a half years after the restoration of CFC (from July 2007), on its
third year (2007, 2008, 2009), CFC-FFL is well underway in pursuing
its clear vision and mission. We are called to renew the family and to
defend life. This is within the context of our overall mission of
evangelization, with emphasis this year on Godís divine mercy.
was impressed upon me as I and my wife Gerry were privileged to attend
and participate in 3 significant events in this first month of the new
year. First we went to Mexico for the 6th World Meeting of Families.
Then we participated in the 36th March for Life in Washington DC, USA.
Finally we made a pilgrimage to the National Shrine of the Divine
Mercy in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, USA.
World Meeting of Families
This is the major event of the Vaticanís Pontifical Council for the
Family, of which Gerry and I are members. It is mounted once every 3
years. In 2003 it was in Manila, while in 2006 it was in Valencia,
Spain. There was a 3-day Theological-Pastoral Congress, where there
were 9,000 delegates from 96 countries, including 20 cardinals, 200
archbishops and bishops, many clergy and religious, and of course lay
people. This was followed by a festive meeting of families with 20,000
people, and a Eucharistic celebration on the last day. Normally the
pope attends these last 2 days. However, for health reasons, this time
he did not go to Mexico (the altitude was a problem). He did have a
and I were privileged to present a paper on ďCouples for Christ in
the Renewal of the Family and the Defense of LifeĒ during the
plenary. It was very well received. We also had the opportunity to
interact with the Church hierarchy, among them Cardinal Tarcisio
Bertone, Vatican Secretary of State (representing the Holy Father),
Cardinal Ennio Antonelli, President of the Pontifical Council for the
Family, Cardinal Stanislaw Rylko, President of the Pontifical Council
for the Laity, and many others.
World Meeting of Families, with its plenary presentations, testimonies
and other activities, highlighted our thrust for the family.
March for Life
After making a pastoral visit to our CFC-FFL brethren in Phoenix,
Arizona, we were off to Washington DC, to participate in the 36th
March for Life. The March for Life has been held since 1973, when the
infamous Roe v. Wade legalized abortion throughout the USA. Since that
time 50 million unborn children have been slaughtered through surgical
event started with a Youth Rally and a Eucharistic celebration. It was
a sight to see, with the venue packed with 30,000 people, including
about 50 bishops, 400 priests and 500 seminarians. Then the march
itself had 300,000 people, including the CFC-FFL contingent of 109
brethren. Our brethren were enthused, and promised to participate in
the marches every year in ever increasing numbers.
March for Life highlighted our pro-life thrust, our defense of the
culture of life, our promotion of the gospel of life.
Then Gerry and I were off to New Jersey, then to New York, to visit
our CFC-FFL brethren there. But before these, we were able to make a
pilgrimage with some of our brethren to the National Shrine of the
Divine Mercy in Stockbridge, Massachusetts. It was a blessed time,
with very few people, with fresh snow on the ground, with the air cold
but with a bright sun overhead.
able to attend the Eucharistic celebration, pray the Divine Mercy
Chaplet, and kiss the relic of Sr Faustina.
visit highlighted our new theme of Trust in Jesus for 2009, with the
very important element of the Divine Mercy.
the right track
In the midst of attacks on marriage and the family, in the face of the
holocaust of the unborn, under the onslaught of anti-family and
anti-life forces in the world, God continues to reach out to a world
in darkness and sin. And God precisely raised CFC in 1981 for this
task. The enemy almost succeeded in destroying CFC in 2007, but God
raised a remnant, and has restored His creation to its authentic
continues to do its basic mission of evangelization, within the
context of the renewal of the family and the defense of life. The
events this January have affirmed our calling and work. We are on the
never veer away again. Let us move forward with the confidence that
God anoints us, Jesus is with us, and the Holy Spirit empowers us. Let
us trust in Jesus and always look to Godís divine mercy.
we trust in you!
bless you all.
brother and servant,
Go to "The Way Forward Part 21" >>