The Family: The First and Most Important School of Mercy
Addressing the Diplomatic Corps, Pope Francis reaffirmed the Church’s teaching regarding the family as the foundation of society on January 11, 2016.
During this address, he reiterated his message from the World Meeting of Families as well as the Synod of Bishops that the family is the first school of love and consequently the first school of mercy. However, the family is not embraced by the culture and rather is rebutted with fears of commitment, responsibility, and sacrifice. Pope Francis lamented that those who suffer most from this rebuttal are the most vulnerable, both children and the elderly.
In this landscape we are called to form families that are schools of love and mercy, not harboring resentment but being quick to forgive and to seek reconciliation. Both love and mercy in the family foster an openness to life and an environment in which the youth can be taught how to engage the society in a constructive and uplifting way. The home is the place where we are connected to our nature as social beings, created to live in community, resisting the cultural call to individualism and narcissism.
For the full text, go to the Vatican website.