Saturday, October 31, 2009

Yearning for wholeness

What I desire most in my life right now is for my family to be made whole again. I want so much for my wife to love me and even more to learn to be a better husband. My heart aches so much for my children everyday because children suffer the most when families fall apart. I frequently thank God for such a precious gift, but yet lack the understanding of why they deserve such hurt. I feel like a great failure to my kids because as father I cannot protect them from the devastation of our broken family. I often wonder why God gave us free will when all we do is screw things up with it. He had to know all of the hurtful and sinful things we would do with free will and yet He gave it to us anyway. With my free will I choose to be strong for my kids. Raising them is my top priority right now. I gain strength through prayer, going to Mass, and by making use of the Sacraments such as Confession and Adoration.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

From the mouth of Pope Benedict XVI!

Recently Pope Benedict XVI spoke about families saying "families are beleaguered and under siege". He noted that this was especially true in western countries that have embraced a culture of divorce. He spoke the hard truth and sometimes the truth is very hard. Here are some excerpts of what the Pope said:

"This is the principle that is being undermined and compromised by the practice of divorce, through the so-called extended and mobile family which increases the number of 'fathers' and 'mothers' and leads to a situation today in which the majority of those who feel orphaned are not children without parents but children with a surplus of parents. This situation, with its inevitable ... crisscross relationships cannot but generate internal conflict and confusion that contributes to giving children a distorted idea of the family".

"The firm conviction of the Church is that the true solution to the problems which married couples currently face and which weaken their union is a return to the solidity of the Christian family, a place of mutual trust, of reciprocal giving, of respect for freedom and of education to social life".

"With all the understanding the Church feels towards certain situations, couples in their second marriage are not like those in their first; theirs is an irregular and dangerous situation which must be resolved, in faithfulness to Christ, finding, with the help of the priest, a way possible to rehabilitate everyone involved", the Holy Father said.

The rest, and I strongly encourage it can be read here:

It' s a boy!

My sister-in-law Sarah, and brother-in-law Justin are having a boy! I just want to congratulate them again as they embark on parenthood and all of its joys!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Marriage under attack

Sadly yesterday a Judge granted my wife a divorce despite that he said he had trouble finding any grounds by which to grant it. This was one of the worst times of my life. My mother-in-law even testified against me on my wife's behalf. Family has turned into people testifying against each other. Worst of all there are two beautiful children that we are all supposed to love while we are turning on each other and tossing accusations. Before the hearing I prayed the St. Michael prayer and a Hail Mary. There were only a few grounds to choose from. Adultery, drug and alcohol abuse, convicted/in jail, abandoning the family home for at least a year, or physical/sexual/emotional abuse. Basically she had no grounds however she claimed emotional and sexual abuse. Though she and her mother both testified against me I was able through my testimony and my questioning of them to prove both completely false. The Judge said that he took marriage whether covenant or not very seriously. He also told us that regardless of whether he granted a divorce we were stuck with each other forever because family doesn't stop at divorce. He said he didn't believe for a second that I physically or sexually abused my wife. He then went on to say that this was a difficult case and was hard pressed to find any grounds to grant the divorce. Then he shockingly said that it was a very close call and that I "may" have emotionally abused her on one or two occasions and that was grounds enough to dissolve our marriage. He wasn't convinced that I actually had, but since it may have happened that was enough for him to end a marriage. It is hard to express the emotions that I felt. Hurt, betrayel, sadness, shock, disbelief. The ones that are going to suffer the most by all of this of course are our two beautiful children. She is of course still my wife as we were married in the Catholic Church and I will continue to live my vows. I hope that through the annulment process I can defend the validity of our marriage. It is important to me to show my sons that marriage is a lifelong commitment, a Sacrament, and indeed a Covenant no matter how difficult the circumstances. I love my family.

Monday, July 6, 2009

My brother-in-law Justin and Sister-in-law Sarah are expecting their first child! I am very excited for them! They are due next March! I find it very interesting watching them go through all the exciting and joyful times just like my wife and I did, not so long ago. In just January they entered into the Sacrament of Marriage! Now they are on their way to becoming parents and experiencing the joys of having children! I pray for them that they will be able to navigate through all of lifes difficulties that may come their way.

Right from the Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. I don't think it can be any clearer what the church teaches about marriage and divorce:

347. What sins are gravely opposed to the sacrament of Matrimony?
Adultery and polygamy are opposed to the sacrament of matrimony because they contradict the equal dignity of man and woman and the unity and exclusivity of married love. Other sins include the deliberate refusal of one’s procreative potential which deprives conjugal love of the gift of children and divorce which goes against the indissolubility of marriage.

Here is a link to the compendium:

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Choose Life license plates available in Arizona!!!!

