Aparecida 114-116: Good News of the Family

Paragraphs 114 through 119 examine “The Good News of the Family.” Pope Benedict offers the first testimony:

114. We proclaim with joy the value of the family in Latin America and the Caribbean. Pope Benedict XVI states that the family the patrimony of humanity, constitutes one of the most important treasures of Latin American countries. The family was and is the school of faith, the training-ground for human and civil values, the hearth in which human life is born and is generously and responsibly welcomed. . . . The family is irreplaceable for the personal serenity it provides and for the upbringing of children.(Cf. Introductory Address 5)

St John Paul II also:

115. We thank Christ who reveals to us that “God is love and in Himself He lives a mystery of personal loving communion.” By choosing to live in family in our midst he elevates it to the dignity of “domestic church.” (Cf. Familiaris Consortio 11)

It is Christ who deepens the life of a family and facilitates our existence as a church. This is a topic well-worth exploring. Churches evangelize outside of their boundaries. The implication is that domestic churches accomplish this through the bearing and raising of children. And this is true. But it is not the limit of our reach. Domestic churches–families if you will–also exist as a portion of an extended family of relations, and they also function in the context of human communities: neighborhoods, schools, workplaces, and associations with civic and leisure roots. Do we function as agents of Christ in these various settings? The extent we do determines our fruitfulness as a domestic church.

116. We bless God for having created the human being man and woman, although today some would seek to confuse this truth: “God created man in his image; in the divine image he created him; male and female he created them” (Gn 1:27). It is part of human nature that man and woman seek their reciprocity and complementarity in one another.(Cf. CDF, Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church on the Collaboration of Men and Women in the Church and in the World, May 31, 2004.)

Reciprocity is determined not only through gender roles, but perhaps more significantly through the personal talents, qualities, and skills of individual persons.

For deeper examination, an English translation of the 2007 document from the Aparecida Conference.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
This entry was posted in 2007 Aparecida document, bishops, evangelization and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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