Passionist Family Groups
What is a Passionist Family Group?
Quite simply - a Family Group resembles an extended family. Your extended family is the St. Joseph's Parish, where parishioners have welcomed the Movement.
Each Family Group has somewhere between 24-40 people, including children. Whilst remaining a part of the Parish extension of the Family Group Movement, each group is encouraged to develop its own flavour.
What do the Groups Do?
The emphasis is on building relationships, so the groups are about 'being' rather than 'doing'.
Each group is encouraged to get together once a month for a low cost or no cost activity.
These gatherings allow people to get to know one another, and then in natural ways, group members begin to create bonds with others. With the building of bonds comes the opportunity to form friendships, have fun, extend acceptance and support, and quite simply and joyfully experience Christian life with others.
The emphasis is on allowing everyone to be part of the 'family'.
Background - where did Passionist Family Groups come from?
Fr Peter McGrath CP founded the Passionist Family Group Movement in 1972 in the (then) small parish of Terry Hills in Sydney, Australia. This small parish, gradually grew, and with it so did the Family Groups, and today Terry Hills has around 26 groups, involving about 350 families.
The spread of the PFGM around Australia under the direction of the Passionists began slowly in 1982. by early 1992 they had spread to over180 parishes in 20 Australian states. Today Passionist Family Groups can be found throughout Australia, New Zealand, USA, UK, Ireland and Scotland.
Passionist Family Groups began in New Zealand in June 1988, and in 2001 there were 103 parishes involved in New Zealand. Of these 6 are of other denominations (Anglican, Baptist, Presbyterian, Uniting).
How do Passionist Family Groups help the parish?
The networking of families has an immediate effect on parish liturgy and within a few months more people are keen to become involved in the life of the parish.
Many pastoral needs such as visiting one another, or helping each other in practical ways in special times of need, build parish life and help people understand what belonging to a church really means.
Family groups support and encourage the life of the family as well as provide an important sense of belonging for many who have lost it, through death or breakdown.
Can anyone join?
The simple answer is 'yes' . The family group motto is 'A family for all'.
For further information please contact the parish priest, Fr John Adams, or the parish secretary, Wilma Vertogen on 352 9275 or click here to download a copy of the enrolment form.