It Starts With You

As a Catholic parent, God has entrusted you with the important mission of guiding your family's Catholic faith on their journey to Him.

To Spark...

A desire for holiness in your children.

To Bring...

them to an encounter with Jesus— the Way, the Truth, the Life.

To Show...

by example that putting God at the center of your life brings true freedom, joy, and peace.

Guiding your family to Heaven is a beautiful, messy, humbling, challenging, and exciting adventure! And in today’s world, your mission to lead your family to God is more critical than ever before.

Your Influence Matters

How you use that influence matters.

50% of kids who are raised Catholic choose to leave the Church as adults.

That’s a huge number and, unfortunately, many of those former Catholics made the choice to reject the Faith between the ages of 10 and 17.

Someday, you may wonder whether your children will make the Catholic Faith their own.

It’s a critical question that many parents don’t ask until it’s too late.

Your time with your children is precious.

Before they go out into the world to make a life for themselves, you have the greatest influence over them: good or bad.

It's Easier Than You Think

The good news is that it’s easier than you think to impact your child’s faith.

A recent study suggests that when parents practice the Faith, by meeting the most basic requirement of weekly Sunday Mass, 75% of children will stay Catholic.

But in families that are striving to place God at the center of their lives—through prayer, regular reception of the sacraments, and meaningful time spent growing in the Faith together—incredible change is happening.

Children of families that are living God-centered lives are very likely to remain in the Catholic Faith. By the grace of God, and because of early, positive experiences within the family, the Faith (which was previously just their family's Catholic faith) has now come alive in their minds and hearts.

Even more than that, families that make God the center of their lives (not just a part) are transformed.

A young girl giving a piggyback ride to her barefoot younger brother outside in the grass as the sun begins to set

A young boy sitting on his bed reading the Holy Bible

The anxieties of daily life don’t disappear. Trials come that test their trust in God. So family members fall and have to get back up again, asking forgiveness from God and each other. But despite the struggles, these families experience greater joy, unity, and peace, because their lives are rooted in and centered on Christ.

If living a holy, faithful life is a priority for you as a parent, there’s a greater chance that it will be for your children too. That’s why your daily example of faith is vital. In short, your family's Catholic faith starts with you.

And We Can Help

Because Your Mission is Our Mission

At the Apostolate for Family Consecration® (AFC), our mission is to empower you to create experiences that make your family's Catholic faith come alive for your children. As a result, your family can become what God wants you to be—a family on fire for Him—and then share that light with others.


We are here to support you through:

Events Ministry

Grow in Holiness, Grow in Truth, Grow Together.

Events Ministry

Learn more about the experiences you can have as a family or individual at one of our live events.

Learn More!

Bring Holiness Home Portal

Never Stop Growing!

Bring Holiness Home Portal

Learn more about the experiences you can have as a family at home or on the go.

Learn More!

Plus, you are constantly being lifted up in prayer by the worldwide AFC spiritual family. Our married Disciple Members, staff members, college- and high-school-age missionaries, and single men and women who have dedicated their entire lives to serving God and families, remember you and your intentions in their daily prayers.

We’re so excited to journey with your family on the way to Heaven.

This Mission Began

with an Ordinary Family

Gwen and Jerry Coniker Gwen Coniker holding her baby Jerry Coniker and his young children gathered around the piano; the lived Coniker family's Catholic faith is an example for us all.

  • Like many Catholic parents,

    Jerry and Gwen Coniker desired to raise their children with strong values and solid faith. Yet, even though God was a part of their life, they failed to make Him the true center.

  • After a tragedy

    that deeply shook the Coniker family, especially Gwen, some friends invited them to make a Total Consecration to Jesus through Mary. It was only then that the Conikers began to understand the importance of a family life rooted in Christ and started to pray the daily Rosary as a family.

  • As Christian values in society continued to decline,

    Jerry and Gwen also realized that the battle against sin was not political, but spiritual.

  • The Conikers thought

    they could protect their family from the spreading moral decay by moving to Fatima, Portugal, where the Blessed Mother had appeared in 1917.

