THE MARIAGE COVENANT, BY WHICH A MAN AND WOMAN FORM WITH EACH OTHER AN INTIMATE COMMUNION OF LIFE AND LOVE, HAS BEEN FOUNDED AND ENDOWED WITH ITS OWN SPECIAL LAWS BY THE CREATOR. BY ITS VERY NATURE IT IS ORDERED TO THE GOOD OF THE COUPLE, AS WELL AS TO THE GENERATION AND EDUCATION OF CHILDREN. CHRIST THE LORD REAISED MARRIAGE BETWEEN THE BAPTIZED TO THE DIGNITY OF A SACRAMENT.
- CATECHISM OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH, 1660
Marriage is a Divine Gift
WHY DID GOD MAKE YOU?
GOD MADE ME TO KNOW HIM, LOVE HIM, AND SERVE HIM IN THIS LIFE,
AND BE HAPPY WITH HIM IN THE NEXT.
- BALTIMORE CATHECHISM, No. 1, Question 6
GOD WHO CREATED MAN OUT OF LOVE ALSO CALLS HIM TO LOVE THE FUNDAMENTAL AND INNATE VOCATION OF EVERY HUMAN BEING. FOR MAN IS CREATED IN THE IMAGE AND LIKENESS OF GOD WHO IS HIMSELF LOVE...
- CATECHISM OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH, 1604
As the Father loves me, so I also love you. Remain in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and remain in his love.
“I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and your joy may be complete. This is my commandment: love one another as I love you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name he may give you. This I command you: love one another.
- John 15:9-14, 16-17
Prayer for Vocations
your Son, Jesus, has shown us that an open heart finds the way.
Help me to find my way in this world.
Keep my heart open to following Jesus' way of serving others in love.
Give me the courage to accept the guidance you offer me
through my family, my friends, and my parish community.
Through the Holy Spirit, you call me to a particular way of life.
help me to walk this journey of love in joyful service to my family.
With you, my God, I know I can find my way.
God created man in his image;
in the image of God he created him;
male and female he created them.
- Genesis 1:27
THE SACRAMENT OF MATRIMONY SIGNIFIES THE UNION OF CHRIST AND THE CHURCH. IT GIVES SPOUSES THE GRACE TO LOVE EACH OTHER WITH THE LOVE WITH WHICH CHRIST HAS LOVED THE CHURCH; THE GRACE OF THE SACRAMENT THUS PERFECTS THE HUMAN LOVE OF THE SPOUSES, STRENGTHENS THEIR INDISSOLUBLE UNITY, AND SANCTIFIES THEM ON THE WAY TO ETERNAL LIFE.
- CATECHISM OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH, 1661
HUSBANDS, LOVE YOUR WIVES, AS CHRIST LOVED THE CHURCH...THIS IS A GREAT MYSTERY, AND I MEAN IN REFERENCE TO CHRIST AND THE CHURCH.
- EPHESIANS 5:25, 32
The sacrament of marriage is not a social convention, an empty ritual or merely the outward sign of a commitment. The sacrament is a gift given for the sanctification and salvation of the spouses, since their mutual belonging is a real representation, through the sacramental sign, of the same relationship between Christ and the Church. The married couple are therefore a permanent reminder for the Church of what took place on the cross; they are for one another and for their children witnesses of the salvation in which they share through the sacrament.
- Amoris Laetitia 72
Prayer for Married Couples
We praise you, O God,
we bless you, Creator of all things,
who in the beginning made man and woman
that they might form a communion of life and love.
We also give you thanks
for graciously blessing our family life
so that it might present an image of Christ's union with the Church.
Therefore look with kindness upon us today,
and as you have sustained our communion
amid joys and struggles,
renew our Marriage covenant each day,
increase our charity,
and strengthen in us the bond of peace,
so that we may for ever enjoy your blessing.
Through Christ our Lord
This one, at last, is bone of my bones
and flesh of my flesh;
This one shall be called ‘woman,’
for out of man this one has been taken.
That is why a man leaves his father and mother and clings to his wife, and the two of them become one body.
- Genesis 2:23-24
IN OUR OWN TIME, IN A WORLD OFTEN ALIEN AND EVEN HOSTILE TO FAITH, BELIEVING FAMILIES ARE OF PRIMARY IMPORTANCE AS CENTERS OF LIVING, RADIANT FAITH. FOR THIS REASON THE SECOND VATICAN COUNCIL, USING AN ANCIENT EXPRESSION, CALLS THE FAMILY THE "ECCLESIA DOMESTICA". IT IS THE BOSOM OF THE FAMILIY THAT PARENTS ARE "BY WORD AND EXAMPLE...THE FIRST HERALDS OF THE FAITH WITH REGARD TO THEIR CHILDREN. THEY SHOULD ENCOURAGE THEM IN THE VOCATION WHICH IS PROPER TO EACH CHILD, FOSTERING WITH SPECIAL CARE ANY RELIGIOUS VOCATION.
- CATECHSIM OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH, 1656
...THE HOME IS THE FIRST SCHOOL OF CHRISTIAN LIFE AND "A SCHOOL FOR HUMAN ENRICHMENT." HERE ONE LEARNS ENDURANCE AND THE JOY OF WORK, FRATERNAL LOVE, GENEROUS - EVEN REPEATED - FORGIVENESS, AND ABOVE ALL DIVINE WORSHIP IN PRAYER AND THE OFFERING OF ONE'S LIFE.
- CATECHISM OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH, 1657
Christ chose to be born and grow up in the bosom of the holy family of Joseph and Mary. The Church is nothing other than "the family of God." From the beginning, the core of the Church was often constituted by those who had become believers "together with all [their] household." When they were converted, they desired that "their whole household" should also be saved. These families who became believers were islands of Christian life in an unbelieving world.
- Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1655
Prayer for Families
Lord God, from You every family in Heaven and on earth takes its name.
Father, You are love and life. Through Your Son, Jesus Christ, born of woman, and through the Holy Spirit, the fountain of divine charity, grant that every family on earth may become for each successive generation a true shrine of life and love.
Grant that Your grace may guide the thoughts and actions of husbands and wives for the good of their families and of all the families in the world.
Grant that the young may find in the family solid support for their human dignity and for their growth in truth and love.
Grant that love, strengthened by the grace of the sacrament of marriage, may prove mightier than all the weaknesses and trials through which our families sometimes pass.
Through the intercession of the Holy Family of Nazareth, grant that the Church may fruitfully carry out her worldwide mission in the family and through the family.
We ask this of You, Who is life, truth and love with the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.
To give you a deeper look into the beautiful Sacrament of Matrimony, the following resources are offered to you: