Starting an Elizabeth Ministry Toolkit
Elizabeth Ministry is an international movement offering hope and healing for women and their families on issues related to childbearing, sexuality and relationships. Endorsed by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), Elizabeth Ministry respects life, cherishes children, encourages families, enriches marriage and builds community. Following the scriptural story of the Visitation of Mary and Elizabeth, Elizabeth Ministry chapters are designed to support women and their families during the joys, challenges and sorrows of the childbearing years. Support, mentoring, education, spiritual nourishment and inspirational resources are offered.
In the past, the presence, intimacy, and support that is needed during childbearing years was found in the structures of family, neighborhood, church and community. Today, these structures are undergoing rapid change. Neighborhoods are fragmented, leaving many people isolated. Parishes have increased in size, making it difficult to create a hospitable and loving environment. Mobility has caused many extended families to be separated by miles, making frequent visits impossible. The support, reassurance and guidance, usually given by the extended family, often now needs to come from another source. Elizabeth Ministry is a response to this need.
- provides mutual support among parents
- fosters relationships among parishioners of varying age groups
- promotes communication between young families and the parish
- enriches young families with children under school age
Diocesan Elizabeth Ministry Coordinator
Faith & Family Life Formation
Office of Lifelong Faith Formation