This is pretty exciting. We may just be on our way to winning the fight for life in America despite our current adiministrations efforts otherwise such as trying to take away the freedom of conscience, spending tax dollars on abortions in other countries, and trying to pass the F.O.C.A(so called freedom of choice act) to name a few. More states however are now having these prolife license plates and a recent gallup poll showed that a majority of Americans 51% are indeed prolife, and only 42% prochoice. Check out the poll here: . Another telling sign is that they are having a much harder time finding doctors that will perform abortions. That's undoubtedly one of the reasons they want to take away the freedom of conscience. To get a Choose Life license plate in AZ go to and download the application. You will also find information on what the money from the license plates will be used for. If you are in a different state check for availability as many states have them available, and other states are working on it still! Lets keep up the good fight!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

I came across an interesting article talking about how No Fault divorce is a plague on our society, and that it originated in the Soviet Union. More interesting is the fact that in 1970 when working on the first no fault divorce law in the U.S., the same group was also working on a law to legalize abortion which later led to roe v. wade. The two laws were the Uniform Marriage and Divorce Act (UMDA) and the other was the Uniform Abortion Act. They were both structured very similar in that they used the term viability. If the child isn't "viable" go ahead and abort him/her. If the marriage isn't "viable" anymore terminate it. Well I am not suprised by this, as the Catholic Church most often says that abortion and divorce are both part of the culture of death in our society, and that they are both grave evils. In the comment section at the end of this article one reader put it this way: Abortion destroys the product of the one-flesh union while divorce destroys the one-flesh union itself. I would say that is satan's master plan in a nut shell. With such an attack on marriage and families in our society we desperately need to pray fervently.

Here is a link to the entire article:

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Prayer to the Shoulder Wound of Jesus

Recently while I was at praying at Adoration I noticed a stack of prayer cards. Most of the time the prayer cards have traditional Catholic Prayers on them. You know the ones everyone knows like the Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be, St. Michael Prayer, Prayer to the Immaculate Heart, Prayer to the Sacred Heart, and many others all of which are great prayers. This one however was much different and it really moved me when I read it. It was about St. Bernard of Clairvoux, and how Jesus revealed to him what his most greatest suffering was. Jesus told him it was the wound on his shoulder from bearing the Cross, and that it tore his flesh all the way to the bone. I was awstruck because it made so much sense, and yet it had never even occured to me. He bore the heavy Cross on his shoulder for a considerable amount of time, and he fell under the weight of it at least three times. So it makes perfect sense and I encourage everyone to read the story below and pray the "Prayer to the Shoulder Wound of Jesus"!
Prayer to the Shoulder Wound of Jesus

It is related in the annals of Clairvaux that St. Bernard asked Our Lord which was His greatest unrecorded suffering and Our Lord answered: "I had on My Shoulder, while I bore My Cross on the Way of Sorrows, a grievous Wound, which was more painful than the others and which is not recorded by men. Honor this Wound with thy devotion and I will grant thee whatsoever thou dost ask through Its virtue and merit. And in regard to all those who shall venerate this Wound, I will remit to them all their venial sins and will no longer remember their mortal sins."

This revelation and promise of Our Dear Savior is another proof of His unlimited mercy. You are urged to say these prayers daily and to promulgate this prayer on a continuous basis, so that others may share in this blessing.


O Loving Jesus, meek Lamb of God, I a miserable sinner, salute and worship the most Sacred Wound of Thy Shoulder on which Thou didst bear Thy heavy Cross, which so tore Thy Flesh and laid bare Thy Bones as to inflict on Thee an anguish greater than any other Wound of Thy Most Blessed Body. I adore Thee, O Jesus most sorrowful; I praise and glorify Thee and give Thee thanks for this most sacred and painful Wound, beseeching Thee by that exceeding pain and by the crushing burden of Thy heavy Cross to be merciful to me, a sinner, to forgive me all my mortal and venial sins, and to lead me on towards Heaven along the Way of Thy Cross. Amen.

Imprimatur: Thomas D. Beven, Bishop of Springfield, Ma.

Pope Eugenius III, at the earnest request of St. Bernard, granted three thousand years Indulgence to all who with a contrite heart, recite the Lord's Prayer and the Hail Mary 3 times, in honor of the Wound on the Shoulder of Our Blessed Redeemer.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Should married people be NFL-like 'free agents'?

Now that the U.S. has seen same-sex marriages, it has now seen same-sex divorces. Therefore, marriage has not been strengthened by the widened definition.
Tuesday, May 05, 2009
By James Thunder

