August 14.   Children, separation and divorce. A serious topic needing a response from the group too was the question of children and family violence.  Rayhab shared her experience as a social worker. “Divorce almost invariably has a negative impact on boys and girls in a whole variety of ways but so does the experience of ongoing violence. Divorce is very common today and we need to ask if it is chosen too quickly.   Careful discernment with qualified and competent counsellors, and ideally mediation, can be very helpful in deciding on the best course of action, be it separation or divorce, for the family and the children in particular.”  Everyone agreed in principle but knew that it is a difficult situation to deal with, especially alone and when one is feeling really desperate. 

“Let the children come to me and do not hinder them for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.” And he laid his hands on them and went away.  Matt 19:14-15.   

Pope Francis.  At times separation becomes morally necessary as a last resort, when it is a matter of removing the more vulnerable spouse or young children from serious injury due to abuse and violence, from humiliation and exploitation, and from disregard and indifference. AL241