The purpose of A Catechism for Family Life: Insights from Church Teaching on Love, Marriage, Sex, and Parenting is to present the teachings of the Catholic Church as they relate to specific questions in marriage and family life. Many Catholics are under-catechized and have trouble both understanding and articulating Church teaching on sexuality and marriage to an increasingly challenging culture. Pope Francis, along with the fathers of the two recent Synods on the Family, have called for better formation for those who work in the area of marriage and family life (see Amoris Laetitia, 202).
To address this need, we gathered pertinent questions facing men, women, and pastoral workers in marriage and family life. We then found passages relevant to these questions by researching Church documents on marriage and family from the past one hundred years. These include papal encyclicals, apostolic exhortations, and addresses, Vatican II documents, and the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
Mainstream media coverage of Church events and Church teaching leads many to misunderstand Catholic positions on marriage and family life. While the Catholic Church has developed a rich, detailed, and positive teaching on marriage, family, and sexuality, many Catholics do not have access to this teaching, buried as it is in lengthy Church documents which many find intimidating. Finding the relevant teaching to address specific questions is not always a simple task, either. This book’s main contribution is to present Church teaching relevant to marriage and family in one volume clearly organized by topic and question.