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Families Matter in advance of world meeting

By Ann Marie Foley - 20 April, 2017


The World Meeting of Families 2018 will be a momentous event, and the ways that families prepare for and build on it is also very important.

This is according to the Focolare Movement’s Declan O’Brien, who told catholicireland.net about the launch of a special resource for families to help prepare for 2018.

The launch of the ‘The Family Cube’ takes place at an event titled Family Matters in Maynooth at the end of this month.

“The World Meeting of Families 2018 is going to be a momentous event for families in Ireland and throughout the world. But it will be more than an event. How we prepare for it and how we build on it afterwards is just as important as the event itself. And so we are delighted to be having this day of family preparation and to launch The Family Cube,” said Declan O’Brien, who is from Prosperous, Co Kildare, and on the organising team for the day which is for all age groups and all families.

He and his wife Sarah have already given their testimony on ‘The Joy of Love in marriage and the family’ video, which features couples and individuals involved in church movements and organisations which support marriage and the family. This film, produced by the Catholic Communications Office of the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference, is a joint initiative of the Council for Marriage and Family and the World Meeting of Families 2018.

Sarah O’Brien explained the cube: “The Family Cube is a very useful tool to remind us of the importance of love in the family. Each face of the cube displays a Gospel based phrase; families roll the cube every morning and try to live according to what comes out on top.”

Many families are already using the cube, and Bronagh from Belfast explained that her children are getting lots of practice. “This little thing, although so small, has more power than you could imagine. It has made me stop and think as a parent how to best live out the gospel,” she said.

“It has brought encouragement, hope along with much love (especially when my three boy’s are fighting). Although we, like many other families, have our ups and downs, the cube of love for the two seconds or less it takes to roll it has certainly made us think and allow us to be a better people, [to] be that child of God and bring love and happiness to everyone we meet.”

Keynote speakers at the Family Matters event include Fr Tim Bartlett, Secretary General for the WMOF 18, Dr Lorna Gold from Trócaire and Susan Gately, Catholicireland writer and author of God’s Surprise – the New Movements in the Church.

Family Matters will be held on 29 April at the Aula Maxima in Maynooth, with a special programme for children and teenagers, and costs €10 for individuals or €20 for a family.

See: http://www.focolare.org/Ireland.

To view the video referred to above see: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DGpx3FK9Spw.

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