23 June 2022
#WMOF22: focus on the concrete realities of families
The welcoming speech of Card. Farrell and the first day of the Theological-Pastoral Congress
With the celebration of the opening Mass in St. Peter's Basilica - presided by Card. Kevin Farrell, Prefect of the Dicastery for the Laity, Family and Life - began the second day of the 10th World Meeting of Families. In his homily, the Prefect reflected on the contemporary mission of the family, inspired by the example of St. John the Baptist, which is: "to build bridges between generations; to preserve hope in the future; to be guardians of the sacredness of life; to be instruments of mercy, prophets of God's faithfulness and providence; and to become witnesses of Jesus in life."
Further reflection on this initial insight was carried out during the first day of the Pastoral Theological Congress -- the crucial part of the Meeting of Families -- which began after Mass in Paul VI Hall in the presence of approximately 2,000 delegates. Launching the work of the Congress, Card. Farrell emphasized that the choice to "meet in a small number, because of the limitations imposed on us by the pandemic, is not a return to the past. Thanks to the development of media and digital media, every moment of this congress will be streamed worldwide." In fact, one of the main new elements of this meeting is precisely the possibility of following all events through the web and radio. Multilingual live streaming of the meeting is available on the official website www.romefamily2022.com, thanks to Vatican News, as well as the texts of all the speeches delivered. Vatican Radio is broadcasting the entire event live.
"In light of what we will hear in these days," - card. Farrell continued - let us ask ourselves: in what areas and in what ways can we better act together to make families aware of the role they have in the Church?"
The Prefect of the Dicastery emphasized that the topics which are in the heart of the discussion were not chosen from theoretical considerations, but from listening to the concrete situations and the suggestions that emerged during the meetings with the bishops during the ad limina visits in recent years.
The day was dedicated to an in-depth study of the important theme of family love. The main conferences of the day had as their theme synodality and the domestic Church, as well as the accompaniment in the early years of marriage. The two panels that followed the lectures gave a lot of space for listening to various testimonies that related to these very topics.