Archdiocese of Dubuque
Marriage & Family Life

1229 Mt. Loretta Ave.
Dubuque, IA 52003
(563) 556-2580, x233
Marriage & Family Life Director: Matt Selby

Marriage & Family Life Associate:
Lynne Chapman

Marriage & Family Life Witness Article
"Giving Voice to Vocations: Marriage" by Dan Russo
As part of a recent series in the Witness on vocations, Matt Selby, Director of Marriage and Family Life, shares about the state of the vocation of marriage in our modern day and what to do about it.
Click Here to Read the Article

Ways to Learn and Live the Faith

as a Catholic Family

Winter Activities for Catholic Families

New Liturgical Year!

December 2 - First Sunday of Advent

December 8 - Feast of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary
December 12 - Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe
  • The Virgin of Guadalupe is the patron saint of Mexico. She is depicted with brown skin, an angel and moon at her feet, and rays of sunlight that encircle her. The Blessed Mother appeared to Juan Diego, wearing Aztec clothing and speaking in Spanish. Learn more about this feast day here
  • Prayer to Our Lady of Guadalupe

December 25 - The Nativity of the Lord – Christmas Day
December 28 - The Feast of The Holy Innocents
  • Bethlehem was a small town, and the estimated number of boys two years old and under would have been about 20. Mary and Joseph would have known the families of these children. One can only guess their feelings when they later heard about the news of their deaths. Click here for resources relating to this feast day. 
  • To learn more about the Holy Innocents, click here.

December 30 - The Feast of the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph

                    Wishing you and your family a 
                        Blessed Advent Season,
                  and a very Merry Christmas!

Marriage Matters

Wanting to Fix People

We have a tendency to want to fix the people we love. While delighting in all their good traits, we think, “If only they didn’t have this one quirk...” In this video, Fr. Mike Schmitz explains that love embraces the entire person just the way he or she is. ​He then give practical advice on how to do that.

Saints of the Month

December 3 - St. Francis Xavier

December 6 - St. Nicholas 

December 7 - St. Ambrose  

December 9 - St. Juan Diego 

December 13 - St. Lucy

December 14 - St. John of the Cross

December 26 - St. Stephen

  • Learn more about St. Stephen here.

December 27 - St John, Apostle and Evangelist

  • Learn more about the Feast of St. John here.

Website Spotlight

Catholic All Year
Catholic All Year is a website and blog created by Kendra Tierney, a Catholic wife and mother. The website includes articles, resources, and ideas about family and parenting, homeschooling, the liturgical year, movies and books, celebrating the seasons, personal experiences, and living a Catholic life with your family.        

Book of the Month

The Catholic All Year Compendium
Liturgical Living for Real Life

by Kendra Tierney       

Kendra Tierney shares how her family incorporates traditional Catholic practices into today's family life throughout the Church year— from Advent and Christmas, through Lent and Easter, to Pentecost and beyond. She provides ideas for stories, decorations, activities, and foods that will help you to celebrate your Catholic faith with your family and friends without expertise or much advance planning. She also offers tips and tricks from her fifteen years in the Catholic mommy trenches on things like surviving bringing young children to Mass and saying a family Rosary. (from

For more information and to purchase the book, click here

This book is available for sign-out from the Education Resource Center: BK #213103.

December Movie Pick

Check out this month's movie pick:

The Star

A small but brave donkey named Bo yearns for a life beyond his daily grind at the village mill. One day he finds the courage to break free, and finally goes on the adventure of his dreams. On his journey, he teams up with Ruth, a lovable sheep who has lost her flock and Dave, a dove with lofty aspirations. Along with three wisecracking camels and some eccentric stable animals, Bo and his new friends follow the Star and become unlikely heroes in the greatest story ever told – the first Christmas.

  • Check out the official movie website for activities, coloring pages, resources and more!
  • Watch the movie trailer by clicking here.
  • Purchase a DVD of this movie here.
  • Family discussion/activity guide can be found here.

