National family ministry organization founded to serve Hispanic families in the U.S.

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Will promote leadership training and formation for Hispanic pastoral family ministers

Enrique Soros

In light of the fact that almost half of Catholics in the U.S. identify as being of Hispanic origin, along with the need to minister to them in a way that speaks to their language and culture, the board of directors of the National Association of Catholic Family Life Ministers (NACFLM) approved, as its subsidiary, the founding of the “Federation for Hispanic Family Ministry”. 

The purpose of the Federation is to provide accompaniment and formation to those who minister to and with Hispanic marriages and families; and be a resource for networking, research and development in Hispanic marriage and family life ministry.

The New Federation within NACFLM 

For over 40 years NACFLM has been the premiere professional organization for Catholic marriage and family life ministry in the United States. Comprised of members from around the country, at the diocesan, parish, and national level, NACFLM provides ongoing training, networking, and advocacy for men and women who work to strengthen and heal marriages and families. 

Bishop Jorge Rodríguez
Jake Samour
Lucía Luzondo
Mario Martínez
Ed Hopfner

A year and a half ago, the NACFLM Board of Directors appointed an ad hoc committee, led by Hispanic Section Representative Jake Samour, to consult with leaders of Hispanic ministry on the growing needs of family life ministry in light of the V Encuentro process. It was determined that a more dedicated effort was needed to increase formation opportunities for leaders in ministry and expand resource offerings to the community. 

At NACFLM’s 2021 annual membership conference, held at St. John Paul II National Shrine in Washington, D.C., on September 24, Jake Samour, Bishop Jorge Rodriguez and other leaders of the founding committee officially announced the founding of the Federation.  

Leadership of the Federation will operate as a Commission within NACFLM and members of the Federation will be part of the Hispanic Section. Jake Samour will serve as Chair and the heads of the various committees and subgroups within the Federation will also be members on the equivalent NACFLM Commissions. This arrangement will allow the Federation to grow organically while remaining united to the mission and work of NACFLM. 

Excitement from its leaders

 “The creation of the Federation of Hispanic Family Ministry within NACFLM, acknowledges the priority that family values have in the Hispanic culture and Catholic faith. At the same time it responds to the need to form leaders able to offer support, to defend and to promote those values in our present time in the United States,” stated Bishop Rodriguez. 

 “We are thrilled to be recognized as a Federation. With the support of Bishop Rodriguez we will begin charting a new course for Family Ministry which focuses on the increasing number of Hispanic families in the U.S.,” said Jake Samour, the Federation’s new Chair. “We know that a large number of our members consistently inquire about the growing need to better serve the Hispanic population in their parishes and dioceses, and we place great value in meeting that need by having a Hispanic Bishop as our Liaison and creating the new Federation.” 

“This is a promising new outreach for not only the Hispanic community but all marriage and family life ministry leaders who serve them,” Mike Day, President of NACFLM said. “The Federation together with our Episcopal Liaison will be dedicated to the formation and accompaniment of family life leaders who minister to and with Hispanic marriages and families. At the same time, the Federation will be committed to the networking and development of its members through effective pastoral practices and innovative models of evangelization, catechesis, and ministry with Hispanic marriages and families of every cultural experience and state in society.”

- Federation for Family Life Ministry Logo_02.png
Logo of the Federation for Hispanic Family Ministry =
Federación para la Pastoral Familiar Hispana
– Bishop Jorge Rodriguez , Auxiliary Archd. of Denver, Episcopal liaison
– Lucía Luzondo, member NACFLM, Archd. Atlanta
– Jake Samour, Hispanic Representative NACFLM, Diocese Wichita, Chair Federation for Hispanic Family Ministry
– Mario Martínez, member NACFLM, Diocese San Bernardino
– Carla Ferrando-Bowling, member NACFLM, Archd. Washington
– Adriana Visoso, President LaRed, National Catholic Network de Pastoral Juvenil Hispana
– Ed Hopfner, member of the Board of Directors NACFLM, Arqd. San Francisco

Originally published in

Foto 1: Lorrie Gramer – Foto 2 & 4: Adriana Visoso