It was not long after our country saw the first same-sex marriages that we saw our first same-sex divorces. Whatever the truth of the argument that same-sex marriage threatens traditional (heterosexual) marriage, the legalization of same-sex marriages, including the recent legalization by the Iowa Supreme Court and the Vermont legislature, certainly do nothing to strengthen marriage.
Because I am a lawyer, when I hear people argue that “we” need to “strengthen marriage,” I consider first how the law might provide such a tool. One type of law that could strengthen marriage has been the subject of state legislation, state court decisions, and law review articles over the past 70 years. Nonetheless, there has never been much public debate. To the extent that there was been public debate over this type of law, the law has been derided and I maintain wrongly so.
Under what is called “the common law,” spouses had two different causes of action available to them to protect their marriages. One was called “criminal conversation” which required an act of adultery but did not require knowledge by the defendant of the marital status of the married party or breakdown of the marriage. The other was called “alienation of affections” which did not require adultery but did require knowledge by the defendant of the marital status and breakdown of the marriage. These causes of action have been derided as “heart balm” torts, that is, they are brought by jilted parties to soothe their broken hearts.
During the past year, opponents of Proposition 8 in California claimed that rights once granted could not be abolished. That is plainly not so since state supreme courts and state legislatures in 40 of our states have abolished the right of spouses to call upon the law to protect their marriages. One example is the Supreme Court of Missouri’s action in the 2003 case of Helsel v. Noellsch, 107 S.W.3d 231.
The courts and the legislatures that have abolished these marital rights have done so on various grounds. As I repeat them, I will refute them, using arguments made by judges and law review authors. At the same time, I will describe some ways in which our legislatures, rather than scuttling these rights, could modernize them by establishing a cause of action labeled “interference with marital relations.”
1) These causes of action originated in previous centuries when a wife was regarded as a property interest of the husband and the husband utilized these causes of action to protect his property. This is true, but there has been no question that, in modern times, a woman has had as much right as a man to utilize these causes of action. Certainly, the legislature can modernize these rights to ensure that both husbands and wives could bring suit.
2) These causes of action are able to be used only against the rich because lawyers will not represent a plaintiff unless the prospective defendant has a deep pocket. This has also been true, but this argument could be used against a host of causes of action. Again, our legislatures could ensure that suits against defendants of modest means would be financially viable. For example, they could ensure that the loser pays the winner’s attorneys’ fees.
3) These causes of action are vindictive because they are brought only after the marriage has been destroyed and cannot be restored. Several responses. First, given the description above of the two types of causes of action, this argument would only be true for “alienation of affections” not “criminal conversation.”
Second, modern legislation providing for “interference with marital relations” could allow for suits prior to the breakdown of the marriage by providing for injunctive relief in the form of protective orders against interlopers -- just as our legislatures have provided for the issuance of protective orders against abusive spouses and stalkers.
Third, it is not generally thought that the vindication of one’s rights in a court of law is being vindictive. Fourth, this argument could be used against a host of causes of action in which money damages are sought. Lawsuits alleging breach of contract are brought after the contract has been breached and most likely cannot be restored. Fifth, this argument fails to consider the deterrent value of the right to sue. For example, the ability to sue for breach of contract is not successful in deterring all breaches of contract. Law is not a cure-all, but an aid.
4) The amount of money damages cannot be ascertained by a jury. What is a marriage worth? The courts and legislatures in the 40 states which have deprived spouses of a right to sue interlopers have set a value on marriage -- at zero. In fact, it would be an easy thing for legislatures to specify damages in various ways. For example, since the interloper is a home-wrecker, damages could be the price of a median existing home in the area. If we can determine a monetary value in the case of the wrongful death of a spouse, we should be able to determine the monetary value of the wrongful death of a marriage.
5) Only weak marriages are susceptible to interlopers and the weak marriages would have failed for some reason anyway. Should the law not be used to help weak marriages? In so many fields of law, our laws come to the aid of the vulnerable. Our society should encourage the strengthening of weak marriages – not deprive the weak marriages of the aid of the law and let predators exploit the situation. Besides, even strong marriages have their weak times and their lifelong weaknesses.
Since the arguments to abolish these rights have been and can be so easily be refuted, there must be a deeper, unstated, reason why 40 of our courts and legislatures have abolished them.
You can read the rest of this article at the following link:

Sunday, April 26, 2009

I have been spending more time reading Familiaris Consortio. It has a lot of beautiful descriptions of what love, marriage, and family are. It also has a lot of insight into what the family in todays world is up against. There is a lot of information in Familiaris Consortio, and everyone who is married or considering marriage should read it. I am attaching some excerpts of things that particulary struck me as I read it. I also put a link on the side of my blog so that if you like you can read the entire thing on the vatican website. Please pray for families and marriages in this day and age, as they are under immense attack.

At the root of these negative phenomena there frequently lies a corruption of the idea and the experience of freedom, conceived not as a capacity for realizing the truth of God's plan for marriage and the family, but as an autonomous power of self-affirmation, often against others, for one's own selfish well-being.

This shows that history is not simply a fixed progression towards what is better, but rather an event of freedom, and even a struggle between freedoms that are in mutual conflict, that is, according to the well-known expression of St. Augustine, a conflict between two loves: the love of God to the point of disregarding self, and the love of self to the point of disregarding God.

In a deservedly famous page, Tertullian has well expressed the greatness of this conjugal life in Christ and its beauty: "How can I ever express the happiness of the marriage that is joined together by the Church strengthened by an offering, sealed by a blessing, announced by angels and ratified by the Father? ...How wonderful the bond between two believers with a single hope, a single desire, a single observance, a single service! They are both brethren and both fellow-servants; there is no separation between them in spirit or flesh; in fact they are truly two in one flesh and where the flesh is one, one is the spirit."

