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TimelineThe Vicariate of Kuwait is now the Apostolic Vicariate of Northern Arabia which includes Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar and Saudi Arabia. The decree from the Holy See came into effect on May 31, 2011.





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Couples for Christ: Kuwait Chapter


Parish Ministries & Organisations

COUPLES FOR CHRIST : KUWAIT CHAPTER



~ SERVING THE CATHOLIC CHURCH ~


COUPLES FOR CHRIST - (CFC) - is a work of Christ, which raises up Christian couples and establishes Christian families committed to the work of evangelization and winning the world for Christ, through the power of the Holy Spirit. As such, CFC is a servant and lay arm of the Church in the work of renewal, fully recognized by and operating under the authority of the Parish priests and the Bishop. CFC is a lay organization of the Apostolic Vicariate of Northern Arabia.


C.F.C. LOGO CFC began in 1981 in Manila when a local Christian community tried a new approach in evangelizing married couples. The method used consisted of bringing together a small group of prospective couples in a private home. There they were brought to a living relationship with Jesus Christ and to a renewal of the power of the Holy Spirit through a series of weekly informal discussions of the Gospel in a social setting. Soon, CFC became a Christian Family Life Renewal Program made available to parishes and groups of married couples who wish to live their Christian life in an active, supportive relationship with one another.

On 25th April 2005, on the Feast of St. Mark, the Vatican through its Pontifical Council for the Laity granted definitive approval of the statutes of the Couples for Christ thereby confirming permanent recognition of CFC as a private international association of the faithful, with juridical personality, according to canons 298-311 and 312-329 of the Code of Canon Law.

Through the years, CFC has blossomed into a worldwide ministry, becoming a major force for the renewal of Christian family life and also of the Church.

CFC - KUWAIT CHAPTER

The Kuwait Chapter of the CFC was started in December 1998. It is the 55th country in the world to have the CFC movement.

Today CFC is in more than 156 countries. The Kuwait Chapter too had a small beginning with the blessings of the previous Bishop Francis Micallef.

Brothers from Manila traveled to Kuwait, met the Bishop and explained the functioning and importance of such a movement.

Bishop Francis Micallef was convinced and encouraged such a movement realizing that the families (domestic church) needed to be strengthened in Kuwait. Bishop picked up a few couples and asked them to join this movement. Brothers from Manila trained these couples, conducted the Christian Life Program, which is a primary requirement to be a member of CFC.

Every lay organization which believes in the principles of the Catholic Church required a Spiritual Director for Spiritual guidance. Rev. Fr. Gabriel Dias was the first Spiritual Director of CFC from 1998 to 2002. He was instrumental in promoting the values of CFC and encouraged many couples to join CFC.

Rakesh & Christina Mascrenhas were the first Area Directors (then called as Chapter Leader), who worked hard with fellow couples in the Fraternal team to propagate CFC. In 2004, Rakesh Mascarenhas & family decided to migrate to Canada for greener pastures. The Mascarenhas family was given a deserving send-off for all their services to the community.

Rudolf & Aonida Fernandes took over the reins of CFC from Rakesh & Christina Mascrenhas and they shepherd the flock very well and to the best of their ability until September 2006.

In September 2006, Donald & Lydia D’Silva were selected to take over the function of Area Directors of CFC Kuwait Chapter.

From 2002 to 2005, Rev. Fr. Xavier Francis Fernandes was appointed the Spiritual Director, who also played a part in encouraging couples to join CFC. From December 2004 to 2005, Bishop Francis Micallef was the Spiritual Director CFC, until he retired as the Bishop of Kuwait.

The CFC Fraternal team led by the Area Director Rudolf Fernandes met the present Bishop Camillo Ballin and introduced Couples for Christ and its Vision to him. The CFC community received considerable support from Bishop and within a short period he appointed Rev. Fr. Berchmans as the Spiritual Director of CFC in Kuwait. The CFC community is thankful to the Bishop and the Spiritual Director and also to our previous Bishop and Spiritual Directors for their support and prayers.

On 25th June 2006, CFC celebrated their 25th Anniversary in the St. Therese Church. Bishop Camillo Ballin and Augustine David represented CFC Kuwait Chapter for the Silver Jubilee celebrations in Manila. God blessed CFC in their 25 years journey and all CFCians believe that God is leading this organization all along and will continue to do so.


