We have our statements of vision and mission, describing who we are and what we are called to do. We are an evangelistic and missionary community. This has been true from the very beginning and has never changed. We do our work within the context of family renewal. That is one distinct factor that distinguishes us from other renewal movements.
Since the crisis of 2007, God has raised a remnant, faithful to its authentic charism. Now we are known as Couples for Christ Foundation for Family and Life (CFC-FFL). Our basic charism and mission have not changed. As an evangelistic and missionary community, we are tasked with renewing the family and defending life. This actually is the crucial task of the Church in this third millennium.
As CFC-FFL, aside from our vision and mission statements, our statement of philosophy, our covenant, we also have our Core Values. These Core Values are: (1) Centered on Christ, (2) Evangelistic and missionary, (3) Focused on the Family, (4) Being Community, (5) Living a Preferential Option for the Poor, (6) Exercising servant Leadership, and (7) Being a Servant to the Church. All these are our guideposts in ensuring that we move forward according to God’s plan for us.
Now, in the challenging work of this third millennium, we can summarize who we are and what we are called to do by considering the initials “CFC-FFL.”
First, what are we called to do? What is our mission? What we are called to do can be summed up by three letters: F, F and L. These stand for faith, family and life.
Our work of evangelization is about a renewal of faith. It is first and foremost re-evangelization, where we bring nominal or lapsed Catholics to a renewal of their faith, through transformation in Christ and empowerment by the Holy Spirit. This is the foremost challenge, as many Christians today are no longer truly Christian, even for those who still go through the motions of Christian activities. Catholics need to know Christ and the power of his resurrection. They need to be true disciples of Jesus. They must be walking along the path of holiness and righteousness.
Then we evangelize within the context of the renewal of the family. The family is the basic unit of society, and what happens within the family is what determines the kind of people who live their lives in society. If a home is dysfunctional, then parents and children also bring that dysfunction into society. If however a home is truly a place of Kingdom ground, then the Church is able to produce the saints that she needs in order to become light and leaven. In this work of renewing the family, we provide strong support environments for every member of the family–the kids, the youth, the singles, the couples, the handmaids and the servants.
Finally, we are called to defend life. The fight of this third millennium is all about the culture of death, which the anti-life, anti-family, homosexualist forces are imposing on society and the world. This is the final assault of the evil one, who wages all-out war on the Author of life. We have been thrust into this savage conflict, and we are to give our all in defending and promoting the culture of life.
What then are we called to do? What then is our mission? It is to defend, preserve, strengthen, renew and celebrate faith, family and life.
Now that is quite a task. For us to become the effective instruments that God intends us to be, we need to become a particular kind of Catholic. We need to be formed according to God’s will and plan. We need to be clear about our identity, about who we truly are.
Who we are can then be summed up in three letters: C, F and C.
The first “C” is being “Centered on Christ.” This is the most basic posture. We live for Christ, and we die for Christ. We serve Christ. We are couples (and others) for Christ. We obey the final commission of Jesus, to go into the whole world and proclaim the good news of salvation in him. We strive to become true disciples. We strive to grow in holiness, to be another Christ. We are his witnesses, to the ends of the earth.
The “F” stands for “Faithful to covenant.” Aside from our covenant with God as Catholics, we have a particular covenant as CFC-FFL. This describes our way of life, so that we can truly become the people that God wants us to become, so He can use us according to His eternal plan. We understand the importance of our life as a community, and we commit to live out our lives as brothers and sisters in Christ, as co-workers in the Kingdom, as comrades-in-arms in the battle that is at hand. Our community life is our priority. Our covenant is our solemn commitment to God.
The second “C” refers to “Carrying the cross.” The cross is at the core of our work. It is an integral component of the call to discipleship. It is the gospel that we proclaim. We realize that responding to God’s call to us will involve us in hardships, oppression, persecution, suffering and pain. This is the very path of Jesus. As such, we know that such suffering is redemptive. And so we rejoice in the cross of Jesus Christ. It is the very power of God. The cross is what strengthens our commitment, as it purifies us, humbles us, and keeps us dependent on Christ and focused on the mission at hand.
Who are we and what are we called to do? The initials of our very name say it all.
C — Centered on Christ
F — Faithful to covenant
C — Carrying the cross
Working to celebrate:
F — Faith
F — Family
L — Life