By virtue of the sacramentality of their marriage, spouses are bound to one another in the most profoundly indissoluble manner. Their belonging to each other is the real representation, by means of the sacramental sign, of the very relationship of Christ with the Church.

Spouses are therefore the permanent reminder to the Church of what happened on the Cross; they are for one another and for the children witnesses to the salvation in which the sacrament makes them sharers. Of this salvation event marriage, like every sacrament, is a memorial, actuation and prophecy: "As a memorial, the sacrament gives them the grace and duty of commemorating the great works of God and of bearing witness to them before their children. As actuation, it gives them the grace and duty of putting into practice in the present, towards each other and their children, the demands of a love which forgives and redeems. As prophecy, it gives them the grace and duty of living and bearing witness to the hope of the future encounter with Christ.

Accordingly, the family must go back to the "beginning" of God's creative act, if it is to attain self-knowledge and self-realization in accordance with the inner truth not only of what it is but also of what it does in history. And since in God's plan it has been established as an "intimate community of life and love,"(44) the family has the mission to become more and more what it is, that is to say, a community of life and love, in an effort that will find fulfillment, as will everything created and redeemed, in the Kingdom of God. Looking at it in such a way as to reach its very roots, we must say that the essence and role of the family are in the final analysis specified by love. Hence the family has the mission to guard, reveal and communicate love, and this is a living reflection of and a real sharing in God's love for humanity and the love of Christ the Lord for the Church His bride.

The family, which is founded and given life by love, is a community of persons: of husband and wife, of parents and children, of relatives. Its first task is to live with fidelity the reality of communion in a constant effort to develop an authentic community of persons.

As the Second Vatican Council writes: "Firmly established by the Lord, the unity of marriage will radiate from the equal personal dignity of husband and wife, a dignity acknowledged by mutual and total love."

Conjugal communion is characterized not only by its unity but also by its indissolubility: "As a mutual gift of two persons, this intimate union, as well as the good of children, imposes total fidelity on the spouses and argues for an unbreakable oneness between them."

Being rooted in the personal and total self-giving of the couple, and being required by the good of the children, the indissolubility of marriage finds its ultimate truth in the plan that God has manifested in His revelation:
He wills and He communicates the indissolubility of marriage as a fruit, a sign and a requirement of the absolutely faithful love that God has for man and that the Lord Jesus has for the Church.

The gift of the sacrament is at the same time a vocation and commandment for the Christian spouses, that they may remain faithful to each other forever, beyond every trial and difficulty, in generous obedience to the holy will of the Lord: "What therefore God has joined together, let not man put asunder."

Various reasons can unfortunately lead to the often irreparable breakdown of valid marriages. These include mutual lack of understanding and the inability to enter into interpersonal relationships.
Obviously, separation must be considered as a last resort, after all other reasonable attempts at reconciliation have proved vain.

Pastors must know that, for the sake of truth, they are obliged to exercise careful discernment of situations. There is in fact a difference between those who have sincerely tried to save their first marriage and have been unjustly abandoned, and those who through their own grave fault have destroyed a canonically valid marriage.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

I am in the midst of some of the legal goings on involved with divorce. I've learned more about the process than I ever cared to know. I never believed in it, and I still don't. I want to write about some of the unfairness of divorce so maybe if you are someone thinking about inflicting this kind of pain and suffering on your family you might understand. I try in my head to make sense of certain things and I just can't. A family consists of at least 2 persons, being a husband and wife, and then quite often there are kids. How is it that one person has the right to make such a decision so as to strip away the rights of the other spouse and the children to live as a family? How do they have the right to force their spouse and children into a situation where they will only be able to see each other, and spend time with each other a couple days a week? There should be accountability, but with no fault/unilateral divorce there isn't. It should be that the spouse who makes a decision to divorce and leave the family should by that very choice lose the right to be a full time parent and bestow that onto the other spouse who made no such choice. That spouse should have to live with the consequences of that decision, not their spouse and children. They should be given no more than visitation. What I say is not to be harsh, or out of hatred. On the contrary I love my wife more than words can say and would willing work as hard as I could toward reconiling, and I obviously love my children every bit as much. I pray for my wife and family daily. I struggle with these things because my children and I made no choice in this matter, but we have no choice. Only one person in a divorce has a choice. One person can decide the fate of the whole family. It brings to mind a great quote "With great power comes great responsibility". I don't believe what I write is a perfect solution, but there is no perfect solution to divorce except not doing it. It bears remembering that even in the event that a divorce happens in the eyes of God andt the Church the marriage still exists. Jesus himself said "Therefore what God has joined together, no human being must separate".

