Who We Are

Introduction: Meeting the Need

With a general cultural decline in family cohesiveness, there is an incredible need to strengthen the domestic church from within. Catholic Social Teaching highlights the Call to Family, Community, and Participation in order to honor not only the sacred nature of the human person, but the social nature as well. Pope St. Paul VI specifies in Gaudium et Spes (The Church in the Modern World) that “the well-being of the individual person and of both human and Christian society is closely bound up with the healthy state of the community of marriage and the family.” It is imperative that each individual within the family unit has access to resources that bring about healing and wholeness ordered towards the universal call to holiness. This includes programs promoting spiritual growth, healthy nutrition and exercise routines, marital and parent-child relationships, inner healing, vocation discernment, and financial stewardship.

Rising levels of depression and anxiety across all age levels has resulted from a lack of authentic connection between family and community members, thus leading to the overall disintegration of the individual (Hidaka, 2012). Understanding that the human person is made of different parts all animated by the soul, there is a growing appreciation for the various dimensions being more wholly integrated with one another – body, mind, and spirit. It has long been known that diet and exercise directly affect physical health, but with a higher incidence of stress-related chronic illnesses and a strong correlation between emotional well-being and regular prayer life, there is an obvious multidimensional cohesiveness within the human being where the strength or weakness of one area will have its effect on the others (Karff, 2009).

While our local parishes generously offer the sacraments to the local parishioners, as well as formation opportunities to children and teens, young families are often left struggling in a season when they need the most support and guidance. The negative effects of stress and isolation float to the surface when they are without others to relate to or to journey with them in their parenting years. There is a great need for family catechesis and community support for parents as the primary educators and catechists of their children. The family catechesis model has been implemented in a variety of ways in parishes across the United States; however, it is not yet widespread, and the crisis of youth falling away from the Church continues. This may pose a heavy burden on the local church, but its benefits show that investment from the greater Catholic community will be well-worth it (Adrians, 2020).

According to the California Catholic Conference (2020), “Catholic social teaching urges that parents be supported in their effort to raise well-formed, healthy children. And at the core of the family is a stable, healthy marriage.” Subsequently, the family is the fabric of society, as Pope St. John Paul II most clearly states in Familiaris Consortio (The Role of the Christian Family in the Modern World): “The future of humanity passes by way of the family.” We as sons and daughters of the Church must respond to this exhortation to take collaborative concrete action in advancing the centrality of Jesus Christ as reigning King of our hearts and our homes. It is only through the embodiment of Gospel values in our families that we will see a positive transformation of culture in generations to come (Cozzens, 2017).

REFERENCES:

“The Call to Family, Community and Participation | California Catholic Conference.” California Catholic Conference, California Catholic Conference.

Adrians, Jessica V. “Shaped by Love: Family Catechesis and the Crisis of Disaffiliation in the Catholic Church.” Digitalcommons.Snc.Edu, Jessica V. Adrians, 2020.

Cozzens, Bishop Andrew. “The Church, Young People and the Role of Parents.” TheCatholicSpirit.Com, The Catholic Spirit, 3 Nov. 2017.

Global Wellness Institute. “Estimated Global Market Size of the Wellness Industry Cluster.” 2010.

Hidaka, Brandon H. “Depression as a Disease of Modernity: Explanations for Increasing Prevalence.” Journal of Affective Disorders, vol. 140, no. 3, 2012, pp. 205–14. Crossref.

Karff, Samuel. “Recognizing the Mind/Body/Spirit Connection in Medical Care.” AMA Journal of Ethics, American Medical Association, 1 Oct. 2009.

Kreeft, Peter. “Human Nature as the Basis for Morality.” Catholic Christianity, edited by Fr. John Farren, O.P., EPub ed., vol. Section 2 Part 3, United States of America, Knights of Columbus Supreme Council, 2001, pp. 1–32.

Executive Summary

Objective: Arbor Family Wellness Village & Institute (also referred to as “The Village”) is a comprehensive resource center that serves families within a community setting. The Village offers recommended resources and services that contribute to the family’s physical, spiritual, emotional, mental, financial, and social well-being. The Village will also include a Teahouse Cafe & Lounge with an adjoining Catholic retail shop to draw interest from passersby and provide a relaxed space for the community to build relationships.

Opportunity: The establishment of wellness centers throughout the United States is a response to the trend of Americans desiring a more healthy lifestyle through preventative measures. However, the purpose and function of many wellness centers tends to lean towards one particular field, such as mental health, fitness and nutrition, or alternative medicine therapies. To our knowledge, there is not yet a single organization in the state of California that operates with a scope as comprehensive as Arbor Family Wellness Village & Institute.

The Village serves out of the Catholic-Christian worldview with the intention of strengthening marriage and family. It is open to meeting the needs of all persons regardless of religious affiliation, family status, or socioeconomic background. Each person is recognized as a child of God made in His image and likeness – endowed with dignity and blessed with gifts, talents, and experiences that can contribute to the good of others around them.

The Organization: The Founders envision the Arbor Family Wellness Village & Institute as a place where families can receive necessary services for a suggested donation or at an affordable cost on a needs-based sliding scale. The Village will attend to our families within a complete range of the following areas:

  • Spiritual Formation
  • Marriage & Family Support
  • Counseling & Therapy
  • Health & Fitness
  • Financial Education & Resources