Towards the 10th World Meeting of Families: it will be a time of listening and encounter
The Program of the event and the themes of the Pastoral Congress were presented in the Press Office of the Holy See
"It will be a time of listening and encounter." Gabriella Gambino, Undersecretary of the Dicastery for the Laity, Family and Life, thus defined the 10th World Meeting of Families on the theme "Family love: a vocation and a path to holiness" presented in the Holy See Press Office and online.
The Meeting - organized and hosted by the Diocese of Rome, but conceived in a multicentric and widespread way - will open with the Festival of Families on Wednesday, June 22 in Paul VI Hall in the presence of the Pope. From June 23-25, three days of Pastoral Congress will also take place in Paul VI Hall with the participation of 2,000 delegates from around the world. Then, on the afternoon of June 25, Mass in St. Peter's Square will be celebrated by the Holy Father, who will greet all participants and those who will live the days of the Meeting in their dioceses during the Angelus on the morning of June 26, as a way of conclusion.
The themes of the Pastoral Congress
The Pastoral Congress "unlike those of the previous editions, will not have academically structured conferences with theological-doctrinal content, but will be a moment of meeting, listening and encounter among family and marriage pastoral workers," Prof. Gambino said during her speech. "We have focused," Gambino continued, "on some themes that have emerged from our continuous meetings with bishops from around the world, especially in ad limina visits, and that constantly resurface: in particular, the co-responsibility of spouses and priests in the pastoral care of the particular Churches; some concrete difficulties of families in today's societies; the preparation of couples for married life; some situations of 'existential periphery' within families; and the formation of formators in family pastoral care full of challenges and difficult issues. Topical and complex issues, which we wanted to address, having as a compass Pope Francis' constant call to renewal and pastoral conversion: the first step we all still need to take, in fact, is to make families aware that theirs is a vocation, that in their daily lives they can discover incredible ways of holiness, that they can transform their ecclesial and social living environment."
Solidarity fund for participation
The delegates who will be in Rome will be two thousand, invited from 120 countries, chosen by the Bishops' Conferences, the Synods of the Eastern Churches and international ecclesial realities that work in a significant way in the area of the family apostolate. "Thanks to a solidarity fund activated by the Dicastery," explained official Leonardo Nepi, "and with the support of the Diocese of Rome, Churches from many areas of Africa, Asia, Latin America and Central Europe will also be represented, including Ukraine (with both delegates from the Synod of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church and delegates from the Latin Rite Bishops' Conference).
WebApp and Pastoral Kit
To maintain and promote the multi-centered and widespread mode of the event, the Diocese of Rome, with the collaboration of the Dicastery for the Laity, Family and Life, has made available on the official website of the Meeting a WebApp for a virtual journey to the Meeting, a Pastoral Kit with guidelines and suggestions for organizing meetings at the local level, and multimedia resources to use and share.
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