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Divorce is ugly. Divorce is evil. Divorce hurts. I have recieved court documents regarding my impending divorce. Sadly, even being married with a Covenant license doesn't prevent divorce. Anyway on some of the court documents at the top is written something that made me stop and think. It says the petitioning spouses name vs. the respondant spouses name. It's the same as when two boxers, wrestlers, cage fighters, or any kind of fighters get ready to fight. They introduce them saying name of fighter vs. name of fighter. The term “vs.” stands for Latin versus (meaning “against”). When I saw this on the court document I thought, I don't want to be in a situation where it's me versus my wife like boxers or cage fighters. I suppose the term "vs." or "versus" goes along with the whole theme of divorce though. It is just the opposite of what marriage stands for. In marriage we are supposed to be unified, together, "one flesh". It is supposed to be "us" together on one side of the versus and whatever of lifes situations that comes our way that we need to tackle together on the other side. It hurts when you see in writing that you and your spouse are "against" each other. How does someone who loves their spouse, and doesn't believe in divorce not be "against" their spouse when divorce is being forced on them? I ask for prayers that I can be as un-"against" my wife as I can while also not giving in to divorce, and that I may keep from pointing out her faults if mine should come up. With God's hellp I will reject and refuse to get caught up in the "versus" mentality of divorce.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

"Clearly the person who accepts the Church as an infallible guide will believe whatever the Church teaches." — Saint Thomas Aquinas.

I think this is a great and yet simple and to the point. This is what a true Catholic needs to live by. People who call themselves Catholic but don't beilieve what the Church teaches are cafeteria Catholics. They pick and choose what they want to believe because they think they know better than the Church. Not everything the Church teaches is easy, but we are called to abide and live in accordance to what it teaches.

If you accept the Church as and infallible guide then you have to accept that abortion, euthanasia, and divorce are all grave sins, and that they are all a part of the culture of death. Far to many people call themselves Catholic and yet believe those things are ok, politicians not excluded.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Divorced Saints?

Fairly recently a family member of mine and my wifes tried to convince me to just let a divorce and annulment happen by saying that there were many good Catholic Saints who themselves had been through divorce. Rather than simply taking that at face value I asked a few questions. I asked if these saints were the divorcer or divorcee, did they seek annulments or choose to live out their vows in the midst of being seperated, and did any of them remarry. I was skeptical to say the least, since Catholic and divorce don't go together I didn't believe that any of them could be the divorcer and become a saint. I was wrong. Of the three divorced Saints I found(I didn't get an answer to those questions so I did my own research) two of them were the divorcer. As you will see there was serious reparation needed on their behalf. None of them sought annulment, and one remarried despite that. The three Saints are Saints Helen, Guntramnus, and Fabiola. their stories are as follows:

St. Fabiola belonged to the patrician Roman family of the Fabia. She had been married to a man who led so vicious a life that to live with him was impossible. She obtained a divorce from him according to Roman law, and, contrary to the ordinances of the Church, she entered upon a second union before the death of her first husband. On the day before Easter, following the death of her second consort, she appeared before the gates of the Lateran basilica, dressed in penitential garb, and did penance in public for her sin, an act which made a great impression upon the Christian population of Rome. The pope received her formally again into full communion with the Church.

St. Guntramnus grew up without the faith.. Son of King Clotaire, and Saint Clothildis, Brother of King Charibert, and King Sigebert. King of Orleans, and Burgundy in 561. Married to Mercatrude, Peacemaker. He divorced Mercatrude; some time later she became seriously ill, and when her physician could not cure her, he had the doctor murdered. Upon his conversion to Christianity he was so overcome with remorse for the acts of his prior life, he devoted his energy and fortune to building up the Church. Protector of the oppressed, care-giver to the sick, tender parent to his subjects, open with alms, especially during plague and famine. He strictly and justly enforced the law without respect to person, yet forgave offenses against himself, including two attempted assassins.

St. Helen was a native of Bithynia, and a daughter of an inn-keeper. In spite of her humble birth, she married a Roman soldier, the then Roman general Constantius I Chlorus about 270. Constantine, her son - who became Constantine the Great, was born in Nish, Serbia soon after, in 272. In 293, when Constantius was made Caesar, or junior emperor, he was persuaded to divorce Helen to marry Theodora the stepdaughter of Emperor Maximian. He lived for fourteen years after the divorce of St. Helen, and when he died at York in 306 his troops at York proclaimed their son Constantine caesar.

Perhaps St. Fabiola's story is the best illustration of the seriousness of divorce and remarriage while your first spouse is still living, as she had to penance before being returned to full communion with the church. We can pray and ask these Saints to intercede for us, as they are all three patron saints of divorce and difficult marriages.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Pope Benedict addresses the Roman Rota!

This is a must read: Against the Tide: Marriage Is Not Impossible. Pretty much in line with what John Paul II and many other Popes have said. Pope Benedict is reaffirming that tribunals especially in the U.S. are issuing too many annulments by abusing the grounds of mental incapacity otherwise known as defect of consent. This is the ground that is used by far more than any other, because one could stretch it to say almost anything could be a defect of consent. All of the other grounds are much more difficult and don't have the same kind of wiggle room. If you find yourself fighting for the validity of your marriage and truly believe in your heart that it is, then you should insist on the tribunal of second instance being the Roman Rota. In other words appeal the decision directly to the Roman Rota. The reason is because the annulment decrees granted in the U.S. that are appealed directly to the Roman Rota, 80%-90% are overturned and declared valid! We need to pray for marriage and families in our country.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Fulton J. Sheen's "Three To Get Married"!