HOW TO JOIN CFC

Any validly married Catholic couple can become members of CFC. Although a Catholic movement/organization, CFC remains open to having non-Catholic Christians as members. CFC draws its membership from all sectors of society, young and old, rich and poor, etc. CFC transcends all cultural, economic, educational, social and other distinctions.

Those who want to join CFC go through a seminar that is called the Christian Life Program (CLP).

The Christian Life Program (CLP) is an integrated course in the basics of Christianity leading to a renewed understanding of God’s call to us to become responsible couples. The CLP starts with an orientation session, then goes through 12 weekly meetings, divided into 3 modules of 4 sessions per module. Each session lasts about 2.5 hours consisting of a talk, group discussion, and some time for fellowship.

The CLP has two basic purposes: evangelism and spiritual renewal.

To evangelize is to take the basic message of Christianity and to proclaim it anew so that those who hear it can make a renewed commitment to the Lord in a way which will allow them to receive a fuller experience of the work of the Holy Spirit in their lives.

Spiritual renewal works in three ways:

1. For the individual, it brings a person into a stronger relationship with God by discovering and living more fully the power and gifts he or she received through the Holy Spirit.

2. For the family, it brings married couples to a renewed commitment to Christian family Life and it starts to build up a community of committed Christian families.

3. For the Church, it brings people within a particular parish to a fuller experience of life in the Spirit. Consequently it strengthens and revitalizes community life in the parish.

The CLP runs for a total of 13 consecutive sessions usually held weekly, divided into an orientation session and then 3 modules of 4 sessions each. The topics of the 12 sessions are:

Module No. 1: The Basic Truths about Christianity

1. God's Love
2. Who is Jesus Christ?
3. What it means to be a Christian.
4. Repentance and Faith.

Module No. 2: The Authentic Christian Life

5. The Christian Ideal: Loving God
6. Loving Your Neighbor
7. The Christian Family
8. Life in the Holy Spirit

Module No. 3: Living a Spirit-filled Christian Life

9. Receiving the Power of the Holy Spirit
10. Growing in the Spirit
11. The Life and Mission of the Couples of Christ
12. Transformation in Christ

On completion of the Christian Life Program, the couples are invited to join the CFC. To begin, they are made a part of a small cell group called a "Household". The Household comprises of about 5 or 6 couples who meet weekly for mutual support and encouragement in the Christian Life, under the direction of a Household leader-couple. The purpose of the Household Group is to build an environment for the support of the Christian Life of couples, and to provide a means of encouraging and hastening spiritual growth. It provides friendship and brotherhood. It helps people overcome obstacles to growth in the Christian Life. The Household meeting starts with Praise & Worship followed by General Intercession and then by CFC teachings.

Once a month the entire CFC Kuwait Chapter meets as one big family for General Assembly (GA) in the Church hall. GA is allocated to various Units or Chapters or HH’s in turns to conduct. The GA in a nut shell is nothing but a HH meeting which consists of Praise & Worship (P&W) followed by General Intercessions. After the P&W, brothers & sisters are invited to give testimonies to encourage and strengthen others in their faith in God. Sometimes there are skits, biblical quizzes and other fellowship activities. CFC also has various ministries that cater to the Kids, Youth, Singles, Single Married Women & Men, widows and widowers.


STATEMENT OF VISION & MISSION OF CFC

God has raised up Couples for Christ so that we in turn would rise up in defense of His work. We believe that the family is a creation of God and no one has any right to change it, its structure and its purpose. Couples for Christ is a creation of God distinctly called to bring families back to the plan of God. Couples for Christ is called to bring the Lord’s strength and light to those who are struggling to be truly Christian families in the modern world.

We believe that God is working powerfully in the world today, and is moving to accomplish His “plan for the fullness of times, to sum up all things in Christ, in heaven and on earth” (Eph 1:10). In this task, God calls upon Christian families to be light and leaven in the world.

As such, we as Couples for Christ are called to be families in the Holy Spirit renewing the face of the earth. As Christian families we are called to grow in holiness and discipleship, so that God can use us as evangelizers and missionaries in order that He might renew the world.

