Resources Family Life
Supporting couples and families in every stage of life through resources and workshops.
Supporting couples and families in every stage of life through resources and workshops.
Liz is first and foremost, a daughter of God. She is married to her best friend, Tony, and enjoys his help with preparing couples for marriage. She has three adult children and loves being “Nana” to her grandkids. Liz started serving in ministry when her children were small as many moms do. Eventually, her pastor asked her to run the high school faith formation program. Equipped with a bachelor’s degree in business from Worcester State College, she knew she needed more theology. After certificates in catechesis and youth ministry, she moved on to get her Master of Theological Studies from Saint John’s Seminary. Before coming to the Archdiocese of Boston in 2016, Liz was the director of youth and young adult ministry for the Worcester Diocese. She has been blessed to serve on team for Cursillo, lead pilgrimages to Marian sites, and mission trips locally and abroad.
Emily Elliott joined the Office of Lifelong Faith Formation & Parish Support in 2014 as an operations associate, following a high-tech marketing career hiatus while she raised her five children with her husband of 28 years, Jim. Emily has served in multiple ministries at her parish, St. Mary of the Sacred Heart in Hanover; on Cursillo weekends; and as a Catholic volunteer for Framingham State Prison. She has also served as a facilitator for women’s study groups and often speaks at parishes about the power of prayer. Her present role as a family life consultant bridges her love for evangelization and all things family, especially in coordinating Transformed in Love marriage preparation workshops, where she often serves alongside her husband, Jim. Emily is working towards her Master of Arts in Theology and Christian Ministry degree through Franciscan University. She has a special devotion to Our Lady of Guadalupe who she credits with handling most of her parenting petitions, together with confidantes St. Therese of Lisieux, St. Faustina, St. Catherine of Siena, and St. Padre Pio – all who lead her closer to Jesus. Emily loves praying the rosary, being with her prayer group sisters-in-Christ, strong lattes, country music, and experimenting with savory recipes in the kitchen. She is happiest when all of her children (Jake, Matthew, Grace, Mary and Benjamin) are home with she and Jim, and they break bread together.
Kathryn grew up in a large (13 kids!) and loving Catholic family on the South Shore of Boston. She still resides there today with her loving husband of five years, Tom, and their two beautiful boys, Thomas and Luke. Her upbringing helped her learn to deal with differing abilities, temperaments, and situations, making her flexible, relatable, and compassionate. Beginning in elementary school, Kathryn has been formed in the faith through her parochial and Catholic education. Majoring in theology, Kathryn graduated from St. Anselm College in 2005 and is currently enrolled in the Master of Arts in Ministry program at St. John Seminary. Kathryn also holds certificates in Ministry with Persons with Disabilities from the University of Dayton and is certified as a trainer in the VIRTUS/ Protecting God’s Children program.
As a faithful Catholic and lover of Christ and His Church, Kathryn has been serving the Archdiocese of Boston for over fifteen years. First, as a theology teacher and campus minister, Kathryn served in middle and high schools of Boston for 9 years. From there, Kathryn moved on to parish work, as both youth minister, confirmation coordinator in parish on the South Shore.
In 2014, Kathryn followed God’s call to serve His Church with the team in the Office for Lifelong Faith Formation and Parish Support. She has held many roles with her office – from consulting with parishes about evangelization and discipleship, to advising faith formation leaders about children’s formation and now serving as family life consultant. Kathryn cherishes her every opportunity to serve Jesus and the Archdiocese of Boston with her team of faithful disciples. She is especially fond of her work with engaged couples as they prepare for marriage, as well as her efforts to lead an archdiocesan ministry with persons with disabilities and her service to those on the margins.
Among her other “loves”, Kathryn is devoted to Our Lady and praying the Rosary daily. She especially enjoys cooking delicious food for her family, spending time with her siblings and parents at large family functions, kitchen dancing, karaoke, and last but not least, the beach!
Congratulations on your engagement! Preparing for the Sacrament of Matrimony is an exciting time. Each parish may have guidelines to prepare a couple for marriage, but we offer these best practices as a guide:
Taking the time to invest in your marriage is extremely important. The health of your relationship impacts your happiness and the well-being of any children. Whether things are going well and you’re just looking for an enriching experience or if you’re having difficulties and are looking for help, we hope you find something here that may be of assistance to you.
National Marriage Week will be held on February 7-14, 2024. Please contact a member of Family Life for ideas on how you can celebrate your marriage or the married couples at your parish.
To learn more about moving from civil marriage to a sacramental marriage through the process of convalidation watch this video.
Couples married outside of the Church are invited to convalidate their marriage in the Catholic tradition either at their home parish or at our archdiocesan celebration – A CELEBRATION OF CONVALIDATION – on World Marriage Sunday, Feb. 11, 2024 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross. For more information about this wonderful celebration of holy matrimony visit the event.
Below are several resources to support couples and families:
For a list of Christian/Catholic counselors and resources in or near the Boston area, please contact a Family Life staff here.
Nov. 8, 2023: An Evening of Remembrance and Healing for Pregnancy and Infant Loss at St. Patrick’s in Stoneham | 7 PM | R.S.V.P. to Diane McCarthy, Pastoral Associate, at 781-438-0200
Emmaus Ministry for Grieving Parents is a beautiful ministry based out of Boston that helps grieving parents who have lost a child of any age, by any cause, and no matter how long ago. Visit the Emmaus website for more information on their support retreats, reflections, resources for parishes, and more.