I have been reading a little bit of a Fulton J. Sheen book called "Three To Get Married" and it is a truly awesome book. I also found the entire book available for reading on the EWTN website and I will provide the link for that later! I want to share a few excerpts from the book that stood out to me. When you read Fulton J. Sheen's writing you get a sense that he truly understands marriage and has a profound faith in the Catholic Church and it's teaching about marriage. He is truly a very wise man.

A bond is a bond no matter how you try to argue it.
The basis of unity is the fact that in this bond two persons are joined together so as to become "one flesh." This inviolable bond, according to Our Divine Savior, excludes not only desiring another partner but also entering into another union while the partner lives. Our Lord even forbade unlawful desires: "But I tell you that he who casts his eyes on a woman so as to lust after her has already committed adultery with her in his heart." (Matt. 5:28) These words cannot be annulled even by consent of one of the partners, for they express a law of God and nature which no one can break. He directly forbade any remarriage while one bond endured. Even though there might be a legitimate reason for the partners separating, this would not give either one the right to marry again.

Here I love how he puts it into perspective, how can you argue with it?
To say, two years after marriage: "I gave my oath at the altar, yes, but since I am in love with someone else, God would not want me to keep my oath," is like saying: "I promised not to steal my neighbor's chickens, but since I fell in love with that handsome Plymouth Rock, God would not want me to keep my promise."

The unification from the duality of flesh of husband and wife is one of the reasons why the Savior forbade the breaking of the bond. Both men and women, in the moment of the knowing, receive a gift which neither ever knew before, and which they can never know again except by repetition. The resulting psychic changes are as great as the somatic. The woman can never return again to virginity; the man can never return again to ignorance. Something has happened to make them one, and from that oneness comes fidelity, so long as either has a body.

In marriage everything should be ours not mine.
In the happy home there is no such thing as saying: "This is my chair; this is yours." But when love leaves, then comes the lawyer, the division of property, and an equality which kills all love. Genuine love excludes all servility but includes a surrender to the other of the peculiar advantages of each.

As the Scriptures tell us: "The unbelieving husband is sanctified by the believing wife; and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the believing husband." (1 Cor. 7:14) This is one of the most forgotten texts on the subject of marriage. It applies to the spiritual order the common experiences of the physical. If a husband is ill, the wife will nurse him back to health. In the spiritual order, the one who has faith and love of God will take on the burdens of the unbeliever, such as drunkenness, infidelity, and mental cruelty, for the sake of his soul. What a blood transfusion is to the body, reparation for the sins of another is to the spirit.
Instead of separating when there are difficulties and trials, the Christian solution is to bear the other as a cross for the sake of his sanctification. The wife can redeem the husband, and the husband the wife.

Again the bond is simply unbreakable by man no matter how difficult things appear to be.
The key to the solution of crosses of married life, if they come, is not in the breaking of the bond, for that is unbreakable. Rather, it is the utilization of its sufferings for self, for children, and for the spouse, who for the present at least is the cause of the suffering.

The noblest love of a spouse can be exposed to the negation of love, because if love is not returned by the other spouse, it is no reason for abandoning love altogether. When a husband gives up an unloving wife, or an unloving wife gives up an unloving husband, there is a denunciation of love in the universe, a betrayal of the Love of God Who loved us even while we were sinners.

Nothing can justify breaking the bond!
Because the Christian marriage is the fleshly symbol of the Divine Espousals of Christ and His Bride the Church, no infidelity or unworthiness can justify the breaking of the bond for the sake of contracting a new marriage. Separation may be allowed; but, even then, the faithful one must be redemptive of the other. Faithfulness to the bond is here not to be interpreted as a passive resignation to a duty. It is not the nature of love ever to abandon the one in moral need, any more than it is the nature of a mother's love to abandon a child with polio.

This one really touched my heart and it is one I will be living by.
The "believing wife" or the "believing husband," whichever the case may be, refuses entreaties to another marriage (while the spouse is living) not for the negative reason, "The Church will not allow me," but for the positive reason, because "I love in a Christian way." Each refusal is a deepening of the first love! Fidelity in crisis is therefore not something one "puts up with" or "makes the best of"; it is something that is ardently chosen for love's sake.

No person in all the world is made happier by the breaking of a pledged love.

Since marital love is the shadow cast on earth by the love of Christ for His Church, then it must have Christ's redemptive quality. As Christ delivered Himself up for His Spouse, so there will be some wives and some husbands who will deliver themselves up to Golgotha for the sake of their spouses. The young suitor does not abandon his beloved because she falls in the mud. Why then, when there is moral dirt into which she tumbles, should the husband claim that love does not demand the rescue?

