The Australian Catholic Marriage and Family Council (ACMFC) is an Advisory Body directly responsible to the Bishops Commission for Family Youth and Life (BCFYL).
Bishop delegate: Bishop Michael Kennedy
Chaircouple: Dr Byron and Francine Pirola
The ACMFC is a reconfiguration of the Family Working Group, which was appointed
by the former Bishops Committee for the Family and for Life. The Family Working Group was the steering committee for activities generated by former Australian delegates to World Meetings of Families. To emphasise their primary emphasis on evangelisation, these delegates referred to themselves as the Evangelization Through The Family Group.
The ACMFC evaluates trends in Church and society and attempts to discern areas of activity that are:
- new or not well covered by existing organisations,
- achievable within the existing limited resources of the Council and the contacts of its members.
It meets monthly by teleconference and biannually face- to-face. The Chaircouple of the Council reports in person at meetings of the BCFYL.
The ACMFC, and the Family Working Group before it, have initiated a number of activities. The most ambitious projects have been the three National Catholic Family Gatherings, ‘Dare to Dream’, held in Melbourne in April 2000, ’Living the Dream’, held in Sydney in April 2004, and, in conjunction with the Melbourne Archdiocesan Life, Marriage & Family Office, ‘Sharing the Dream’, held in Melbourne in April 2011. Other projects initiated by the ACMFC have included:
- Resource kits for use in parishes to reflect on family themes.
- ‘I Have a Story…’ a booklet on people with disabilities.
- An online Q&A on ‘Getting Married in the Catholic Church’
- The Common Marriage Policy, adopted by the ACBC in Nov 2005.
- Pastoral statements on marriage and divorce.
Resources produced by the Council are available: here