Regard family as ‘rich human resource’, laity told

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VATICAN, Jan. 24, 2015—The Catholic faithful must view the family as an important human resource rather than as a societal unit that is oftentimes subjected to attacks and criticisms of various ideologies challenging its stability.

Pope Francis made this call on Friday as the Vatican released his message for the 49th World Day of Social Communications to be celebrated on May 17 with the theme “Communicating the Family: A Privileged Place of Encounter with the Gift of Love.”

Thousands of Filipino families came to greet and see Pope during his pastoral visit to the country from Jan. 15 to 19, 2015. (Photo: Johann Mangussad)

“The family is not a subject of debate or a terrain for ideological skirmishes. Rather, it is an environment in which we learn to communicate in an experience of closeness, a setting where communication takes place, a ‘communicating community’,” he said.

“The family is a community which provides help, which celebrates life and is fruitful. Once we realize this, we will once more be able to see how the family continues to be a rich human resource, as opposed to a problem or an institution in crisis,” he added.

He warned the faithful of possible misrepresentations being done about the family as an institution, particularly noting the kind of framing done by the media at times.

“The media can tend to present the family as a kind of abstract model which has to be accepted or rejected, defended or attacked, rather than as a living reality. Or else a grounds for ideological clashes rather than as a setting where we can all learn what it means to communicate in a love received and returned,” the Pope said.

He stressed that the human family “should be seen as a resource rather than as a problem for society” as families at their best actively communicate by their witness the beauty and the richness of the relationship between man and woman, and between parents and children.

“We are not fighting to defend the past. Rather, with patience and trust, we are working to build a better future for the world in which we live,” he said. (Jennifer M. Orillaza/CBCP News)

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