The Great Family Called Humanity

Although contemporary reality presents us with a panorama of domestic violence, of an increasingly larger number of youths involved with drugs and the self-discovery of sexuality by children, skipping important stages of their psychological development, in the opposite direction of these sad facts research also shows that even "the most modern" person, when things get really difficult, look for support in their mothers’ homes, or at grandma’s...

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I respect the opinion of those who predict the destruction of the family. However, I question the reasoning of those who affirm that its value in strengthening society has reached the end. Society does not exist without the family. Moreover, no transformation on Earth has been peaceful.

At the 9th LGW’s Legionnaire Youth Congress, in 1984, I declared that in a world constantly threatened by savagery, we should note that given the transcending of the barriers of space and time, the more they announce the end of the family, the more it grows and ends up being called Humanity. In the century of the hydrogen bomb, we are not protected by anything, even if it happens to the antipodes... In a period of deep mutations, everyone needs aid. The "block of me alone" will stop existing, despite globalization and the many contradictory analyses made about it. It is not only the seers at the end of the year that err... analysts of social, political and economic facts also make mistakes. The growing lack of common sense in the world will force human beings through extreme necessity to restore the family, the universal family, Humanity, even if there still might be some wayward sheep.…

And what about the family? It survives!

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Paulo

Is the family coming to an end? No. It is just evolving, as a natural process. And within all the confusion of the passing of the millennium, as incredible as it may appear to the more hasty, the family is searching, though awkwardly, for Something, which one day it will discover to be God—with or without a name—, who is Love and without which the individual cannot subsist with dignity, since, wanting to or not, he is a part of Him. As registered by Apostle Paul in his Second Epistle to the Corinthians, 6:16: "You are the Temple of the Living God."

Without beating the skull

And I continued: Nothing lives without Love. One day we will reach this happy understanding. Changing habits is an older process than most people may think... It is astonishing, since its speed has increased significantly and the media has been taking full advantage of this. Observe how the process is remote: when a primate decided not to beat his skull as a way to seduce his chosen mate, there were certainly others who feared the tremendous absurd: "That is dangerous, where is the respect? In this case the family is doomed to the saddest end."

But it was nothing like that... What happened was the effect of evolution. After all, women are not prey. The family would only end if Love no longer existed. And Love will never end since it is for the spirit what oxygen is for the body.

Fernanda’s consideration

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Fernanda Montenegro

I like to mention the example of the great actress Fernanda Montenegro, who was asked on a TV program: "Do you think theater is coming to an end?" With finesse she responded: "The theater is like the family; since I was small I have heard it will end, yet it still continues."

That’s right, dear Fernanda: the family may evolve, but it will never die. Love, if authentic, always wins! It may take a while, but it triumphs, because we have various complementing existences to go through until our total integration with God, who—as we repeatedly affirm—is Love (First Epistle of John, 4:8). In a time of so much bitterness, the more we need to believe in it. In periods of intense reform we generally err by exaggeration. That is when Love becomes indispensable. When there is a drought, we beg for rain.

Arquivo BV

Isaac Newton

Today violence has reached absurd levels. However, the time for equilibrium will come. Every excess tires, becomes tedious and is expelled. The more an elastic band is stretched the faster it returns under the impact of the stretch. And it might even hit the face of the person who stretched it so much. That is the conclusion of Physics. Newton’s Third Law in full action.

José de Paiva Netto is a writer, journalist, radio broadcaster, composer, and poet. He is the President of the Legion of Good Will (LGW), effective member of the Brazilian Press Association (ABI) and of the Brazilian International Press Association (ABI-Inter). Affiliated to the National Federation of Journalists (FENAJ), the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), the Union of Professional Journalists of the State of Rio de Janeiro, the Union of Writers of Rio de Janeiro, the Union of Radio Broadcasters of Rio de Janeiro, and the Brazilian Union of Composers (UBC). He is also a member of the Academy of Letters of Central Brazil. He is an author of international reference in the concept and defense of the cause of Ecumenical Citizenship and Spirituality which, according to him, constitute “the cradle of the most generous values that are born of the Soul, the dwelling of the emotions and of the reasoning enlightened by intuition, the atmosphere that embraces everything that transcends the ordinary field of matter and comes from the elevated human sensitivity, such as Truth, Justice, Mercy, Ethics, Honesty, Generosity, and Fraternal Love.”