Finding the heart of practicing our faith Print
Year of Faith
Thursday, Dec. 20, 2012 -- 12:00 AM

year of faith column logoDuring this Year of Faith, we are called to take time to consider what is at the heart of the practice of our Catholic faith.

Hopefully this season of Advent has been a chance to prayerfully think about this topic and wait in anticipation for the answer. This may have been a battle, as our world poses many challenges to this task. There are Christmas parties to attend, light displays to enjoy, trees needing to be trimmed, gifts waiting to be wrapped, and meals to be planned. The pre-Christmas to-do list goes on and on.

The Christmas season itself may not be any different. It will likely be a busy, hectic time, filled with joyful visits with family and loved ones and celebrations galore. We may not find a lot of silence and time for reflection.

To help, the diocese wants you to know of a place of inspiration online — the Madison Diocese YouTube channel. As you are working on posting your photographs from this beautiful season online and gathering last minute recipes for Christmas dinner online, please stop by.

For the final week of Advent and throughout the Christmas season, you will be able to enjoy the latest Year of Faith film, having been produced by the Diocese of Madison and Backflip Films.

In this latest edition, Jeff and Rebecca Hoeben — co-directors of Camp Gray — are featured. To help you enter into the spirit of this great holiday, watch them decorate Christmas cookies, unwrap gifts, cut down a tree with their toddlers, and enjoy the season. While watching, listen to their powerful reflections about the Christmas season.

This holy couple gave birth to their three children during the month of December. They know a thing or two about what Mary and Joseph experienced during that first Christmas.

Jeff battled cancer for the better part of the past couple years. As of this winter, the doctors have declared him to be cancer free. This Christmas season is one of deep gratitude and importance for his family.

And, above all, Jeff and Rebecca know a lot about love, especially in the person of Jesus Christ who entered the world over 2,000 years ago this Christmas season.

Do not let these weeks pass by without reflecting on the reason for the season. Allow this film to help you do so!

To learn more about the Year of Faith and watch the other films in this series, visit

Lindsay Becher is the coordinator of youth and young adult ministry for the Diocese of Madison.