Brazil – Educating to the faith in a society marked by individualism

20 March 2019

(ANS - Brasilia) - Today there is a strong tendency towards individualism which, together with the growing fragility of community life, generates not only isolation but also indifference and strengthening of hatred and division.

by Sr. Marcia Koffermann, FMA

In an individualistic perspective, to be happy human beings must satisfy all their desires, regardless of who and what surrounds them. In other words, the "I" always appears in the first place and as a principle of fundamental choices. Taking this view as a logic of life, every suffering, personal refusal or need for otherness is seen as an aggression against the human being.

It also shows how, in family education, parents try to protect their children as much as possible, avoiding saying any kind of "no", or trying to eliminate any frustration that could happen to the child.

Digital media are also a space that favors the development of individualism. It is interesting to see how the center of social networks is the individual himself, so that people always revolve around themselves. It is the reference that the individual uses for himself. On World Communications Day, Pope Francis said: "what should be a window open onto the world becomes a showcase for narcissism."

Perhaps this is one of the keys to understanding why human beings, in today's culture, are always in a desperate search for happiness, in search of strong emotions, more intense experiences, riskier life situations. From the beginning the Church has organized itself into a community and has seen a constitutive value of its faith in the community.

Thus, to reach Christ it is necessary to go out of oneself, to experience "being community", "being a people of God", because that is where God acts and manifests Himself. God does not want closed and selfish individuals, because He himself is relationship, gift and mercy.

According to Pope Francis: "Joy and the understanding of Christ's centrality are the two attitudes that Christians should cultivate in their daily lives." Furthemore, it is impossible for the Christian to live in a logic of individualism that leads to selfishness and closure.

Parents and educational communities, both in schools and in social works, have a very important mission to educate others, helping new generations to let themselves be guided by Christ, making Him the true center of their lives.

This is the joy that will not be taken from Him.


ANS - “Agenzia iNfo Salesiana” is a on-line almost daily publication, the communication agency of the Salesian Congregation enrolled in the Press Register of the Tibunal of Rome as n 153/2007.

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