Oslo, Norway—UPF-Norway held a program for UN International Day of Families which addressed the challenges that families face today.
The title of the event, held on May 22, 2018, at a Lutheran college, was “The Significance of the Family, New Challenges and How to Meet Them.” Different cultures have different challenges. We wanted to focus on the situation and challenges in our own culture.
Steinar Murud, the secretary general of UPF-Norway, gave a presentation entitled “The Family as the Basic Unit in Society.” He spoke of how good families are a great resource, both for all the family members and for the society. He elaborated on the values that constitute a good and functional family. Mr. Murud also mentioned some of the challenges faced by families today and their consequences.
The second speaker was Mr. Øyvind Håbrekke, a former member of parliament and the author of the newly published book The Liberal Family. His main topic was how the development of biotechnology and its political application present challenges and changes in how we see the family. Politicians might unknowingly create problems for themselves when they challenge biology, he said.
“Is it the task of the state to define the family?” Mr. Håbrekke asked. Biotechnology is making rapid progress, and there are many groups that are eager to use the new methods, but the need for ethical guidance in its practice is of great importance, he said.
The presentations raised many questions that were discussed around the tables. Johanna Toresen, the leader of the Norwegian chapter of Women’s Federation for World Peace (WFWP), an organization that is affiliated with UPF, guided these discussions and the plenary summary very well.
Around 30 participants attended the event, which ended with coffee and cake and sales of Mr. Håbrekke’s book, The Liberal Family.