Red Bird Ministries is a national Catholic grief support ministry for those individuals and parents who have experience the loss of a child from pregnancy through adulthood. They offer retreats, a podcast, RBM support app, and other resources.
The Annual Wedding Anniversary Mass is for married couples celebrating their 10th, 25th, 50th or other milestone anniversary. It was held Sunday, October 29, 2023 at 3pm @ the Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Boston. View photos from the 2023 celebration. Check back for the 2024 date.
In the Arms of the Shepherd: A Morning of Reflection for Those Impacted by Divorce or Separation
Our morning of reflection with Mother Olga, founder of the Daughters of Mary of Nazareth and Irina Robinson, director of family & respect life for the Fall River Diocese was very beautiful and many found their burdens lightened. Please check back for future events. In the meantime here are some resources:
For Adult Children of Divorce, visit Life Giving Wounds
St. Patrick Parish at 71 Central St. in Stoneham will start a drop in support group on Sept. 12, 2023 that will be held the second and fourth Tuesdays of each month from 7-8:30pm. For more information, email Diane McCarthy.
For more information on programs, support groups, and additional resources, please access this PDF.
A list of local and telehealth Catholic/Christian psychologists and counselors is available by contacting a member of the Family Life team.
A virtual seminar for the Archdiocese of Boston featuring Catholic author and presenter, Rose Sweet. We invite you to view the program here, for encouragement, guidance and practical support.
For information related to annulments, contact the Tribunal here.
NFP is an umbrella term for natural methods used to achieve or avoid pregnancy that protect God’s plan for spousal love. These methods are based on the observation and interpretation of the naturally occurring biological markers of the fertile and infertile phases of a woman’s menstrual cycle. NFP is applicable to all women, can be used at any stage of a woman’s reproductive life, and not our “Grandparents’ Rhythm Method.”
If the priest or deacon preparing you for marriage requests that you receive an introduction to NFP, the archdiocesan program Transformed in Love is a great place to begin.
NFP and Infertility: Finding Fruitfulness in the Desert
In this virtual workshop, Springs in the Desert, a Catholic infertility ministry that accompanies those carrying this cross, discusses the experience of infertility and acknowledges the unique grief and isolation it brings. They offer encouragement and strategies to help couples strengthen their identities in Christ and discover God’s unique plan for fruitfulness within their marriages. Watch the recording here.
More NFP Webinars –
Consider NFP because it utilizes the natural methods that respect God’s plan for both the unitive and procreative; it is a completely healthy way to plan a family because no chemical or physical barriers are used; the modern methods of NFP are evidenced based, boasting a correct use efficacy rate from 97-99.6% that competes with artificial means; and it is holistic. Fertility awareness through the lens of NFP respects the WHOLE person – physical, mental, spiritual, and intellectual. It fosters intimacy between a husband and wife because it invites a husband to be an active, caring, and knowledgeable participant in a couple’s intimate reality, their fertility. To learn more, read our brief booklet – Love’s Perfect Design: A Guide to Understanding Fertility Awareness. English | Español .
Included in our Guide is a list of national organizations offering a number of different methods to meet the needs of each woman or couple. You could start by reading the Guide; view one of the recorded webinars found on this page; or use the NFP Instruction list provided to contact one of the many local certified instructors or national organizations through the NFP Instructor List 2023
If you are suffering from a reproductive health issue the science of NaPro Technology may help. This is an effective and alternate approach versus the traditional practice of using artificial hormones or IVF.
NaPro Technology (Natural Procreative Technology) networks NFP with the treatment of reproductive disorders and infertility. NaPro Technology is a new reproductive science that cooperates with the reproductive systems in producing a treatment that corrects the condition, and sustains the procreative potential. It respects the dignity of women, the integrity of marriage, and the conjugal act.
NaPro Technology was developed at the Pope Paul VI Institute for the Study of Human Reproduction. It is delivered through the services of trained medical doctors and Creighton/Fertility Care NFP teachers. For more information, on NaProTechnology visit www.popepaulvi.com or contact a Creighton/Fertility Care NFP teacher on the NFP Instruction List above.
One day soon, we pray there will be more health care providers that offer these services. Until then, many in the New England area suggest visiting:
Virtual Rosary for Couples Struggling with Infertility, Difficult Pregnancies, or Infant Loss.
On the feasts of Sts. Anne and Joachim, parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Fr. Ed Riley reflected on the Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary. Together we meditated on these mysteries while praying for our brothers and sisters in Christ who struggle with infertility, difficult pregnancies, or the loss of a child. Watch the recording.
Transformed in Love is the marriage preparation resource developed by a dedicated group of married couples, theologians, psychologists, canon lawyers, priests, deacons, and staff under the direction of Cardinal Seán O’Malley.
This instrument of evangelization thoughtfully combines the practical with the theological through the implementation of hands-on activities, personal witness, and spiritual reflection. It is best utilized as one piece of a catechumenate model to marriage ministry.
If you are a married couple, deacon, or priest being called to serve in this special ministry, we encourage you to learn more through the workshop. Stay tuned for upcoming trainings.
Until our next workshop, you can learn more about Transformed in Love on our diocesan/parish leader page.
Visit our shop for Transformed in Love resources in English and Spanish. Please note that there is special pricing available for parishes and retreat centers of the Boston Archdiocese. If you have questions about the materials or program, please call Liz Cotrupi @ 617-746-5801.