Lumen Gentium (LG) 11 acknowledges: “The family is, so to speak, the domestic Church.” The Instrumentum Laboris (IL) of the Synod of Bishops, dealing with “The Pastoral Challenges of the Family in the Context of Evangelization,” refers five times to the family as domestic Church. The concluding prayer of the IL asks the Holy Family of Nazareth to “grant that our families, too, may be places of communion and prayer, authentic schools of the Gospel and small domestic Churches.” This paper seeks:

  • To explore the notion of the family as domestic church or Church in miniature;
  • To make a contribution to a theology/ecclesiology of the domestic church and Mary’s role therein;
  • To introduce the ‘Home Shrine’ of the Schoenstatt Movement as a place of prayer and spiritual encounter for the domestic church with a specific focus on Mary’s efficacy as Educatrix of the Family;
  • To show that the domestic church under the protection of Our Lady can be a prime promoter of evangelization.


Copyright © 2015, Mariological Society of America



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