Tag: "marriage"

The Joy of Vocation: A Look at the Grown-up Version of Fun
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The Joy of Vocation: A Look at the Grown-up Version of Fun

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Shortly after I got married, a good priest gave me some sage advice: look at all your daily frustrations as a source of holiness. Later that day, my husband did something that irritated me, so I said to him through clenched teeth: “You are making me so holy right now.” Of course, this made us […]

Forgotten Children: Singles in the Church
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Forgotten Children: Singles in the Church

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A question that occasionally comes up when the topic of single Catholics is raised has to do with priorities. Some would say that the Church is too busy addressing the many moral evils in today’s society to be concerned with single people. This line of thinking, however, prevents the Church from seizing a great opportunity. Assisting […]

The Narrow Way
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The Narrow Way

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The most terrifying aspect of living out Catholic sexuality is that it requires us to unflinchingly kill an entire world of potentials. In this world of dreamers, it can be very difficult to commit oneself to a given way of life simply because it entails giving up all other ways of life. It can be […]

Married Love is Total Self-Giving, Says Pope Francis' Amoris Laetitia
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Married Love is Total Self-Giving, Says Pope Francis’ Amoris Laetitia

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Pope Francis’ Amoris Laetitia (Joy of Love) should be required reading in pre-Cana classes, say commentators, because the Pope explains Catholic teaching on marriage so wisely and elegantly to the current generation. Throughout the papal exhortation, you can find the themes of the four marks or “keys” of married love: faithfulness, freedom, fruitfulness, and a […]

Truth, Treason, and Marriage
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Truth, Treason, and Marriage

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The early part of the first century A.D.: Herod was the one who had John arrested and bound in prison on account of Herodias, the wife of his brother Philip, whom he had married. John had said to Herod, ‘It is not lawful for you to have your brother’s wife.’ Herodias harbored a grudge against […]

Pope Francis' <em>Amoris Laetitia</em> Praises Faithful and Forgiving Love
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Pope Francis’ Amoris Laetitia Praises Faithful and Forgiving Love

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Reading the full text of Pope Francis’ Amoris Laetitia, I experienced the odd sensation that the Pope and I must have been poring over the same exact Church documents for the past two years. The themes of faithfulness, personal freedom, fruitfulness, and total gift of self are woven throughout the Pope’s exhortation, and of course […]

Natural Family Planning as Self Defense
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Natural Family Planning as Self Defense

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My comment was met with a blank stare, a look of confusion. Fortunately, it only lasted a few awkward seconds. I was visiting my nurse practitioner for a nagging abdominal pain. Having concluded that I should have a CT scan (a detailed, in-depth x-ray) she had asked me if there was any chance I might […]

How to Have a Happy Marriage (Even When You're Busy with Kids)
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How to Have a Happy Marriage (Even When You’re Busy with Kids)

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Marital satisfaction tends to take a dip once that first baby comes home from the hospital (or out of the bathtub, birthing center, etc.). This shouldn’t be surprising to anyone. Let’s face it. Kids, particularly newborns, are difficult. Anyone who says otherwise is either lying, or a grandparent. But you can maintain a happy marriage […]

Family Ties that Lift Us Up
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Family Ties that Lift Us Up

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Jesus’ invitation to discipleship comes with a warning: “Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me” (Mk 8:34). He made this statement shortly after Peter confessed him to be the Messiah, and he told his disciples what that role entails. The suffering involved in denying oneself and […]

The Holy Family: The Reason for Christmas
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The Holy Family: The Reason for Christmas

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Do you love Christmas? Before you answer, I don’t mean the nearly 4 weeks of frantic shopping or the crazy parties or the frenzied family gatherings or the warm, gushy feelings we get from receiving presents. I mean the real reason why we do those things in the first place. Do you love the real […]

Family in Full: Blending Backgrounds for New Family Traditions
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Family in Full: Blending Backgrounds for New Family Traditions

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It was Thanksgiving and my then-girlfriend was meeting my family for the first time. Much to my surprise, all five of my siblings were able to be there, and we enjoyed – or so I thought – our usual holiday dinner with the typical excited-aggressive talking that Italians tend to do. Later that evening, I […]

dating, marriage, love
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In Defense Of “Soul Mates”

