One of the first lessons about Divine Patriarchy is that God creates Man, gives him freedom, and then requires him to be active.
Man is supposed to be fruitful, multiply, exercise dominion, cultivate the garden, protect the garden, and give names to the animals. God does not do everything for the man. Man is required to be active. Patriarch is based on the premise that, from the beginning, men are required to be active rather than passive.
Too often, the experience of religion is passive.
Catholics are great at sitting and listening, while someone else does the speaking, someone else does the teaching, someone else does the praying, someone else does the LEADING. But if your only experience of religion is watching someone else, even if that person is an expert, you are still only a spectator.
And then, when someone tells you that you should lead the family spiritually, guess what – you have no experience, you have no training, you have never been ACTIVE before spiritually, so there is a disconnect. Men may say or think: “At Church I sit and listen, I’m trained to be passive with my faith. So why isn’t it okay to be passive at home or at work? Other people are the experts…NOT me.”
Not here. Patriarch requires preparation and participation. There is no “Teacher Edition” with all of the answers. There is no "expert" or "professional" there to facilitate your discussion, and that’s a good thing to consider before you decide if you want to pursue this. It requires reading and reflection ahead of time, and conversation about the passages during the meetings.
If Patriarch Men's Groups only spoon-fed you information, you would still be passive, sitting, listening, well-informed, educated and UNTRAINED leaders in the faith.
Patriarch Men's Groups require:
YOU to read,
YOU to reflect,
YOU to ask questions,
YOU to apply the lessons,
YOU to become familiar with the characters and narratives of the Bible.
If illiterate shepherds 3000 years ago could share and understand these stories, then literate educated professionals can understand and apply these stories, when they take the time.
Patriarch aims to accustom men to:
1. Biblical prayer;
2. Biblical reading and discussion;
3. Applying the Word;
4. Personal, vocal prayer with another adult.
The goal of Patriarch is that as Catholic men can get comfortable doing those exercises at Patriarch, they will begin to exercise biblical prayer, biblical reading, applying the word, and personal-vocal prayer at home with their wives and with their children. And that will change the next generation.