What CFM Is
Christian Family Movement is a national network of parish/neighborhood small groups of families. Through the use of programming available from the CFM USA Office and the dynamics of small group interaction, Christian values are reinforced and families are encouraged to reach out in action to others.
The CFM group consists of five to seven families with the adults meeting two evenings a month in each other's homes. Through the use of CFM's many different programs, members discuss what they have observed in their own family or community, judge what they have seen in the light of Jesus' teaching, and then act to change things for the better.
The observe/judge/act technique is the "Jocist Method" first pioneered by Canon Joseph Cardijn, founder of the Young Christian Worker Movement in Belgium. Through the application of this method, many CFM families have become involved in helping others in such ministries as foster-parenting, prison ministry, refugee sponsorship, religious education and couple counseling.
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|Be doers of the word, and not merely hearers.|
|The Church speaks clearly of the duties of family members to one another that build a radiant faith. . . . But the Church doesn't stop there; it also speaks of the relationship between families and the larger culture, the duty of service, working for the common good, welcoming strangers, and giving voice to the Christian conscience. That is the message; you are the messenger.
A Radiant Faith: The Gift of Families to Families|
|Address of the Most Reverend Anthony M. Pilla, Bishop of Cleveland|
|to the Christian Family Movement|
|August 5, 1995|
The mission of the Christian Family Movement is
- to promote Christ-centered marriage and family life;
- to help individuals and their families to live the Christian faith in everyday life; and
- to improve society through actions of love, service, education and example.
Adopted by the Board of Directors
March 10, 2002
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Benefits of CFM
- CFM makes lasting friends
- CFM helps couples stay married
- CFM supports family life
- CFM helps members grow in faith
- CFM helps members get involved in the community
- CFM makes members aware of the issues facing the community
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Outline of a CFM Meeting
Gather and Pray
The meeting always begins with a prayer, read or sung, prepared or spontaneous.
Take a few minutes to let one another know how your life has been since you last met.
Quiet reflection and discussion help group members to step away from the ordinary pressures and distractions of the day and to focus on the issues of the meeting from a Christian perspective.
Report on Actions
Group members report on the progress of CFM actions taken individually, as a family, or by the group. This is the appropriate time to describe needs that have come to the attention of the members.
Quotations, facts, and statistics, drawn mainly from the writings and observations of experts and advocates, add perspective to the issue under discussion.
Members should "Get the facts." At this stage of the meeting, members should refrain from expressing their opinions about facts. They should try to simply report, like any good objective newspaper reporter. The knowledge and experience of group members are valuable, but the group must go beyond its own members to gather facts from the larger world and report them objectively. One can editorialize later.
For CFMers, to judge is not to find another person sinful or holy; it is rather the comparison of how things are with how things should be, in accord with Gospel values. To make such a comparison requires objective observation of how things are, as well as a sincere effort to determine the teaching of Jesus.
If the group judges through prayer, reflection, and observation that things are not as they should be, then ways to bring about a change will come forth from the group. Actions listed in the book are suggestions. The best actions come from the group. They may be directed toward improving family life relationships, or toward the community and beyond. If action is the essence of CFM, autonomous action is its quintessence.
Look Ahead to the Next Meeting
Set the time and the place. Preview the "Observes" to see if specific assignments are required.
The meeting ends with a prayer, the one suggested in the chapter or another chosen by the group or the discussion leaders.
A short social with simple and inexpensive refreshments helps members to know and understand one another better and builds community.
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Holy Trinity, you are a family.
We believe you wish our families to reflect your heavenly community.
Jesus has called us to family ministry, and asked his heavenly Father not to take us from the world, but to deliver us from evil.
And so we pray for the Christian Family Movement, that present members may grow in grace and that new families may join us.
Through good example and prayer, may our homes become that which you desire them to be: true domestic churches, temples of your glory, and schools of humanity, ushering in the reign of God.
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Copyright © 2013 Christian Family Movement