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HOLY FAMILY SEMINARY
401 RANDOLPH ROAD SILVER SPRING, MD 20904
Prophet of the family
Saint Josep Manyanet is the Prophet of the Family. Inspired by the Holy Spirit he grasped how many threats a family has to face. His answer, over a century ago, was to dedicate his entire life to minister to families.
He sees the Sacrament of Marriage between a man and a woman as the natural foundation for all families. They have been called by God to develop their mutual love as an echo and reflection of the divine love and to create a community in the service of life. The family thus becomes the spring and source of all social goods and a precious jewel for the church and for the world.
Manyanet issues an invitation to all families interested in discovering the fullness of their mission, to consider Nazareth as the mirror and the Holy Family as the image reflecting their potential and their goals. His aim will be to build a Nazareth in every home and to make every family into «a Holy Family».
In 1899 he began a monthly magazine dedicated to the Holy Family and that same year he published his Precious family jewel, a guiding manual for family life. Even earlier (1868 and 1874), he had given impulse to a Movement and Lay Association of followers of the Holy Family.
He became convinced that the Good News of the Holy Family offers an abundance of Pastoral opportunities because it proclaims the fundamental values of family life and fosters the celebration of the home as the place where husbands and wives and parents and children will find their joy. «At the School of Nazareth, every family will learn the gift of love, the ideal of unity and the service of life».
Teacher and educator: children and youth
Manyanet's ministry to families comes down to details: he seeks to train his followers as educators and teachers: «The best way to bring a family to the Gospel and with it all of society, will be to raise the children in a thoroughly Catholic environment».
Pope John Paul II has insisted on «the Gospel of Nazareth» as an Educational System. Josep Manyanet, addressing the same idea' refers to the mystery of Jesus growing up at Nazareth in wisdom, age and grace before God and the people. He then, speaks, of the loving care exercised by Mary and Joseph who make their home into a church and a school to establish a «culture of mind and heart» for the child. What educational institutions are staffed by Josep Manyanet and by his followers, honor that same paradigm.
His Religious Congregations focus today on a holistic approach to education. They help children and youth learn with their parents. This is the first step towards a civilization of love solidly set on the Gospel. The goal is that while young people earn an education, the family becomes a community of love in the service of life, marriage vows are strengthened and both children and grown-ups accept their community responsibilities, fostering families for a better society that walks towards «a civilization of love».