“THE CHRISTIAN FAMILY CONSTITUTES A SPECIFIC REVELATION AND REALIZATION OF ECCLESIAL COMMUNION … IT CAN AND SHOULD BE CALLED A DOMESTIC CHURCH. IT IS A COMMUNITY OF FAITH, HOPE, AND CHARITY.” (CCC 2204)
Our archdiocese is committed to the work of becoming a band of joyful missionary disciples, willing to go out into our communities to share the Gospel of Christ with all. But as we envision how our local church is called to minister in and to the world around us, let us not lose sight of one of the foremost settings in which evangelization takes place: the family.
Under the protection and loving care of the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Joseph, Christ was nurtured and raised within the family that has set the standard for all families striving to be “domestic churches” in our world today. As St. Joseph obeyed God and took Mary into his home following the Annunciation, husbands and wives give of themselves in self-sacrificial ways. As Mary and Joseph dutifully taught the child Jesus, mothers and fathers are the principal and first educators of their children. And as 12-year-old Jesus responded to his parents’ anxiety by assuring them he had been “in [his] father’s house” all along, even young children evangelize their parents through the beautiful simplicity of their faith. As members of a Catholic family receive the love of God and share it with each other in these ways, they become a “living reflection” of the Father, Son and Spirit of love that is our triune God. (Pope Francis, Amoris laetitia, 11)
In this issue of Unleash the Gospel, we will immerse ourselves in the beauty and joy of love in the Catholic family — the domestic church — where sacrificial love, after Christ’s own example, is the principle that governs all of life. It is by ministering to families, evangelizing within families and witnessing Christ’s love to others as families that we can light the brightest spark fueling our mission to unleash the Gospel in Southeast Michigan and beyond.
“CHRIST WAS NURTURED AND RAISED WITHIN THE FAMILY THAT HAS SET THE STANDARD FOR ALL FAMILIES STRIVING TO BE ‘DOMESTIC CHURCHES’ IN OUR WORLD TODAY.”