Family Life Ministry of the Metropolis of Atlanta, supported with a Leadership 100 grant of $200,000 over 2014 and 2015, as guided by His Eminence Metropolitan Alexios, envisions a ministry that will positively impact not only the lives of the faithful of the Metropolis, but of the entire Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America and all the Orthodox faithful of America and all over the world.
Family Life Ministry provides clinical and spiritual tools, concepts, resources, and skills via psycho-educational workshops, seminars, and retreats for clergy and lay families, married couples, singles, divorced, those preparing for marriage, and bereaved individuals, as well as through an active online presence on its blog and social media. The unique Ministry has created and distributed curricula for these workshops, seminars, and retreats, conducting them in parishes all over the Metropolis of Atlanta. In addition, it trains qualified clergy and lay volunteers in leading these psycho-educational events and in basic counseling skills, techniques and principles that are consistent with Orthodox Christian spirituality.
The blog (www.familylifeministry.atlanta.goarch.org), which is regularly accessed by people all over the world and is promoted via the Family Life Ministry's social media presence on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media outlets, offers online materials such as articles, videos, reflections, Hierarchal encyclicals and other letters, clinical tools and resources that combine the clinical with Orthodox Spirituality in order to help the faithful quickly and efficiently. Writing on the blog is done not only by ministry board members, but by qualified guest authors. It also promotes the work of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, its ministries, and other pan-Orthodox ministries such as the Orthodox Christian Network, the International Orthodox Christian Charities, along with other popular, qualified and clergy-approved Orthodox blogs. The goal of such a strong online presence is to reach the faithful when they have immediate needs, to evangelize to non-Orthodox who may see the posts, and to offer the faithful an outlet through which they can offer feedback and ask questions related to topics that can be answered by reliable, qualified sources.
Metropolis-wide implementation of Family Life Ministry's work began with mandatory implementation of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America's pre-marital curriculum, "Journey of Marriage." Completion of this course was required of all couples seeking marriage in the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Atlanta beginning September 1, 2015. The oversight committee of the Family Life Ministry is made up of Orthodox Christians of varying professional backgrounds and varying Orthodox jurisdictions, and works closely in consultation with the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America's Department of Marriage and Family to accomplish this goal.