12-August-2013 -- ZENIT.org News Agency |

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Pope: 'Families Must Be The Most Convincing Testimony of Love'

Pontiff Sends Message Brazilians During National Week of the Family

By Junno Arocho Esteves

VATICAN CITY, August 12, 2013 (Zenit.org) - In a message sent to Brazilian families on the occasion of the "National Week of the Family yesterday, Pope Francis called on the faithful to defend human life from the moment of conception. The event which is promoted by the Brazilian Bishops Conference, will reflect on theme of "The transmission and education of the Christian faith in the family."

The National Week of the Family, the Brazilian bishops noted, emphasizes a key point in the Aparecida document which states that the family "is one of the most important treasures in Latin America and patrimony for the whole of humanity."

According to Vatican Radio, the Holy Father underlined how he still retains alive in his heart the joy received during his Apostolic visit to Brazil for World Youth Day. Pope Francis also encouraged parents to continue the "noble and demanding mission" of being God's first collaborators in guiding future generations. It is important, the Pope noted, that "parents cultivate common practices of faith in the family that accompany the maturation of faith in their children."

"Parents are called to transmit with their words, and above all, their deeds, the fundamental truth on life and human love, that receives a new light from the Revelation of God. In particular, facing a throwaway culture that relativizes the values of human life, parents are called to transmit to their children the knowledge that [life] must always be defended, from the maternal womb, recognizing it as a gift from God and a guarantee of the future of humanity, but also in the care of the elderly, especially of grandparents, that are the living memory of a people and transmit the wisdom of life."

Concluding his message, Pope Francis invoked the intercession of Our Lady of Aparecida while expressing his hope that families become "the most convincing testimony of the beauty of love sustained and nourished by faith."

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