Families, communities, and nations are strengthened when individuals understand and live the principles contained in the inspired document known as “The Family: A Proclamation to the World.” The proclamation on the family is inspired counsel from living apostles and prophets and contains counsel to help strengthen marriages and families.
The ninth and last paragraph of the Proclamation states: “We call upon responsible citizens and officers of government everywhere to promote those measures designed to maintain and strengthen the family as the fundamental unit of society.”
The family was described by latter-day prophets and apostles as “the fundamental unit of society.” What does this mean? I believe the family holds the same place in society as that of a foundation in a building. The foundation of a building is what holds the structure in place. When a building does not have a strong foundation, the structure soon loses its proper form and shape and will eventually falls apart. The same is true of society. Strong families strengthen the society around them, and society will fall apart if the family fails.
We can encourage other people and our government leaders to protect the family by emphasizing the importance of the family in society. We can elect only political leaders who support families and replace those who pass bills destructive to families. Those people who are attempting to destroy our society are doing so by devaluing marriage and the presence of fathers in the lives of their children. They encourage premarital sex, support divorce, make abortion available, and encourage dependence on government. Absent fathers and overburdened mothers are not able to teach, protect, and provide for their families; young people who are left on their own without proper nurturing become burdens on society. We can see the obvious results of the breakdown of families in the African-American community, as seen in crime-ridden Chicago and bankrupt Detroit.
“One example of great importance for humanity is strengthening our own families. The principle of family home evening was given to us in 1915. President McKay reminded parents again in 1964 that `no other success can compensate for failure in the home.’ In 1995 the prophets of our day called upon all the world to strengthen the family as the fundamental unit of society…. However worthy and appropriate other demands or activities may be, they must not be permitted to displace the divinely appointed duties that only parents and families can adequately perform” (Dieter F. Uchtdorf, “Heeding the Voice of the Prophets,” Liahona, July 2008.)
I know that God planned for families to be together forever. I know that the teachings in the family proclamation are true. I encourage you to study the complete proclamation and visit my posts about the other paragraphs of the proclamation.