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Contemporary Catholic Conversations

Save the date!

Speaker: Massimo Faggioli

Sunday October 27, 2019
3:30 - 5:00 PM

St. Mark's Lutheran Church
100 Harter Road, Morristown, NJ

Our speaker will be Dr. Massimo Faggioli, Professor of Historical Theology and Religious Studies at Villanova University. He is an expert on the history and administrative inner workings of the Catholic Church and of the papacy. Learn more.

Our Church: Called to Be a Reflection of Who God Is What Does This Ask of Us?

Speaker: Sr. Catherine Nerney, SSJ

Sunday, September 22, 2019
3:30 - 5:00 PM
St. Mark's Lutheran Church
100 Harter Rd., Morristown, NJ

Vatican Council II called the church to reclaim its core identity in the Communion of God's own Life-a Divine Life revealed and experienced as "COMPASSION." If that Life of God has birthed the church, then compassion is the church's very DNA. Sister Catherine Nerney SSJ will explore with us what this means in our troubled times, what this asks of us, and how we can do our part to rebuild a church that God might recognize as a more authentic divine/human self-gift to the world and our planet.

Sr. Catherine Nerney SSJ, a Sister of St. Joseph of Chestnut Hill, Philadelphia received her Ph.D in systematic theology from The Catholic University of America. Currently, she is Associate Professor of Religious Studies at Chestnut Hill College and Director of its Institute for Forgiveness and Reconciliation. Dr. Nerney's area of specialization is the Theology of the Church. Sister Cathy's latest publication is titled The Compassion Connection, Recovering Our Original Oneness

Read more ...

What is going on with the Vatican? ...And why should I stay Catholic?

Speaker: Jamie Manson

In this talk, Jamie Manson, columnist and editor at the "National Catholic Reporter" shared her thoughts, based on her recent trip to Rome for the sex abuse summit, about several hot button issues: Why wasn't more accomplished at the summit? Why did those women journalists resign from the Vatican newspaper? Did Frederic Martel's book, In the Closet of the Vatican, have any impact at all? She'll also talk about why she stays Catholic amid this constant barrage of drama, controversy, and deep institutional sin, and what hope she is seeing for the Church among the next generation of Catholics and prophets. 

Jamie Manson is a columnist and books editor at the "National Catholic Reporter."  She received her Master of Divinity degree from Yale Divinity School, where she studied Catholic theology and sexual ethics. She is editor of Changing the Questions: Explorations in Christian Ethics, a collection of writings by Margaret Farley (Orbis, 2015). Her writing has won numerous awards, most recently the 2015 Wilbur Award for Best Online Religion News Story for her extended essay "Feminism in Faith: Sister Elizabeth Johnson's Challenge to the Vatican." Her activism on behalf of women in the church recently garnered her the Theresa Kane Award for Women of Courage and Vision from the Women’s Ordination Conference.

Presentation was held Sunday April 28, 2019, 3:30 St. Mark's Lutheran Church, Morristown, NJ 


In the Prophetic Tradition: Raise Your Voice!

VOTFNJ NCR 2019 1Dear VOTFNJ brothers and sisters,

The self-inflicted wound of the clerical sexual abuse crisis has brought our beloved Church to the point of implosion--at least the hierarchical clerical culture of our Church. It is, in one way, a good thing! This means that the wound has been exposed and now the healing may begin; the rebuilding of the Church can commence. What is good can be retained and what has gone off course can be rooted out and left behind.

As members of the laity, committed to our baptismal promises, we can - and must - participate in the rebuilding of our beloved local New Jersey church. In this packet of materials you will find helpful resources, appropriate contact information, and informative background articles. May we suggest a few things that we all can do to move the healing forward?

VOTFNJ has developed an Action Packet of practical steps you can take to confront the abuse crisis in our Church.

Join Us to Support Refugees in New Jersey

 Refugee Assistance Update

RAMP tag stackedAt VOTFNJ's invitation, a steering committee for refugee assistance held its first organizational meeting on May 23, 2016 at St. Peter's Episcopal Church. The result: a coalition of 14 member organizations which have named themselves, Refugee Assistance Morris Partners (RAMP). Their stated purpose: " assist vetted Middle Eastern and other refugee families to transiton to productive lives of dignity, safety, and hope in the Morris County area of New Jersey." The group has partnered with the International Rescue Committee (IRC) and with the Community Foundation of New Jersey (CFNJ).

Learn more about RAMP here.
Learn more about RAMP's partnership with CFNJ here.
Donate to RAMP here.

For the latest news, read our latest newsletter here.

If you would like to join this multi-faith and civic effort, check for the opportunities available here. Contact RAMP This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information and to receive updates.






VOTF National News & Views

votfnj sStay in touch and informed!

Read In the Vineyard and stay abreast of VOTF national activities and views here.

Confronting the Systemic Dysfunction of Clericalism
Produced by the Association of U.S. Catholic Priests in collaboration with Voice of the Faithful and lay people and clergy across the nation; endorsed by FutureChurch.

When we were asked to prepare a document about clericalism within the Church, we quickly realized that our challenges would be two-fold. One was the sheer volume of books, articles,
editorials, and pronouncements on the topic. What could we say that would help advance the literature already available? What new perspectives or visions could we offer to move forward
on efforts to confront and root out clericalism?

Our other challenge was to produce a document that would “ring true” with both clergy and laity. Could we help us all to see the problem clearly and begin to recognize its manifestations? Could we frame the discussion so as to encourage clergy and laity together to confront actions and attitudes that contribute to clericalism?

Click above for more.

Road to Recovery

VOTFNJ is pleased to support ...

Road to RecoveryRoad to Recovery, a non-profit organization that offers compassionate counseling and referral services to survivors of sexual abuse. Launched in 2005 to provide direct assistance to victims of clergy sexual abuse, R2R has expanded its mission to include survivors of all sexual abuse. Learn more.

Next Eucharistic Celebration

Sunday, September 1, 2019HC
4:30 - 6:00 PM
Saint Mark Lutheran Church
100 Harter Road, Morristown, NJ

Rev. Ken Lasch, Presider






THE VOICE - VOTFNJ's Monthly Newsletter

Click here for VOTFNJ monthly news and more...

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Living the Gospel - Intentional Eucharistic Communities

Intentional Eucharistic Communities (IECs) are those small faith communities, rooted in the Intentional Eucharistic CommunitiesCatholic tradition, which gather to celebrate Eucharist on a regular basis. Born in the enthusiasm flowing from Vatican II for a church of the people, some IECs were instituted in parishes, some were created as alternatives to the parish, some retain close ties with the institutional church, and some function independently. VOTFNJ considers itself to be an Intentional Eucharistic Community. Another New Jersey area IECs is the Sophia Inclusive Catholic Community (Andover, NJ), founded by a VOTFNJ member, Mary Ann Schoetlly.

Discover more...


Upcoming Events

22 Sep
The Compassion Connection
Date 09.22.2019 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm

Speaker: Sr. Catherine Nerney, SSJ

6 Oct
Eucharistic Liturgy
Date 10.06.2019 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm

Presider: Ken Lasch

20 Oct
Eucharistic Liturgy
Date 10.20.2019 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm

Presider: Michael Corso

27 Oct
Contemporary Catholic Conversations
Date 10.27.2019 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm

Speaker: Dr. Massimo Faggioli

3 Nov
Eucharistic Liturgy
Date 11.03.2019 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm

Presider: Dick Rento

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