For many years, our family has been blessed to have had the opportunity each summer to enrich our relationship with God, with each other and with other Catholic families by participating in a week of Catholic Family Camp.
Family members who attended one of the five weeks this summer of Family Camp at Camp Koinonia in Italy Valley in rural Yates County took a deeper look at the Hail Mary prayer as together we explored our weekly theme "Full of Grace."
Moms and dads, babies, toddlers, high-school students and the full range of school-aged kids reflected on Monday on our daily theme of "Hail Mary" and what it means for us to be called by God to live out our own unique vocation, as we took a look at Mary's "yes" to God and the feast of the Annunciation.
On Tuesday, our daily theme encouraged us to examine the feast of the Visitation of Mary with her kinswoman Elizabeth and what it means for us to see ourselves as "Blessed."
Wednesday's theme of "Mother of God" led us to recognize Mary as the theotokos, or God-bearer, and to a deeper appreciation of the realization that Mary is mother of Jesus but also mother to all of us who are baptized into Christ.
On Thursday, our theme of "Pray for Us" helped each of us to acknowledge that although we are sinners, we can ask our Blessed Mother to intercede for us in seeking the forgiveness offered by her son, our Redeemer.
On Friday, our daily theme matched our weekly theme, "Full of Grace," and we recalled the infinite grace that is always available to us in our Christian families as we live out the mission of Christ in our daily family life as the domestic church.