La familia y el bien común de la sociedad
The Letter to the families of John Paul II presents the family itself as not closed but as open to public life and to the common good. It reveals the essential relatedness of human beings. Being a man does not begin with a decision or with self-reflection, but with a grateful recognition of the original gift, mediated through our parents. With the birth of a child, communion becomes community, and here the foundations are laid for building the civilization of love. This means that the family is more than the sum of its members. The child is the common good of the parents. The common good of the family is above all the relationship of love among its members. Parents are educators precisely inasmuch as they are parents, and thus, family education is education in a love that develops according to the different stages of life. The family serves the common good by helping to build up the truth about man, which overcomes the relativism that leaves human life without any ultimate point of reference. The family moreover, serves as a nexus capable of uniting two aspects, too often separated in modern life, as namely faith and life. It is here that the person is perceived as a gift that the Creator loves for itself, and also, the vocation of the spouses springs from the gift that Christ makes of His own love in the sacrament of marriage, and that they themselves live by conjugal charity. The family is the way of the church; even more, it should be the key to the whole of pastoral ministry, because it contains the genetic code of the vocation to love to which every person is called.
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