For Better or Worse?!?
"I STILL REMEMBER every detail of the
day he left home. I relive it in my
over and over again. 'Are you really
it's worth it?' 'No I am not. But I
Those were his last words that day."
It is Valerie speaking. The beginning
Everyone had something to say, she
Mum said "Get your hair cut. It'll
you feel better." Dad said : "Monitor
the joint bank accounts. He might empty
Sister said: "Take your time,
counselor." Friends said : "Get
even. Nail him in the settlement."
The Hurt Of Divorce
Two months later, her 7 year-old daughter
Lindsey still cannot go to sleep alone,
her 5 year-old is constantly angry,
the mother and wife, is waking up every
with a headache, alone in a big bed
One evening, while the kids were running
around the family room, Lindsey went
into the mum's left arm. It was hard
to hurt and Valerie said so, and Lindsey
apologized and Valerie forgot all about
Lindsey apparently remembered. Before
to bed, this seven year old girl handed
mum a note that said, "I'm sorry
you. Are you gonna go away like daddy
Just another divorce. As a statistic
hardly noticeable. In America roughly
per cent of first marriages end in
This cuts through religious affiliations.
For the past twenty years, the number
divorces in the States has exceeded
Always the same story. Filled with
they get married. Empty of love, they
Then comes a time of adjustment. A
pain. Some bitterness. Reciprocal accusations.
Lawyers and attorneys. Eventually,
it will work out. Better to be apart
That, at least, has been the conventional
thinking about divorce. It's temporarily
unpleasant but ultimately beneficial.
just to a particular family but to
Well, this is just wishful thinking!
are confirming what experience has
shown us. Divorce is not and will never
an asset to society. It hurts families
and economically. Today, secular counselors
are saying that even couples who despise
each other, or are fighting a lot or
simply become bored should do whatever
takes to remain together.
You Can Run But Not Hide
"The divorce revolution has failed,"
says a report "Marriage in America
A Report to the Nation. "It has
terrible hardships for children, incurred
unsupportable social costs, and failed
deliver on its promise of greater adult
This report took two years in the making.
"A study conducted at the University
of Washington divided 117 households
three categories: "maritally distressed",
"maritally supported", and
mothers," and found that children
the families that had marital distress
significantly higher disciplinary problems
than children from families that reported
a happy marriage, but those children
mothers had a considerably higher amount
of disciplinary problems that those
from the other two categories."
This is not even debatable. Children
two things. They want the love of their
and they want their parents to stay
If you take that away from them, you
doing something that is non-compensatible.
You are hurting them and wounding them
diminishing their chances to become
an contented adults. It is as simple
In the family the father presents the
"I", the meaning of duty.
creates in the child the sense of affection,
love, tenderness. If one is missing,
children will grow emotionally handicapped.
Hollywood and Television do not help.
still insist on glamorizing unwed motherhood,
marital infidelity, alternative life
and sexual promiscuity.
Schooled By Christ
We have to return to the sources. "Come
to him [Christ] a living stone. Yes,
brothers and sisters, make sure that
the Lord is your teacher"
"Sacred Scripture begins with
of man and woman in the image and likeness
of God and concludes with a vision
'wedding feast of the Lamb'. Scripture
throughout of marriage and its 'mystery',
its institution and the meaning God
it, its origin and its end, its various
throughout the history of salvation,
difficulties arising from sin and its
'in the Lord' in the New Covenant of
and the Church." (Pope John Paul
And those who are divorced? "My
is blown away like a shepherd's tent,"
Isaiah wrote, "it is cut short
a weaver stops working at the loom.
short day, my life hangs by a thread."
Many a Catholic has felt the same while
on the brink of divorce or separation.
Pope encourages pastors to work at
that thread into the fabric of their
community. The divorced persons need
than ever to feel the love of Jesus
The only love which is always faithful.
need more than ever the experience
of a real
And those who were divorced and got
again? Compassion and all possible
the Pope insists. They must not despair
God's grace. "Let these men and
know that the Church loves them, that
is not far from them and suffers because
of their situation. The divorced and
are and remain her members, because
have received Baptism and retain their
And those who are passing through difficult
moments in their marriage? Keep believing
in the power of the sacrament you received!
In the Hebrew vocabulary, there is
for marriage. The word that is used
which means holiness. Very interesting!
relationship between a man and a woman
marriage is not a biological union,
partnership, or an emotional attraction,
but rather a sacred oneness of man
through the holiness of God.
Marriage is indeed the union of two forgivers.
That is why God remains the greatest asset
to romance. Include Him in marriage and He
will lift it up above the level of the mundane
to something rare and beautiful ... and lasting.
There was an elderly man riding on a bus
holding a bouquet of flowers. A young woman
sitting in the seat across the aisle from
him kept glancing again and again at the
flowers. The bus came to a stop. The man
got up looked at the young woman and said,
"Here, I can see you love these flowers
and I think my wife would like for you to
have them. I'll tell her I gave them to you."
The girl accepted the flowers and watched
the old man get off the bus and walk through
the gate of a small cemetery.
(c) Fr. Pius Sammut, OCD. Permission
hereby granted for any non-commercial
provided that the content is unaltered
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