ST VALENTINE’S DAY – Gifts with a difference!

The World Meeting of Families 2018 is offering free St Valentine’s Day Gift Tokens for couples to give to their loved ones this 14th February. This is in response to a call from Pope Francis for couples to celebrate the feastday in a more meaningful way and to think beyond the merely commercial aspects of the occasion.

With this in mind, the World Meeting of Families 2018 (WMF2018) has produced six free gift tokens that people can give to their loved ones and a St Valentine’s flyer with further ideas on how they can mark the special day, including prayers for single people looking for a spouse. The gift tokens are designed to celebrate love and to help love grow. They include, a commitment to

  • Have a technology-free evening to do an activity of choice
  • Set aside time for praying together as a couple
  • Go for a hand-in-hand walk together
  • Cook a special meal for your loved ones
  • Share loads of tender hugs
  • Taking a journey down memory lane.

The tokens are available in our diocese at St Macartan’s Cathedral, Monaghan, and at St Joseph’s church, Park Street, Monaghan, or in the Veritas shop in Park Street, Monaghan. They are also available at Knock Shrine and at Cathedrals all across the country.

Another suggestion is for couples to visit the reliquary containing the remains of St Valentine in Whitefriar Street Church in Dublin and to pray through St Valentine’s intercession for the finding of love and the growing in the love couples already have.

The World Meeting of Families (WMF2018) will take place in Dublin from 22 to 26 August 2018. The theme for the event is “The Gospel of the Family: Joy for the World’. The WMF2018 will include a three-day Congress for all, talks and discussions centred on the main theme, an engaging and exciting programme for young people and faith and fun events for children. This will be followed by a Festival of Families on Saturday 25 August, comprising a special concert-style event in which personal stories of faith will be shared by families representing the five continents of the world. WMF2018 will close with a Solemn Eucharistic Celebration on Sunday 26 August that will gather thousands of people from Ireland and across the world.

In advance of WMF2018 and to help prepare for the event, a programme of pre-catechesis will be offered to parishes and families based largely on the Pope’s recent Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia (The Joy of Love), encouraging reflection on different aspects of being family in the Church and in the world today.

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