Our Lady of Good Counsel looks forward to Papal Visit

Our Lady of Good Counsel, Moorestown’s Roman Catholic Church and School is greatly anticipating the Papal Visit and the World Meeting of Families. They are working to incorporate much of what they do with the Papal Visit and theme of the World Meeting of Families, “Love is our Mission: The Family Fully Alive called together from all over the world in celebration of the family, the sanctuary of love and life.”

“We look forward as a parish community to celebrating the arrival of Pope Francis and prioritizing the importance of the family in the lives of our parishioners and the families of the world as well,” Father Damian McElroy, VF Pastor, said.

The school and religious education program of the parish have incorporated Flat Francis, a play on “Flat Stanley,” a children’s story about a flat young boy who travels the world into their teachings for the Papal Visit. Flat Francis is used to create a dialogue between children and their parents at home about Pope Francis’ visit and its historic significance. Sharing a conversation with the family and incorporating the message of the World Meeting of Families is a priority.

Our Lady of Good Counsel School is also doing art projects all this week to be displayed throughout the school as part of their art and religion class and the children of the Religious Education Program are decorating the Church during religious education afternoon classes. They also have a large cardboard cut out of Pope Francis in the hallway with messages from the Pope. This has become a way for all the children of the parish, from early childhood through to eighth grade, to unify in their celebration of the Pope’s visit and message to families.

For the Papal Visit and the World Meeting of Families, parishioners of the Archdiocese of Denver, led by Father Jason of Saints Peter and Paul Parish in Wheat Ridge, Colo., will be making the pilgrimage to New Jersey and Philadelphia and are teaming up with Our Lady of Good Counsel to celebrate Mass at 7 p.m. on Wednesday evening before going to the World Meeting of Families events this week. The World Meeting of Families’ priority is the family and the different issues facing the family today. They will bring back what they learn to better minister to parish families and engage in dialogue with all.

For the Pope’s Mass on Sunday, Sept. 27 at 4 p.m., Our Lady of Good Counsel will have a live stream of the Pope’s Mass in the cafeteria. People will be bringing their favorite snacks and all of the parish and community are welcome to attend.

“All are welcome to the live simulcast, but seating is limited as we have a large congregation. We are celebrating our faith as well and extending love and mercy to our neighbors and those in need,” Father McElroy said.

For those interested, the World Meeting of Families Prayer:

God and Father of us all,

In Jesus , your Son and our Savior,

You have made us your sons and daughters

In the family of the Church.

May your grace and love help our families.

In every part of the world be united to one another

In fidelity to the Gospel.

May the example of the Holy Family,

With the aid of your Holy Spirit,

Guide all families, especially those most troubled,

To be homes of communion and prayer

And to always seek your truth and live in your love.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.