  • But after two years in Fatima,

    it was clear that God was calling Jerry and Gwen to return to the United States to begin sharing Our Lady’s call to prayer, reparation, and holiness of life with other families.

  • Inspired by the message of Fatima

    and seeking a way to strengthen and encourage Catholic families—including their own—to live and grow in the Faith, the Conikers began to ask for God’s guidance.

  • In 1975, after much prayer,

    the Conikers founded the Apostolate for Family Consecration®.

  • During the ministry’s founding years,

    Jerry and Gwen had sixteen personal encounters with Pope St. John Paul II and, with God’s help, established five international mission centers and a worldwide television network.


It Has Grown

to Include Thousands of Families

Over the last four decades, the AFC has seen countless blessings.
We’ve worked with holy men and women, like Pope St. John Paul II, St. Teresa of Calcutta, Fr. Michael Scanlan, and Fr. Benedict Groeschel.
We have also had close connections with Pope Benedict XVI, Francis Cardinal Arinze, John Cardinal O’Connor, and other members of the Magisterium.
At our invitation, two-thirds of the U.S. bishops consecrated their dioceses to the Immaculate Conception during the Marian Year of 1987–1988.
And a cause has been opened for the beatification of one of our founders, Servant of God, Gwen Coniker.
But what really matters to us are the stories of ordinary families whose lives are being changed because of this ministry.
No other apostolate of the Catholic Church does as much to help bring families closer to God by providing proven tools in an atmosphere of love and fellowship in Christ. Family Fests at Catholic Family Land have been a huge blessing for our family. The Holy Spirit truly moves in this organization! Consecrate *your* family to the Holy Family. Consecrate them in the Truth! It will change your life forever.Eric, via Facebook
The Apostolate gave our family hope though their Christ-centered message and life-changing resources, retreats and Holy Family Fests. The impact of Consecrating our family to the Holy Family is unquestionable. It has changed our family life.Ben, via Facebook
I highly recommend getting involved with this great Apostolate. This is truly a life changing organization and one day will be world changing.Paul, via Facebook
Our family is forever changed because of our involvement in the AFC. There is nothing more important than our family’s Consecration to Jesus through Mary in union with St. Joseph. It is a daily Blessing as we journey towards Heaven. My husband And I are Blessed and grateful to have made our Life Commitment as Disciple Members in the AFC yesterday.Christy, via Facebook
Today, the AFC continues to operate from Catholic Familyland®—its administrative center and a place set apart for families—and to impact thousands of families.

Animated

by a Unique Charism

A

Apostolate
As a spiritual family, we work together...

F

For Family
...to support families in the Catholic Faith...

C

Consecration
...so that, with the help of the Holy Family, each person can fully live their baptismal consecration and achieve the holiness God desires.

Expressed

through a Balanced Spirituality

Holiness leads to happiness, the true happiness for which we were created: union with God. At the AFC, we seek to grow in holiness by living a spirituality of Family Consecration.

Family Consecration is a deliberate choice to live our baptismal promises by entrusting our families to the Holy Family. In this way, we strive to follow Jesus Christ more fully with the help and protection of Mary and St. Joseph.

The Seven Keys for God-Centered Family Living guide us on this journey to eternal happiness with God in Heaven: prayer life, sacramental life, learning the Faith, living the virtues, serving others, sharing the Faith, sanctifying daily duties.

This spirituality of Family Consecration is one of the best ways we know of for families to grow in holiness and become fully alive in Christ. We invite you to join us in this beautiful way of life!

Our Team

United in Prayer, Service, and Mission

Board of Directors


Theresa Schmitz

Theresa Schmitz

Director, President, & CEO

Theresa and her husband, Ken, are AFC Disciple Life Members and parents of six children on earth and one in heaven.

Theresa has extensive management experience and played a key role in guiding the AFC through its transition from the founders to the next administration. As the eleventh child of Jerry and Gwen Coniker, Theresa has been involved in the AFC’s ministry since the very beginning. She has a thorough knowledge of the organization’s history and the founders’ vision.

As AFC President, Theresa is committed to completing the business plan, further clarifying and simplifying AFC Membership, increasing financial support, and continuing to seek God’s will for this ministry.

