January 2019
From the Office of Marriage & Family
2019 Catholic Men's Conference
Five Rules for Serving Your Spouse
The only way marriage works is if you serve each other. That’s how God designed it. There are two reasons this is true. First, we can’t meet our own needs. If we could, we wouldn’t be seeking a partner in the first place. A husband has what his wife needs. A wife has what her husband needs. The best way to receive these things if we serve each other.
Safe Haven Sunday March 3
Equipping the Family, Safeguarding Children
Safe Haven Sunday is celebrating its first year of raising awareness throughout dioceses and parishes in the United States regarding the negative impacts of pornography on individuals, marriages, families and society. Safe Haven Sunday is a weekend set aside by dioceses and parishes to directly address the harms of pornography in an appropriate way. Within the context of the Mass, dioceses and parishes are able to provide teaching and resources that will support and protect individuals, marriages and families in making all homes a safe haven.
Respect Life
Vespers for Life & March for Life
Sunday, January 20:  Vespers for Life

St. Anthony’s Church
2405 North 1st St., St. Cloud. 

3:30 pm Rosary for Life
4:00 pm Vespers -
Bishop Donald Kettler presiding 
MARCH FOR LIFE  Join us on the bus for a Prayer Service and the March for Life on  January 22nd  at the Cathedral of St. Paul. The bus will leave after the 7:15 a.m. Mass at St. Anthony Parish parking lot in St. Cloud picking up in Foley and Elk River and will return at approximately 3:00 p.m. A free-will offering will be accepted to help defer the cost of the bus.

To reserve a space for the bus ride, register on line, click below or contact the Office of Marriage & Family at 320-252-4721
For flyer of the event,   click here.
2019 Respect Life Poster
Download and hang in your window!
Abortion Was the Leading Cause of Death Worldwide in 2018, Killing 42 Million People from Lifesite News
40 Days for Life
40 Days for Life
March 6 through April 13
Mon-Fri 7 am to 7 pm
The focus of this pro-life effort consists of:
  •  40 days of prayer & fasting
  •  40 days of peaceful vigil
  •  40 days of community outreach
You and your parishioners can help make a life-saving impact by joining our local vigil.  Many people are needed to maintain the peaceful prayer and vigil at the Planned Parenthood site on E St Germain in St Cloud.
Movie: Unplanned
Coming Spring 2019
The true life story of  Abby Johnson and her journey from a Planned Parenthood director involved in upwards of 22,000 abortions and a spokesperson fighting to enact legislation for the cause to the day she saw something that changed everything.
Natural Family Planning
Faithfully Yours: Discover Natural Family Planning (NFP)!
NFP cooperates with nature and God's plan for married love. It is effective, healthy, and marriage building. The Billings Ovulation Method is a natural, highly effective method for postponing or achieving pregnancy without the use of drugs or devices.

A First Instruction in the Billings Ovulation Method will be offered in: 
  • Little Falls: Tuesday, January 8 & February 5 at 7:30 PM
  • Long Prairie: Monday, January 28 & February 25 at 7:00 PM 
  • Rice: Monday, January 7 & February 4 at 6:30 PM
  • St. Cloud: Thursday, January 17 & February 28 at 6:30 PM
  • St. Michael: Monday, January 14 & February 11 at 6:00 PM
  • Wadena: Friday, January 25 & February 22 at 5:30 PM
Puberty Presentation On-Line
Over the last 32 years, I have given talks to thousands of 5th grade students on the topic of "Puberty." Last Spring, anticipating my retirement, we taped my presentation. We are in process of editing the videos and making them available on our web-site, along with accompanying resources for parents. The project is scheduled for completion by January 11 . We hope these will be helpful to you, your parents and students.
Beginning Experience
Beginning Experience (B.E.) is a Catholic based weekend program for adults grieving the loss of a relationship due to separation, death or divorce.

  • April 2019
  • Luther Crest, Alexandria MN
  • Call (888) 565-0178 for more information or Click here.

Healing Hearts of Suicide Survivors - January 8
Healing Hearts is a support group that assists when a loved one has died by suicide, working through the complex emotions. With support and hope of other survivors, members of the group walk alongside each other "through" the grief. For more information contact Roxann at (320) 248-1563
Retrouvaille Weekend

Retrouvaille weekend for couples struggling in their marriage. For more information, call 320-255-5314 or click here .
The next weekend is in St. Cloud begins January 18, 2019. 
  Worldwide Marriage Encounter
Worldwide Marriage Encounter For more information, call Brent & Tracy Chessen at 612-756-8720 or click here. The next weekend is November 16th in Prior Lake, MN
Catholics at the Capitol February 19, 2019
Want to make your Catholic voice heard at the Capitol?

Minnesota Catholics will be gathering at the State Capitol to learn about the issues impacting our faith and daily life. You’ll have the
chance to hear from and meet with legislators, pray with fellow Catholics, and get a window into the legislative process. These are opportunities for you to share your story and make your voice count. Preregistration is required for this free event and space is limited. A free-will offering will be accepted.
Catholics at the Capitol 2019 - February 19
Go to right now to reserve your spot!
Save the Date
Women’s Lenten Retreat “DIGNITY OF WOMEN”
Seven Dolors Church
Albany, MN
March 16, 2019
A Found Farewell
There are many euphemisms attributed for those completing a journey:  end-of-the-line, winding down, topping off the building with a tall flagpole, or my personal favorite… It's not over until the fat lady sings. Well, after 31 plus years at the Diocese of St. Cloud, plus a few more as a volunteer, I am officially retiring in January.
I want to thank each of you, for your dedication, courage, and integrity in serving your families and communities, to bring the Gospel message to the world. It has been an extreme privilege and honor. Your love for Christ and His church, for the sanctity of life and your defense for the most vulnerable in our society – the unborn – gives me great pause and admiration.
Through these last years, there have been many issues and challenges. The threats to life and family have been many. It is not surprising that the evil one strikes at the heart of the basis of society. One hundred years ago, Sister Lucia dos Santos, one of the three children who witnessed the Marian apparitions at Fatima foretold of this danger. Before her death, she predicted that the final battle between Christ and Satan would be over marriage and the family. And the battle has been raging for some time.
In this on-going battle, some fights we have won, for example the ban on partial birth abortion, and overturning the HHS mandate on religious organizations being forced to pay for abortions. Some fights we have lost, such as the Marriage Amendment - recognizing the sacredness of marriage only between one man and one woman. And for some issues, it is too soon to know the outcome. 
I have been part of initiating important ministries, such as the 40 Days for Life campaigns, Project Rachel ministries, Courage and EnCourage, Catholic Men’s and Women’s Conferences, Honoring Marriage Day, Vespers for Life, Fortnight for Freedom, and Purity Balls. During my tenure, I have personally had the great privilege to present to well over 100,000 people on topics of sexuality, respect life, puberty, gender theory, pornography, marriage and dating. I will carry with me the lessons I have learned and the inspiration I have received working with so many of you. 
Soon, a new director will be named and the work to foster marriage and family will go on. As for me, I will still be working part time with the Fully Engaged program. Rich and I will be traveling in our fifth wheel trailer throughout the country much of the year, training new mentor couples to prepare engaged couples in the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony. So while my journey as director of the Office of Marriage & Family may be coming to an end, a new adventure begins. 
When God closes a door, he opens a window, and it’s time to hit the road. And while the fat lady may be singing, what I will strive to hear is, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.” Please join in our continued prayers for an end to the tragedy of abortion, the sanctity of marriage and family and particularly for holy Mother Church. Blessings…Chris