Abp. Kikuchi: isolation and destruction of the family root cause of child abuse
The Archbishop of Tokyo comments on the scourge of violence against children. Lack of support among family members. Young people grow up in isolation and cannot ask for help. The government should favour parental leave, not encourage parents to leave their children in institutions. The lack of community solidarity, young parents increasingly alone and isolated. Need to educate people about the value of life, fundamental mission for the Japanese Catholic Church.
Tokyo (AsiaNews) - The isolation and disintegration of families is the gravest problem afflicting Japan, and the root cause of tragic stories such as that of little Yua Funato, says the Archbishop of Tokyo, Msgr. Tarcisio Isao Kikuchi,
He shared his reflections on the scourge of violence against children to AsiaNews. "I am terribly sad - says the bishop - for this child, who no one offered a helping hand to save her from the appalling situation".
The problem of child abuse in Japan is the product of a growing crisis of the traditional family system, "which has disappeared from Japanese society for some time now. This is why parents themselves have no idea of how to encourage mutual support among family members, when difficulties arise in life. And since they grow up in isolated family nucleas, they themselves are not able to ask for help when they struggle to raise their children. "
"In many cases of family problems in today's Japan - continues Msgr. Kikuchi - the origin of the problem is the breakup of the family itself. Often both parents are forced to work to survive economically. At present, government policy is to encourage parents to leave their children in institutions, even when they are very young, so that they can continue to work. I believe that priority should be to improve jobs, so that parents can take permits for significant periods without being afraid of losing their jobs or their income while raising their children. They are encouraged to separate themselves from children, and families are together only during the hours of sleep. In this way how can family bonds be establish? "
"In addition - the prelate adds - the big cities do not have the mutual support networks of local communities. There is no kind of community aid for young parents who have problems. They are isolated. Isolation is one of the biggest problems in Japan ".
In conclusion, Msgr. Kikuchi says at the basis of the problem is the lack of moral education. "There is no space in the system of public education for religion - he continues - so people do not have many opportunities to learn about the real the meaning of human life and its precious value". A value, the prelate concludes, to which the Catholic Church in Japan is trying to give voice.