A Catholic Approach for Helping Children through Parental Separation or Divorce
Faith Journeys is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) foundation dedicated to supporting young people and young adults from divorced or separated families in their journey towards growth. We are listed in the Official Catholic Directory under the listing for the Archdiocese of Baltimore.
Our model is the only one in the nation that is family-focused and written by a Roman Catholic child of divorce who is happily married and schooled in pastoral counseling. As such, our curricula reflect the authority of personal experience, pastoral counseling concepts, and Catholic teachings. Our model has been recognized by His Holiness Benedict XVI, Pope Emeritus; Donald Cardinal Wuerl; Cardinal Edwin F. O'Brien and other Catholic leaders. The text of our model has been published in Italian, Spanish, and French.
Our mission is two-fold. First, we aim to help children work through the feelings and problems they experience as a result of significant loss, doing so in a peer group setting. We also partner with parents, guardians, and school and parish personnel through our educational workshops, healing retreats, and guidance group programs.
Our Founder and President, Lynn Cassella-Kapusinski, MS, LGPC, is a child of divorce whose parents separated when she was 11 years old. She meets young people not only as a pastoral counselor, but also as a mentor who has lived through and healed from their difficulties. Her personal experience has given her a deep empathy and compassion for the struggles of grieving children plus insight into what they need to do in order to grow.
The second objective of Faith Journeys is to help young people bring God and the Church into the solution. We strongly believe that the only way hurting children can truly heal and grow is through God's grace and direction.
Today's statistics which state that children with separated or divorced parents are twice as likely as children living in intact families to experience difficulties -- speak to a need for help. A need that only God's grace and direction can fully satisfy.
While not all children experience difficulties as a result of parental divorce or neglect, many note having academic problems, trouble with school authorities or the police, low self-esteem and depression. These children often have more difficulties getting along with siblings and peers also.
In adolescence, they are more likely to engage in delinquent behavior including substance abuse, to be involved in early sexual activity, and to experiment with illegal drugs. In young adulthood, they are more likely to have some difficulty forming intimate relationships and establishing independence from their families.