Archive for ‘news and views’
“A good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” (Jn 10:11) In today’s world time is often our most precious commodity. It reflects your priorities. When you give time and attention to your beloved, it’s like laying down your life for the other. Save time for each other today.
In an address to South African bishops, Pope Francis stressed the difficulties surrounding Christian marriage and family life and encouraged authentic witness to the truth of marriage.
Is social media helpful to relationships or harmful? This article looks more deeply into the effect social media is having on relationships today and our ability to communicate with others.
Mary Jo writes about a Lenten exercise her family tried this year – the “Lenten Family Unity Circle” – and how it was unexpectedly fruitful for all.
Imagine you are absolutely broke. (Maybe you are.) What could you and your beloved do for a fun date? Walk? Bike? Read? Watch the stars? Play a game? Could this weekend be a time to experiment?
Today the Church rejoices in two new saints: Pope Saint John XXIII and Pope Saint John Paul II. Both lived recently enough that you may have memories of them. Talk with your spouse and children about what these two Popes mean to you.
You’ve heard of “Take your child to work day,” but what about “Take your spouse to work day”? Your spouse doesn’t need to take a day off work to join you, but does your beloved know enough about your work environment to understand your stresses? Does your spouse know your colleagues?
No matter how much better one spouse may be than the other at home decorating, it’s wise to let the artistically challenged one make a few of the decor decisions. After all, it’s your home together, and shared input is important.
Is your marriage going through a rocky spell? It’s tempting to blame it on a stressful job, the kids, or getting older. All of these things can stress a marriage, but not necessarily kill it. To find the underlying cause most couples need help. Don’t be afraid to ask for it.
Where did all the flowers and magic go? Infatuation may get a couple together but eventually fades and romance alone will not keep you together over the long haul. Common values, commitment to each other, and shared experiences are the glue.
Of all the many rights of children, Pope Francis emphasized their right to grow up in a family with both a mother and a father as he spoke to the International Catholic Child Bureau.
Stacey reflects on ways that her marriage informs her Christian life of discipleship.
Praying the Rosary together, as a family, is very beautiful and a source of great strength!” (Pope Francis) Do you pray the rosary as a family? Try it!
Reminder: Easter lasts for 50 days! (Lent was only 40.) A lesson that joy will have the last word. How can you and your spouse practice being joyful this Easter season?
Christ is risen! Celebrate new life today. Recall a hardship in your marriage that is now history. Rejoice that you’ve weathered it together. Remember this, and Jesus’ Resurrection, in future tough times.
Today, as we mourn Christ’s death and await Easter morning, remember those who grieve. Perhaps it is your own family. Share in each other’s grief to make the burden lighter.
“Spouses are therefore the permanent reminder to the Church of what happened on the Cross.” (Bl. John Paul II) Powerful. As a sacrament, marriage shows to the world the love Christ has for His Church – love that took Him to the Cross. Pray to live this love in your own marriage.
“As I have done for you, you should also do,” Jesus tells his disciples after washing their feet. (Jn 13:15) A tall order! Talk with your spouse about ways to “wash their feet” – do small, humble acts of service for each other.
Pope Francis encourages us to witness to the Gospel so that we might protect life with courage and love, especially that of children and the elderly, as they are the “hope of the people!”
Would your spouse describe you as a good listener? If you’re not sure, humbly seek out their opinion, and be willing to grow.
“Marriage…is to be a school for nurturing gratitude.” (USCCB, Marriage: Love and Life in the Divine Plan) How do you foster gratitude in your marriage? Try coming up with three things every night to be grateful for. Add them to a “gratitude journal” and count your blessings!
If you want someone to change, encouragement is more effective than criticism. Look for one thing about your spouse or child’s behavior that you can compliment today. Although easier with pre-schoolers, perhaps sending an older child an e-mail or text would work. Kiss your spouse.
Hosanna to the King of Kings! The start of Holy Week – with its stark reading of Jesus’ Passion – is a great reminder to reexamine our hearts. Is Jesus the King of our marriage and our home? Pray to enter fully into Holy Week with your spouse and children.
Take a trip down memory lane. Retell the story of your engagement and wedding day to each other or your kids. What was the craziest, funniest, most endearing part of these milestones for you?
Fighting Fair Tip: Use “I feel” statements. This is an old standby but it still works. Instead of saying, “You make me so angry when you…” say, “I feel upset when you… Would you be willing to …” It’s not a magic cure but it decreases defensiveness.