The Holy Father spoke at length to 350 married and engaged couples assembled at St. Mary's Pro Cathedral in Dublin.
One of Pope Francis’ personal requests for his first apostolic visit to Ireland was to meet with married and engaged couples. He was able to do just that while making a short visit to St. Mary’s Pro Cathedral in Dublin, Ireland.
There assembled before the Holy Father was 350 married and engaged couples from every diocese in Ireland. Pope Francis began his address by saying, “Our world needs a revolution of love – let that revolution begin with you and your families.”
Pope Francis said this revolution needs to occur because, “The virtues and truths the Lord teaches us are not necessarily popular in today’s world, which has little use for the weak, the vulnerable and all those it deems ‘unproductive.’ The world tells us to be strong and independent, with little care for those who are alone or sad, rejected or sick, not yet born or dying.”
Responding to a question presented by a newlywed couple regarding education of the faith, the Holy Father explained that the home is the privileged place for teaching the Catholic faith.
“[T]he first and most important place for passing on the faith is the home, through the quiet daily example of parents who love our Lord and trust in his word. There, in the ‘domestic church,’ children learn the meaning of fidelity, integrity and sacrifice. They see how their mother and father interact with each other, how they care for each other and for others, how they love God and love the Church. In this way, children can breathe in the fresh air of the Gospel and learn to understand, judge and act in a manner worthy of the legacy of faith they have received. The faith is passed on ‘around the family table,’ in ordinary conversation, in the language that persevering love alone knows how to speak.”
Pope Francis encouraged families to, “pray together as a family; speak of good and holy things; let our Mother Mary into your family life. Celebrate the feasts of the Christian people. Live in deep solidarity with those who suffer and are at the edges of society. When you do this with your children, their hearts will gradually fill with generous love for others.”
The Holy Father also reminded families not to forget their roots, saying, “No family can grow if it forgets its roots. Children will not grow in love if they do not learn how to converse with their grandparents. So let your love sink deep roots! Let us never forget that ‘all the flowers on the tree come from what is buried beneath.'”
On his way to the Festival of Families, Pope Francis will make a short stop to the Day Centre of the Capuchin Fathers to greet the poor and homeless families there.