A Catholic Monthly Magazine

Families – To Children in Africa

Families in Work and Rest

“Work and rest are particularly associated with the life of families: they affect the choices families make, influence relations between spouses and among parents and children, and affect the ties of families with society and with the Church”.

Everyone has access to dignified, stable and well paid employment

“Through work man comes to see himself as a participant in God’s plan of creation. This is why unemployment or precarious work undermine man’s dignity, creating not just situations of injustice and poverty which frequently degenerate into desperation, criminality and violence, but also crises of identity. It is, then, vital that serious, effective and judicious measures be taken on all sides, accompanied by an indissoluble and forthright will to find ways to ensure that everyone has access to dignified, stable and well paid employment, through which they may seek sanctity and participate actively in the development of society, combining intense and responsible labour with adequate time for a rich, fruitful and harmonious family life”.

“A serene and constructive home environment, with its duties and its affections, is the first school of work and the best place in which a person may discover his potential, nurture his ambitions, and foster his most noble aspirations. Moreover, family life teaches us to overcome selfishness, to nourish solidarity, not to disdain sacrifice for another’s happiness, to value what is good and true, and to apply ourselves with conviction and generosity in the name of our joint wellbeing and reciprocal good, showing responsibility towards ourselves, others and the environment”.

“Rest makes our time more human, opening it to the encounter with God, with others and with nature. For this reason families need to rediscover the genuine significance of rest, and especially of Sunday, the Day of God and man. In the Sunday celebration of the Eucharist, families experience the real presence of the Risen Lord in the here and now, they receive new life, welcome the gift of the Spirit, increase their love for the Church, listen to the Divine Word, share the Eucharistic bread and open to fraternal love”.

To Children in Africa: How to Pray

 “It is with much joy that I greet you”, “Thank you for coming out in such great numbers! God our Father has gathered us around His Son and our Brother, Jesus Christ, ... Who loves us very much, is truly present in the tabernacles of all the churches around the world, in the tabernacles of the churches in your neighbourhoods and in your parishes. I ask you to visit Him often to tell Him of your love for Him.

.. Ask your parents to pray with you!”

“Some of you have already made your First Holy Communion, and others are preparing for it.When I receive Communion, Jesus comes to live in me. I should welcome Him with love and listen closely to Him. In the depths of my heart, I can tell Him, for example: ‘Jesus, I know that you love me. Give me your love so that I can love you in return and love others with your love. I give you all my joys, my troubles and my future.’ Do not hesitate, dear children, to speak of Jesus to others. He is a treasure Whom you should share generously”.

“Prayer”, the Pope went on, “is a cry of love directed to God our Father, with the will to imitate Jesus our Brother. ... Like Jesus, I too can find a calm place to pray where I can quietly stand before a Cross or a holy picture in order to speak to Jesus and to listen to Him. I can also use the Gospels. That way, I keep within my heart a passage which has touched me and which will guide me throughout the day. To stay with Jesus like this for a little while lets Him fill me with His love, light and life! This love, which I receive in prayer, calls me in turn to give it to my parents, to my friends, to everyone with whom I live, even with those who do not like me, and those whom I do not appreciate enough. ... Ask your parents to pray with you!”

“Look! I have this rosary in my pocket”, the Holy Father explained. “The rosary is like a tool that we can use to pray. It is easy to pray the rosary. Maybe you know how already; if not, ask your parents to help you to learn how. At the end of this meeting, each one of you will receive a rosary. When you hold it in your hands, you can pray ... for every important intention. And now, before I bless you all with great affection, let us pray together a Hail Mary for children throughout the world, especially for those who are sick, who are hungry and in places of war”.

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