14 Notes & Comments

posted Aug 29, 2018, 9:52 AM by Neil D'Souza   [ updated Aug 29, 2018, 9:52 AM ]

Challenges that families face today


Prior to the World Meeting of Families in Ireland, we interviewed Brian and Ninette Lobo who play an important role in the pastoral outreach of the Archdiocese of Bombay. The couple talked about their experience as Catholic parents and discussed the challenges that families currently face, not only in India, but around the world.

Brian Lobo is Executive Vice President & Head of Corporate Affairs; he was part of the core team that set up and established the 'tomb for the unborn' and is working actively in the field of Apologetics to help defend the Catholic faith. Ninette has a degree in microbiology, but gave up her career to dedicate herself to the family. She heads the Diocesan Human Life Committee (DHLC), and last year represented India at a Bioethics Conference in Thailand. The couple have three children who work abroad.

Ninette said Catholics should put Christian values into practice in the family, at work, in everyday life. The challenges of the modern world include abortion, euthanasia, gay marriage, and the role of women. "[Only] when we exercise our faith and translate it into actionable works of God do we become an extension of Christ and his love for us."


Pope: Families can help God's dream come true


Pope Francis participated in the Festival of Families celebration in Dublin's Croke Park Stadium on August 25, and told families they are "the hope of the Church and of the world."

Months of preparation went into creating the event, considered one of the highlights of the World Meeting of Families 2018. There were about 70,000 people. Even the stage design reflected an ideal "circle of encounter" where families could sit close to Pope Francis, while sharing their testimonies and enjoying the performances.

The talent was provided by some of Ireland's best performers and musicians: a 1,000-voice choir, a 50-piece orchestra, and over 700 dancers from the best Irish dance schools across the country, as well as international artists like The Riverdance Troupe, American jazz singer Dana Masters, and Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli.

The testimony came from five families representing Ireland, Canada, India, Iraq and Africa. All shared a common theme of how their families had provided them with hope, love and support during the most challenging moments of their lives. Their testimonies focused on themes of forgiveness and hope in the family, the importance of grandparents, and even the role of social media and technology in family life.

When the Pope addressed the gathering, he described it as "a family celebration of thanksgiving to God for who we are: one family in Christ, spread throughout the world." Pope Francis' speech was filled with references to his Apostolic Exhortation, Amoris Laetitia, on the joy of love.