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Sunday 27th December

The Feast day of the Holy Family presents us with an ideal of a family growing in wisdom and understanding of each other. There is great parental responsibility and privilege in forming the character and personality of another human being in a culture where a child is considered as a gift – not a burden.

We take the stability of our own families for granted sometimes. It is good to be thankful for al the good that family has provided for us and for the security and forgiveness of our homes.

We acknowledge the difficulties of our time. Vows are often treated as disposable (all things are allowed… as long as he is happy). Cheating and adultery have become acceptable in some circles. Children are often growing up in insecurity or not being allowed to grow up in innocence.

There is a responsibility on parents of children to care, to be present, physically and emotionally. There is a duty to show example and to enforce discipline. Conflict and anger are normal within a certain range within the security of family. This is were we learn the sorting out of differences and we learn to cope with different personalities.

Parents have a duty not to be corrupt, uncaring or hypocritical in what they teach their children and what they do themselves.

Children have a duty to honour father and mother, to be respectful and obedient. Most parents do their best and it’s important to thank them while we still have the opportunity.

It is Important for older, adult children to make provision for their elderly parents in a fair and dignified way, not letting the burden fall on one person in the family. There is a tendency to make parents into scapegoats for all that has gone wrong in life.

Raising children has never been easy in any culture. Sometimes the only thing that parents can do is to ponder the mystery and hope the child will (continue to) grow in wisdom, maturity, and favor among human beings and God.