On the afternoon of February 15, Pope Francis traveled by helicopter from San Cristóbal de Las Casas to Tuxtla Gutiérrez, the city of 600,000 that is capital of the Mexican state of Chiapas.
There he spoke to families at the Estadio Víctor Manuel Reyna, a soccer stadium that seats over 28,000.
Emphasizing the love of God the Father throughout history, Pope Francis described the kingdom of God as “a kingdom which has the feeling of family, the flavor of a life shared.”
“Today we see how on different fronts the family is weakened and questioned,” the Pope said. “It is regarded as a model which has done its time, but which has no place in our societies; these, claiming to be modern, increasingly favor a model based on isolation.”
Societies become increasingly inoculated – they refer to themselves as societies which are free, democratic, sovereign – but they are inoculated by ideological colonizations which destroy; and we end up being ideological colonies that then have a destructive effect on families, the family cell, which is the basis of every healthy society.
It is true that living in family is not always easy, and can often be painful and stressful but, as I have often said referring to the Church, I prefer a wounded family that makes daily efforts to put love into play, to a family and society that is sick from isolationism or a habitual fear of love. I prefer a family that makes repeated efforts to begin again, to a family and society that is narcissistic and obsessed with luxury and comfort.
How many children do you have? “No, we don’t have children as we like to go on holidays, be tourists, and I want to buy a villa.” Luxury and comfort without children, and yet, when you then want a child, it’s too late. This is so harmful, is it not? I prefer a family with tired faces from generous giving, to a family with faces full of makeup that know nothing of tenderness and compassion.
Following his brief visit to Tuxtla Gutiérrez, the Pope flew by plane to Mexico City, where he spent the night.