Saturday, November 26, 2016

Big Families, Big Faith

The following article was taken from the Denver Catholic.  In the Neocatechumenal Way, families eat together at the dining table using china plates and glasses.  We do not use paper cups and paper plates.  


Large families know that God provides

Jim Major, center above, and his wife, Teresa, left of Jim, and 11 of their dozen children-one no longer lives at home-gather around their dining room table for breakfast May 24. The Majors say God has provided for them in caring for their large brood. 
Everyday Jim and Teresa Major do the impossible.
They take their budget fit for two children and stretch it to provide for their brood of 12.
The Majors place their openness to life first and budget second, having faith that God will provide. And he has.
“Here I am everyday living the impossible,” said Teresa, who attends St. Louis King of France Church in Englewood. “So I know God exists.”
They call finances the “boogeyman that the devil holds up” to scare a couple into restricting their family size.
“Being open to having a big family is being open to faith from God,” Teresa said.
Families like the Majors, who are members of the Neocatechumenal Way catechumenate, said they’ve overcome fears and found the joys of a larger-than-life family.
Some are well aware of the secular world’s opinion that it’s financially irresponsible, maybe even negligent, to be open to more than one or two children.
Kali and Lane Reagan, who also attend St. Louis, will get stares over their four children. Reagan is expecting their fifth child in September.
“We get strange looks,” Kali said. “People have asked us if they were accidents or if we had them on purpose. Others have asked ‘Do you know what birth control is?’”
The Reagans have a different view.
Lane and Kali Reagan with their four children. They are expecting a baby in September.
Lane and Kali Reagan with their four children. They are expecting a baby in September.
“I think being open to life can mean so many different things,” Kali said. “For us it means five children. We’re happy to give up some of the things people think they can’t live without to have these kids.”
Budgeting to meet the needs of a growing family requires a more intentional approach to their spending, they said. They look at their budget and determine wants versus needs. They try to pay in cash. They won’t buy a new car until it’s a necessity. Going out to eat and the movies is an infrequent event. When they buy something new, they share it. The important thing is that they’re together, they said.
They love their oldest, 10-year-old Brooklyn, who keeps to herself, and Jersey, 6, and Staten, 3—their two other girls—who are “rambunctious and feisty.” The baby, 8-month-old Bronx, gets all the attention.
“For us the joy we get from our children is way more than you can put a monetary price on,” Kali said.
Lane, 33, added, “With God’s help anything is possible.”
Discovering God’s planEric and Delores Benedict of Immaculate Conception Church in Lafayette are no strangers to the fear of a large family.
After child No. 6 was born, relatives and doctors urged them to choose sterilization. Delores succumbed to pressure and decided to have a tubal ligation.
“My husband and I could just sexually satisfy ourselves. No guilt—no babies,” Delores told the Denver Catholic Register.
But their marital union felt empty and their marriage suffered.
“I didn’t want Eric to touch me. Without the possibility of a child, the act was meaningless. I was so sad.”
Then Delores discovered the Neocatechumenal Way at her parish, and she and her husband had a conversion of heart. They fell in love with Christ, they said.
Eric Benedict, center above, and his wife, Delores, to the right of Eric, and six of their 11 children seated at their dining room table.
Eric Benedict, center above, and his wife, Delores, to the right of Eric, and six of their 11 children seated at their dining room table.
After attending a liturgy with their Way community, Delores asked how she could find peace after choosing to be sterile. Their pastor advised them to consider a reversal.
“We decided it didn’t matter whether we had more kids or not, we were going to get the reversal done,” she said.
In 1995, her fallopian tubes were repaired. They were blessed with five more children.
Eric said being open to God’s plan may be difficult but “God has always, always provided.”
They shared their experiences with life in a letter addressed to the pope in April.
Delores said, “We chose life instead of material things. We put God first and he has provided for everything.”
The Majors had the same experience.
While it may be scary to be open to life, it’s only led to blessing after blessing for their family, Teresa said.
Being open to life has been a true walk of faith.
“The Christian has to know that God will provide. He has to know that. That’s what faith is,” Teresa said.

