Local director hopes renewed outreach to divorced is one result

Chris Codden is the director of the Office of Marriage and Family in the Diocese of St. Cloud and past president of the National Association of Catholic Family Ministers. She is one of the authors and trainers for “Fully Engaged,” a catechetical, pre-marital inventory and marriage formation program. The Visitor interviewed Codden about the recently…

Becoming a marriage-building parish: 8 strategies for success

Local marriage and family life director offers practical ideas at world meeting By Joe Towalski The Visitor Strengthening marriage and family life in today’s secular culture is no easy task, says Chris Codden, director of the Office of Marriage and Family in the Diocese of St. Cloud. But parishes that are willing to consider multiple…

Pilgrim snapshots

Thirty-six pilgrims from around the Diocese of St. Cloud traveled to Philadelphia Sept. 22-28 for the World Meeting of Families and Pope Francis’ visit to the city. The following are brief reflections from some of the pilgrims: “Pope Francis was the highlight of our week in Philadelphia. Our hope and prayer was to be able…

Adventure to see pope leads to deeper realization about church

By Joe Towalski Editor/The Visitor It’s hard to match the excitement of seeing the pope in person and up close. He is, after all, the vicar of Christ on earth, a leader beloved by billions who serves as the conscience of humankind. Who else can claim that? So, when you get the chance, you don’t…

Pope urges U.S. Catholics to keep enthusiasm, welcome newcomers

PHILADELPHIA (CNS) — Pope Francis ended his trip to the United States with a call for Catholics to keep the enthusiasm of the visit, while continuing to welcome newcomers and care for creation. “Do not let your enthusiasm for Jesus, his church, our families, and the broader family of society run dry,” Pope Francis said…

Pope says he left U.S. praying for, impressed by its people

ABOARD THE PAPAL FLIGHT FROM PHILADELPHIA (CNS) — As the American Airlines plane taking him to Rome from Philadelphia took off, Pope Francis said he pictured the faces of all the people he met, and he prayed for them. At the end of his first-ever visit to the United States, the pope told reporters he…

Memory and motion: Pope Francis shows Americans who he really is

PHILADELPHIA (CNS) — Pope Francis speaks often about memory and motion, the importance of remembering where you came from and setting off without fear to share the Gospel. That’s what he did in the United States. He circled the Statue of Liberty in a helicopter and flew over Ellis Island not preparing to condemn the…

Serve, care for each other, pope tells families at closing Mass

By Dennis Sadowski Catholic News Service Pope Francis urged the hundreds of thousands of people gathered for the closing Mass of the World Meeting of Families to serve and care for each other as freely as God loves the human family. The pope called upon the faithful to embrace signs that the Holy Spirit can…