New Vatican document calls for defence of family life in America

 On Friday, the Pontifical Council for the Family released the 'Santo Domingo Declaration' drawn up following a four day meeting to discuss family life in America. Participants included members of the Pontifical Commission for Latin America, the Latin American Episcopal Council (CELAM), the presidents of the episcopal conferences of America as well as married couples and university professors. The document was approved unanimously. The first section, entitled "Situation of the family," states that "due to strong ideological pressure, it could be said that there exists the goal to dismantle piece by piece the structure of the family, based on marriage." The second part of the document, "Truth of family and life," emphasizes that "a healthy society and culture are reflected in and nourished by the health of the family. Similarly,sick society and culture are reflected in weak and deteriorated families. The future of humanity will not be possible without recognizing and respecting the values of the natural institution of the family." "We are distressed by the pretext of giving legal recognition - with the juridical effects that the tradition of peoples only recognizes in marriage. an eminently public good - to the so-called 'de facto unions' in their diverse versions and stages. Even greater is our concern when such an expectation applies to people of the same sex. It is inadmissible to ask that the union of homosexuals and lesbians be considered a legitimate union and included as 'marriages', or that they have a supposed right to adopt children." The third and last section, "The need for action," urges "politicians and legislators, not only Catholics to vote against immoral laws, just as they are obligated to vote for laws that favour the common good. We ask them insistently to search for creative initiatives that promote the family and life which emerge as one organic and positive legislation." "The right to conscientious objection," concludes the document, "is particularly urgent in the face of an avalanche of proposals on unions at different levels which attack the singularity of marriage." source: Vatican Information Service

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