International Day of Families, 15 May 2018

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Families come in all shapes and sizes and all families face challenges. Some common challenges families face include issues like moving house, separation or divorce, parenting issues, pressure at work or school, unemployment and financial problems, illness or disability of a family member, addictions, domestic violence.         


The International Day of Families, celebrated each year on 15 May, provides an opportunity to promote awareness of issues relating to families and to increase knowledge of the social, economic and demographic processes affecting them.

The theme this year is “Families and inclusive societies”. This year’s observance will explore the role of families and family policies in advancing Sustainable Development Goal 16 in terms of promoting peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development.

Another date in this year’s calendar provides a further opportunity to recognise the challenges and the blessings that family life holds.

Dublin, Ireland, has been chosen by Pope Francis to host the triennial World Meeting of Families from 21-26 August 2018, guided by the theme “The Gospel of the Family: Joy for the World”.


In preparation for this event we are invited to pray the specially composed prayer for the World Meeting of Families. The prayer calls for the protection of families and invites us to pause and remember each person in our own family.

The prayer can be read here

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