The Sacrament of Reconciliation

Are you afraid to start a Catholic Moms Group? Are you sitting on the fence?

Jul 29, 2022

Today I want to reach out to all the moms who are on the fence about starting a Catholic moms group. I have written before about all the reasons I have – about not being a Catholic Moms Group leader before, let’s just say they are numerous and valid.  I can begin with my 10 children and the time it takes to run my house, and get all the way to the fact that I hold a demanding public office, and plus I’m tired!

However, I AM a Catholic Moms Group leader. Once I gave my “fiat” to the Holy Spirit and said yes to Dorothy, Founder of,  the blessings just started to flow. Having the training, resources, access to the membership portal with  curriculum, dozens of tools ready and the support of seasoned Catholic Moms Group Leaders  – made all the difference in the world. All of the pieces fell together and my first year has been a complete blessing to me and the moms in my parish and diocese. I worked hard and set up and the moms came.  The support and sharing flowed.  I even got sent a wonderful co-leader, Lisa. She is always there to brainstorm and fill in and guide conversation and be supportive and just an all around blessing.

Now, don’t get me wrong. We have had our share of challenges.  Weather, we live in Alaska, demanding schedules, and even a little burnout, we do a weekly group.  The main challenge we face is child care.  We have a special parish.  We are located in an isolated area and most people do not have family within two thousand miles. This is a military town and it just creates a dynamic of isolation, loneliness and moms who need a break.  We have promised 2 hours with the kids at a babysitter to our moms. Our group is a moment in the week for moms to decompress and share and build each other up. We learn about each other and our faith and the world, and we want to do it while having a break from the sometimes dozens of kids that we have with us.  We tried taking turns sitting with the kids but it felt wrong always leaving one mom out.  We advertised for months looking for child care for two little hours a week.  We offered good money, no takers. Finally we found a homeschooled high school student who was able to be there nearly every week and accepted gas money as her payment.  It was ok.  She sometimes had a class or issue that called her away. More than that, the sheer number of children was just too much for a young babysitter.  The kids needed an adult.

Once summer came we took a break from normal meetings and have been meeting at different parks. The kids play and moms chat, but the organized and guided conversations we came to rely on are missing.  A few weeks ago a mom sighed and told me she can’t wait until we get back to the church (i.e normal meetings). I was filled with dread. Who is going to wrangle all of these kids.  Now let me explain this is not an average moms group. This is a CATHOLIC Moms Group and we have a LOT of kids.  I only have my one little toddler, my kids are grown or go to school.  With only a handful of moms there, we easily have 20 or more kids on any given week, from babies to early teens. The parish has a nice play area and lots of beautiful classrooms. All we need is a committed adult or 2 to help give moms a break.

June 15 I had a major surgery.  While I was in the hospital my husband found out about an activity at the Cathedral near the hospital for kids.  He had no idea what it really was, only that it said “Kids’ Mission 3-5, daily” He took our kids and met a Miracle! The Diocese had just become home to 3 Servidora Sisters. They had brought a bunch of Brothers and Sisters from their order and were doing a Mission. Just playing with kids, teaching them about God and doing rosary processions through town. It was amazing.  My little boys were enamored with Mother Way of Salvation and Sister New Eve and Sister Innocens (I hope that’s how you spell it) from the moment they met them. They had an amazing time.  My husband, one of the few dads there, caught their attention and it was a MATCH! Since then our family has developed a real love for these sisters. They were at our parish helping with VBS last week and I suddenly just knew that they were the answer to my prayers.

I told them about OUR Mission with the Catholic Moms Group. I showed them the materials and I explained our dilemma. They chimed right in that they would love to support us.  They will do a children’s program DURING the moms group. Two of them will provide an organized activity for the children and one of them will sit in the moms group and help us answer theology questions and guide us on our Faith journey with presentations and prayer.

It is like the Holy Spirit heard our cry and sent Angels to answer it. These Holy, happy, loving women are the answer to so many prayers.  I can not wait to get the program back from our summer break and introduce everyone to the Sisters!

The presence of the sisters has emboldened Lisa and I to really start advertising the group to the entire Diocese and we can not wait to see what Our Lord does with our Catholic Moms Group in year 2!

April Smith,
Catholic Moms Group Leader

April is the new leader of the Mothers Group in North Pole, Alaska. She has run various versions of mom groups for nearly 20 years and feels so blessed by the Catholic Moms Group program which has finally led to a real spiritual movement in her parish. 
April is a mom to 10 children from toddlers right up to adults. She recently left a successful real estate business to focus more time on things that directly impact her family. This led to her running for and being elected to the Board of Education for her school district. What a challenge THAT has been in these crazy times.  
Hospitality is the Smith Family ministry, as they also administer the parish Social Committee, for nearly a decade now, at St. Nicholas. April loves making opportunities for social engagement in the parish that build up families and the whole community, every single month.

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