St. Peter Parish helps young families connect to parish community

Rebecca Venegoni Tower

Many young Catholic families are at that “awkward age” — with children too young to attend the parish school, parents lack many opportunities to meet fellow parishioners and be involved with their faith community. St. Peter Parish in Kirkwood is doing something about that.

St. Peter Young Families, begun last year under the direction of associate pastor Father Mike Esswein, links up young families with a variety of activities. Participants rate it a rousing success, both for parents and children. It’s also a big benefit for the parish, according to Father Esswein.

“We are so blessed to have a large number of young families,” Father Esswein said. “But with their children not yet in school, they were not connected to the parish except for coming to Mass. They are our future, and we wanted them to be more connected. I have siblings in the same situation who expressed a desire to find ways to become more connected to their own parishes.”

Father Esswein approached five young married couples he saw frequently at Mass and asked for their thoughts. “We wanted to hit three areas: social, spiritual and service,” he said. The response was great, he added.

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