Great News from Mother’s Group at Our Lady of Perpetual Help
When we initially heard about the How to Start a Mother’s Group workshop through the archdiocese, there were a lot of uncertainties: I had a lot on my plate and I knew long-term volunteer commitment was a challenge. After some discernment, I had asked one of our parish moms to attend the archdiocesan workshop informing people about how to start a parish mother’s group; at the very least, we would be open to hearing about it and then discern if God willed this for us. The workshop made us realize that it was super-easy to start and run this ministry and there were a lot of supports provided by the CatholicMomsGroup.com ministry. I realized that it was an excellent a way for us to form our parish moms as well as to reach out to our broader Catholic family who do not go to church. This mandate to reach out to the scattered forms an integral part of the Archdiocesan pastoral plan.
We officially launched on October 2017 and have been meeting our moms once a month since then. We have been so heartened by the response from the moms of which there are at least 12 who come regularly. Among these are two non-Catholic moms and moms from 25 to 70 plus years of age. Some of our moms have had to go back to work but the group is come as you can. We have a mix of mothers including new moms, moms of teenage children, and those whose children are all grown up. We pray together, learn more about our faith, and mingle over refreshments, coffee and tea in a relaxed setting. We have had guest speakers including a Catholic artist named Liz Tan and theologian Dr. Moira McQueen as well as watched videos that help our moms grow in faith. We have had activities to teach our moms to pray the rosary, as well as wrapped gifts for the homeless in December – gifts which were then hand-delivered and given personally to those on the street as a family activity.
Both Jenny and I never realized how God would bless the group and how God was working within our moms! This year for our parish Good Friday Walk, for instance, a large portion of our moms from our parish moms group were in attendance and they brought with them their families. I now have something to invite our new mothers to after they complete our Baptism prep. program and some have actually followed suit! Another mother from our group shared last month that during the prayer component of our meeting, she had prayed for her 18-year old nephew who was away from the church and, immediately after, events had providentially occurred in his life such that he now wishes to be confirmed. The mother forms an integral part of the home and so reaching out to our moms, leading them to Jesus allows them to gently bring home the gospel to their husbands and children. A Catholic Mother’s group has served not only our parish mothers but, by consequence, enables us to reach out to the broader parish community! If you wish, please feel free to contact me if you have any questions about running the parish mother’s group at your parish.
Alison Endrizzi was born in the United Arab Emirates and has called Toronto her home for over two decades. She feels blessed for the opportunity to serve God and his people through the ministry of Lay Pastoral Associate at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church, Toronto.