Volume IV: Marriage, Family and Sexuality

Future of Humanity

In this fourth volume of Magisterium Summaries, the mind of the modem Popes and the Second Vatican Council on family life is placed “at the reader’s fingertips”.

Here we find the essential themes such as the nature and value of the sacrament of marriage, the procreation and education of children and the evangelizing role of the “little church” in the Christian home. 

Therefore, this is the right place to present the teaching of the Church on the transmission of human life and on sexual morality, so often contested and rejected in our times. Once we understand human sexuality as inseparable from marriage and procreation, it makes sense to present related moral questions in the context of the community of life and love.

Alfonso Cardinal Lopez TrujilloPresident of the Pontifical Council


Pope John Paul II challenged us with his prophetic words, in Familiaris Consortio, n. 86:

The future of humanity passes by way of the family.

When we study the teaching of the Church on the family, we know that we have entered the most decisive area of human life. In the home, the issues facing humanity are worked out long before politicians and statesmen make their decisions. In the Catholic family, a “domestic church”, the future of the Church begins to unfold.  Every form of pastoral care of the family, if it is to be authentic, must be based on doctrinal truths and fidelity to the will of the Lord, who is the Author of the plan for marriage and the family.

Table of Contents

  • Arcanum Divinae Sapientiae, Encyclical Letter of Pope Leo XIII on Christian Marriage, February 10, 1880 
  • Casti Connubi, Encyclical Letter of Pope Pius XI on Christian Marriage, December 31, 1930
  • Address to Italian Midwives, Pope Pius XII, October 29, 1951 
  • Address to the Directors of Associations for Large Families of Rome and Italy, Pope Pius XII, January 20, 1958
  • Address to the Sacred Roman Rota, Pope John XXIII, October 25, 1960
  • Vatican Council II, Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, Gaudium et Spes, nn. 47-52, December 7, 1965
  • Humanae Vitae, Encyclical of Pope Paul VI on the Regulation of Birth, July 25, 1968
  • Matrimonia Mixta, Apostolic letter of Pope Paul VI on Mixed Marriages, January 7, 1970 
  • Address to the Teams of Our Lady, Pope Paul VI, May 4, 1970 
  • Declaration on Certain Questions of Sexual Ethics, Congregation for the Doctrine of the Fait, December 29, 1975 
  • Familiaris Consortio, Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation of Pope John Paul II on The Christian Family in the Modern World, November 22, 1981 
  • Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church on the Pastoral Care of Homosexual Persons, Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, October 1, 1986 
  • Mulieris Dignitatem, Encyclical of Pope John Paul II on the Dignity and Vocation of Women, August 15, 1988 
  • Address to the Second International Congress of Moral Theology, Pope John Paul II, November 12,
  • Appendix: The Holy See’s Charter of the Rights of the Family, November 24, 1983

Lectio Divina Cordis

Divine Reading of the Heart


HEAR the words as you inwardly read  or speak

- Read -


ENTER  the silence to reflect on a core precept

- Meditate -


ANSWER to the knock at the heart's door

- Speak -


REST silently without words or thoughts

- Contemplate -


TRUST: “Do not let your HEART  be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me.”   (John 13:1)

 - Trust in the process -

Lectio Divina (Latin for "Divine Reading") is a traditional Benedictine practice of scriptural reading, meditation and prayer intended to promote communion with God and to increase the knowledge of God's Word. It does not treat scripture as texts to be studied, but as the living word.

The focus of Lectio Divina is not a theological analysis of biblical passages but viewing them with Christ  as the key to their meaning.

Approaching the Magisterium Summaries from this perspective may lead to a deeper appreciation of its meaning and  an appreciation of how it may be applied to one's life.

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