As you can see Fulton J. Sheen is very passionate in his writing. It is very moving. If you want to read more of "Three To Get Married" you can read it online at the EWTN link below:

If you want to buy the actual book you can click the picture of the book off to the side of the blog. Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

A true witness to what marriage is!

I just came across this story and it is about a man who's wife has been in a coma for 14 years. He visits her 3 times a day every single day, and has remained faithful to her. It is truly an inspiring story about what marriage and marital vows are about. More than that it is a true testament to what it is to truly love your spouse. Check out the link below for the story!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

I offer a simple quote that to me is very true. Even in the midst of a pending divorce.
"A man's greatest treasure is his wife, she is a gift from the Lord!"  Sometimes we forget
that our spouse is a gift, and we should always treat them as such.  Our children are a gift as well.
We are never gauranteed tomorrow with the ones we love, and so we should always
treat them as a gift and never stop telling them how much we love them.
I love my family more than words can begin to say.  Please pray for my hurting family.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

I went to a Catholic Men's conference today, and one of the speakers talked about being husbands and fathers into todays culture. He talked about the need for fathers to be involved in their childrens lives. He also talked about how husbands should love their wives. As I sat listening a scripture verse popped into my head and i really started thinking about what it meant and I think it might be my favorite verse in the bible about marriage. The verse is: 1 Cor 7:4 A wife does not have authority over her own body, but rather her husband, and similarly a husband does not have authority over his own body, but rather his wife. This verse is profound. It is about spouses loving and trusting each other completely. So completely that they no longer have authority over themselves, but freely give that authority over to each other. It is about spouses trusting each other so much that they have nothing to hide from each other, and keep no secrets from each other. When this happens they think not of themselves first, but of their spouse. This is possible because the two are joined by God and become one flesh. If you think about this verse it is what two spouses promise each other as they stand on the alter before God and enter a Covenant.
What is a family? The Catholic family is often refered to as a Domestic Church. A family is in and of itself a community of people. As a community families grow together spiritually and share their faith with each other. They also pray together and love each other unconditionally. Just as within the Church most families experience hurt and brokeness from time to time, but ultimately are called to forgiveness and reconcilition with each other. As long as God is the center of the family these things are possible. Sadly enough just as with the Church occassionally some members schism or leave the family. Usually it is because they have put themselves and their needs before that of God. Maybe the child who wants to be his own person, or is filled with anger, or wants to rebel against his parents. Maybe it is the Husband or Wife who is bored, wants to find something better, or simply just has fallen out of love. We can find hope throughout scripture, and with the power of prayer. We must stand and defend the family in our society. Our greatest weapon is prayer.

The following are some beutiful exerpts of what it is to be a family, which are from "Familiaris Consortio The Role of the Christian Family in the Modern World":

All members of the family, each according to his or her own gift, have the grace and responsibility of building, day by day, the communion of persons, making the family "a school of deeper humanity" (59) : this happens where there is care and love for the little ones, the sick, the aged; where there is mutual service every day; when there is a sharing of goods, of joys and of sorrows.

The first communion is the one which is established and which develops between husband and wife: by virtue of the covenant of married life, the man and woman "are no longer two but one flesh" (46) and they are called to grow continually in their communion through day-to-day fidelity to their marriage promise of total mutual self-giving.

Conjugal communion is characterized not only by its unity but also by its indissolubility: "As a mutual gift of two persons, this intimate union, as well as the good of children, imposes total fidelity on the spouses and argues for an unbreakable oneness between them."

Being rooted in the personal and total self-giving of the couple, and being required by the good of the children, the indissolubility of marriage finds its ultimate truth in the plan that God has manifested in His revelation: He wills and He communicates the indissolubility of marriage as a fruit, a sign and a requirement of the absolutely faithful love that God has for man and that the Lord Jesus has for the Church.

The gift of the sacrament is at the same time a vocation and commandment for the Christian spouses, that they may remain faithful to each other forever, beyond every trial and difficulty, in generous obedience to the holy will of the Lord: "What therefore God has joined together, let not man put asunder."

Love for his wife as mother of their children and love for the children themselves are for the man the natural way of understanding and fulfilling his own fatherhood.

You can read more of Familiaris Consortio at

The following links are to some great websites that are really great resources for family and the domestic church:

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

When I Say I Do

This is an awesome song by Matthew West about marriage and the vows we take at the alter.
This song really truly captures how I feel about the vows I took with my wife.

When I say "I do"
by Matthew West
There must be a God, I believe it’s true
‘Cause I can see his love when I look at you
And he must have a plan for this crazy life
Because he brought you here and placed you by my side

And I have never been so sure of anything before
Like I am in this moment here with you --
And now for better or for worse --
it’s so much more than only words.
And I pray that every day will be the proof
That I mean what I say when I say I doYeah,
I mean what I say when I say I do.

