Mission Statement

1 Jul

nfpWhat is the mission of your marriage? Do you have an actual mission statement? A popular trend for married couples and families is to form a mission statement. In this Sunday’s Gospel, Jesus clues us into the mission of every married couple.

Jesus sends His disciples out 2 by 2 to proclaim the Kingdom of God, which means they were sent to announce the presence of God among us. With sacramental Marriage, the couple becomes the presence of God in the community as the sign of Christ’s love for the Church. God’s plan for every married couple is to bring His life and love into the local community through the way they love each other.

St. John Paul II said, “Couples are a permanent reminder to the Church of what happened on the Cross.” Does this mean that marriage is torture? No, it means that couples are the concrete reality that God’s love is tender and moves toward unity with the Beloved. This week, live your mission heroically!

The foregoing is this week’s installment of the “Marriage Minute,” produced by the Marriage and Family Life Office of the Archdiocese, which attempts to view the Sunday readings through the lens of the Sacrament of Marriage.

Freedom!

24 Jun

calling of disciplesHow well do you use your freedom? The greatest choice we can make daily is to follow Jesus Christ and share His love with others.

In this Sunday’s Gospel, Jesus invites people to do this, but they offer various excuses as to why they cannot choose the path of discipleship, or at least why they need to put off the decision until they can take care of other important things.

Isn’t this the lot of family life? Daily, Jesus desires to share joy with us, but we are quick with excuses, or we are so distracted that we do not even hear the invitation to encounter Him.

Whether it is stress at work, the busyness of family life, the television, the cell phone, the computer, sports, music, or hurting relationships keeping us from a deeper relationship with Jesus, let’s pray for the grace to make Him the top priority of our marriages and families. He awaits us with open arms!

The foregoing is this week’s installment of the “Marriage Minute,” produced by the Marriage and Family Life Office of the Archdiocese, which attempts to view the Sunday readings through the lens of the Sacrament of Marriage.

The Dignity of Dads

17 Jun

fffHow do our children experience the tangible love of God? Pope Francis reminds us in Amoris Laetitia of the importance and dignity of being a parent when he said, “The love of parents is the means by which God our Father shows His own love.”

Aside from the obvious mission of participating with God in the creation of life, each parent has a daily mission to make God’s love concrete by the way they love their children. Spending quality time, providing food and shelter, teaching virtue and morals, showing affection, offering forgiveness, and even using proper discipline are all ways children grow into the experience of God’s love.

As we celebrate Father’s Day, take stock of the qualities your dad or husband has that reflect God the Father, and acknowledge the noble mission of fatherhood. Pray for all dads, and take the time to affirm the great qualities you see. In this current culture, dads need all the encouragement they can get. Especially in this Year of Mercy, remember that no earthly dad is perfect.

The foregoing is this week’s installment of the “Marriage Minute,” produced by the Marriage and Family Life Office of the Archdiocese, which attempts to view the Sunday readings through the lens of the Sacrament of Marriage.

Taming the Monster

9 Jun

aaaOften the worst part about an argument with our spouse is the pain we inflict afterwards. We magnify the original hurt by rehashing it and adding to it, allowing doubt to creep in like a growing monster lurking in the darkness. We can ask, “Are we even still in love?”

Part of this pain can be avoided by realizing that in a fallen world, spouses will hurt one another, but it does not have to result in permanent division. We are reminded in the Catechism, “what therefore God has joined together, let no man put asunder” (no. 1614). While God does not want us to sin, He is also not surprised when we do. So, we expect sin, but don’t let it divide us. How do we do this?

Forgiveness is the answer. Jesus says in this Sunday’s Gospel, “But the one to whom little is forgiven, loves little.” Forgiveness humbles us. It makes us more compassionate. In short, it makes our relationship stronger. So while we shouldn’t sin on purpose, we also shouldn’t panic when we do. Instead, we should make reconciliation our most urgent task.

The foregoing is this week’s installment of the “Marriage Minute,” produced by the Marriage and Family Life Office of the Archdiocese, which attempts to view the Sunday readings through the lens of the Sacrament of Marriage.

Divine Design

2 Jun

CCCThis Sunday, St. Paul reminds us that the Gospel he preached was of divine origin. As it was true for Paul 2,000 years ago, it is true for the Church today. Nowhere is this point more relevant than in the current cultural debate about marriage and human sexuality.

While there is much misunderstanding over what we believe as Catholics, an essential point is that we do not have the power to change what we did not create. Marriage certainly is a human institution, but it has a divine design. Like most things, if we do not understand an aspect of Catholic teaching, it is good to sincerely seek the authentic teaching rather than the caricature that popular culture perpetuates.

“The intimate community of life and love which constitute the married state has been established by the Creator and endowed by him with its own proper laws” (CCC 1603). In other words, marriage is not an accident. If you have legitimate questions about what the Church believes about marriage and want to go straight to the source about it rather than through the filter of someone else, a good place to start is the Catechism of the Catholic Church, starting at paragraph 1601.

The foregoing is this week’s installment of the “Marriage Minute,” produced by the Marriage and Family Life Office of the Archdiocese, which attempts to view the Sunday readings through the lens of the Sacrament of Marriage.

God Himself Is the Author of Marriage

18 May

Happy Ordinary Time! The color of this liturgical season is green because it is a time of growing in our faith. In keeping with this time of growth, the Marriage Minute for the next few months will examine what we as Catholics believe about marriage so that we can live out our vocation more fully.

CCC“God himself is the author of marriage” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, no. 1603).

No one knows a story like its author. In like manner, no one knows marriage like God, who created it. We look to God for the definition of marriage, and especially for direction in what our own marriage should look like.

  • How much do we allow God into our marriage?
  • What prevents us from allowing God to have a greater influence?
  • How can God be more central in our marriage?
  • How can we better understand God’s true vision for marriage?

The foregoing is this week’s installment of the “Marriage Minute,” produced by the Marriage and Family Life Office of the Archdiocese, which attempts to view the Sunday readings through the lens of the Sacrament of Marriage.

Unity and Difference

12 May

aaaaaOften when we get frustrated with our spouse, it is not because he or she has behaved badly, but because he or she did not react the way that we ourselves would have acted under the same circumstances.

Today’s readings are about unity. We hear of different languages understanding each other, and different parts of the body working together for good. But unity does not mean “sameness.”

The Holy Spirit did not make everyone the same, but rather aligned those differences harmoniously. This is a model for us in learning how to handle our differences in relationship. When confronted with an irritating difference, try asking yourself:

  • What positive trait or virtue is at work in my spouse right now?
  • What can I learn from this virtue?
  • If I have a complementary virtue, what is the most charitable way to use it in this situation?

The foregoing is this week’s installment of the “Marriage Minute,” produced by the Marriage and Family Life Office of the Archdiocese, which attempts to view the Sunday readings through the lens of the Sacrament of Marriage.

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