Saturday, February 25, 2012

PH fosters healthy family culture—priest

BACOLOD City, Feb. 25, 2012— Despite being threatened by issues affecting the family across the globe, the Philippines can export to the world a healthier culture of the family, according to a speaker in the recent National Conference conducted by the John Paul II National Institute for Studies on Marriage and the Family.

Fr. Jose Granados, Vice President for the Central Session of Pontificio Instituto Giovanni Paolo II Per Studi Su Matrimonio E Famiglia in Rome, noted that in the Philippines marriage is much “more stable and its existence is covered by the laws,” which makes Filipinos look upon the family as a resource, not as a problem.
In his keynote address during the conference, Granados affirmed that in the perspective of Blessed John Paul II, the issue of marriage and the family is the crucial point for the new evangelization of society.
Touching on the prevalence of secularism, Granados mentioned that many people no longer believe in God, resulting in the superficiality of the present generation’s attempt to build a society without setting the foundations on a “common search for common roots and essence of human life.”
He cited that one of the greatest problems of our age is that many people have stopped believing in love and its capacity to regenerate the human being and transform society. Furthermore, he mentioned that “care for human love is at the center of the Church’s concern.”
The five-day conference opened with a Mass on February 13 at the San Sebastian Cathedral in Bacolod led by Apostolic nuncio to the Philippines, Archbishop Giuseppe Pinto.
In his homily, the nuncio lauded the effort of the diocese in hosting the national conference, describing it as “a concrete testament to the unrelenting commitment of the Catholic Church in the Philippines to uphold the truths regarding family and life.”
Pinto also said that “during these days, let Bacolod be the ‘Nazareth of the Philippines,’ in order to live a page of the Gospel in our families and in the family of the Church.”
Hosting the national conference initiated by the John Paul II National Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family, is only one among the many projects the diocese is involved in its effort to preserve the sanctity of life and the family.
In the fight against the Reproductive Health (RH) bill, the diocese launched last year a massive Caravan for Life which traversed the whole island of Negros.
The diocese has also an ongoing awareness campaigns and the establishment of natural family planning (NFP) centers in the diocese.
The National Conference was attended by some 175 participants – Directors and Executive Officers of the Episcopal Commission on Family and Life (ECFL) as well as members of the Clergy, Graduate students and professors. For this year, the theme was Blessed John Paul II’s Nuptial Theology: A Call to Family Ministry, Agenda for Humanity.
Gracing the Conference were Bacolod Bishop Vicente M. Navarra, D.D., ECFL Chairman and Antipolo Bishop Gabriel V. Reyes, D.D., Bishop Camilo D. Gregorio, D.D. of the Prelature of Batanes, Bishop Juan De Dios Pueblos D.D., and ECFL Executive Secretary Fr. Melvin Castro.
In another development, the Bacolod City Council passed a resolution declaring February 13-20, 2012 as “Blessed John Paul II Week” as part of the 31st Anniversary of Blessed John Paul II’s 1981 visit to Negros. The resolution also recognized the numerous historic landmarks; notable among these is the John Paul II Tower in Reclamation Area that celebrated the Pope’s historic visit to Negros. (Fr. Deogracias Aurelio V. Camon)


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