Adopted by acclamation in the closing ceremony of the
XIII World Congress of Families in Verona.
Verona, a noble city of art, of culture, and of ancient civilization, which for centuries has been called the “City of Love” proclaimed itself in October 2018 to be the “City for Life”; today it is has also become the “City for the Family.” Verona so serves as a model of good political, economic, and social practices in favor of our common humanity: because those who care about the family truly care about the Common Good of all people, of every woman, every child, and every man, present and future. This positive affirmation, however, comes when we are witnessing at the global level an ideological attempt to deconstruct the human being and to disrupt the anthropological natural order. As always, the first victims of these upheavals are the most fragile and defenseless of all human beings: the children.
In light of the above, for the love of life, of children, of the family and of all human beings,
WE AFFIRM THAT:
- The right to life is the foremost of all human rights: it must be recognized and protected – from conception to natural death – regardless of the quality of life that lies ahead.
- The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by Society and the State (Article 16/3 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, or UDHR).
- The family is founded on marriage, a stable and exclusive union between a man and a woman, both necessary and complementary for their psychophysical well-being, and for generating and educating children, the future citizens of every land, in a healthy and responsible manner.
- The family is the natural place where the new person is generated, grows, is formed, and is educated in relationships, love, and social solidarity.
- The natural family, founded on stable marriage, has invariably and universally shown to be – at a population level – the reality which ensures both the being and well-being of children, the maximum protection of human rights, and the highest common good for society as a whole.
- A renewed alliance between men and women of good will is essential to escape from the current cultural and economic crisis.
- Sustainable economic development is not possible without reaffirming the profound link that must exist between economics and morality: the well-being of the human person must always take precedence over the pursuit of profit.
- At the same time, a human society disjointed and deprived of intermediate bodies like the family would result in a mass of obedient, servile consumers who would not recognize their roots and traditions and as such would be more easily manipulated by those powers who would exploit them for profit. This would represent the end of the Millennial civilization that human society has so far built.
FOR ALL THE ABOVE REASONS, WE ASK:
- That the humanity of any conceived human being be recognized and protected;
- That every human being, regardless of sex, age, race, religion, health, political opinions and any other personal condition, be given fair and equal protection by law and by society, and that all unjust discrimination be condemned;
- That the life and rights of the mother should not be put in opposition to the life and the rights of the child. Both should be protected, and public policies should seek to prevent abortion and offer the mother alternatives.
- That those who work to maintain and promote individuals’ mental and physical health not be forced to betray their conscience or their faith in pursuing the true needs and well-being of their patients;
- That all families be protected, especially when in economic difficulty, to include large families and all persecuted families seeking refuge in a foreign country; and
- That developed nation-states in the West and elsewhere invest in demographic growth, as this is threatened by the neo-Malthusian ideology which, although it has been disproven by history, has led to a worrying demographic winter in these places.
WE ALSO CONSIDER IT URGENT AND IMPERATIVE THAT THERE BE:
- An international ban on surrogacy of any kind—a total prohibition on trade or donation of gametes– for the woman is not an incubator and the child is not a product.
- The protection of real and essential children’s rights:
- To have a mother and a father;
- Not to be bought or given away as products;
- To be respected in their nature and supported in developing an integral sexuality consistent with biology;
- To be protected in their innocence from early sexualization, too often imposed on them at school, on television, and on the Internet;
- To be firmly defended from child pornography and pedophilia, with strong and severe action by the authorities towards anyone who tries to abuse or corrupt minors.
- The promotion of women’s rights to:
- Have valid and accessible alternatives to abortion;
- Be offered clear, truthful, and complete information on the risks deriving from artificial insemination (for them and their children) and abortion,
- Receive, for equal work, a salary equal to that of male colleagues,
- Be able to reconcile work and motherhood by favoring long-term parental leave and– for those who so freely decide– flexible, part-time, or telecommuting work;
- Choose to dedicate themselves exclusively to children and the family, with adequate remuneration for home work where the spouse’s salary is not sufficient for a free and dignified existence;
- Not be used as an object of pleasure, especially for a fee, and therefore to see the exploiters and clients of prostitutes severely punished;
- See the pornography market fought in a rigid and incisive way, since porn commodifies and degrades the dignity of women, instigates violence, and corrupts the minds of new generations.
- No imposition on taxpayers of state expenditures for abortion, artificial insemination, and hormonal and surgical operations aimed at modifying the sexual apparatus of individuals.
- Strong, even radical opposition to the diffusion and legalization of every type of illegal, mind-altering drug. And,
- Affirmation of the fundamental right and duty of parents to choose the kind of education that shall be given to their children (article 26/3 of the UDHR), particularly in the sexual and family spheres.