Carolyn Stegmann

Carolyn Stegmann

Director & Assistant Treasurer
Carolyn is an AFC Catholic Corps Member. She has been serving the AFC in various capacities for more than 25 years, including as global Community Coordinator of the Women’s Catholic Corps communities.
Rory Freiermuth

Rory Freiermuth

Director, Policy Officer & Assistant Secretary
Rory is an AFC Catholic Corps Life Member. He received a bachelor of science degree (discipline of fisheries) from the University of Minnesota. Rory has been serving the Apostolate full-time for 31 years in various capacities, after having been professionally employed by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources for eight years. Currently, he is serving in the development, facilities management, and events departments, and is a member of the Catholic Corps Men’s governing committee.
Randy Christensen

Randy Christensen

Director
Randy and his wife, Diane, are AFC Disciple Life Members. Involved in the AFC since 1986, they are parents of seven children and grandparents of nine. Randy has degrees in technology management and diesel technology and spent his career in quality, manufacturing, and facility management.
William Keck

William Keck

Director
William (Bill) Keck is an AFC Disciple Life Member. He and his wife, Eileen, who is also a Disciple Life Member, are the proud parents of eight children and grandparents of ten. Bill graduated in 1980 from Hofstra University with a bachelor of business administration degree in administration of computer systems. He and his family have been involved in the Apostolate since 1994. Bill currently works for Freedom Mortgage Corporation as a senior loan officer.
Peter Maliani

Peter Maliani

Director
Peter and his wife, Linda, are AFC Disciple Life Members. He has been actively involved in facilitating AFC programs in his diocese for over 15 years. Previously, Peter served as the AFC’s Vice President of Sales and Marketing.
Elizabeth Phillips

Elizabeth Phillips

Director
Elizabeth (Beth) Phillips is an AFC Disciple Life Member. She and her husband, Nick, who is also a Disciple Life Member, are the proud parents of five children and grandparents of one. Beth graduated in 1986 from the University of Toledo with a bachelor of science degree in pharmacy, but has been a stay-at-home mom since 1992. She and her family have been involved in the Apostolate since 1996.
Robert Snyder

Robert Snyder

Director
Robert and his wife, Maria, are AFC Disciple Life Members. They have been actively involved in the AFC since 1995. Robert has a degree in mechanical engineering and is a certified insurance counselor and a chartered property casualty underwriter.

Former Board of Directors



Thank you for your service!

Alan Zimmerer (smaller image)

Alan Zimmerer

Former AFC President & Director
2012 - 2018
Theresa Lawson

Theresa Lawson

Former Director
2015 - 2018
Dr. Nick Phillips

Dr. Nicholas Phillips

Former Director
2015 - 2018
Greg Becker

Greg Becker

Former Director
2015 - 2018

Leadership


Theresa Schmitz

Theresa Schmitz

Director, AFC President & CEO
Theresa and her husband, Ken, are AFC Disciple Life Members and parents of six children on earth and one in heaven. As the eleventh child of Jerry and Gwen Coniker, Theresa has been involved in the AFC’s ministry since the very beginning. As AFC President, Theresa is committed to completing the business plan, further clarifying and simplifying AFC Membership, increasing financial support, and continuing to seek God’s will for this ministry.
Alan Zimmerer

Deacon Randy Redington

Executive Vice President
Deacon Randy is a convert, retired teacher, and permanent deacon of the Diocese of Steubenville. Since 1987, he and his wife, Mary Ellen, have served the AFC as Disciple Members. Together, they have directed First Saturday Devotions and St. Louis de Montfort’s Total Consecration Retreats for more than thirty-five years.
Basil Dannebohm

Basil Dannebohm

Dean of Mission Advancement and Formation

The Honorable J. Basil Dannebohm is a former state legislator, writer, speaker, and consultant. He is the visionary that established a devotion to Our Lady Healer of Hearts.

