WMOF History 1994-2015

Pope John Paul in St Peter's Square
Pope John Paul in St Peter’s Square

The World Meeting of Families started in 1994, when Pope St John Paul II asked the Pontifical Council for the Family (now part of the Dicastery for Laity, the Family and Life) to establish an international event of prayer, catechesis, and celebration that would draw participants from around the globe and that would help to strengthen the bonds between families and bear witness to the crucial importance of marriage and the family to all of society.

World Meetings of Families with Pope Francis 

VIII – Philadelphia 2015 (22-27 September)
Love is our mission: the family fully alive
Read Pope Francis’ homily here

World Meetings of Families with Pope Benedict XVI

V – Valencia 2006 (1-9 July)
“Handing on the Faith in the Family.”
Read Pope Benedict’s message here

VI – Mexico City 2009 (13-18 January)
“The family: teacher of human and Christian values.”
Read Pope Benedict’s message here

VII – Milan 2012 (30 May – 3 June)
“Family, work & celebration.”
Read Pope Benedict’s homily here

World Meetings of Families with Pope St John Paul II

I – Rome, 1994 (8-9 October)
International Year of the Family
“The Family: the heart of the civilisation of love.”
Read Pope John Paul’s homily (IT) here

II – Rio de Janeiro 1997 (4-5 October)
“The Family: gift and commitment, the hope of humanity.”
Read Pope John Paul’s homily here

III – Rome 2000 (11-15 October)
Great Jubilee Year
“Children: springtime of the family and of the church.”
Read Pope John Paul’s homily here

IV – Manila 2003 (22-26 January)
“The Christian family: good news for the third millennium.”
(St John Paul II participated via TV link)