In the new ‘Pope Video,’ the Holy Father emphasizes the difficult moments that today’s families are experiencing —marked by the stress of a world in crisis— and asks that they “may be accompanied with love, respect and guidance.”
(Vatican City, July 2, 2020) – July’s The Pope Video has just been released, sharing the prayer intention that the Holy Father entrusts to the Pope’s Worldwide Prayer Network (includes the Eucharistic Youth Movement – EYM) every month. It is addressed to families, who need to be protected especially in these difficult times. With this concern in mind, Pope Francis asks that States protect them and that they “may be accompanied with love, respect and guidance.”
The realities of families today differ from those of the past. Immersed in a culture where there is little time, where overwork sometimes hinders family living and where digital connection often replaces human affection, many families feel isolated and suffer in silence. In times of crisis, moreover, where the socio-economic consequences of the pandemic are still visible —marked by the losses of jobs or the difficulties to make a living— it becomes more evident that neither individuals nor society can do without families. That is why States need to promote policies that contain and protect them.
The Pope Video points out that these situations are, among others, “the many dangers” that the family faces today. And there are also issues of daily living: “Sometimes, parents forget to play with their children.” This is why Pope Francis insists on the need of the Church “to encourage families and stay at their side, helping them to discover ways that allow them to overcome all of these difficulties.”
Fr. Frédéric Fornos S.J., International Director of the Pope’s Worldwide Prayer Network, observed: “We know that in many parts of the world the effects of the pandemic are still being felt. There are many families in need, and uncertain about their present and future employment. In the face of all the unease and diseases of our world, how are they accompanied? The Holy Father also reminds us that ‘the family is the foundation of society and it remains the most suitable structure for ensuring for people the integral good necessary for their continuing development.’ And in his appeal to States to protect them, he stresses once again that families are not simply a private matter, but a social fact. Today, families need to be supported, strengthened, ‘accompanied with love, respect and guidance.’ To pray for this intention is to set out on a journey, at the service of our families, supporting the associations that help them to face their various challenges —for true prayer is embodied in our lives. During July, let us devote our free time to our families; each person can know what this means concretely.”