- Jun 23, 2021
To truly reach out to families, the Catholic Church first must learn to listen to their concerns rather than doling out theoretical solutions to life’s harsh realities, Pope Francis said.
Pope Francis for the month of June is asking faithful to join him in praying for young couples preparing for marriage – an intention that falls within the broader year dedicated to Amoris Laetitia, the pope’s major document on family life.
Pope Francis opened the “Amoris Laetitia” Family Year March 19, encouraging people to read the document, strengthen their families and support other families who may be struggling.
At a time when social relationships have become difficult to maintain due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Vatican’s top man on family matters has said that rebuilding these social bonds begins with the family.
A Jesuit priest and expert in discernment has voiced his belief that many families don’t actually understand what the popular spiritual concept means, and suggested training courses be launched at the local level.
The Catholic Church cannot claim to safeguard marriage and family life if it simply repeats its traditional teaching without supporting, encouraging and caring for real families, especially when they struggle to live up to that teaching, Pope Francis said.
Families need the care and attention of the church, but they also have so much to offer its pastoral programs and priests, said Cardinal Kevin J. Farrell, prefect of the Dicastery for Laity, the Family and Life.
Cardinal Kevin Farrell, who heads the Vatican’s office for family on Thursday said that no one can be excluded from the pastoral care and love of the Church, even if the Church can’t bless same sex unions.