Pope: Determined to follow the path of family love

The Tenth World Meeting of Families in Rome ends on Sunday. At the last Saturday evening Mass, presided over by Cardinal Kevin Farrell, Francis once again emphasized the beauty of the family. “We must not allow it to become contaminated with the poisons of selfishness, individualism and a culture of indifference,” wished the church leader in St. Peter.

Silvia Kritzenberger – Vatican

The 10th World Meeting of Families in Rome is coming to an end. The colorful festival of families with the Pope in the audience hall began on Wednesday. In the following days, there were moments of reflection and exchange with the delegates of the World Meeting of Families in the Vatican, as well as a concert of classical music in the evocative setting of the courtyard of the Lateran Palace. The message was a loud “yes” to the family.

The climax of the events accompanying the main event was the closing mass, which was celebrated on Saturday evening in a festive atmosphere at St. Peter. Cardinal Kevin Farrell, Prefect of the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life, presided over Mass. in the presence of the Pope on behalf of Pope Francis, who still has severely restricted mobility. Francis had previously circled in a papamobile in St. Peter’s Square – much to the delight of a group of little girls who were allowed to ride with him.

In the homily he read himself, Francis started with the readings presented in the liturgy of the day. Francis applied Paul’s words about freedom to families, “one of the most valued and desired goods of modern man,” as follows:

“You spouses, starting families, each of them, with the grace of Christ, made this courageous decision not to use your freedom for themselves, but to love those whom God has placed next to you. Instead of living like “islands”, you gave yourselves “in service to one another.” This is how freedom is lived in the family! There are no “planets” or “satellites” each traveling in its own orbit. The family is the meeting place where one shares and goes out to accept the other and be close to him. This is the first place you learn to love. “

Family, meeting place

But especially in today’s world, one feels more and more of the necessity to defend the beauty of the family, the Pope pointed out and demanded: “We cannot allow them to be spoiled by the poisons of selfishness, individualism, culture, indifference, and the mentality of rejection, and thus lose their” DNA ” , that is, the willingness to accept each other and the spirit of service ”.

Relations between generations are also often not easy, continued Francis. Many parents fear that their children “will not find their feet in the complexity of our society, where everything seems chaotic and uncertain, and will eventually lose their bearings.” And this fear makes some parents anxious, others overprotective, and sometimes even blocking. them the desire to bring new life to the world. But here is where trust is needed:

“God loves young people, but that doesn’t mean He protects them from every risk, challenge and suffering. He is not restless and overprotective; on the contrary, he trusts them and calls everyone to a demanding life and to great service, “said Francis, advising his parents as follows:

“Dear parents, the Word of God shows us the way: do not protect your children from all difficulties and suffering, but try to instill in them a passion for life, a desire to find their calling and accept the great task that God has prepared for them … If you help your children to discover and accept your calling, you will see that they will be “taken up” by this mission and will have the strength to face the difficulties of life. “

Then the Pope returned to the slogan of the 10th World Meeting of Families: “Family love: vocation and path to holiness“.

“With this word of life, I encourage you to pursue with determination the path of family love and to share with all family members the joy of this vocation. May the love that you share with each other always be open and outward-facing, capable of “touching” the weak and wounded whom you meet on your way: all those who suffer from physical and mental infirmities. Love, including family love, purifies and strengthens as it is passed on…. May the Lord help you live in unity, peace and joy every day and show everyone that God is love and community ”.

At the end of the Mass Pope Francis read the following prayer for families to be sent out:

Dear families,
I invite you to continue your journey
And listen to the Father who calls you:
Become missionaries on the roads of the world!
“Don’t go alone!

You young families let yourselves be led by those who know the way;
you who are moving forward are companions to others.
You who got lost in trouble
Don’t let sadness overwhelm you
trust in the love that God has placed in you,
she pleads with the Spirit daily to make them come alive.

Preach the beauty of family life with joy!
Proclaim the grace of Christian marriage to children and young people.
Give hope to those who don’t.
Act as if everything depends on you
knowing that everything must be entrusted to God.
Are you the ones who “weave” the fabric of society and the synodal church?
it creates relationships and increases love and life.

Be a sign of the living Christ,
Do not be afraid of what the Lord asks of you,
and don’t be afraid to be generous to him.
Open yourselves to Christ, listen to him in the silence of prayer.

accompany the weak
take care of the lonely, runaway, abandoned.
Be the seed of a more fraternal world

Be big-hearted families!
Be the hospitable face of the Church!
And please – never stop praying!

Mary, our Mother, help You when there is no more wine,
he accompanies you in times of silence and trial, he helps you to walk with his Risen Son.

(Vatican news -skr)

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