Ministry Spotlight: Parent’s Discussion Group

By Tim Quirk

Are you interested in continuing your mystagogia of our faith? Are you looking for a peer discussion group to help you get a deeper understanding of our Catholicism in a laid back environment? If so, the Sunday Parents discussion group at St. Catherine of Siena’s Newman Center may be perfect for you. The origin of this group was for parents, but any adult who is interested in deepening their faith through discussion, respectful questioning, and reading scripture is more than welcome to join us on Sundays after the 8:30 am Mass. We created this group to meet at the same time as when our children are in their weekly Sunday school (Religious Ed) classes. So, whether you attend the 8:30 am or 10:45 am Sunday mass, this group will work out perfectly for you. We meet in the cozy and comfortable confines of Cate’s Café just down the hallway from our chapel and meeting space.

Our group’s well-structured discussions are regularly led by our Pastor, Fr Lukasz. In the event of his absence, Fr Peter, as well as group members, have taken the reigns. We usually start out with some prayer and reflection and then dive right into the weeks’ topic. Our discussions have been focused on various subjects such as Advent, where we examined its meaning and origins. Another week, we deeply examined the Sacrament of Reconciliation (penance/ confession). We started by looking at its origin and evolution in the church. Our discussion then unraveled some of the common misconceptions and fears associated with this sacrament while suggesting some tips to help overcome many of the hurdles that prevent us from receiving this beautiful sacramental gift on a more regular basis. Some of our other thought-provoking sessions have focused on topics such as: Jacob wrestling the angel, society’s obsession with sexualizing everything, and the church’s views on contemporary topics like homosexuality, same sex unions, and “Nones” (the increasing group of people who do not believe in any higher power.)

The overwhelming feeling that is left in my heart after attending these meetings is that the Holy Trinity of The Father, Son and Holy Spirit embody pure Truth and Love and that our Catholic religion is one of inclusion, acceptance, and relevant teachings.