AMERICA/BOLIVIA – Considerations of the Archbishop of Santa Cruz on the importance of the family during the pandemic

AMERICA/BOLIVIA – Considerations of the Archbishop of Santa Cruz on the importance of the family during the pandemic

AMERICA/BOLIVIA – Considerations of the Archbishop of Santa Cruz on the importance of the family during the pandemic

Iglesia Viva

Santa Cruz (Agenzia Fides) – On the occasion of the celebration of the feast of the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph, the Archbishop of Santa Cruz, Mgr. Sergio Gualberti, reflected on the importance of this fundamental cell of society and the Church, especially in this time marked by the spread of Covid-19. “I think I am correct when I say that many people, in the face of this pandemic, have seen the importance and value of having the help of family. Within it, they found comfort, help and encouragement in order not to lose hope and had the strength to stand up and move forward. For many infected people, the family was the only hospital and the only place of rest and recovery”.

The Archbishop said that “for many brothers who have lost a loved one, and for others who have directly experienced the disease, this painful experience has changed their lives, has taught them to value small daily gestures in the family and to establish new relationships of respect, care and affection”.

Mgr. Gualberti recalled that the Creator wants every human being to come into this world within a family, built on the foundations of mutual love between a man and a woman. Every Christian family, he stressed, is called to be a small community of faith, the domestic Church, where parents are the first educators of their children on a human and Christian level. “It is a demanding task. It is therefore important that they are not alone, and that they are guided and accompanied by a larger family, that of the ecclesial community”.

The institution of the family constitutes an important resource for people, for society and for humanity as a whole, a wealth that must be safeguarded by the whole of society since the family is its first and vital cell, as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights affirms. In a stable and well-established family, its members experience the essential elements for their integral development and learn to establish harmonious and peaceful relationships. Within it, one learns to practice justice and respect for others, to recognize the role of responsible authority of parents, to practice loving service towards the weakest, the little ones, the elderly or the sick, to help each other in the necessities of life and be available to welcome the other and, if necessary, to forgive him.

“For this reason, society cannot do without the services provided by the legally constituted family. Nobody, not even the State, can take this power away from it because it would seriously violate freedom and original and innate rights. The weakness of the family is the weakness of a society. In this regard, we should sincerely ask ourselves if many of the problems we experience in our country, such as the lack of ethical and moral values, increasing violence, corruption, drug trafficking and the weakness of democracy, do not depend mainly on the fragility and disintegration of many of our families”.

Faced with this situation, the Archbishop stated that the authorities have the obligation to give priority to family policy through concrete measures that respond to the real needs of families: housing, work, education and health care for all in particular. Civil, social, religious and educational institutions as well as the means of social communication are called to collaborate in this mission. We all have a responsibility to defend the family, its wishes and rights, so that it fulfills its irreplaceable role in the life and well-being of individuals and society.

“On this feast – concluded the Archbishop -, the witness of the Holy Family urges us to strengthen the family as the fundamental link of the one great human family within which we all, walking together as brothers and sisters, achieve full realization on a personal, community and social level in a climate of fraternity and lasting peace”. (CE) (Agenzia Fides, 28/12/2020)

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