Archive for ‘news and views’
The sacramental grace we received on our wedding day makes our marriage vows much more powerful than any New Year’s resolution!
In his 2014 World Day of Peace message, Pope Francis emphasized the importance of recognizing all human persons as our brothers and sisters – a recognition that begins in our families.
Our Christmas journeys (and hosting) this year taught us the importance of being present with others – a lesson the three wise men knew well.
In his address on Holy Family Sunday in December, Pope Francis said that in the example of the Holy Family, we are reminded of all who are suffering, including our own family members.
Every marriage has its difficult moments, some more severe than many others.
A Christmas two-for-one special: two posts about Christmastime by Stacey and Josh. Stacey writes about the importance of “presence” – not just presents – at Christmas, while Josh writes about the importance of traditions for families and faith life.
As 2014 begins, Sara and Justin say a heartfelt “goodbye” to their blog readers and share their favorite posts from the past three years. The For Your Marriage website is grateful for all they’ve contributed and wishes them all the best in future endeavors!
Emily Macke looks at a relatively new phenomenon called “co-parenting,” where two (or more) adults contract with each other to have a child, without any expectations of relationships between them.
Justin teaches a health class to college students, and at the end of the semester the topic of sexually transmitted diseases is covered. He writes here that he hopes to show the students that chastity really does lead to happiness.
Josh and Stacey’s oldest son is 13, and sometimes feels like the world – and his parents – are against him. Josh writes that intentionally spending time together, especially playful time, goes a long way in fighting bitterness and building unity.
Advent is here. Sara and Justin write about their efforts to truly celebrate Advent and not jump right into the Christmas season. They say small things matter: the Advent wreath and celebrating saints in Advent, for starters.
“As Christians we are called to a certain level of detachment,” writes Justin. That can be a hard virtue to practice on Good Friday…or when your beloved football team loses in the last play of the game to your arch rival! Advent is a great time to evaluate our attachments, material and otherwise.
Have you noticed that we often try to express our gratitude to someone by giving them a gift, i.e. something that costs money? Stacey reflects here on an experience that taught her that there’s no greater gift one can give than the gift of self. Free, but far from cheap.
In their new book, Tim and Sue Muldoon write that spirituality can be found “right in the messy midst” of home life. They encourage families to see their lives as a pilgrimage together, and they suggest reading Scripture together as a family as a way to foster each other’s faith.
Is it possible to marry yourself? How about an inanimate object? Reflecting on recent trends, Emily Macke writes about the importance of *another person* to the communion of man and woman that is marriage.
After a disastrous “eating out” experience, Justin and Sara talk about how it’s too easy to settle for low standards instead of striving for excellence – a principle that applies to family life as well as restaurants.
How do you talk to your children about tragedy and suffering? Josh offers some practical advice here about how he and his wife help their children respond with hope and charity to other people’s suffering.
Getting married doesn’t mean that you’ll never feel attracted to someone other than your spouse. Stacey writes here about how she and Josh have navigated this situation with honesty and clear boundaries. The key: “Always and everywhere, I am Joshua’s wife.”
How do you make time for your spouse? Is time together a priority in your relationship? Sara and Justin reflect on the value of setting aside time just to be together.
Do you thrive on routine, or love being spontaneous? Sara and Justin write about the importance of routine to their marriage and family life: “I am convinced that our routine is the key to thriving as persons and maintaining the balance we need in our family.”
In new research on divorce, Catholics enjoy a lower-than-average divorce rate – a sign of hope. But marriage rates continue to be low among both Catholics and the general public – a sign of concern and a reminder of the need to encourage young people to embrace the vocation of lifelong marriage.
Hospitality has always been important to the Noems. Here, Josh talks about being hospitable…to his wife: making her homecoming after work pleasant and tending to her needs.
Looking for good advice about disciplining children? Popular author and psychologist Ray Guarendi weaves his typical humor and common sense into true-to-life “discipline scenes” and offers “stage directions” to Mom and Dad. Readable as a whole or in parts.
Now that their son is over a year old, Sara and Justin are getting questions from relatives about when they’ll be sharing another “announcement.” Reflecting on this, Sara writes that while she would love to welcome another child into their family, she knows that that’s ultimately up to God and His timing. “We’re called to discern God’s will for our family,” she writes, and find ways to serve Him and others in the here and now.
“Parenting is a constant call to conversion,” says Stacey. Read the second half of her top ten list: things to remember as a parent.