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It has been said that: Real love is not all feelings. Real love takes work. Real love requires choosing your beloved on a daily basis.  These are all statements that I believe to be true. But, can I let you in on a little secret? I believe in soul mates. And [thankfully], I believe that I […]

Theology of the Body Revolutionized My Marriage
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Theology of the Body Revolutionized My Marriage

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I can’t fully explain it, because it wasn’t what my parents tried to teach me. But this is what I learned as a child: sex is dirty. I knew, in my head, that this wasn’t true, and that sex, in its proper context, was a blessed, holy thing. But even for good Catholic girls who […]

Book Review: <em>Intimate Graces</em>
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Book Review: Intimate Graces

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The Jubilee Year of Mercy is right around the corner. Why not take advantage of that year to work on your marriage? In Intimate Graces (Ave Maria Press, 2015), Catholic media maven Teresa Tomeo (Pastore) and her husband Deacon Dominick Pastore examine how practicing the works of mercy can bring out the best in marriage. […]

The Meaning of Human Sexuality
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The Meaning of Human Sexuality

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As the concept of gender grows ever more fluid (you can pick any one of 58 gender options on Facebook), it’s worth asking why God created humans as male and female. Bacteria have no gender and reproduce mostly by dividing their cells. Some species of fish are sequentially hermaphroditic, changing genders throughout their lifetime. Angels, […]

dating, marriage, love
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Let Your Spousal Love Grow

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This past summer, after nearly 16 years of marriage, my husband and I took our first bona-fide, airline-ticket “weekend away.” As you might imagine, it was quite a logistical undertaking for a family with four children. More than once I questioned whether we were being selfish for doing it at all. But something happened that […]

Feathers in the Wind: Scandal and Sharing Online
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Feathers in the Wind: Scandal and Sharing Online

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St. Philip Neri once told a woman that as penance for her gossiping, she should scatter a pillowful of feathers into the wind and then walk about the town collecting every feather. The task was impossible, of course, and it emphasized that we can’t take back our words once they’ve been uttered. That’s especially true […]

Your Number One Job as a Wife: It's Not What You Think
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Your Number One Job as a Wife: It’s Not What You Think

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This past February, my husband and I started planning the family trip to Las Vegas that will commemorate our 20-year wedding anniversary in two years. We spent a week in Sin City for our honeymoon, and think it’s only fitting that we return two decades later with our kids, having “beaten the odds” when it […]

Marriage and Family
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Marriage and Family

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The Beatles wrote a song that was the sensation of 1967, “All you need is love.” This the same point made a few years earlier by an ecumenical council of the Catholic Church. Gadium et Spes 24, Vatican II’s Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, says this: God is Trinity, a communion of […]

Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium, The Joy of the Gospel
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Cherry-Picking Pope Francis

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This pope is neither liberal nor conservative.

The Married Life of St. Gianna, Patron of the World Meeting of Families
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The Married Life of St. Gianna, Patron of the World Meeting of Families

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As The World Meeting of Families draws to a close, we can all take a moment to pray to one of the meeting’s patron saints, St. Gianna Molla. (The other patron saint, also dear to my heart, is Pope John Paul II.) St. Gianna is easier to relate to than many earlier female saints who […]

Nothing 'Automatic' About Sacramental Marriage
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Nothing ‘Automatic’ About Sacramental Marriage

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By now, every Catholic — and a whole bunch of non-Catholics — are aware the Church faces a vocations crisis. Yes, we need more women and men discerning a call to join the religious life and the priesthood. It’s important that adults in the pews encourage such discernment as a legitimate, honorable and holy life […]

Cross Bearers Needed
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Cross Bearers Needed

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In March of this year my father sent out an email to his family marking an important date in his life. It was the anniversary of the day, at thirty years old, he woke up paralyzed. Forty-eight years had passed. I was only eight years old, and the oldest of five children. I cannot remember […]

Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium, The Joy of the Gospel
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Front Row With Francis: Marriage and Poverty

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Family bonds are the virtue of the family, and poverty is the family’s its most direct enemy. Yet it would be a serious error to mistake the problem with society’s material poverty as a solely material problem. “It is not just a matter of bread.” The family is a benefit to society even as it […]

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