Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Role of the Family

36. Man is not really himself, however, except within the framework of society and there the family plays the basic and most important role. The family's influence may have been excessive at some periods of history and in some places, to the extent that it was exercised to the detriment of the fundamental rights of the individual. Yet time honored social frameworks, proper to the developing nations, are still necessary for awhile, even as their excessive strictures are gradually relaxed. The natural family, stable and monogamous—as fashioned by God (37) and sanctified by Christianity—"in which different generations live together, helping each other to acquire greater wisdom and to harmonize personal rights with other social needs, is the basis of society." (38)

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