In this task, we are called to take up the very mission of Jesus in bringing glad tidings to the poor. We rise up in defense of the poor and the oppressed. We struggle for peace, justice and the integrity of creation. We work for total human liberation in order to establish the kingdom of God here on earth.

In submission to God’s will, Couples for Christ commits itself to this mission. Couples for Christ will serve wherever God brings it to serve, trusting only in His guidance and His power.


STATEMENT OF PHILOSOPHY

Couples for Christ adheres to a set of beliefs and ideals, from which flow its Christian values, attitudes and behavior, as well as its teachings, programs and approaches to Christian renewal within the context of family relationships.

WE BELIEVE in marriage as an indissoluble institution as taught be our Lord Jesus Christ (Mt 19:6); and that God created marriage primarily for love between man and woman, and for the procreation and proper rearing of children.

WE BELIEVE that God created man and wife with equal personal worth and dignity; and that God ordained order in the family by giving the man the role as head of the family and the woman as his helpmate and support, which roles best express their complementarity.

WE BELIEVE in the inalienable and irreplaceable right and responsibility of parents to educate their children; and that children need to be educated in essential human and Christian values for them to become responsible and mature members of society.

WE BELIEVE that the family, in practicing the gospel message, shares in the life and mission of the Church—through prayers, evangelization and service to others, especially to the poor.

WE BELIEVE that Christian family renewal can best be achieved by inviting Jesus to be the Lord of our homes, by allowing the power of the Holy Spirit to lead our family lives, and through the full use of all spiritual gifts at our disposal.







THE CFC LOGO


The CFC logo has three (3) elements: the concentric circles, the cross, and the dove.
The CFC logo stands for who we are and what we are for.

CFC - THE CONCENTRIC CIRCLES THE CONCENTRIC CIRCLES

These stand for 2 wedding rings, one on top of the other. They depict Christian marriage, where two have become one. They stand for the unity between husband and wife, a unity manifesting itself in mutual love and service. The ring also point to our family life ministry. The family is to be the focus as well as the foundation of our work.

CFC - THE CROSS THE CROSS

This stands for the cross of Christ. The central position of the cross states that Christ is at the center of our lives and of our work. The cross is also an empty cross. It shows that Christ is risen. By his death and resurrection, Christ conquered sin and death, and won for us our salvation. Finally, the cross stands for the radical Christian life we are called to. It is a life where we are to take up the cross of Christ (Mt. 16:24).

CFC - THE DOVE THE DOVE

The dove represents the Holy Spirit. It is the Holy Spirit Who is our guide, our counselor, our advocate. He is the Spirit of truth. He is the source of power and strength for the Christian life. The dove also indicates the charismatic dimension of our spirituality. We are to pursue our work of renewal with the full use of all charismatic gifts at our disposal (1 Cor. 12:4-11).



THE CONCENTRIC CIRCLES AND THE CROSS

The circles also stand for the globe or the world. Christ is at the center. He is the King of kings and the Lord of lords. Our work is to participate in the fulfillment of God's plan: to bring all things in the heavens and on earth into one under Christ's headship (Eph. 1:10).

Also depicted is the establishment of CFC worldwide family, the one global community under the lordship of Christ. The circles also suggest the ever widening network of renewed families in Christ. The light and life of Christ radiates outwards and touches the lives of more and more people. CFC is an evangelistic movement, intending to bring Christ to all people and to all places.

cfc logo meaning

cfc theme 2007







THE CFC MINISTRIES


EVANGELIZATION & MISSION
EVANGELIZATION & MISSION

Evangelization is the bringing of the good news of Jesus Christ to people. It is proclaiming that Jesus came into the world in order to bring salvation to men, through His death and resurrection. Evangelization is at the core of our life in Couples for Christ. It is our call, our duty and our privilege.

Evangelization is the practical living out of the two greatest commandments, love of God and love of neighbor. Thus, to evangelize is not an option but a necessity for a follower of Christ.

Every Christian is to be an evangelizer. The whole Church, the body of Christ, exists for mission. In Jesus' Great Commission, His final marching order is a call to "Go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel to every creature." (Mark 16:15). CFC's response is rapid, massive and global evangelization.


