11/23/2007, 00.00
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World Meetings of Families to encourage embattled family, says Cardinal Trujillo

The president of the Pontifical Council for the Family describes the world meeting scheduled for Mexico City, titled “The Family: Educator in Human and Christian Values. The next meeting of his dicastery is dedicated to grandparents.

Vatican City (AsiaNews) – “World Family Day” is an opportunity to respond to the multiple attack against the family and encourage married Christian couples and bishops, this according to Alfonso Cardinal López Trujillo, president of the Pontifical Council for the Family, who hosted a meeting with reporters about the upcoming World Meetings of Families scheduled for January 16-19 in Mexico City, which the Pope wants to attend himself.

The title of the gathering is The Family: Educator in Human and Christian Values. It will be preceded by a pastoral theological congress that should see some 20,000 delegates attend, said Norberto Cardinal Rivera Carrera, archbishop of Mexico City.

Work is already underway to choose topics, logo, hymn and organisation, he noted, in the certainty that “that the future of our world and civilisation depends on the family.”

“Even though there has been no confirmation, let us hope that the Pope may make the pilgrimage to [Our Lady of] Guadalupe. There are his wish [to come] and the Mexican people’s desire to welcome him,” he added.

Cardinal Trujillo also announced that the next assembly of his dicastery, set for the first week of April, will address the issue of grandparents’ role in the family.

“The Pope recommended we think through the role they can play today,” he said. “To us it is something very important for passing on the faith.”

First of all, World Meetings, said the current Roman Catholic Archbishop of Bologna Carlo Cardinal Caffarra, are “moments of great importance in the journey of the Church.” They are venues that “encourage bishops and married Christian couples, who need a lot of courage nowadays.”

Secondly, “we bear witness.” This important, “especially in the West where we are blurring what was obvious in the beginning like marriage between a man and woman.”

Finally, we bear witness that the Church not only announce the Gospel but also uphold what is “good for marriage.”

Antonio Cañizares Llovera, archbishop of Toledo and cardinal designate, warns against the dangers that loom over the family in Spain as a result of recent legislation like the divorce law which now allows the two parties to end their union without citing reasons. In Spain he said, “divorces have risen by 75 per cent and abortions by 90 per cent.” It is “the country in the world where the definition of marriage as the union between a man and a woman has disappeared.”

Nonetheless, after last year’s World Family Day during which the truth about the family was reasserted, believers have become more aware of the problems the family and couples preparing for a religious marriage are facing.

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