The 14th Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops in its proceedings focussed upon "The vocation and the mission of the family in the Church and in the contemporary world". A strong need was demonstrated for dialogue about the marriage and family within the Church and with the world primarily represented by contemporary means of communication. First and foremost young people are interested in this dialogue. For a number of years the images of marriage and family relationships have been formed in the home church, i.e. the family at catechises classes. Then in the process of maturation and gaining self-reliance these images are confronted with the world. Family dreams encounter various difficulties: some rooted in the past (e.g. dysfunctional families) and some related to the future (emotional immaturity, fear of taking on responsibility for the other person, fear of losing freedom). Daily-life experience brings about economic concerns, consumerism and relativism related mind-set. Many young people seek dialogue with their parents, peers, in parish communities, in the sacrament of marriage preparation, talking to priests or family-life counsellors. In the era of new communication technologies, the mass media have become a strong dialogue partner; both in the sense of traditional and the new media (the computer and Internet-enabled mobile phone). Dialogue, or in other words - interpersonal communication goes hand in hand with the communication which could be referred to as intrapersonal: young people seek internally answers to questions that arise in the context of the marriage and family. Therefore the question arises: what should the dialogue be like as regards the above-mentioned grounds. What is the basis for the inter- and intrapersonal communication? Answer to these questions will also engage the Church in dialogue; not only within the Church community, but also with the external world. Therefore there is the internal dialogue of the Church members - clergy and laity, as well as external dialogue with those who seek, doubt or deny the Church's teaching on marriage and the family or go as far as to negate the very definition of marriage. That internal dialogue constitutes the Church's, the marriage's and the family's identity. The external dialogue defines their mission. The dialogue, therefore determines the two pillars: identity and mission[1]. The marriage's and family's identity and mission call for references to the truth, to what was in the beginning. The dialogue about the marriage and the role of women and men requires a reference to what was in the beginning. The dialogue should serve the purpose of searching for truth The truth, when revealed as logos creates diálogos. Therefore it leads to communication and communion[2]. The truth creates community. Love is even stronger community creator. The truth and love are inextricably united in the quest for the marriage's and the family's identity and mission in today's world. There is therefore the «need bring love together with the truth, not only as it has been indicated by St. Paul: veritas in caritate (Ep 4, 15), but also in the opposite, complementary direction - caritas in veritate. The truth needs to be sought, found and expresses through the "economy" of love. Love, on the other hand, must be understood, authenticated and implemented in the context of truth»[3]. Love in truth and truth in love lead to love in the dialogue and the dialogue in love - the dialogue about the marriage and the family in today's world.


[1] “The family finds in the plan of God the Creator and Redeemer not only its identity, what it is, but also its mission, what it can and should do. The role that God calls the family to perform in history derives from what the family is; its role represents the dynamic and existential development of what it is. Each family finds within itself a summons that cannot be ignored, and that specifies both its dignity and its responsibility: family, become what you are”, John Paul II, Apostolic Exhortation on the role of The Christian Family in the modern world "Familiaris consortio", Rome 22.11.1981, no. 17.

[2] Benedict XVI, Encyclical on integral human development in charity and truth „Caritas in veritate”, Rome 29.06.2009, no. 4.

[3] Ibid, no. 2.

Autor: Jarosław Jęczeń
Ostatnia aktualizacja: 23.11.2016, godz. 23:21 - Jarosław Jęczeń