PASTORAL SUPPORT
PASTORAL SUPPORT

Integral to the call of evangelization is the need for each CFC member to grow in personal renewal and holiness. As the work grows bigger, in a faster pace and larger territories are covered, the workers in God's vineyard need to be cared for and nourished.

The Pastoral Formation Office, Counseling Services, Church Relations, Administration and Finance ensures that the spiritual needs of our members are addressed. To grow in the Spirit, each CFC member is nurtured through prayers, scripture, sacraments, service and fellowship. To put good order into our work of evangelization and mission, a good administrative and financial support system has also been put in place. The Pastoral Support also consists of Counseling Services (thru the Church), Church Relations and Administration and Finance.


FAMILY MINISTRY - FAMILY LIFE RENEWAL
FAMILY MINISTRY - FAMILY LIFE RENEWAL

In 1993, CFC established its Family Ministries. These are CFC Kids for Christ (KFC), CFC Youth for Christ (YFC), CFC Singles for Christ (SFC), CFC Handmaids of the Lord (HOLD), and CFC Servants of the Lord (SOLD). This has provided a "womb-to-tomb" renewal ministry, where persons are evangelized at the youngest age and sustained as they grow through the different stages and states of life.

Many singles are now finding their life-time partners in SFC.

As CFC continues its massive work, we look to doing proportionately less work evangelizing couples in an established area, as the present generation of couples already pass on, and as many future couples would already be coming from our Family Ministries.


CFC - Kids for Christ (KFC)
CFC - Kids for Christ (KFC)

CFC Kids for Christ aims to provide a Christian support environment for Kids of Couples for Christ members who are between the ages of 4-12.

Owing to the wide age range covered by the ministry, we have programs for the Junior Kids, those of ages 4 to 8, and the Senior Kids, those of 9 to 12. Realizing that a program for kids needs to be simply understood, exciting and fun-filled, we have put a premium on four characteristics for our Kids for Christ program. It is fun- activities are enjoyable and stimulate the child's creativity, perception, and sensitivity.

It is build upon Friendship- activities encourage members to build strong friendships with one another.

It enhances faith- activities explain Christian faith elements in kids language.

It allows free but responsible expression- activities respect the kids for who and what they are and what they can be.


CFC - Youth for Christ (YFC)
CFC - Youth for Christ (YFC)

CFC Youth for Christ aims to provide a Christian support environment for young teenagers between 13 to 21 years of age.

The program is oriented towards meeting the needs of our young people to belong, to be motivated, to be useful, to be good examples, to be Christian witnesses. It has put a premium on four characteristics: it is Fun ; it builds Friendships ; it enhances the Faith ; it allows the young Free , but responsible expression.


CFC - Singles for Christ (SFC)
CFC - Singles for Christ (SFC)

CFC Singles for Christ aims to provide a Christian support environment for single men and women who are as the crossroads of their state of life, choosing between marriage, a religious vocation, or single blessedness.

SFC is now established throughout the Philippines and in many key cities and states of other countries around the world.

Singles for Christ as a support environment: --- teaches the individual the right values to build their future on;
--- surrounds the individual with friends who are well-meaning and have a positive influence;
--- provides the individual with opportunities to meet potential partners in life who believe in the same Christian goals and values;
--- involves the individual in service that prepares them for the responsibility of marriage and family life; and,
--- helps those with a vocation for the priesthood or religious life to discern their calling.

SFC uses a three-pronged evangelization approach: Attraction, Retention and Transition. Attraction establishes creative ways of bringing single men and women to community. Retention keeps members actively involved through community life experience and innovative formation. Transition involves the proper transition of youth to singles and singles to couples.

Pastoral guidance is extended to SFC members following CFC's vast network of households (a cell group of 10 to 12 members) led by a household head. Further, unit heads lead household heads, chapter heads lead unit heads and cluster heads lead chapter heads. Over-all direction is provided by a national council.


CFC - Handmaids of the Lord (HOLD)
CFC - Handmaids of the Lord (HOLD)

CFC Handmaids of the Lord aims to provide a Christian support environment for single mature women, widows, separated or divorced, single parents, wives of overseas workers, and those whose husbands are incapacitated or in prison. Realizing the difficult life and role that these women play in family and society due to loneliness, rejection and fear, HOLD provides pastoral guidance and support to its members following CFC's network of households (a cell group of 10 to 12 members led by a household head). Correspondingly, unit heads lead household heads, chapter heads lead unit heads, and cluster heads lead chapter heads. Over-all direction is provided by a national council.

