Greetings to all from the Cowichan Valley, in this my first Communique I am pleased to introduce our Christian Family Life team:

National Chairperson: Pat Deppiesse
Provincial Chairperson: Blanca Stead
Diocesan Chairpersons:
Kamloops Diocese: Ria Wanner
Nelson Diocese: Phyllis Miller
Prince George Diocese: Amabile DalMonte
Vancouver Diocese: Rosemary Azu
Victoria Diocese: Linda Foucault
Whitehorse Diocese: Carol Vanderbyl

Responsibilities of the Chairperson of Christian Family Life:
Marriage and Family: “The family is the basic cell of society. It is the cradle of life and
love, the place in which the individual is born and grows.” (Christifideles Laici)

Sanctity of Life: “A human embryo must be protected because it is alive, just as a sick person must be protected from unethical interventions or neglect. This basic equality of persons is absolute…It is the basis
on which the Catholic Church rests its whole teaching on respect for human life from conception until natural death.”
(McQueen, Moira. Bioethics matters. Novalis, 2011, p.24.)

Vocations: “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Pray to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers to gather the harvest.”
(Mat 9:38)

Ministry to: Youth, disabled, seniors, widowed, separated and divorced.
“We are co-workers in the vineyard of the Lord.”
“The role of the laity is essential in accomplishing the mission
of the Church”.

The 9th World Meeting of Families was held in Dublin, Ireland, August 22 to 26, 2018, on the theme chosen by the Pope “The Gospel of the Family: Joy for the World”, framed in the context of Amoris Laetitia and coordinated by the new Dicastery for the Laity, the Family and Life, presided by Cardinal K. Farrell. In the letter addressed to Cardinal Farrell the Holy Father referred to the true family love, lived according to the words “please’, “thank you”, and “I’m sorry” and with attention to each person’s fragility.

At the meeting, some of the topics addressed by the speakers and panelists were human trafficking, the role of the grandparents in family, supporting newly married couples in the parish, and why the family matters to the future of the planet.
Other issues addressed by the panelists were “Cure for our common home: why the family matters to the future of the planet” and an interactive seminar based on the themes of “Laudato Si.”

One of the Cardinals’ homily was entitled “Love endures all things: why strong marriages make stronger societies. In his homily at the closing Mass, Pope Francis said in reference to John’s Gospel that the teachings of the Church were at times challenging to follow. “If we are honest with ourselves, we too can find the teachings of Jesus hard. How difficult it is always to forgive those who hurt us, how challenging always to welcome the immigrant and the stranger. How inconvenient to protect the rights of the most vulnerable, the unborn or the elderly, who seem to impinge upon our own sense of freedom? If Jesus questions us Do you also want to leave? Our answer should be like Peter’s: We too will serve the Lord because he is our God”. He concluded: “may God’s blessing come down upon all your families, so that they may be places of love and forgiveness”.

The 10th World Meeting of Families will be held in Rome in 2021.
In her first Communique, our National CFL Chairperson reminds us that: National Seniors Day is on October 1st and that is an opportunity to show seniors our appreciation and to acknowledge their contributions to family and society.
Prime Minister Youth Council: applications are currently underway, and the deadline is November 30, 2018. Canadian youth aged 18 to 24 are the non-partisan board to advise the Prime Minister on mental health, education, economy, climate change and other issues affecting youth.
The website is: www.canada.ca/en/campaign/prime-ministers-youth-council.html 

May Our Lady of Good Counsel guide us as we work for God and Canada,

Blanca Stead