forming a group for mothers of young children

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This topic contains 10 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  michelle123 7 years, 3 months ago.

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  • #2173

    mormadmom
    Member

    I am interested in forming a group at my church for discussion and fellowship with catholic moms of young children. Maybe be similar to MOPS, but on much smaller scale, has anyone ever done this and/or have any insight on forming such a group? Thanks Lori :)

    #3664

    sunnyone
    Member

    I used to belong to a well-run Mom’s group at a Christian Reformed church near my home. They supplied babysitting, had great speakers, and supplied our discussion book (at the time one was the Purpose Driven Life). They alternated book discussion days with fun days, like speakers, videos, and craft days. It met every Tuesday from 9:30 – 11:30 am. There were about 5 Moms in charge of it, and we took turns bringing coffeecakes and the like. At one time there were about 30 women coming each week! It was great fun, but during book discussions, there was a difference in theology. This could have gotten out of hand in a catholics vs. protestants battle if the leaders didn’t diffuse the situation.

    The big thing is that the group had the financial support and approval of the “elders”, or their parish council. I belong to the Elizbeth Ministry at my parish, and talked to them about bringing something like this to our church. There is a lot of red tape, like approval of the pastor, parish council, securing a meeting place, space for babysitting, and finding people willing to participate and help you run it. The movement kinda fizzled out after that.

    Good Luck to your endeavor. I think we as Catholics need more things like this, as well as vacation bible school. There are slight differences that kids will pick up, and become confused at our Catholic doctrines by going to VBS at another church.

    #3665

    Amazing how the Lord works! I just signed on today to search for this exact anwser. I belong to a MOPS and I too want to start a similar group at our parish. I am just now taking over the Elizabeth Ministry at our parish and hoping to get started next spring or fall with the moms group. I hope we can share our experiences and gain from the experiences of any other moms out there with wisdom to share!

    #3666

    andrea
    Member

    I’m in Familia at my church, it is a group for Mothers with Children.
    Andrea

    #3667

    Question for moms out there…Would you prefer a mom’s group to have childcare or would you prefer to have it structured such that you can have your kids with you? How does Familia do it? Does it work? How often does Familia meet? Thanks!

    #3668

    andrea
    Member

    Our Familia group has some mom’s that volunteered to watch our children while we had our group. The older children were fine in the other room (of course we could still see them), they watched tv, played with toys, and had snack. Little ones that still needed their mommy’s stayed out with their mom’s. Even if the older kids needed their mom it was fine for them to come out with us. We just tried to keep them quiet and let them play quietly with something at our feet. It works great for us. Our Familia group meets ever other week during the school year and takes summers off. I think it’s really what your group wants to do though. Here is a link -
    http://www.familiausa.net

    Andrea

    #3669

    teresa_marie
    Member

    I’m considering starting one at our parish.

    I would want our children to be with us, much like LLL. I don’t understand being in a moms group and being separated from your kids. The idea is foreign to me.

    #3670

    andrea
    Member

    Teresa-Marie,

    I totally know where you are coming from. When I first decided to be in Familia my son was just over a year old. I told them I wasn’t going to take part in Familia if he couldn’t be with me at all times. I didn’t feel comfortable leaving him in another room (even though we can see in the other room) because he was young, had never been left before and I didn’t know the woman (at that point) who were going to be watching him all that well. Everyone in the group decided it was fine if you needed to have your children with you, or if they wanted to be in the other room. It is however a group for mothers with children. I do think the little play room is a good idea though. Some children like being in there (especially the older ones) to play, watch a movie, or eat snacks. If they need to come out and be with their mom, that’s fine. In Familia though, there is quiet time, praying, etc and with children running ALL over, or maybe you having to keep a constant eye on your older ones, maybe be a bit disruptive and nobody would get anything out of it. I think nothing should be set in stone, it needs to be flexible. Andrea

    #3671

    michelle123
    Member

    I agree with wanting the little ones with us. Our local MOPS had a “nursery” for the kids. I didn’t feel comfortable leaving my children with people I didn’t know. If MOPS were in a Catholic Church, at least I’d know they’d been screened and Virtus trained. Who knows what screening and training was done with these people? The “leader” Mom (I didn’t end up attending) tried to make it seem like I had some kind of hangup about babysitters. I don’t – it’s just that I screen them carefully.
    I never understood people who would just drop their kids off with strangers. A lot of people research their dog kennels more than they research their child care! :(

    Whew – didn’t mean to vent. :wink:

    #3672

    ashersmomma
    Member

    I TOTALLY understand wanting to have your kids with you during a mom’s group if you dont know the people who are watching your kids. I am in one mom’s group and its mostly for social interaction for moms as well as the kids and I love it! The group my friend Lori (the original post) is starting is more like a Mommy Bible study/catechism study/reigniting your love for Christ kind of group that will help us to be better followers of Christ, wives and mothers. Although I love having my 2 y/o son with me during Mass, I feel like I miss out on alot and cannot focus. So this will be a time when us moms can focus and stregthen ourselves without having to pick up thrown cheerios off of the kneeler and keep them from coloring in the missal….Im sure you ALL know what Im talking about!
    Of course the only people who will be watching the kids are people we know from our own parish which of course helps. I love talking about our Lord, learning about the church and recommiting my faith and I feel like I HAVE to take that time out for myself, for my soul, so that I can correctly answer ALL of the questions my son, future children, and people in my community will throw my way when questioning the Catholic faith. I hate it when a Protestant friend asks me a question and I cant fully debate my stance. My hope is to help others to see the truth in our faith. So yea, if you have NO idea who is watching your child or where they come from….yikes! But I think we moms deserve that bit of time just devoted to the Lord and learning more about our beautiful faith!
    Now for my MOPS story! My first and ONLY time attending a MOPS event was when my son was about a year old. My husband’s co-workers wife heads it up and she invited me. She assured me that the women in the nursery were sweet church-goin grandmothers with plenty of experience. Well when I picked up my son upstairs, his diaper was on BACKWARDS! Yea, plenty of experience?? It was not only that (although that was plenty for me) that made me not return. Im sure it was just this group and maybe its not always like this but the women were so “catty” and gossipy. I couldnt stand feeling like I was in high school all over again. Also, my time is precious and if Im going to spend 2 hours away from my son Im definetely not going to waste it by making some silly craft for 45 minutes! Maybe thats just me. Dont get me wrong, I love to scrapbook, but not while my son is being watched by people who cant diaper! I felt like an outsider when after we opened the event with prayer, I blessed myself with the sign of the cross….needless to say Im sure I was the only Catholic, oh well.
    I think its always smart to trust your instincts as you all are doing. Even if this new Catholic mom’s group’s caregivers make me uneasy for any reason, I’ll find a family member of friend to watch him. I never want to say to myself “if only I would have….”
    Im so happy we have so many wonderful mommies in this group, talk about refreshing! Kudos ladies! Many blessings, Gina N.

    #3673

    michelle123
    Member

    Gina – Not sure if it’s nationwide – or just our diocese – but all Catholic Church and School workers and volunteers are REQUIRED to have Virtus training. It’s a course called “Protecting God’s Children.” Its focus is on preventing a recognizing forms of abuse in children. We are not even allowed to drive kids to an event, read a story to them in class, NOTHING, unless we’ve had this training.

    Here’s info:

    http://www.virtus.org

    Good luck – if I lived near you, I’d attend the Mom Group! :D

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