The Living Sacrament: Marriage
(continued)

To insure ourselves of this growth the frequent reception of the Eucharist - the Real Presence of Love - and the healing Sacrament of Reconciliation are indispensable. Without Him we cannot ascend the heights of holiness. Without the healing balm of Absolution we cannot maintain a consistent thrust toward virtue and goodness.

The children of such a couple become a source of love and fulfillment. They have the power to bring out of father and mother hidden qualities that would never manifest themselves without them. Parents exercise their roles in a higher degree as they form, educate and teach their children. The compassion and understanding of the father grows in degree and quality as opportunities present themselves. A woman becomes a bond of unity and a means of reconciliation. She begins to practice those inner qualities of kindness and love never before manifested. A new spirit of sacrifice issues forth as her role in the family is enhanced. In mutually giving themselves to the fruit of their love, that love grows. Love increases when pain and sacrifice, cheerfully accepted, is borne with faith and hope. Any kind of selfishness that would manifest itself at this point in a couple's life would warp their marriage, decrease their love for each other, and create tension. When possessions and pleasure take the place of children, the fire of love grows cold. Love begets love and when love is prevented from giving of itself, human nature takes over and living becomes an endurance test - a wild chase after fleeting pleasures - pleasures that merely distract from one's obligations and duties in this state of life.

Since Matrimony is a sacrament from which the couple receive the very source of love - God, it cannot be a living sacrament If love is deliberately cut off. Only the binding aspect of the sacrament remains and such a couple soon begins to feel only the tight pressure of those indissoluble ropes. Deliberate decisions to be selfish in any state of life, be it married, single or religious, brings havoc. Though the single life or religious life are not sacraments in themselves, those in these states receive other sacraments and the principles of living applied to matrimony applies equally to these other states.

Our entire life was created by Love so we might choose to be love. Faith and Hope build love and If we allow those virtues to lessen by selfish choices, we remove ourselves from the source of all warmth, goodness, kindness and joy. Instead of seeing God's hand in the present moment, we see only people and things, and Faith lessens. Instead of watching God bring good out of all our pain, frustration and heartache, we see only evil intentions and we lose Hope and Joy. In this type of atmosphere it is difficult, if not impossible, for love to grow.

To insure ourselves of this growth the frequent reception of the Eucharist - the Real Presence of Love - and the healing Sacrament of Reconciliation are indispensable. Without Him we cannot ascend the heights of holiness. Without the healing balm of Absolution we cannot maintain a consistent thrust toward virtue and goodness.

If these two Sacraments, Eucharist and Reconciliation, are an integral part of the lives of a married couple, the Sacrament of Matrimony that they possess will make of them a Host - one body united to His Body - one Love united to His Love - one in mutual forgiveness as they are the recipients of His forgiveness. Their Sacrament will be living and feeding on the never ending source of love - God.





 

 

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