The Holy Father has written a letter to Cardinal Alfonso Lopez Trujillo, president of the Pontifical Council for the Family, for the occasion of the designation of the archdiocese of Mexico as the location of the 6th World Meeting of Families, which is due to take place from January 16 to 18, 2009. Pope Benedict gave the cardinal his insight into the theme of the gathering: "The family, educator in human and Christian values."
"As the first school of life and of faith, and as a 'domestic church'," writes the Pope in his letter, "the family is called to educate new generations in human and Christian values so as to forge in them - guiding their lives according to the model of Christ - a well-balanced personality. In such a vital task ... it is important to have the support of the school, of the parish and of the various ecclesial groups that favor the integral education of human beings."
"At a time in which there is often an apparent disassociation between what people claim to believe and the way they live and behave, this forthcoming World Meeting of Families aims to encourage Christian homes in the formation of an upright moral conscience."
The Pope concluded by praying, "I ask the Lord that the period of preparation and the celebration of this event ... may be for families ... a special occasion joyfully to experience their vocation and mission."