Just Start (3): Enlarge your Family

Pope Francis encourages us to "never be a family that is closed in on itself." Third video in the series on the works of mercy.

Below are some questions and quotes that can help you get more out of this video, in screenings with your friends, in your school or your parish.

Questions for dialogue

— What do Thomas, in Singapore, and Annemarie and Mathias, in Austria, have in common?

— How have they “enlarged their family”?

— Why does Sara, a volunteer in an orphanage in the Philippines, say that anyone can help out and there is no need to be a professional to help others?

— What people in today’s society stand in need of receiving the warmth of a family? How can we help them?

Suggestions for action

— Pray each day for your family and for all the families in the world.

— Be more attentive to those who need someone to listen to them or to accompany them.

— Try to spread joy and optimism to those around you.

— Become informed about nearby shelters for children, for the elderly, etc., and if possible donate your time and company to those living here.

Quotes from Sacred Scripture to reflect on

— As one whom his mother comforts, so I will comfort you (Is 66:12-13).

— Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God (2 Cor 1:3-4).

— If a brother or sister is ill-clad and in lack of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what does it profit? (Jas 2:15-16).

— Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares (Heb 13:2).

Quote from Pope Francis to reflect on

— A family that is closed in on itself is like a contradiction of the promise that gave birth to it and enables it to live. Never forget: the identity of a family is always a promise that expands, and it expands to the whole family and also to all of humanity (Audience 21 October 2015).

— Jesus made a great promise to us: “I will not leave you orphaned” (Jn 14:18), because he is the way to go, the teacher to listen to, the hope that does not disappoint. How can we not feel a burning desire in our heart and say to all, especially the youth: “You are not orphans! Jesus Christ revealed to us that God is Father and wants to help you, because he loves you.” This is the profound meaning of Christian initiation: being born in the faith means proclaiming that we are not orphans (Address, 16 June 2014).

— By looking at Mary, we discover the most beautiful and most tender face of the Church; and by looking at the Church, we recognize the sublime features of Mary. We Christians are not orphans, we have a mama, we have a mother, and this is great! We are not orphans! The Church is mother, Mary is mother (Audience, 3 September 2014).

Quotes from Saint Josemaria to reflect on

— The Master passes very close to us, again and again. He looks at us... And if you look at him, if you listen to him, if you don’t reject him, He will teach you how to give a supernatural meaning to everything you do... Then you too, wherever you may be, will sow consolation and peace and joy (Way of the Cross, 8th station, no. 4).

— Don’t forget that our Lord has a special love for little children and those who become as little children (The Way, no. 872).

— What a joy it is to contemplate Jesus in Bethany! Friend of Lazarus, Martha and Mary! It is there that he goes to regain his strength when tired. There Jesus finds a home, and people who appreciate him. Some people, when they draw close to the Tabernacle, find Bethany there. May it be so for you! Bethany is trust, the warmth of a family, intimacy. Specially beloved friends of Jesus (Meditation, 6 November 1940).