Great Jubilee News

U.S. BISHOPS CALL FOR CELEBRATION OF "GRANDPARENTS' DAY" 

Will Be Observed on July 26, Feast of Ss. Joachim and Anne 

WASHINGTON, JULY 14 (ZENIT.org).- Grandparents play a very important part in society and the Church. Therefore, in order to highlight this truth, the U.S. Church has called on the faithful to celebrate July 26, the feast of Ss. Joachim and Anne, Mary's parents and Jesus' grandparents, with special solemnity. 
"Grandparents can be a sign of stability in a world of constant change. They often given youngsters time and attention, and encourage them to flower with new talents. Their example of firmness of faith can inspire younger members of the family to make good decisions in life," explained Sheila Garcia, head of the U.S.
Episcopal Conference's Office for the Family, Laity, Women, and Youth. 
The U.S. bishops have written a document for the elderly entitled, "Blessings of Age"  in which they describe the joy of being grandparents. The bishops also quote John Paul II's conviction that the presence of grandparents in the family can help to avoid the division between generations so characteristic of present-day society. 
Sometimes, the role of grandparents in the family is irreplaceable. According to "Blessings of Age," "nearly 6% of U.S. children, or 3.9 million, lived in a household headed by a grandparent in 1997, while no parent was present for 1.3 million children." 
The Jubilee of the "Third Age" -- the elderly -- will be held in Rome on September 17. In the United States, the celebration will take place the following week, on September 24. The Pontifical Council for the Laity is preparing a congress in Rome for this date entitled, "The Gift of a Long Life: Responsibility and Hope." 

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