Reflections - October 4, 2015

“What God has joined together, no human being must separate.”  Mk. 10:9.
 
The beginning of the Book of Genesis speaks about the union of a man and a woman to become one family:  “It is not good for a man to be alone.  I will make a suitable partner for him…….and he will cling to his wife, and the two of them will become one flesh.”  Gen. 2: 18, 24.
 
However, we know that from the beginning the family suffered the consequences of Original Sin and disobeyed God’s plan.  But God’s dream of family was fulfilled with Christ that was incarnated in Mary’s womb, the full of grace, to save the human family and give us an example together with the family of Nazareth.
 
Pope Francis said in his speech before the Congress of our country:  “The family has been the foundation of the construction of our country….but I can not hide my concern because interiorly  and exteriorly the fundamental relationships of marriage are put in doubt……”.
 
Who puts in doubt and in danger the foundations of the family?
 
Different interests attack the family, but sometimes there is also a lack of family virtues and values in the couples that want to marry because of a lack in preparation for family life.  Many are unaware of the sense of commitment and Christian sacrifice needed for marriage.  As an example, many young people study for a career that may take them up to five years or more but then in some cases a commitment for a lifetime in marriage is decided within a few hours and a weekend of talking about marriage in marriage retreats offered by the church.  Then sometimes if the couple discovers while attending these retreats that they have to give each other more time in their dating relationship because something doesn’t feel right it is practically impossible to stop the wedding because dates have been set and family and social pressures are very strong….
 
At the end of today’s Gospel the Lord invites us to protect the family and in particular the non-born still in their mother’s womb.  Let us pray for all, and also for couples who have problems.  Sometimes tragedies and the heavy loads in life can put on a marriage psychological pressures stronger than they can withstand.  Let us unite in prayer so that families will feel the Lord’s compassion and receive from their parish community acceptance and a word of comfort and Christian hope.