The Top Quotes about Family
Top 10 Pope Francis Quotes on Family
Pope Francis placed such a high value on the family that in his first year as Pope, he called for a Synod on the Pastoral Care of the Family in the contemporary world.
- It is “the fundamental cell of society”. (Pope Francis, 66)
- “Family relations contribute decisively to the sound building of human society”. (Synod Report to Pope Francis, 50)
- “The first setting in which faith enlightens the human city is the family.” (Pope Francis, 46)
- “[T]he Family begins with the creation of humanity in the image of God who is love and calls man and woman to love according to his likeness”. (Synod Report to Pope Francis, 35)
- The family is “where we learn to live with others despite our differences and to belong to one another“. (Pope Francis, 66)
- “The family provides the opportunity for personal fulfillment and contributes to the growth of other persons in society-at-large.” (Synod Report to Pope Francis, 7)
- “Through our family, we belong to the whole of creation; we contribute in a specific manner to promoting ecology“. (Synod Report to Pope Francis, 16)
- “We remain firmly convinced that the family is a gift of God, the place where he reveals the power of his saving grace.” (Synod Report to Pope Francis, 5)
- “[T]he family, the basic human community, is painfully being weakened“. (Synod Report to Pope Francis, 10)
- “The family is experiencing a profound cultural crisis“. (Pope Francis, 66)
“We remain firmly convinced that the family is a gift of God, the place where he reveals the power of his saving grace.” (Synod Report to Pope Francis, 5)
Top 10 Pope Benedict XVI Quotes on Family
Pope Benedict XVI was a staunch defender of the family.
- “The family…is the ‘patrimony of humanity’…it is the vital cell and pillar of society.” (Pope Benedict XVI)
- “[M]arriage and the family are rooted in the inmost nucleus of the truth about man and his destiny.” (Pope Benedict XVI)
- Every state has the obligation to defend “the right to form a family“. (Pope Benedict XVI)
- “The book of nature is one and indivisible: it takes in not only the environment but also life, sexuality, marriage, the family, social relations”. (Pope Benedict XVI, 51)
- “States are called to enact policies promoting the centrality and the integrity of the family”. (Pope Benedict XVI, 51)
- “[T]he State must acknowledge, respect and support this venerable institution as the stable union between a man and a woman who willingly embrace a life-long commitment of love and fidelity”. (Pope Benedict XVI)
- “The communion of life and love which is marriage…emerges as an authentic good for society.” (Pope Benedict XVI)
- It is “a social and even economic necessity…to hold up to future generations the beauty of marriage and the family, and the fact that these institutions correspond to the deepest needs and dignity of the person.” (Pope Benedict XVI, 44)
- The family “is called to welcome, radiate and show the world the love and presence of Christ.” (Pope Benedict XVI)
- “It is only the rock of total, irrevocable love between a man and a woman that can serve as the foundation on which to build a society that will become a home for all mankind.” (Pope Benedict XVI)
Top 10 Pope St. John Paul II Quotes on Family
St. John Paul the Great made some of the most decisive statements on the importance of the family.
- “The future of humanity passes by way of the family.” (Pope St. John Paul II, 86)
- “The family is the first and fundamental school of social living”. (Pope St. John Paul II, 37)
- “[T]he role of the family in building a culture of life is decisive and irreplaceable.” (Pope St. John Paul II, 92)
- “[T]he family has the mission to guard, reveal and communicate love, and this is a living reflection of and a real sharing in God’s love for humanity”. (Pope St. John Paul II, 17)
- “[T]he family is placed at the center of the great struggle between good and evil, between life and death, between love and all that is opposed to love”. (Pope St. John Paul II, 23)
- “The family is…the place of origin and the most effective means for humanizing and personalizing society”. (Pope St. John Paul II, 43)
- “[S]ociety, far from putting itself at the service of the family, attacks it violently in its values and fundamental requirements.” (Pope St. John Paul II, 46)
- The family is “increasingly menaced by forces of disintegration on both the ideological and practical planes, so as to make us fear for…the future of society as a whole.” (Pope St. John Paul II, 6)
- “[T]he Church openly and strongly defends the rights of the family against the intolerable usurpations of society and the State”. (Pope St. John Paul II, 46)
- “It is necessary to go back to seeing the family as sacred – ‘the heart of the culture of life'”. (Pope St. John Paul II, 39)
Top 10 Quotes on Family: 1893-1967
There are countless, but here are 10 family quotes, both long and short, from the birth of modern Catholic social teaching through the beginning of Pope St. Paul VI’s pontificate.
