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Showing Off Your Faith
By Susan Hines-Brigger


The Rosary Bowl
Time to Show Off
For Teens: Getting the Word Out
For Kids: Who Was Father Peyton?

It wouldn’t be very difficult for anyone who doesn’t already know me to find out my favorite baseball or football team, what kind of music I like or my taste in food or clothes. All they would have to do is watch me or listen.

I wonder, though, if it would be as easy for them to know that I am a Catholic. Do I make my faith as obvious to the rest of the world as I do my love for the Green Bay Packers?


The Rosary Bowl

This month, people in Southern California will get a great opportunity to show up and demonstrate just how much their faith means to them. Holy Cross Family Ministries and its local member, Family Theater Productions in Hollywood, California, in conjunction with the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, is hosting “A World at Prayer Is a World at Peace: The Rosary Bowl” (

The event, which will take place on May 19 at the Rose Bowl in Southern California, is a multicultural Rosary celebration for world peace. It will be the largest outdoor recitation of the Rosary in Southern California in 50 years. It is free and open to the public and will take place from 6 to 9 p.m.

The program will feature music, prayer and cultural exhibitions, as well as adoration, the recitation of the Glorious Mysteries of the Rosary and a homily by Los Angeles Cardinal Roger M. Mahony.

Holy Cross Father John Phalen, president of Holy Cross Family Ministries, says, “The Rosary Bowl carries forward the tradition and mission of the ‘Rosary priest,’ Servant of God Father Patrick Peyton, to foster world peace and support the spiritual well-being of the family by encouraging daily family prayer, specifically the Rosary.”

Time to Show Off

While we shouldn’t wait for an event like the Rosary Bowl to display our faith, such events do serve as a good reminder to us. Here are some other ways that we can keep living—and showing off—our faith.

• If you can’t make it to the Rosary at the Rose Bowl, make plans to replicate it in your own home or parish. There are suggestions on the event’s Web site for ways you can take part without being present.

• Take stock of ways that you and your family are revealing your faith. If you feel you’re not doing a good enough job of showing the world what your faith means to you, focus on ways you could improve.

• Get out your rosary. Earlier this year, as my daughter Maddie was preparing for First Communion, she started asking me questions about praying the Rosary. It was a good opportunity to share with her what those prayers mean to me and refresh myself on a practice I learned years ago.

• Father Patrick Peyton, C.S.C., known as the “Rosary priest,” often said, “The family that prays together, stays together.” Take that slogan to heart and set aside a special time for your family to gather and pray.

Next Month: Have You Seen God Today?


For Teens: Getting the Word Out

Last summer as I was sitting at my son Alex’s T-ball game, a young woman approached me and offered me a bottle of water. I told her that I didn’t have any money on me to buy one and she said, “No, I’m not selling them. They’re free.” I graciously accepted the water and, as she walked away, I noticed a tag on the bottle that said, “A reminder that God loves you, courtesy of [the name of the church].” I was floored. I wondered if many Catholic churches are out there sharing their faith as well as some of these churches.

So why not gather a group of friends from your parish or youth group and take to the streets? Buy some cases of water or soda and distribute them one evening at the local park—no strings attached, just as an outward sign to others of our faith. (Check to make sure you’re allowed to do it first, though.) Or approach your pastor or DRE and ask if your group can pass out doughnuts or some other little snack after Mass on the weekends. Try to come up with a catchy phrase to include with the treat.

For Kids: Who Was Father Peyton?

To your grandparents—and maybe even parents—Father Patrick Peyton is probably a pretty familiar name. During his lifetime he devoted a lot of time and energy to encouraging families to pray together, especially the Rosary. He used the power of television, radio and celebrities to help spread his message. Ask your grandparents or parents to tell you their memories of Father Peyton. They can also read about Father Peyton in the new United States Catholic Catechism for Adults.

St. Anthony Messenger did a feature on Father Peyton and his Family Theater Productions ( in June 1997. Ask them to read it with you. The article Family Theater at 50: Father Patrick Peyton Remembered is available online.


Do you have ideas or suggestions for topics you'd like to see addressed in this column? If so, send them to me at “Faith-filled Family,” 28 W. Liberty Street, Cincinnati, OH 45202-6498, or e-mail them to

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