The Reagan Family’s Expenses
Kali and Lane Reagan shared a breakdown of their regular monthly bills in providing for their four children. They trust that God will provide.
Typical month
Groceries: $500
Target and CostCo for bulk items: $275
Diapers: $85
Clothing: $30-40 for miscellaneous needs
Recreation for children: $140
Phones: $150
Cable: $150
Insurance: $150
Gas: $200
The family also pays for medical bills, car repairs, school tuition, parish tithing, birthday parties and entertainment.
Free family activities in Denver
Denver offers free activities and attractions for the whole family that won’t break the bank. Below is a list of ideas for this summer.
Red Rocks Amphitheatre and Park in Morrison—Visit the museum and Performers Hall of Fame or take a hike through the colorful red rocks of the park. Visit or call 720-865-2494.
Denver U.S. Mint downtown—Take an hour-long weekday tour of one of only two mints in the United States. Reservations required. Visit or call 303-405-4761.
Denver Art Museum downtown—See the latest art exhibits during the museum’s free days the first Saturday of the month. Families may play games in the galleries, make art or take a tour in Spanish. Visit or call 720-865-5000.
Hammond’s Candy Factory in Denver—Satisfy the family’s sweet tooth with a behind-the-scenes tour of the candy factory. Visit or call 303-333-5588.
Washington Park in Denver—Enjoy the expansive lawns, gardens and lake at the 165-acre park ideal for picnics, games or relaxing in the sun. Visit
Celestial Seasonings in Boulder—See first-hand the workings of a tea production plant at one of the company’s free tours.  Visit or call 303-581-1266.
National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder—Learn about tornados, global warming, lightning and other acts of nature at its visitor center. Visit or call 303-497-1000.


  1. Dear readers,

    Insulting comments about having large families will not be published. Contraceptives such as birth control are not condoned in the Catholic Church because they believe in being open to life. This is one of the doctrines that many Catholics do not follow. Many of them use contraceptives. These Catholic families should be commended for following the Church doctrine regarding contraceptives.

  2. This is fascinating. So ALL families in the NCW use china plates and glasses? Nobody uses Corelle dinnerware? Only china? Is it also a sin for people in the NCW to use paper plates and paper cups?

    1. Dear Anonymous at 9:02 pm,

      We also use those, just not paper plates and cups. Where did I say that using paper plates and cups is a sin?????

    2. My husband and I work hard to take care of our family but we can't afford to buy china because we use the money to give our children food, clothes and shelter. We only use the correlle dishes and the plastic glasses we bought at KMart. Sometimes we have to use paper plates and cups.
      I guess we would never be worthy to join the NCW.

    3. Dear Anonymous at 7:49 am,

      It is not a matter of whether you are worthy. I am sure that you want the best education for your children along with a nice home. In the same way, we also decorate the table nicely and use dishes and glasses when we sit down together for a meal. After all, why keep the nice dishes and glasses in the glass cabinet only for show when we can use them for our children.

  3. Using disposable dining ware just adds more solid waste to the landfill on our small island. This waste should be diverted from entering the landfills and should be recycled.

  4. These families are an inspiration. They made a lot of sacrifices to raise 12 kids. Their trust and faith in God is very admirable. Trust and faith is the key.

  5. It's stories like this that need to go viral. Thanks for sharing.

  6. All they have on their plate is pancake. That's it. That wouldn't suffice in Guam!

    1. Dear Anonymous at 10:34 am,

      Because they are not Chamorros, it is sufficient for them.

    2. Dear Diana,
      If you look carefully, there is another dish by the father that apparently still has to go around. I wish you would have replied that there is more to come instead of the comment referring to Chamorros. What are you trying to infer? It incites further division.....And, by the way, there are more than just Chamorros on Guam....

    3. Dear Anonymous at 2:11 pm,

      Division over pancakes????? Please, get real!

    4. Can you clarify your statement that since they are not Chamorro it is sufficient for them?

    5. Dear Anonymous at 12:10 pm,

      It means that pancakes are good sufficient for them, and they do not need to eat rice and meat the way most Chamorros have their breakfast.

  7. Talk about division all the sarcastic mean little comments and attacks against Diana and The Way are childish . The Way is not the problem it is Satan just watch Ewtn aWolf in Sheeps Clothing on YouTube . We have lots of vicious Wolves in Sheeps Clothing on Guam trying to destroy the Catholic Church .

  8. I agree wholeheartedly with this; children are always a blessing, and as long as you have faith in God He will always provide. The greatest example here in Guam of this is Mr. Tim Rohr. He has raised a family of 11 children, all of them bright and talented, all without the help of welfare, a high-paying full time job, or a lucrative church position to take advantage of. And his adult children are likewise proactive, entrepreneurial spirits who find their way to be financially stable while giving back to the community. His story is proof that when you stand with God and fight for what is right, God will provide for you and your family, no matter how big a family it is.

    1. at 11:29 PM Maybe Tim should attend to his family, and not start problems with the Church.

    2. Given how well he and family seem to be doing, it looks like he's attending to them just fine.