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“I” Over “We” is Bad for the Family

In an article that appeared on the front page of the Vatican newspaper (L’Osservatore Romano), Cardinal Gualtiero Bassetti of Perugia said that an “individualistic mentality” is the wound that most damages family life today.

The concept of “we,” he continued, has decreased as the concept of “I” and the “god of money” have held greater sway. Other threats to family life include an economy that does not put the dignity of the human person at its center, one that lead employees to work long hours and become “productive nomads.”

Quoting a 1965 letter from philosopher Jacques Maritain to Blessed Paul VI, Cardinal Bassetti said that families and small lay communities in the modern world, like “monasteries in a hostile and barbaric world,” will “construct a constellation of fireplaces to keep alive the flame of faith and prayer.”

These “hearths of spiritual light scattered throughout the world will become one day like a leaven … [or] a more or less persecuted diaspora, through which the presence of Jesus and his love abide, in spite of everything, in an apostate world.”

Originally published in Catholic World News.