January 2020


Happy 2020! Whether you're a new-year-new-me resolution maker, new year's cynic, or somewhere in between, I think we can all agree that the beginning of a new year - and a new decade - signifies a fresh start.
A new year is a great time to introduce myself so you have a name behind the newsletter! My name is Caty Burke, the new Associate Director for Marriage and Family Ministry in our diocese. I grew up in Mishawaka and graduated from Marian High School (go Knights!) From there I moved to Ohio for college, Washington, DC for grad school at the John Paul II Institute, then briefly to Massachusetts to marry Ryan, my best friend from college, in August 2018. This past summer we made the long journey from New England to the Midwest so I could begin my new job at the diocese. While I never thought I'd move back home, I couldn't be happier now that I'm here! In 2020, we're working hard to reach out to more young adult couples to help you grow in love - so stay tuned for some exciting initiatives, including an upcoming dessert-based date night series (scroll down for more info).
As Catholics, we always have the chance for a fresh new beginning no matter what time of year - we can always go to Confession, pick up a prayer habit, begin a devotional, or start reading Scripture daily. And we still have much to celebrate - the Christmas season lasts until the Baptism of the Lord on January 12! But the January cold reminds us that we're still in winter, a season of suffering for many. January is also the month when the United States legalized abortion in 1973 in Roe v. Wade . You can join the 9 Days for Life novena to pray for the protection of all human life, no matter how vulnerable, from conception until natural death. Together let us pray for peace in the lives of all the born and unborn.

The Marriage & Family Ministry Staff
Say "I do" to 3 new year's resolutions for couples
We hear talk of “falling in love” and being “swept off our feet” when we each first met our spouse, but then the reality of life sets in and that’s where the phrase “labor of love” comes into play. We must make an effort each day to love our spouse; to honor, respect and die to ourselves for the sake of our beloved; the one we said “I do” to. Here are a few suggestions of New Year’s resolutions for marriages.
New Year's resolutions for the Catholic Family
January is an opportunity to improve not just your health or your spending habits, but your spiritual life as well. There are countless spiritual resolutions to make for the new year, but picking just one or two is ideal so that you don’t become overwhelmed. Just remember to keep it simple at first, and as your resolutions turn into habits, you can add more. One small step toward improving your spiritual life is all you need to become a stronger Catholic in the new year.
4 ways to keep in touch with family after the holidays
Picture this: you just spent a great week or so with your family. Not only were you able to see your immediate family, you were able to travel to see your significant other’s family, as well. And — bonus points for you — it was all smooth sailing: Christmas cookies, a visit to Santa, lots of long dinners and late nights spent catching up. How can you sustain this closeness and continue to be a part of everyone’s life year-round, despite the distance?
Podcast: Habits: Let Us Begin Again
St. Francis would tell his followers “Let us begin again for until now we have done nothing.” This is a great inspiration for us because sometimes we feel like we are always beginning again with new habits, plans, and goals for our family. In this podcast we discuss questions such as how do you create appropriate habits for your family? How do you come up with a plan with your spouse? How do you keep those kids motivated?
10 ways to support her when she's unexpectedly expecting
An unexpected pregnancy might be confusing along the way, but life—though at times difficult—is ultimately beautiful. Perhaps one of your friends has become pregnant unexpectedly. As someone who has been there, I encourage you to support your friend in her new journey of being a mother.
Not sure how to help or what to say? Here are ten tips.
Marriage Tip of the Month

With your spouse (or fiancé), choose a patron saint (or saints) for your marriage this year. Learn more about them, read their writings, and pray for their intercession in your life together.
Not sure where to start? Check out this list of married saints below!