Tom and Maribeth are college sweethearts married 29 years. They feel they have a stable marriage that has involved raising four children. It has been a wild ride of parenthood with a few hair-raising experiences. Still, they both agree that all four have been successfully launched into adulthood. And now that their youngest has recently married, they are truly an “empty nest” marriage, not just the “shifting nest” of college years and a few years beyond.
They say that when a man marries a woman, he thinks, “She’s the one I’ve been waiting for. She’ll never change.” – and she always does. And a woman looks at her man, and thinks, “He just needs a little work; after we’re married, I’ll help him change” – and he never does.
“This love is above all fully human, a compound of sense and spirit. It is not, then, merely a question of natural instinct or emotional drive. It is also, and above all, an act of the free will, whose trust is such that it is meant not only to survive the joys and sorrows of daily life, but also to grow, so that husband and wife become in a way one heart and one soul, and together attain their human fulfillment.” Blessed Paul VI
February 7-14 marks the annual celebration of National Marriage Week USA which the U.S. Bishops say is a time to “focus on building a culture of life and love that begins with supporting and promoting marriage and the family.
I have been an apologist for Catholic Answers since 2003. When people find out how long I’ve been with Catholic Answers, they sometimes ask, “What is the most-asked question you receive?” That’s easy: Can I go to this wedding? The question has been asked so often, in fact, that in 2007 I created a checklist for laypeople to use to decide for themselves if they could go to a particular wedding. In the years since, that checklist has become one of the most-viewed apologist Q&A’s on the Catholic Answers Forums, with over 75,000 views. Read the rest…
Imagine you and your spouse driving down an open road and all you see out the window is an endless body of water, along with a beautiful beach and captivating sunset. What is your first thought? Is it the beauty of God’s creation? Is it the thought of how the water came to be? Does your husband want to go fishing? Or do you wish you could lie down and relax on the beach? Regardless of what your thoughts or desires may be, God created that image, even if it was a manmade body of water. He created the water, he created the sand, and he has complete control over the sunset. He may have even put those desires on your heart: the desire to relax and rejuvenate what may have been lost amidst the busyness of your schedule.
A couple of years ago, one of my dearest friends showed me an amazing and moving quote by St. John Chrysostom concerning the love a husband should display to his wife. The quote is in the Catechism of the Catholic Church and it reads: Read the rest…