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January 15, 2004 Edition

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Vocations Awareness Week Jan. 11-17
• Front page: Happy 75th Birthday! -- Bishop George O. Wirz
News Briefs

News Briefs:
Women's day of prayer

JANESVILLE -- St. John Vianney Parish Adult Faith Enrichment Committee is sponsoring a women's day of prayer, reflection, and faith-filled humor with Kate Wiskus as facilitator.

It will be held Saturday, Jan. 31, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Marian Hall. Marian Hall is the closest building to Racine St. opposite the church entrance and adjacent to the parking lot.

This day is open to any woman who would like a special day to herself to rejuvenate, relax, enjoy, and start the new year right. Wiskus is director of the diocesan Office of Pastoral Services.

Lunch will be served so reservations are required. There is a $10 fee.

Register by the end of the day on Jan. 26 by calling 608-305-0153 or the parish center, 608-752-8709, or by mail to: Joan Prendergast, St. John Vianney, 2245 Clark St., Janesville, WI 53545.

Parish offers grief program

MONONA -- Moving through Grief will be offered at Immaculate Heart of Mary (IHM) Church, 5101 Schofield St.

This is a non-denominational Christian program in which participants share caring, support, understanding, and reassurance for those grieving the loss of a loved one. It is a four-session series presented by the IHM Bereavement Ministry Team.

Meetings will be held Saturday mornings (9:30 to 11:30) in the church meeting room. The dates are Jan. 24 and 31, Feb. 7 and 14. There is no charge for attending, but registration is necessary.

To register or for more information, call Mary at 608-222-3840 or Mary Lou at 608-839-5514.

Prayer retreat for women

SINSINAWA -- A women's prayer retreat entitled "A Colorful Palette: A Reflection Time for Women" will be held Friday, Feb. 6, at 7:30 p.m. through Saturday, Feb. 7, at 3:30 p.m. at the Sinsinawa Mound. A fee is charged.

Participants will explore different "colors" of prayer natural to women's hearts, as well as common difficulties experienced in prayer. Group leaders Marilyn Dansart and Cookie Scherrman, both of the Dubuque area, offer this ecumenical retreat as a time to deepen lives of prayer together.

For more information, contact the programs department at 608-748-4411, ext. 811.

Parishes host support groups

MADISON -- Peer support groups for those hurting from separation, divorce, or loss of a significant relationship are open to all ages/faiths at two Madison parishes.

Friends on a Journey will meet from 7 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 15, at Our Lady Queen of Peace nursery, 401 S. Owen Dr. For information, call 608-821-3170.

New Directions will meet from 7 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 22, at St. Dennis Parish Center, 413 Dempsey Rd., top floor. For information, call 608-821-3170.

Vocations Awareness Week Jan. 11-17
Ideas for families to promote vocations in Diocese of Madison

The following are ideas for families to promote vocations:

1. Share freely your vocation as parents; what you value, how you came to that decision, how you feel about vocations to a consecrated life.

2. Make prayer a normal part of family decision-making. Pray with and for members of the family, parish, neighborhood. Give children opportunities to lead prayer and to pray in their own words.

3. Teach your children to share their time, talent, and treasure. Help them to share with those who have less.

4. Talk positively and enthusiastically about the activities of priests, sisters, and brothers. Speak with respect about priests and religious, especially where differences of opinion arise. Be careful of the way criticism of the church is handled.

5. Invite a priest, sister, or brother to your home to visit with you and your children.

6. Include a prayer for vocations as a part of your meal prayers. Institute some special observance as a family for vocations. Choose a particular day to fast, pray the rosary, or pray together in some other suitable way.

7. Tell your children the stories of the saints and founders of orders. Talk with them, in an age-appropriate way, about what priests, brothers, and sisters do today.

8. Consider becoming an associate or lay member of a religious community or joining a lay movement in the church.

9. Challenge young adults to look at a church-related vocation. Tell them about the gifts of ministry you see in them.

10. Explore the feelings you might experience should one of your children choose to give his or her life to church ministry.

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