|TO: Provincial Chairpersons of Christian Family Life|
|CC: National Executive (for information)|
|FROM: Doreen Gowans, National Chairperson of Christian Family Life|
|ATT: Provincial Christian Family Life Chairpersons|
As the newly elected chairperson of this committee may I personally welcome you to join me as we do our best to inform members of the issues under this standing committee. Christian family life has a wealth of opportunities to serve and inform members. The only way to do this is to have an open heart to the Holy Spirit and to take the time to listen to His direction!
To introduce myself, I was born in Kamloops, British Columbia. After graduating from St. Ann’s Academy, I took a business administrative course that led me to work for Weyerhaeuser Canada as an administrative assistant to the vice-presidents of human resources and pension and benefits. Later I worked as a scheduler for hourly employees, retiring in 2010. In 1968 I married my best friend Bill; we have two married children and eight grandchildren.
I joined the League in 1968. At the parish and diocesan levels I was chairperson of many standing committees. I was instrumental in designing the membership gift certificate which the League has modified and uses today. On the provincial level I held the positions of secretary, communications and organization standing committees chairperson and then president. I was awarded life membership in 2011 and was elected to the national executive in 2014.
I am very involved in my parish community and together with my husband and another couple we’ve put together a weekend gathering for happily married couples entitled “Together Forever”. I’m also an associate member of the Congregation of Notre Dame and was formerly a member of its Justice, Peace and Integrality of Creation Team which deals with global justice and peace issues. My husband and I organized and taught marriage preparation for 20 years and represented the diocese at the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia in 2015. Being in the presence of Pope Francis was an awesome experience I will never forget. Spirituality and my love for the League are very important parts of my life and I’m looking forward to my term as the chairperson of this committee. If you have any questions or suggestions contact me and I will do my best to accommodate you. Together we will work as a valuable team to do our part to make family and life important to all members and beyond.
Welcome to life members Glenda Klein (Ontario) and Marg McCallum (New Brunswick) who have said ‘yes’ to being Christian family life sub-committee chairpersons. I look forward to working with these two wonderful ladies.
Ministry to Seniors
National Seniors Day is October 1, 2016. Let’s encourage councils to celebrate seniors by hosting a seniors’ tea or just stopping by one of the many seniors’ homes to visit.
Marriage and Family
The Catholic Organization for Life and Family (COLF ) is an organization that was co-founded and sponsored by the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops and the Knights of Columbus. Its mission statement is to:
- Promote the teachings of the Catholic church on the inherent dignity of the human person and the essential respect for human life in all circumstances and at every stage of development, from conception to natural death;
- Promote the teachings of the Catholic church on marriage and the family, as well as the fundamental role of the family in society;
- Educate and support Christian families, assisting them to fulfill their mission in the church and the world.
Do the councils in your province/territory have a kit of marriage and family life information supplied by COLF? They can order pamphlets on issues Catholic women face by going online to www.colf.ca . Also some pamphlets of interest can be downloaded such as:
- Parents, will your children be happy? 
- The Church Speaks Out: Excerpts on Euthanasia, Suicide, and the Christian Meaning of Suffering 
- Prayer for the Protection of Human Life 
- Families, Christ calls us to sow joy, and hope! 
- Bullying: A plague to combat together 
These publications are ideal for families and for distribution in parishes, schools, universities, hospitals and faith-sharing groups.
The Euthanasia Deception
The Euthanasia Deception: We are All Vulnerable is a documentary that may be ordered by going to the website caringnotkilling.com . Councils may purchase it for $30.00 or rent and download it. The DVD comes with helpful resource materials, including a discussion guide. The Euthanasia Prevention Coalition is asking councils to share the documentary with others by organizing screenings in their community. The DVD is the first part in a social media resistance campaign. Councils may join the resistance campaign by becoming a member of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition .
Ministry to Youth
The prime minister has formed a Prime Minister’s Youth Council. The council will advise him on issues such as employment, access to education, building stronger communities, climate change and clean growth. Adolescents between the ages of 16 to 24 may apply at https://www.canada.ca/en/campaign/prime-ministers-youth-council.html .
In this Jubilee Year, let us allow God to surprise us. He never tires of casting open the doors of His heart and of repeating that He loves us and wants to share His love with us. Pope Francis
National Chairperson of Christian Family Life