Last Friday Pope Francis inaugurated the start of special emphasis on the Encyclical ‘Amoris Laetita‘ ‘The Joy of Loving‘ which is about support for family life.

Pope Francis urges all in the church especially those involved in pastoral work to walk with families.

He speaks about the beauty and ideals of family life. It is important that we aim and strive for the ideals.

However he reminds us that families and individuals very often find themselves in situations that are far from ideal.

He speaks about accompanying families and individuals from where they actually are. Many find themselves in complex situations which are very difficult.

The compassion of Jesus and how he reached out to others, often condemned harshly by others, needs to be our guide and teacher.

Prayerful, thoughtful, wise and compassionate reflection is essential unless we want to find ourselves in the position those Jewish leaders who condemned Jesus for his compassion.

We need to encourage those who feel trapped in situations, reminding them that in Jesus there is always hope.

Modern life has many complex challenges. Often there can be tremendous pressures on family life.

Jesus is about hope, He is about fullness of life and he wants it for all!

Jesus was never wishy washy but he was always compassionate. God is Love.

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