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Cardinal says materialism threatens families

Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace head Cardinal Renato Martino spoke of materialism, violence and permissiveness as the most dangerous threats to families in the world.

He was speaking on Wednesday at the concluding session of the Third World Congress of Families.

Cardinal Martino said that the family is the "key for the future of mankind", and, in order to make society more human and just, the family as society's basic institution must be strengthened.

He said "we must direct our greatest efforts, our best ideas and refine our imaginations and our creativity to make this action of strengthening the family more efficacious."

"It is within the family," he stressed, "that those forms of anti-culture must be fought, those forms that contradict the vocation inscribed in the hearts of all human beings to a full life, to fraternity and to solidarity."

Noting that it is impossible for societies today not to be open to globalisation, the cardinal said that "it is important, however, to educate to discernment and to defend the riches of every culture, avoiding what can place these cultures in danger. A people that loses its cultural identity becomes fertile terrain for inhuman practices and places its own future at risk."

Materialism, violence, permissiveness threaten families (Vatican Information Service 1/4/04)

Third World Congress of Families
Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace

2 Apr 2004