My brothers and sisters, Jesus knows about all our troubles as families and he is concerned about them. In fact, He came down to earth in order to restore the original idea of God for families. He comes to heal the brokenness that has become all too evident in many families. He comes to re-establish the primordial dignity of the family. So, brothers and sisters, there is no surer foundation upon which to place your family than on the rock which is Jesus Himself. Jesus speaks of a ‘’house that is built on rock.’’ Our families must be houses built on the rock. Speaking in this manner, Jesus cast our minds back to Psalm 128 which speaks of a house or family whose labour shall be blessed: ‘’By the labour of the hand they shall eat, they shall be happy and prosper; your wife shall be fruitful as a vine and your children like olives around the table.’’ Also, the house built on rock is the house that the Lord builds as Psalm 127 teaches us, for “If the Lord does not build a house, in vain do they labour, they that build.’’
While on earth Jesus Himself, being a carpenter, was a builder with building ingenuity. There are many who attempt to build families according to their own private, personal, poor and insufficient ideas, many who employ mere human wisdom and standards in raising their families. In vain do they labour, because it is only that which is built on the wisdom of God that stands, having been built on rock, upon the teaching of Christ and His Church. Any attempt to follow personal wisdom and the wisdom of the world amounts to building on the sand and it shall not stand. A house built on the rock is family where two or three are gathered in the name of Jesus. It is a family that prays and stays together. It is a family that prays the rosary, reads the Bible, says the Lord’s prayer, prays the Angelus and enhances pious devotions. It is a family that prays and participates in the sacramental life of the Church and worships with the community of believers. It is a house built on faith, hope and love.
• Most Rev. (Dr.) Alfred Adewale Martins is the Archbishop of the Metropolitan See of Lagos.