The Pope: the family under attack, ideologies of various kinds plunder human values

Francis receives the Schönstatt fathers on the occasion of the General Chapter and urges them to give answers to the concerns of the men and women of our time: “Many marriages in crisis, tempted young people, forgotten elderly, suffering children … be bearers of hope and open new roads “. Greetings to the new superior Awi Mello

In today’s “dark situations”, between “marriages in crisis, tempted young people, forgotten elderly, suffering children”, while the family is under attack and “ideological colonizations” try to “savagely plunder” the same human values, it is necessary to become bearers of hope. Pope Francis receives the fathers of the community of Schönstatt, a Catholic Marian movement born in Germany in 1914, on the occasion of the General Chapter, and asks them to give an answer to the efforts and anxieties of the people.

Greetings to the new superior general

Before speech, entirely in Spanish, the Pope greets the new superior general, Father Alexandre Awi Mello, elected on 21 August last. For five years, the Brazilian religious was secretary of the Dicastery for the Laity, Family and Life. A service for which Francesco expresses his gratitude: “He was my secretary in Aparecida, then my guide in Rio de Janeiro, then my secretary here. Thank you, for his collaboration in these years in communion with the Successor of Peter, for the benefit of the whole Church. I wish you a fruitful ministry in this new responsibility that has been entrusted to you ”.

Bearers of hope

Thanks, Pope Francis, also goes to the entire community:

You, dear brothers and sisters, carry out a beautiful service to the Church and to the world, especially by accompanying families in the various events and vicissitudes they are going through, announcing to all its members the beauty of the “Covenant of Love” that the Lord has established with his people. Today there are many marriages in crisis, tempted young people, forgotten elderly, suffering children. You are bearers of a message of hope in these dark situations that every stage of life goes through.

“This – adds the Pope, detaching himself from the written text – goes a little hand in hand with this plunder of human values, a plunder that ideological colonizations of all kinds are making savagely”.

Distances and ideologies

Yes, says Francis, “the world asks us more and more often to give answers to the questions and concerns of the men and women of our time”. And one of the most serious concerns concerns the family and its nature:

We often see that the nature of the family is attacked by different ideologies, which undermine the foundations that support the personality of the human being and, in general, the whole of society. Furthermore, within families, on many occasions there is a gap of understanding between the elderly and the young

Alliance between generations

The Pontiff recalls his cycle of catechesis in the Wednesday general audience to reiterate “the alliance between the generations, that is, between the oldest and the youngest, is what can save humanity, because in this way the personal and family identity “. In the family “not only a genetic heritage or a surname is inherited, but also and above all one inherits the wisdom of what it means to be human, according to God’s plan”.

The mystery of our redemption is therefore also intimately linked to the experience of love in families. And let’s not forget that ultimately the faith is always transmitted in ‘dialect’ through families, the elderly, grandparents.

The example of the Madonna

The model is the Holy Family, and above all the Virgin Mary, “who cares with tender and committed love for all her sons and daughters, especially the poorest, in body and spirit”. Schönstatt members venerate the Virgin with the title of “Thrice Admirable Mother” with “great love”. “She is a fundamental model for everyone, who pushes us to create bridges based on fraternal charity and on the communion of goods with the most needy”, underlines Francis.

Off the cuff, he says that on his bedside table “the statuette of the Virgin is enthroned, Alexandre (Mello, ed), and after fifteen days he also brought a crown to crown her. In other words, I have the whole ceremony done by your ‘sect’ ”, she says, amid the laughter of those present. “So every time I walk into my bedroom it’s the first thing I see and I have to remember you.”

Opening up new paths

Finally, the Pope concludes with the encouragement to the members of Schönstatt “to go forward in your apostolates, always renewing yourselves with the grace of the Holy Spirit and showing courage to open new paths at the service of families, to make the beauty of the Covenant established between God and men, with spirituality and the lived experience of Christian values ​​”.

The original on Vatican News

The Pope: the family under attack, ideologies of various kinds plunder human values