The Archbishop of Madrid and President of the Bishops Conference of Spain, Cardinal Antonio Maria Rouco Varela, said this week political or juridical experimentation on authentic marriage and the family should not be allowed to take place and he emphasized “the grave and urgent duty” of Catholics and of all of society to promote and care for marriage and the family.
In a pastoral letter, the Cardinal stated that “if endless political and juridical experimentation with that ever-important pedagogical instrument for the education of man in his early stage that is the school is not advisable, even more so should one not experiment with marriage and the family, which constitute the primary and most intimate sign” of the human person.
The Cardinal underscored that “the truth about the human person, about his fundamental rights and duties, and the truth about the basic institutions into which he is born, grows and develops, is buried deep within man’s very being, which is designed and created by God!”
The human person “is not at the disposal or whim of any human power that individually or institutionally seeks to make use of him. Rather, he is to be scrupulously respected, cared for, supported and facilitated in his fulfillment with all of the resources that are at the disposal of a justly ordered society and political community, which should be sincerely concerned about progress that is worthy to be called such,” the Cardinal said.
Cardinal Rouco also explained that “the perspectives of our society will not improve with a spectacular increase in the number of divorces and of children and teenagers immersed in dramatic marital and family crises, and much less so if the sustained wave of abortions is not stopped.”
He also stated that most young people want to live out authentic matrimony and that, therefore, “they need effective and prompt assistance from society and its institutions in order to reconcile professional life with marriage and family life, the commitment to work with responsible parenthood, and in order to gain access to the essential resources--employment and housing, primarily--needed to create and sustain a family with dignity.”
According to the Cardinal, God’s plan for marriage and the family “is not an impossible ideal, nor is it some romantic dream conjured up by those who are oblivious to the social realities of the day. Rather, through Jesus Christ and his Gospel, lived and experienced in communion with the Church, it is a gift within everyone’s reach, including of course, the young people of our times.”