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Alex Haley:

In every conceivable manner, the family is link to our past, bridge to our future.

Ariel and Will Durant:

The family is the nucleus of civilization.

Auguste Napier:
In each family a story is playing itself out, and each family's story embodies its hope and

Ben Silliman:
American families have always shown remarkable resiliency, or flexible adjustment to
natural, economic, and social challenges. Their strengths resemble the elasticity of a spider
web, a gull's skillful flow with the wind, the regenerating power of perennial grasses, the
cooperation of an ant colony, and the persistence of a stream carving canyon rocks. These
are not the strengths of fixed monuments but living organisms. This resilience is not
measured by wealth, muscle or efficiency but by creativity, unity, and hope. Cultivating
these family strengths is critical to a thriving human community.
Family Life Specialist with the University of Wyoming's Cooperative Extension Service

Bertrand Russell:
The place of the father in the modern suburban family is a very small one, particularly if he
plays golf.

Carl Sandburg:
A baby is God's opinion that the world should go on.

Chinese Proverb:
Govern a family as you would cook a small fish - very gently.
- sometimes attributed to Confucius

It is not a bad thing that children should occasionally, and politely, put parents in their

To put the world right in order, we must first put the nation in order; to put the nation in
order, we must first put the family in order; to put the family in order, we must first cultivate
our personal life; we must first set our hearts right.

Eda LeShan:
Becoming responsible adults is no longer a matter of whether children hang up there
pajamas or put dirty towels in the hamper, but whether they care about themselves and
others -- and whether they see everyday chores as related to how we treat this planet.

Elizabeth II:
Like all the best families, we have our share of eccentricities, of impetuous and wayward
youngsters and of family disagreements.

Elizabeth Stone:
Making the decision to have a child - it's momentous. It is to decide forever to have your
heart go walking outside your body.

Erma Bombeck:
You hear a lot of dialogue on the death of the American family. Families aren't dying.
They're merging into big conglomerates.

Evelyn Waugh:
Don't hold your parents up to contempt. After all, you are their son, and it is just possible
that you may take after them.

Francis Bacon:
He that hath a wife and children hath given hostages to fortune.

Francis Bacon:
Important families are like potatoes. The best parts are underground.

George Bernard Shaw:

If you cannot get rid of the family skeleton, you may as well make it dance.

George Bernard Shaw:

Perhaps the greatest social service that can be rendered by anybody to this country and to
mankind is to bring up a family.
George Burns:
Happiness is having a large, loving, caring, close-knit family in another city.

George Santayana:
The family is one of nature's masterpieces.

Harry S Truman:
I have found the best way to give advice to your children is to find out what they want and
then advise them to do it.

Helen Keller:
A man can't make a place for himself in the sun if he keeps taking refuge under the family

Isaac Rosenfeld:
In every dispute between parent and child, both cannot be right, but they may be, and
usually are, both wrong. It is this situation which gives family life its peculiar hysterical

Jane Howard:
Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family:
Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one.

Jessamyn West:
Writing is a solitary occupation. Family, friends, and society are the natural enemies of the
writer. He must be alone, uninterrupted, and slightly savage if he is to sustain and complete
an undertaking.

John Donne:
As states subsist in part by keeping their weaknesses from being known, so is it the quiet of
families to have their chancery and their parliament within doors, and to compose and
determine all emergent differences there.

John P. Kretzmann and John L. McKnight:

Every single person has capabilities, abilities and gifts. Living a good life depends on
whether those capabilities can be used, abilities expressed and gifts given. If they are, the
person will be valued, feel powerful and well-connected to the people around them. And the
community around the person will be more powerful because of the contribution the person
is making.
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Leo Tolstoy:
Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way. - opening line
from Anna Karenina

Leo Tolstoy:
All happy families resemble one another, each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.

Margaret Mead:
No matter how many communes anybody invents, the family always creeps back.

Margaret Mead:
Nobody has ever before asked the nuclear family to live all by itself in a box the way we do.
With no relatives, no support, we've put it in an impossible situation.

Marian Wright Edelman:

If you as parents cut corners, your children will too. If you lie, they will too. If you spend all
your money on yourselves and tithe no portion of it for charities, colleges, churches,
synagogues, and civic causes, your children won't either. And if parents snicker at racial and
gender jokes, another generation will pass on the poison adults still have not had the
courage to snuff out.

Marilyn French:
To nourish children and raise them against odds is in any time, any place, more valuable
than to fix bolts in cars or design nuclear weapons.

Marilyn French:
To nourish children and raise them against odds is in any time, any place, more valuable
than to fix bolts in cars or design nuclear weapons.

Mary Randolph:
Early rising is also essential to the good government of a family. A late breakfast deranges
the whole business of the day, and throws a portion of it on the next, which opens the door
for confusion to enter. (preface, The Virginia House-Wife, 1824)

Michael Levine:
Having children makes you no more a parent than having a piano makes you a pianist.
Pearl S. Buck:
I love people. I love my family, my children . . . but inside myself is a place where I live all
alone and that's where you renew your springs that never dry up.

Sarah J. Hale:
Nor need we power or splendor, wide hall or lordly dome;
The good, the true, the tender -- these form the wealth of home.

The voice of parents is the voice of gods, for to their children they are heaven's lieutenants.

Sidonie Gruenberg:
Home is the place where boys and girls first learn how to limit their wishes, abide by rules,
and consider the rights and needs of others.

Theodore Hesburgh:
The most important thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother.

Thomas Jefferson:
The happiest moments of my life have been the few which I have passed at home in the
bosom of my family.

Thomas Moore:
Family life is full of major and minor crises -- the ups and downs of health, success and
failure in career, marriage, and divorce -- and all kinds of characters. It is tied to places and
events and histories. With all of these felt details, life etches itself into memory and
personality. It's difficult to imagine anything more nourishing to the soul.

Virginia Satir:
Feelings of worth can flourish only in an atmosphere where individual differences are
appreciated, mistakes are tolerated, communication is open, and rules are flexible -- the
kind of atmosphere that is found in a nurturing family.

William Shakespeare:
It is a wise father that knows his own child.

Willie Brown:
You would think that those who are always talking about family values would want to create
an environment of permanent relationships for people of the same sex. But they're not
advocating family values. They're advocating their values. - Mayor of San Francisco

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