"We will not lose the battle of hope"
Last group of French Bishops for Ad limina visits to the Dicastery
On various burning issues of bioethics and civil rights such as medically assisted procreation, marriage for all, the French state and a large part of its public opinion have recently embarked on a path very different from the Church's doctrine in these matters. And among the many lay people who had done their utmost in various ways to prevent events from taking this turn, there is a feeling of defeat and discouragement.
Thus, the Bishops of the third and last group of France on their ad limina visit to our Dicastery wished to reiterate in recent days the determination of the faithful of France to continue to be prophets of hope: “We have lost numerous battles in society; we will not lose that of hope. We will not give up on exercising hope in social commitments as well as in the intimacy of our conscience ". One of the prelates also brought the theme of incest to the attention of the Dicastery, inviting a profound ecclesial reflection on this phenomenon experienced by many as a fatality and around which an unacceptable silence still reigns today. The reference to the new impetus given to the pastoral care of the family by the exhortation Amoris Laetitia, defined as "a profound breath of the Gospel and Mercy" was also inevitable.
The Bishops spoke of the efforts made to involve the laity and families in the mission of the Church, investing in their formation and entrusting them with specific ministries. And to ensure that the Church truly becomes the "universal sacrament of salvation" (LG 48), they shared numerous experiences of accompaniment and integration in ecclesial communities: from wounded families to homosexuals, from migrants to elderly people.