Officers


Leonard O'Nan

Leonard O'Nan

Treasurer & Financial Control Officer
Carolyn Stegmann (smaller image)

Carolyn Stegmann

Assistant Treasurer
Tricia Hauber

Tricia Hauber

Secretary
Rory Freiermuth (smaller photo)

Rory Freiermuth

Policy Officer & Assistant Secretary

Department Directors


Tim Boudreaux

Tim Boudreaux

Director of Art and Environment
Jack Heemskerk

Jack Heemskerk

Director of Evangelization
Roger Keiser

Roger Kaiser

Director of IT
Roger Keiser

Ann Marie Lapkowicz

Head of Membership
Dan Lappert

Dan Lappert

Director of Web & Media
Peter Mergen

Peter Mergen

Director of Events
Jesus Morales

Jesus Morales

Director of Facilities Management
Stasia Phillips

Stasia Phillips

Director of Communications
Zennel Sy

Zennel Sy

Director of Sales & Marketing
Stephen Young

Stephen Young

Director of Hospitality

Staff


Sonya Arellano

Sonya Arellano

Housekeeping & Disciple Member
Jim Barnes

Jim Barnes

Facilities Management
Greg Becker

Greg Becker

Catholic Corps
Sr. Mary Benedicta

Sr. Mary Benedicta

Administrative Assistant
Dorita Billingsley

Dorita Billingsley

Housekeeping & Kitchen
Bob Brayer

Bob Brayer

Facilities Management
Jomel Brondial

Jomel Brondial

Development & Catholic Corps
Greg Caspers

Greg Caspers

Facilities Management & Catholic Corps
Tim Croes

Tim Croes

Facilities Management & Catholic Corps
Jessica Eberts

Jessica Eberts

Digital & Visual Arts
Karalyn Finnell

Karalyn Finnell

Year Round Alumni Corps
Fr. Bernard Geiger

Fr. Bernard Geiger

Chaplain
Anthony Giammarino

Anthony Giammarino

Accounting & Catholic Corps
Roch Gillmore

Roch Gillmore

Information Technologies, Communications & Catholic Corps
Tricia Hauber

Tricia Hauber

Accounting & Catholic Corps
Fr. Klem Hasencox

Fr. Klem Hasencox

AFC Chaplain
Julia Kloess

Julia Kloess

Year Round Alumni Corps
Fanny LeFever

Fanny LeFever

Reception & Disciple Member
Skip LeFever

Skip LeFever

Sales & Marketing & Disciple Member
Lucy Lu Mai

Lucy Lu Mai

Groundskeeping & Catholic Corps
Therese Poole

Therese Poole

Mama C's
Mary Ellen Redington

Mary Ellen Redington

Events & Disciple Member
Renee Schue

Renee Scheu

Groundskeeping & Catholic Corps
William Spencer

William Spencer

Development
Kyle Stutzman

Kyle Stutzman

Media, Digital & Visual Arts
Mary Sue

Mary Sue

Groundskeeping & Catholic Corps
Dominic Tarr

Dominic Tarr

Year Round Alumni Corps
Anna Thompson

Anna Thompson

Catholic Corps
Bob Turk

Bob Turk

Facilities Management
Catherine Wall

Catherine Wall

Accounting & Catholic Corps
 
Elsie Yator

Elsie Yator

Shipping & Catholic Corps
Barney Yosten

Barney Yosten

Franciscan University Program Liason
Chuck Young

Chuck Young

Events
 

A Vision

of Hope for the Future

“Families are meant to contribute to the transformation of the earth and the renewal of the world, of creation, and of all humanity,” wrote Pope St. John Paul II in his Letter to Families (Gratissimam Sane).

When you understand your parental role in passing on the Faith, desire to take on that responsibility, and—with support—know how to do it, your family's Catholic faith will transform your family. You will begin to experience all the good fruits God desires for your family—freedom, joy, unity, and peace. And as more and more families seek to live holy lives, by cooperating with the Holy Spirit, together we can help to renew the world and bring about the reign of Jesus on earth, through Mary and in union with St. Joseph.

Thousands of lives have already been changed by this mission. And we are filled with hope each time we hear that another family has been impacted. We can’t wait to see what God has in store for the future!

Won’t you join us?

Join the Mission

It Doesn't Happen Without People Like You!

Transform Your World

Find out how to live and share the mission.
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