You see … these hands you hold -- will always hold you up
When the strength you have, just ain’t strong enough
And what tomorrow brings, only time will tell
But I will stand by you -- in sickness and in health

‘Cause I have never been so sure of anything before
Like I am in this moment here with you
Now for better or worse it’s so much more than only words.
And I pray that every day will be the proof
That I mean what I say when I say I doYeah,
I mean what I say when I say --

Take my hand -- and take this ring
And know that I will always love you through anything – yeah…
And as the years march on, like a beating heart
I will live these words -- Till death do us part

‘Cause I have never been so sure of anything before
Like I am in this moment here with you
Now for better or worse it’s so much more than only words.
And I pray that every day will be the proof
That I mean what I say when I say I doYeah,
I mean what I say when I say I do

Friday, February 13, 2009

Beware of anti-depressants

Anti-depressants can devestate a marriage. There are different types of anti-depressants. I strongly encourage anyone who's spouse is thinking about taking one to do some research first. The particular kind I will talk about are called SSRI’s or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. Some of the drugs in this family are Paxil, Prozac, Zoloft, and Effexor. SSRI's increase a persons serotonin level, and this can cause all sorts of problems. Serotonin is a chemical that the brain produces, and the more the brain produces the happier a person feels.

While elevated serotonin levels make a person feel good it can cause imbalances of other chemicals in the brain. It reduces dopamine levels and oxytocin levels. Dopamine helps give you the excited in love feeling. This happens mostly during the infatuation stage of a relationship. Oxytocin is a hormone the brain produces in both men and women when they make love and in women when the breast feed their babies. Oxytocin is a hormone that helps people bond or form emotional attachments.

SSRI’s affect oxytocin levels in two ways. First is by reducing the brains ability to produce it. The second way is because SSRI’s also reduce libido. Remember oxytocin is produced in the brain during love making. If a person using an SSRI isn’t making love their brain isn’t producing oxytocin and they aren’t able to bond. Further more when they do make love their brain isn’t producing very much oxytocin with which to bond. It can also cause a lack of bonding with ones children while breastfeeding and can cause frustration for the mother.

To conclude SSRI’s can make it difficult to have and maintain any emotional attachments, and can even erode existing attachments by changing the chemical balance in the brain. Sadly it is very hard to reason with someone on this type of drug, and so it is hard to get them off of it. They of cours feel the drug is helping them immensely because they feel good(because of the higher serotonin levels of course). I found the following on a website that almost sums it up for me: "I know of one couple on the edge of divorce. The wife was on an antidepressant. Then she went off it, started having orgasms once more, felt the renewal of sexual attraction for her husband, and they're now in love all over again."

Attached are a few links that offer more detail and corroborate what I have been talking about.

In the next link pay close attention to the comments after the story, as they are from people who have used or whose loved ones have used these drugs.

The next link is to a forum specifically with peoples stories about how their marriages were destroyed by these horrible drugs.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Intoduction to my family and I.

Hi. My name is Mike, and I’d like to start off by telling you a little bit about myself and my family. My wife and I are both devout Catholics. I married my beautiful wife 4 years ago, and we now have two beautiful children.

We met and fell in love when she began volunteering for the youth group at our parish which I was already volunteering for. We talked and got to know each other and after about a year or so we started dating. As you can see by the pictures I’ve posted that my wife is very beautiful. I fell in love with her for more than that though. She was a very caring and loving person. She cared about everyone around her. She was just fun to be around and had a beautiful smile even when she still had her braces on.

We also had common interests such as we liked hiking and going on road trips. We always liked to visit the Catholic churches wherever we went. One of my favorite things that we did together was playing a game she had on her cell phone called pushpush, which is a strategy/brain game, and we would take turns trying to beat the levels. We also used to sit at the park until late at night just talking and getting to know each other.

Due to our faith we had a lot in common too, such as our belief in the true presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist, our pro-life beliefs, our strong belief in all of the sacraments, and belief in the Churches authority. When it came to marriage we were on the same page too. We both believed in waiting for each other(by the grace of God we were each other’s first when we married), and we beleived in natural family planning(NFP) as opposed to contraception.

The most important things we both believed were that marriage was life long(Covenant), that we were open to life, and we believed in keeping fidelity in marriage. According to Canon Law intending those three things(Marriage as a Covenant/life long, being open to life, and fidelity in marriage) at the time of your vows is all that’s needed for a valid marriage.

I wanted to start this blog because I truly believe in the Sacrement of Marriage. I also strongly believe what the Catholic church teaches about the indissolubility of it. Sadly my wife and I are seperated, but I beleive with God's grace anything can happen and we could reconcile.

Every spouse is difficult to love at some time(s) in their marriage, and I have been no exception to that. For myself I know there are things that I failed to do and things that I could have done better, and I’m sure that is true for most people in a marriage. We are however called to love each other even in our failures, or when one spouse or the other makes it difficult.

In our society marriage is being destroyed. We have to listen to our call especially as Catholics and stand for marriage. We have to treat marriage as though it is a Sacrament and a Covenant, and not something disposable as society would have us believe.