"The family is the privileged setting where every person learns to give and receive love ... The family is an intermediate institution between individuals and society, and nothing can completely take its place ... The Family is a necessary good for peoples, an indispensable foundation for society and a great and lifelong treasure for couples. It is a unique good for children, who are meant to be the fruit of the love, of the total and generous self-giving of their parents ... The family is also a school which enables men and women to grow to the full measure of their humanity ... 'O God, who in the Holy Family left us a perfect model of family life lived in faith and obedience to your will, help us to be examples of faith and love for your commandments.'" - Pope Benedict XVI (From December's Magnificat)
The Church is deeply convinced that only by the acceptance of the Gospel are the hopes that man legitimately plkaces in marriage and in the family capable of being fulfilled.
Willed by God in the very act of creation, marriage and the family are interiorly ordained to fulfillment in Christ and have need of his graces in order to be healed from the wounds of sin and restored to their "ginning," that is, to full understanding and the full realization of God's plan ...
The family finds in the plan of God the creator and redeemer not only its identity, what it is, but also its mission, what it can and should do. the role that God calls the family to perform in history derives from what the family is; its role represents the dynamic and existential development of what it is. Each family finds within itself a summons that cannot be ignored and that specifies both its dignity and its responsibility: Family, become what your are.
Accordingly, the family must go back to the "beginning: of God's creative act if it is to attain self-knowledge and self-realization in accordance with the inner truth not only of what it is, but also of what it does in history. And since in God's plan it has been established as an "intimate community of live and love," the family has the mission to become more and more what it is, that is to say, a community of life and love in an effort that will find fulfillment, as will everything created and redeemed, in the kingdom of God. Looking at it in such a way as to reach its very roots, we must say that the essence and role of the family are in the final analysis specified by love. Hence the family has the mission to guard, reveal and communicate love, and this is a living reflection of and a real sharing in God's love for humanity and the love of Christ the Lord for the Church, his bride. Every particular task of the family is an expression and concrete actuation of that fundamental mission. - Blessed John Paul II (From December's Magnifcat)