In Depth: The Prayer and Sacramental Lives of America’s Young Catholic Families

CARA-HCFM-BannerAs Family Theater Productions’ founder, Father Patrick Peyton, CSC, famously said, “The family that prays together stays together.”

But exactly what’s happening out there with Catholic families? On Saturday, Feb. 27, at the recent Los Angeles Religious Education Congress in Anaheim, California, FTP’s current Head of Production, Father David Guffey, CSC, presented a talk on how Catholic families can use existing media for evangelization and catechesis.

Included in that were the results of a 2014 study from Georgetown University’s Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA), commissioned by our parent organization, Holy Cross Family Ministries.

It surveyed Catholic parents between the ages of 25 and 45, with a minor child in the home. One takeaway is that much of religious education for children is now centered in the home, with resources available there, and with parents as primary catechists, rather than in school or parish-based programs.

And sadly, only a small percentage of young parents attend Mass regularly with their children. As the former head of FTP, Father Willy Raymond, observed:

“Sine Dominico, non possumus.” When the Roman judge in 304 AD asked the martyrs of Abitene (present day Tunisia) why they risked death to celebrate the Eucharist, their response was we cannot be our true selves without Mass, without keeping the Lord’s Day. We cannot be followers of Christ, we cannot live, we are empty without this central prayer of our faith.

Unfortunately, too many of these parents aren’t aware of the resources available to them, through media and the Internet, that transmit Catholic information and values.

Rectifying that is central to the mission of Holy Cross Family Ministries, and to Family Theater Productions.

As Father Guffey promised to his listeners, here are some infographics that summarize the CARA reports:


The Young Catholic Parent


Participation in Formal Catholic Practices


Perceptions on Prayer


Click here for the full text of the reports (which are available for online reading and as downloadable PDFs), along with larger versions of the infographics.

Image: Courtesy Holy Cross Family Ministries

Visit the Family Theater Productions homepage and Facebook page to learn more about how FTP is reaching out to Hollywood and producing its own projects.