This movie is available for sign-out from the Education Resource Center: DV #31627.

There's An App For That
Xt3 Advent Calendar App

Advent is a time of preparation and waiting for the birth of Jesus, a time when we ask ourselves, “Is there room for the Baby Jesus in the Inn of our hearts?” Watch an introductory video, and learn more about the Xt3 Advent Calendar App for 2018 here

Download the Advent Calendar as an App. It’s FREE!
For iPhone or for Android

Interest in Pinterest

December Pinterest Highlights for Families
from the Education Resource Center, Archdiocese of Dubuque

Check out these Pinterest topics focused on the family - the Domestic Church!
Prayers and Reflections
During Advent, we not only prepare ourselves to celebrate the birth of Jesus, but we also check in to see if we are doing all the things that will keep us ready to receive Jesus when he comes again. Talk to your family about how you are doing in attending to your spiritual life as a family. Recommit yourselves to praying daily, reading scripture, and staying faithful to God's commandments. Pray together that through this Advent season your family will be more prepared to receive Jesus when he comes again.

Advent Family Prayer

Heavenly Father,
your Son, Jesus, is your greatest gift to us,
a great sign of your love.
Guide us as we strive to walk in that love together
as a family this Advent.
As we prepare our hearts for Christmas,
bring us closer to each other and to your Son.
Give us the grace and strength we need every day.
Help us to always trust in you.
Come, Lord Jesus, lead all people closer to you.
Come and dispel the darkness of our world
with the light of your love.
All Are Welcome

National Day of Prayer for Inclusion: November 30 - December 2, 2018
Please join Catholic schools (Nov 30) and Parishes (Dec 1-2) across the country in the National Day of Prayer for Inclusion of People/Students with Disabilities and the Families Who Love Them, as we ask for God’s blessing on children, teachers, parents and families.

To read more about the National Day of Prayer for Inclusion, go to the FIRE Foundation of Northeast Iowa’s website.

For Inclusion Best Practices click here.

Inclusive Winter Retreat – January 5, 2019
The Office of Disability Inclusion sponsors this retreat that offers participants an opportunity to deepen their faith through prayer, reflection, sharing, and song in celebration with persons with disabilities. The Winter Retreat will be held at Holy Ghost Church in Dubuque.

For additional information and resources for inclusion of persons with diverse abilities, please contact Mindy Hart, Director of the Office of Disability Inclusion.

Upcoming Events

Behold: A Retreat Day for Young Adult Women
Saturday, December 1, 2018
This event will take place from 9:00 am - 4:00 PM
at American Martyrs Retreat House, Cedar Falls.
This retreat day helps each woman to “recognize the gift she is, realize the gifts she’s been given, and give to the world the gifts that only she can give.” Please invite young adult women, ages 21-29, from your parish/cluster to attend this day. This is an offering you may want to take back to your parish, so please consider attending to learn more about it. Click here to register.

3rd Annual Archdiocesan Women's Conference
Saturday, January 26, 2019

Mark your calendars for the 3rd Annual Archdiocesan Women’s Conference, Beauty in Christ, Saturday, January 26, 2019, DoubleTree by Hilton, Cedar Rapids, IA. 
Learn more and register by visiting:

23rd Annual Catholic Men's Conference
Saturday, March 16, 2019

Xavier Catholic High School, Cedar Rapids
Keynote Speaker: Anthony Digmann
Learn more here:

Essential Elements of a Strong Catholic Marriage Day
Saturday, April 27, 2019
St. Ludmila Catholic Church, Cedar Rapids
Keynote Speakers: Greg and Julie Alexander
Cost: $75 per couple
To register, click here.
Copyright © 2018 Archdiocese of Dubuque, All rights reserved.

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Office of Marriage and Family Life 
Archdiocese of Dubuque
1229 Mt. Loretta Ave
Dubuque, IA 52003

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Archdiocese of Dubuque · 1229 Mt. Loretta Avenue · Dubuque, IA 52003 · USA

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