The rights of the Family and the Challenges of the Contemporary World

The Pontifical Council for the Family held a three day  conference to discuss how to recover the true meaning of the family in the context of a growing process of deconstructionism and confusion.

“The family is still regarded almost universally as a good,” said Cardinal Francesco Coccopalmerio, president of the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts, Sept. 19, while adding that in secular society “there are still all the pieces of marriage, but not the whole building anymore.”

“Marriage has not been destroyed by a bomb, but it has been deconstructed, so that we recognize the pieces but we cannot recognize the building any more.“

The contemporary challenge, he said, “is to speak about the truth of marriage to non-believers by presenting to them the anthropological truth and value of family in a language that makes it possible for there to be a consensus to save the family.”

The conference, held at the Pontifical Urban University in Rome, ran Sept. 19-21 and is themed “The rights of the family and the challenges of the contemporary world.” It will include exhibitions as well as keynote addresses and contributions from renowned journalists in roundtable discussions.

The conference commemorates the 30th anniversary of Blessed John Paul II’s Letter on the Rights of the Family.

September 19th afternoon Vatican media advisor Gregory Burke led a roundtable discussion featuring the director of CNA, Alejandro Bermudez; the director of the Italian SIR news agency, Paolo Bustaffa; Australian journalist Angela Shanahan; and professor of social communications Jean-Baptiste Sourou.

Jean-Baptiste Sourou presenting on Family and Media in Africa

Among the topics which were discussed in group sessions include the role of women in and for the family; work, family and economic challenges; procreation and the challenges of biotechnology; and the family in the experience of immigration.

Other speakers at the event include the secretary of the Pontifical Council for the Family, Bishop Jean Laffitte,  gave an address on pluralism, the emotional life and lifestyles; Carmen Dominguez from Chili, spoke on freedom in education; and the secretary general of the Federation of Catholic Family Associations of Europe, Maria Hildingsson,  spoke about the family from the perspective of international politics.  (With CNA/EWTN News) —

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