- “[T]he family…is the foundation of society.” (Gaudium et Spes, 52)
- “Man is not really himself…except within the framework of society and there the family plays the basic and most important role.” (Pope St. Paul VI, 36)
- “The family is a kind of school of deeper humanity.” (Gaudium et Spes, 52)
- “[T]he prosperity of the State and the temporal happiness of its citizens cannot remain safe and sound where the foundation on which they are established…the family, is obstructed“. (Pope Pius XI, 123)
- “All those…who exercise influence over communities and social groups should work efficiently for the welfare of marriage and family.” (Gaudium et Spes, 52)
- “[T]he State must not absorb the individual or the family; both should be allowed free and untrammeled action”. (Pope Leo XIII, 35)
- “Public authority should regard it as a sacred duty to recognize, protect and promote it [the family]…and to favor the prosperity of home life.” (Gaudium et Spes, 52)
- “Whoever wants to build the civic and social edifice on strong and stable foundations must base it on a conception of marriage and the family”. (Pope Pius XII)
- “Christians…should actively promote the values of marriage and the family, both by the examples of their own lives and by cooperation with other men of good will.” (Gaudium et Spes, 52)
- “[T]he essence and role of the family are in the final analysis specified by love.” (Pope St. John Paul II, 17, quoting Pope St. Paul VI)
Top 10 Church Document Quotes on Family
The Church has no shortage of teaching regarding the absolute essential nature of the family in human society.
- “The family…is the natural society“. (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2207)
- The family “exists prior to the State or any other community and possesses inherent rights which are inalienable“. (Preamble, D., Charter of the Rights of the Family)
- “[T]he family constitutes the foundations for freedom, security, and fraternity within society.” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2207)
- “[E]xperience…throughout history has shown the need for society to recognize and defend the institution of the family“. (Preamble, H., Charter of the Rights of the Family)
- “[T]he good of the person, of society and of the Church herself passes by way of the family“. (Preamble, L., Charter of the Rights of the Family)
- The “Family” is a “communion of persons, a sign and image of the communion of the Father and the Son in the Holy Spirit.” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2205)
- “The family constitutes…a community of love and solidarity, which is uniquely suited to teach and transmit cultural, ethical, social, spiritual and religious values, essential for the development and well-being of its own members and of society.” (Preamble, E., Charter of the Rights of the Family)
- “[T]he State…must protect the family through measures of a political, economic, social and juridical character, which aim at consolidating the unity and stability of the family so that it can exercise its specific function”. (Preamble, I., Charter of the Rights of the Family)
- “Public authorities must respect and foster the dignity, lawful independence, privacy, integrity and stability of every family.” (Article 6, a, Charter of the Rights of the Family)
- “The family has a right to assistance by society in the bearing and rearing of children.” (Article 3, c, Charter of the Rights of the Family)
Catholic social teaching is built on three foundational principles - Human Dignity, Solidarity and Subsidiarity. Human Dignity, embodied in a correct understanding of the human person, is the greatest. The others flow from it. Good governments and good economic systems find ways of fostering the three principles.
This means a correct understanding of the human person and of each person’s unique value. All Catholic social teaching flows from this: the inherent dignity of every person that comes from being made in God’s image.
Solidarity is not “a feeling of vague compassion or shallow distress at the misfortunes of others. It is a firm and persevering determination to commit oneself to the common good”. (Pope St. John Paul II, 38) Love of God and love of neighbor are, in fact, linked and form one, single commandment.
Subsidiarity “is a fundamental principle of social philosophy, fixed and unchangeable, that one should not withdraw from individuals and commit to the community what they can accomplish by their own enterprise and industry. So, too, it is an injustice and at the same time a grave evil and a disturbance of right order to transfer to the larger and higher collectivity functions which can be performed and provided for by the lesser and subordinate bodies”. (Pope Pius XI)