Why Family Solidarity?
The family, as designed by God, and as traditionally understood, is based on the union of one man and one woman in lifelong marriage. This concept is the concept of the family on which Family Solidarity was founded to protect and promote. In fact, this is the concept that is enshrined in the Irish Constitution. The needs of family style groupings can and should be met but on the basis of individual rights. It is neither desirable nor necessary in meeting their needs to substitute a completely new understanding of what constitutes a family. As is emphasised in ‘Familiaris Consortio’, “…the family is the object of numerous forces that seek to destroy it or in some way to deform it…” Society must suffer, as well as individuals, insofar as these destructive forces are successful. The destructive include marital breakdown, divorce, abortion, contraception, financial deprivation and the laws which promote them.
Causes of Decline
The causes of decline in population and family well being are both philosophical and practical. At the philosophical level, there is the decline in Christianity and the growth of secularism and materialism in both capitalist and communist countries. In his famous Report, Cardinal Ratzinger says “…where money and wealth are the measure of all things…authentic (Christian) ethics now appear to many like an alien body from times long past….in opposition not only to concrete habits of life, but also to the way of thinking underlying these”. “In such a situation, acquisitiveness and self indulgence are extolled and it becomes difficult to present (Christian) morality as reasonable”.
Laws Affect Moral Environment
It is an accepted fact that for many people, what is legal is seen as moral. Laws affect the moral environment in which we live and can affect people’s attitudes about relations between the sexes, both within marriage and outside of it.