Last month the United States had the privilege and blessing to host our Holy Father, Pope Francis! It is no surprise he brought words of encouragement, challenge, and hope, not to just the people of the Church, but to the whole world. While in Philadelphia, Pope Francis focused on the importance of the family. During the Festival of Families, the Pope addressed the crowds saying, “All of the love that God has in Himself, all of the beauty that God has in Himself, all of the truth that God has in Himself, He gives to the family. And a family is truly a family when it is able to open its arms and receive all of this love.”
Through these words we are reminded that the family is the source and vessel through which God loves. Just as Jesus was brought into this world as a member of the Holy Family, we recognize that our very lives are rooted in the life of our family and nourished by the love of God. As parents, guardians, brothers, and sisters we are called to teach and exemplify the love, the beauty, and the truth of God. However, Pope Francis explains that this becomes impossible if we do not open our hearts to the workings of our Creator.
Along with his words of encouragement and hope, Pope Francis also brought a challenge to the people of the Church. In a separate address to the Bishops at a seminary in Philadelphia he speaks on the danger of “imbalanced Christianity.” He explains, “A Christianity which ‘does’ little in practice, while incessantly ‘explaining’ its teachings, is dangerously unbalanced.” In order to avoid this imbalance, we rely on the families of the Church. Here at St. Pius X, we continuously work to inform our students of the life and love of Christ, but there must not be a disconnect between school and home. It is imperative that each student’s faith formation is not limited to the forty-five minutes of their Theology class. We as a Theology Department encourage the family to take an active role in your child’s spiritual walk. It is important for prayer, conversation, contemplation, and participation in the Sacraments to take place within the family and not just at school. The family is called to instill the values of faith, hope, and love into the children’s lives, and encourage them to constantly grow in relationship with God.
Thank you for all that you do for your children! Continue to share your faith with them so that it may permeate into all that they do. God Bless!