Berlin. On the celebration of the Feast of the Holy Family, the Filipino Community was visited by the Ambassador of Zimbabwe Lucia Muvingi. The Holy Mass stressed the common values in the Philippine and Zimbabwian cultures: close family ties. Two art works from both countries were also presented to the community during the Homily for further reflections on the importance of not only the Feast but also of the family in general.
"We need the family in order for people to survive," stressed Ambassador Muvingi in her personal sharing, treasuring her own family. She meant her words by taking care of the son of her deceased sister in Zimbabwe. Family for her extends beyond the boundaries of one's own family. Support and concern for one another are vital aspects of this family.
The community also meditated on the importance of having a model family in the persons of Mary, Joseph and Jesus. But the social reality is more than that. A survey published at the end of last year showed that in Germany, more than half of married couples do not have children!
In the Philippine context, every third girl or boy grows up without a mother, a father or both due to migration, according to a survey done two years ago.
"The family is in danger!" summized the Chaplain on this feast of the Holy Family and challenged the parents present to create a "home church" where love, respect and dialogue are valued. It may not be an easy task for them, but the blessing they received at the end of the Holy Mass could give them the necessary strength they needed in fulfilling their God-given responsibilities.
(by Fr. Adonis Narcelles Jr. SVD)