To all our fathers who have given us life, supported us over the years, and have led us to know God, we send out a great “Happy Father’s Day”!
The divine fatherhood is the source of human fatherhood (Cf. Eph 3:14); this is the foundation of the honor owed to parents. The respect of children, whether minors or adults, for their father and mother (Cf. Prov 1:8; Tob 4:3-4) is nourished by the natural affection born of the bond uniting them. It is required by God’s commandment. (Cf. Ex 20:12) (Catechism of the Catholic Church, #2214)
Through the grace of the sacrament of marriage, parents receive the responsibility and privilege of evangelizing their children. Parents should initiate their children at an early age into the mysteries of the faith of which they are the “first heralds” for their children. They should associate them from their tenderest years with the life of the Church. A wholesome family life can foster interior dispositions that are a genuine preparation for a living faith and remain a support for it throughout one’s life. (Catechism of the Catholic Church, #2225)
Parents’ respect and affection are expressed by the care and attention they devote to bringing up their young children and providing for their physical and spiritual needs. As the children grow up, the same respect and devotion lead parents to educate them in the right use of their reason and freedom. (Catechism of the Catholic Church, #2228)
We also remember the spiritual fathers who have given of themselves for the instruction, protection, and guidance of those entrusted to them: teachers, coaches, and in a most particular way priests, whom we call “father” in honor of their unique spiritual paternity. They show us the gentle goodness and mercy of God the Father through their ministry of the sacraments.
Happy Father’s Day! May the Holy Family protect and guide all fathers in the fulfillment of their vocation. St. Joseph, pray for us!