Why is God more important than the family?

Without relationship a person cannot live. Man’s most important relationship is the one he has with God. This has priority over all human relationships, even family relationships. Children do not belong to the parents, nor do parents belong to their children. Every person belongs directly to God. Only to God is man bound absolutely and always. This is how we understand what Jesus said to those who are called: “He who loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; and he who loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me” (Mt 10:37). Therefore parents should place their children confidently into God’s hands if the Lord calls them to the consecrated life in a religious order or to be a priest.

How is authority exercised correctly?

Authority is exercised properly when it is understood according to Jesus’ example as service. It must never be arbitrary. Jesus showed us once and for all how authority should be exercised. He, the greatest authority, served others and took the last place. Jesus even washed the feet of his disciples (Jn 13:1-20). The authority of parents, teachers, educators, and superiors is given to them by God, not so that they can lord it over those who are entrusted to their care, but rather so that they might understand and exercise their duty of guiding and training as service.