Family festival inspired by St John Paul II

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Family festival inspired by St John Paul II

A festival for families celebrating the life of Pope St John Paul II will be held for the first time in Moonah this month.
The St John Paul II Family Festival will be an opportunity for families to gather for games, food, and faith formation with a Polish flavour in a family-friendly atmosphere.

Event organiser Ben Smith says that Catholic family life is now counter-cultural in the face of legislative changes and family violence – and that families need to be strengthened and supported by other families.

“It’s important to get back to the roots of what family is, and understand [St John Paul II’s] call for developing a civilization of love.

“That starts with the husband and wife and the way they treat each other, and then that ripples out to the rest of their family and the rest of society,” Mr Smith said.
The date of the festival – Sunday, October 20 – was chosen to fall as close as possible to the actual feast day of St John Paul II.

Beginning with lunch and a concert by Polish dancers, festival-goers will have the option of watching a documentary on the saint’s inspiring opposition to communism or take part in outdoor family games, learn about and discuss St John Paul II’s Letter to Families, pray the Chaplet of Divine Mercy and venerate the relics of the Pope, and try what was reportedly St John Paul II’s favourite cake – Polish kremowka.

Known as the ‘Pope of the Family’, this year marks the 25th anniversary since St John Paul II released his Letter to Families.

“[The festival] will be a whole lot of different experiences which will keep people’s stomachs satisfied – also their spiritual souls are going to be fed and their minds will be fed – and they’ll hopefully have some fun while they’re doing it,” Mr Smith said.

The St John Paul II Family Festival will be held at St Therese of Lisieux Church in Moonah on Sunday, October 20 from 12-4pm. The event is free and all are welcome. For more information, or to register, contact 6208 6036 or email