What is a Patriarch Men's Group?
Patriarch is a self-run men's group that reflects on the models of fatherly leadership narrated throughout scripture.
There are 3 components to Patriarch Men's Groups:
1. Formed in Scripture
Beginning with the story of Creation in Genesis, Patriarch Men's Groups meet regularly to reflect on the models of fatherly leadership narrated throughout scripture. The curriculum for Patriarch Men's Groups is less a class of instruction, and more a forum for intelligent discussion and application of the lessons of the Word of God. Here are just a few examples of questions Patriarch Men's Groups reflect on and apply to their own lives:
- From the Genesis 18 Session: How does the Lord permit himself to be persuaded by Abraham? How might I, like the Lord, allow myself to be persuaded by the intercession of my wife or children?
- From the Exodus 12-13 Session: After 430 years, Moses and Israel remember to take Joseph’s bones out of Egypt back to the Promised Land. How important has your family tree been for your family? How often did your parents take you to visit the graves of your ancestors? How often do you take your family to visit your deceased relatives?
2. Forming their Children
Patriarch Men create intentional formation experiences for their children. Here are just a few examples of resolutions men make to intentionally form their children:
- Genesis 17 Resolution: I will write a note to each of my children expressing my gratitude, pride, and hopes for their future fruitfulness
- Genesis 23 Resolution: I will have my children help me fix up part of our home that has been neglected
- Genesis 24 Resolution: I will have a conversation with my children about important priorities to look for in a future spouse
- Genesis 33 Resolution: I will acknowledge one of my failures to one of my children and ask for forgiveness
- Genesis 17 Resolution: I will plan with my wife the way we will address sexual maturity with our children
3. Leading their Families
Just like the Patriarchs of the Old Testament, Patriarch Men lead their families in celebrating religious feasts, undertaking sacrifices, fasting, praying and being generous to the Lord and to others. Here are just a few examples of resolutions men make to lead their families:
- Genesis 8-9 Resolution: I will schedule a Feast for friends to celebrate a Holy Day at our home
- Genesis 3:1-7 Resolution: I will fast one day for the healing, protection and freedom of my wife
- Genesis 21 Resolution: I will teach my family how to pray the Angelus
- Exodus 7 Resolution: I will bring my family to volunteer with an organization that works with the homeless or disabled
- Exodus 19-20 Resolution: I will come up with a plan to train my younger children in self-control and perseverance (i.e. music lessons, karate lessons, a household project, etc.)
Who runs Patriarch Men's Groups?
Well... you do!!
Patriarch Men's Groups are intentionally designed to be self-run. The intention is to bring together a group of men and help them, by their own ingenuity and creativity, develop into better formed, stronger praying, and more passionately loving fatherly leaders.
For these reasons Patriarch Groups are often smaller than other men’s ministries you may have attended. In fact we have found that Patriarch is most effective with a smaller, committed, and accountable group. An average group size is 5-10 men. Because of this, when there is interest in Patriarch we suggest that you start a new group rather than looking to join an already established group.
Start a group?! Are you crazy?!
No, we're not crazy.
We designed Patriarch so that ANYONE can start a group.... and IT'S COMPLETELY FREE! Patriarch Men's Groups involve practical application of scripture. That's it. If you can read scripture and practically apply it to your life as a husband/father, you can start a group. The men who have started Patriarch groups share one characteristic: they are Catholic men seeking to learn how to better lead their families as husbands and fathers. Most groups don't even have a "leader". Most groups have a coordinator of meeting times and locations, but they rotate who facilitates each week.
Starting a group sounds intimidating to most men, but you will find that the most challenging part will simply be working up the courage to extend an invitation for other men to join you.
I'll give it a try... what should I do first?
Think of men who are husbands/fathers who might be interested and invite them to join you for the Genesis 1 Pilot Session. All material can be accessed using a mobile device or if you'd like to print out the curriculum, pdf versions are available with each chapter. We suggest that you share with the men in your group the "Start a Group" section of this website before your first meeting so that everyone is on the same-page about the content when you get started.
So, this is free? What's the catch? My high school economics teacher told me there is no such thing as a free lunch.
It's true! It is free!... although, your economics teacher was still right. Patriarch is a Colorado based non-profit that relies solely on donations. It was created by Fr. John Ignatius, of the Servants of Christ Jesus. If you feel that Patriarch is a valuable resource, please consider donating to Patriarch, however, our goal is simply for you to be blessed and encouraged in the leadership of your family. Donations support the continued development and promotion of Patriarch Men's Groups.
The only thing we require is that you register your group using the form below if you choose to use Patriarch. We will not spam you (we won't even send you annoying emails asking for donations!!!)... we just want to be able to have an idea of how Patriarch material is being used.