Pope Benedict said that his encyclical is an effort to explain the true nature of love, by discussing the "different dimensions" of human love. In today's world, he observed, love is often discussed in language that " often appears as something far removed from Church teaching." But even romantic love points toward a higher form of charity, he said: "Eros becomes agape if one seeks the good of others, it becomes caritas if it opens to one's own family and to the entire human family."
The encyclical goes on to say that "the very personal act of love must be expressed within the Church also as an organizational act," the Pope told his audience. He added: "If it is true that the Church is an expression of God, it must be true that love becomes an ecclesial act." Thus the encyclical takes a detailed look at the charitable activities of the Catholic Church.