The Francis Chronicles: When their lives are all work and no play, men turn their children into "orphans" who lack a father to guide them, Pope Francis said.
During a meeting with families, the pope praised his predecessor Paul VI, who wrote Humane Vitae and "had the strength to defend openness to life."
Mothers are indispensable to society and the church, showing the world what it means to generously give oneself for others, to respect life and to display tenderness and moral strength even in times of trouble, Pope Francis said.
Speaking to some 4,000 people gathered indoors for his general audience Wednesday, the pope continued his series of talks about the family, but also gave a second talk about beauty and harmony when he thanked a group of circus performers at the end of the audience.
Faith and Justice: Divorce is a sad reality with multiple and varied causes. Blaming the victims is no solution. No one gets married just so they can get a divorce.
The Vatican spokesman says his daily briefings will give "an effective feeling of what has happened in the room in the diverse languages with the diverse fathers."
The prelate responsible for shepherding the process said one thing is clear: The coming days will see an "opportunity to deal with existential issues."
Wearing pins declaring "families must have a vote in family synods," a global group pushing for greater inclusivity in the church is meeting here this week in an effort to influence the Vatican's upcoming global meeting of Catholic bishops.
The coalition, known as Catholic Church Reform International and claiming backing of like-minded groups around the world, is calling specifically for more ways for ordinary families to have input in the discussions at the meeting, known as a synod.
From Where I Stand: The coalition of renewal groups will hold a Forum on the Family to present the opinions and insights of families from all over the world.
"Biblical teaching regarding the family is quite widespread, but there is much work that remains to be done in terms of ... church teaching on marriage."
It's "getting difficult" for Catholics to partner with the government in providing social services because of laws like a federal mandate requiring contraceptive services.