Islamabad (Agenzia Fides) - The year 2023, in the diocese of Islamabad-Rawalpindi will be a "Year of the Family": this was announced by Archbishop Joseh Arshad, inviting all the parishes, associations, movements and ecclesial realities of the diocese to give special pastoral attention to families, fostering "the joy of domestic prayer in all families, so that they may be a temple where the Spirit of God lives and grows". The Archbishop, in a letter sent to the faithful, invites the entire diocesan community to be "a welcoming family" and to follow the example of the Holy Family of Nazareth.
The central theme of the Year of the Family is "Love, fidelity and obedience", while, in the area of reflection and biblical deepening, the verse from the Gospel of Matthew will be taken as a starting point: "So that no longer they are two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no man separate" (Mt 19:6).
Hoping that all the parishes commit themselves to celebrating the special Year, Archbishop Arshad suggests that local communities organize activities, events, spiritual, pastoral and charitable programs, study seminars and even moments of conviviality between families, always highlighting the primary reference to the Holy Family.
It will be important - it is noted - to involve the families themselves, who can be "missionaries of other families, bearing witness to their faith, hope and charity". Particular importance is then given to celebrate events such as the 25th or 50th wedding anniversary of Christian spouses with liturgies and moments of community celebration, to highlight the gift of a Christian family because "the Sacrament of marriage contains in itself the grace and power to sublimate human love".
All these activities, the letter explains, are specially designed and directed at young people who are approaching marriage and have in their hearts the desire to start a family: the path of marriage and family, in fact, is a path of sanctification for the baptized and for the whole Church. (PA) (Agenzia Fides, 4/1/2023)
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