HOLD is established all over the Philippines and in many key cities and states of other countries around the world.

HOLD's formation program teaches that: 1. the woman is a beautiful creation of God, chosen for greatness and designed for excellence;
2. while loneliness, rejection and fear in their lives are real, they have God who loves them and cares for them through community;
3. to fully experience a life of joy and fulfillment, they need to heal, forgive, and decide to be happy and productive; and,
4. by serving other women whose circumstances are similar to theirs, they thank God and gain empowerment.


CFC - Servants of the Lord (SOLD)
CFC - Servants of the Lord (SOLD)

CFC Servants of the Lord aims to provide a Christian support environment for single mature men, widowers, separated or divorced, single parents, husbands of overseas workers, and those whose wives are incapacitated or in prison.

Realizing the difficult life and role that these men play in family and society due to loneliness, rejection and fear, SOLD provides pastoral guidance and support to its members following CFC's network of households (a cell group of 10 to 12 members led by a household head). Correspondingly, unit heads lead household heads, chapter heads lead unit heads, and cluster heads lead chapter heads. Over-all direction is provided by a national council.


SOCIAL MINISTRY - SOCIAL RENEWAL
SOCIAL MINISTRY - SOCIAL RENEWAL

In 1995, CFC established its Social Ministries. The CFC Social Ministries comprise our work of building the Church of the Poor. They look to the social dimension of our life in the Lord. They focus on external service. They are designed to help us grow in stewardship and servant hood. These ministries cover all the areas of the life of a people. They are designed to make a difference in the social, political, economic, cultural and environmental life of a country. They are meant to confront structures of sin in society. They are intended to work to make this world a better place to live in, reflective much more of the of the kingdom of God that is already in our midst. In Kuwait the Social Ministry is involved in organizing various CFC programs at CFC and Parish Level


GAWAD KALINGA
GAWAD KALINGA

Gawad Kalinga has evolved into not just a work with the poor but also a work of nation building, from a simple but daring CFC initiative to a growing multi-sectoral partnership by the same spirit and vision.

GK hosts people-empowering activities moving towards building integrated, holistic and sustainable communities focusing first and foremost on depressed areas throughout the Philippines. Not one organization has the capability to rebuild the country, not even the government. The challenge that lies before us, the very stability and growth of a people and nation, compels more and more of us to work together.

GK gives priority to dismantling the pattern of despair and feeling of abandonment which overwhelm the lives of the impoverished. GK starts with establishing caring relationships with those who are among the most used, abused and neglected of society. GK then moves quickly to help restore the dignity of the poor and marginalized and revitalize their capacity to hope and dream. This is why GK builds brightly-painted homes, beautiful parks and playgrounds, colorful gardens and clean surroundings. The caring spirit moves strongly to become a sharing one, and GK symbolizes the revolution of love and the vision of total human liberation.

It begins with the CFC leadership and membership through the padugo system (bleeding for a cause), which institutionalizes the giving of resources and exemplies the culture of sharing. The ideals of GK state that "no one is too poor that he cannot share, that no one is too rich that he cannot care." GK reflects the determination of CFC and its partners to heal relationships in society, from within the family to the national environment. Rebuilding broken relationships translates to bridging gaps between people, and opens new and unlimited opportunities for human interaction and the exchange of resources. GK defines resources as beyond the monetary to that which has value to life and community. That is why GK goes beyond the management of funds to the management of relationships and sharing of resources. Architects and engineers design houses and create color schemes, doctors and nurses can attend to the people's health, teachers can contribute their time and knowledge to the young, and business leaders can tutor others towards economic enterprises.

In Kuwait GK program is purely reaching out to the needy financially. Once a year, GK organizes a program to raise funds. The Kuwait Chapter has contributed to CFC Manila to build homes and also has reached out to the needy in Sri Lanka, India and Kuwait. A document containing the activities and un-audited balance sheet of GK has been already handed to the Spiritual Director.







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  • COUPLES FOR CHRIST - Kuwait Chapter
  • COUPLES FOR CHRIST - Middle East






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