The Family as Target and Hope

The family unit is the foundation of a morally upright and virtuous society. However, the integral and well-ordered structure of the family is built upon more than secular means. The family is a holy framework of God’s sacramental love and a structural force against powers of evil. There is no dispute that for the last century a struggle has been waged against the family both on a secular and spiritual level. It was said by Cardinal Carlo Caffarra that Sr. Lucia stated a “decisive battle between the Kingdom of Christ and Satan will be over marriage and family.” There is no doubt that this statement speaks volumes as the 21st century suffers from an overwhelming destruction of marriage and the family unit, by gradually wearing down the very framework necessary to develop a virtuous society. It has been a slow and steady erosion, as the forces against righteousness continue to attack the family through economic deterioration, social class distinctions, individualism, and ultimately, the crippling of virtuous living with lax spiritual support from earthly Shepards.

The family is a holy scaffold, based upon natural law, of God’s love and mercy. The reason the structure of the family is built upon more than secular determinations is that the structured hierarchy of the family unit is a decisive force against the powers of evil. Such a hierarchy may appear unnecessary or old-fashioned in modern times, as people rely upon moral relativism, rule of the majority, and individual rights, rather than charity, servitude, and selflessness. The very facets that mold a family together are considered derogatory by Modernists and perpetuated as offensive by progressive educators. There is no doubt that such overwhelming voices to the masses are difficult to ignore as future generations struggle to find their purpose in this earthly life and rebel against what is true, good, and beautiful.

Though the voices of defiance may appear loud and unobstructed, the spiritual battle is not over; it is raging with resonant vigor. The evil forces against God will not be victorious, for there is a counterattack to defeat this evil. At times, it may seem fruitless as the whole world is in disarray and swamped in vice, but there is always hope. Even among the throngs of chaos, there is a desire in many virtuous souls to trust in God and His glory. So, where will we find that confidence to defend against these earthly battles? There is no doubt that the effects of prayer and fasting are essential for the fight. Along with the prayerful connection to God, the ultimate fight against the destructive evil forces infiltrating modern society lies in the traditional family structure.

The definition of family is too often regarded with superficial meaning that focuses on economic benefits, social class distinctions, and material accumulation. The family is a foundation not solely created for earthly means, but for a much higher purpose. As St. John Chrysostom said, “When husband and wife are united in marriage, they no longer seem like something earthly, but rather like the image of God Himself.” The union of the husband and wife is beyond the simple worldly definition that focuses more on personal satisfaction and appearance. The Sacrament of Marriage is a giving of oneself to another to last a lifetime. It is through this union that the foundation of a family blossoms.

As society has developed towards modern conveniences and technological advancements, less care has been given to traditional values. The family is viewed on a superficial level, rather than a means towards holiness and a virtuous society. Yet, it is often said that where there are obvious evil forces, there is an even more abundance of virtue and goodness. As society has begun to reach a breaking point over the past several years, so too have many people woken up from a dazed sleep. The lukewarmness so prevalent in the late 20th century and early 21st century has recently been dismantled. The shift has been quick and strong as many in society are searching for a higher purpose that is dependent upon virtue and goodness, and beyond the modern moral relativism. With such a change, there must be another option for souls as they seek a higher purpose and that is God’s love and mercy. Through this search, souls desire to build upon a foundation that will bring them closer to God and this stabilizing force is the family.

It is within the traditional family structure that human souls find their higher purpose. The family is not the end, rather it is the continuance that leads to Almighty God, the Creator of all things. The destructive nature too often found in modern society has a variety of sources, but it would be best to consider the state of families. The security of the family is a source of hope for all members as they are given an opportunity to love. The family gives souls an opportunity to grow closer to Christ on earth and strive towards sainthood through the grace of God. For charity and servitude within a family has more lasting effects on future generations than society cares to recognize. So, rather than dwell on the destruction so prevalent throughout the entire world that wreaks havoc upon society, it is of greater value to focus on one’s immediate family and grow in virtue to those God has placed in our path.

Photo by Nathan Anderson on Unsplash

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