Paris – Rome, 16 March 2020

“It is not good for man to be alone”. In this context of the pandemic, it is indeed loneliness which risks being spread. Family remains as the only remedy.

Over the past days, the public health crisis of the Coronavirus has escalated to unprecedented levels all over Europe and the coordination seems to be very difficult. Our President, Vincenzo Bassi, delivered the following message: “We would like to express our warmest wishes to all the families in Europe, to all the mothers and fathers of families, without whom we would not be able to overcome this phase. It is not easy to stay together for a long time in houses that quickly become narrow. But at the same time, we live this moment as an opportunity to rediscover our human relationships and recognise the essential role of the family for our societies. The emergency measures taken for families must be universal and automatic: they must not be dependent on income nor involve bureaucratic procedures but should be easily accessible to all“.

Our Honorary President, Antoine Renard, underlines the service rendered by the family to society as a whole: “In these moments of emergency, the doctors and all the nursing staff are supported by their families, as are the most vulnerable people such as the elderly“. Today there are around 44 million single-person households in Europe, and 32% of people over the age of 65 live alone.

Each family should be able to take care of their elders and family associations must be supported in their service to families and to those who are alone: “We must ensure by all possible means this contact with the elderly and be very pro-active to maintain these relationships and avoid loneliness”, affirms Antoine Renard.

Vincenzo Bassi, finally recalls that “In this crisis, we all have our share of responsibility vis-à-vis the common good. We thank the Holy Father for his wishes, made clear through the Holy Mass transmitted online every morning at 7:00 am.By keeping at the minimum level the measures to reduce the access to the sacraments, Pastors can assist us in becoming aware of God’s action in history, which allows us to perceive this virus as a new opportunity. Families in particular are called to rediscover themselves as domestic churches, the primary place for the transmission of faith. Advice for the domestic liturgy is already reviewed online and new technologies offer us alternatives to stay connected in prayer”. Let’s not forget that, since 2016, a Holy Mass has been celebrated every morning at 8:00 am in the Shrine of Our Lady of Czestochowa for the intention of all families across Europe.