Church in Cuba announces activities for the Year of the Family

By Diego Lopez Marina for CNA

The Cuban flag. / Steward Cutler via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0).

Havana, Cuba, Apr 27, 2021 / 14:19 pm (CNA).

The Cuban Conference of Catholic Bishops’ National Committee on the Family announced a three month period of activities to celebrate the 2021 Year of the Family, which Pope Francis declared to mark the fifth anniversary of his apostolic exhortation Amoris laetitia.

The May 9-July 31 activities will include weekly messages, reflections, and things to do “within the family and involving other families.”

Pope Francis inaugurated the Year of the Family March 19, and it will conclude June 26, 2022.

In a statement published last weekend, the Cuban bishops expressed the need to “organize and support the celebration of this time so that it has a good impact on all the communities of each diocese,” and emphasized the importance of “family love, the source of social fraternity.”

The bishops expressed their appreciation for the short guides accompanying each video that were prepared by the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life in order to aid reflection on the words of the Holy Father. The guides will help fulfill the “desire to explore more deeply the content of the apostolic exhortation Amoris laetitia and to journey together as a Church.”

These guides are “a simple tool,” providing a helpful basis for “a weekly reflection for families, pastoral workers and communities.”

The bishops also announced that the material called “Seeds on the joy of love in the family” would be launched with “excerpts from Amoris laetitia and photos of families in our communities.”

The Cuban bishops announced they will improve their presence “on the different virtual platforms with images, texts and radio programs, worthwhile small efforts, new ways of communicating today, which are very valuable due to the harsh reality of the pandemic.”

They also stressed that “Christians cannot give up proposing that the foundation of the family is marriage.”

“We want to present marriage as a dynamic path of development and fulfillment that progresses gradually with the progressive integration of the gifts of God. This is what Amoris laetitia calls for,”  they explained.

For the Year of the Family observance, the bishops conference will provide audios developing marriage preparation topics. A WhatsApp group for young people interested in getting married is also planned. A marriage preparation guide will be provided by the bishops.

“We would like to see other pastoral ministries contribute ideas so that all of us may better care for families and celebrate the joy of love, so that in all dioceses this special year for families may be lived with enthusiasm, even more so in the midst of the current situation we are going through.”

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