THE FAMILY IS THE FOUNDATION OF STATE AND KINGDOM

EVERYBODY has a vocation, and all vocations are essentially one to know, to love and to serve God and this knowledge, love and service is first and foremost the duty of each individual, so that none can put the entire blame of his failure in these matters on another.

But God did not make us to live our whole lives as solitary individual s; from Him also come the institution of the family and the State. Consequently in our family life and in our public life we must also know God's will, we must seek to please and serve Him.

Everybody's vocation then, is the loving service of God; but to carry out our vocation in its fullest measure of perfection, we must seek light from God, and have the right motives for embracing it. In the ordinary course of life, vocation, according to God's will, is the married state. That is necessary for the propagation of mankind as well as for the continuance of the Church. It can be, has been, and is a vocation of Sanctity. The number of married living Saints to-day exceeds that of any other calling. The names of Canonised Saints who had received the sacrament of Matrimony are found in the Canon of the Mass, and in the Lives of the Saints for every month of the year.

The mutual attraction of a man and a woman which tends towards marriage is one of the most powerful of mental forces. As the family is the foundation of all social order and government, so it is most fitting that the bond, in which the family itself is founded, should be a powerful influence— capable of inducing those under its sway to great, even, heroic, acts of self-denial; and not merely of inspiring single actions, but also of producing a complete change of outlook, sufficient to modify the whole future life. Although many of the extreme sacrifices ascribed to human love may perhaps only exist in the pages of fiction, still the writers of those fictions are witnesses to the ideal, not only of what they themselves feel possible, but also of what they hope will find an echo in the hearts of their readers.

This great motive force has been given in order that a man and a woman, when uniting together for life in the bond of marriage, may be willing, with God's grace, to undertake any, even the most painful and lasting of sacrifices if only it will lead their partner to a higher life and an increase of God's grace.

It is for this reason also that there has been instituted the period of "engagement" so that the two may seriously study each other's character, and thus may learn how they can best help that other to self restraint and greater virtue, while acquiring that true love which will make any sacrifice easy.

Titles, honours, wealth, position, personal charms, accomplishments; without the blessing of God and mutual love can mean only failure.

Having to live together until death thorough agreement is necessary.

This cannot be expected in the absence of the essential— love, strong love, mutual love, sacrificing love—in other words to love and be loved. This is quite a different thing from its mere semblances— emotion, fascination, passion—which are not love. They lack the continual, unwavering union of hearts and wills that characterise the love of Holy Matrimony—the flow and reflow of love that gives joyous happiness while filling the heart. But, the unity of love is not enough, lt must be strengthened by unity of religion, religious belief and sanctity of life, otherwise a bridgeless chasm exists.

Mere natural love, no matter how strong, is insufficient to sustain the trials, sorrows and difficulties of married life. Many forget this in time of courtship, and God is not consulted by prayer and by the reception of the sacraments.

Religious indifference, selfishness, love for excitement and pleasure, bad temper, are seldom cured by marriage, of course, there have been miracles of God's grace, but such miracles are not the ordinary course. Marriage includes a tremendous responsibility to the wedded pair, to the children—resulting in happiness or misery— both unspeakable. Good parents realize their apostolate. They watch over the first dawning of reason to turn their children's hearts to God. They confirm their words by the example of Christian virtues. A visit to such a home, no matter how humble, is an effective sermon without words.

Surely the Vocation to Married Life is high, magnificent, and even sublime!

The devil, the world and sensual pleasures will strive for mastery in the children. What a privilege for parents to be, not only guardians of their virtues, but trainers of it, to be associated with their Creator in the work of their sanctification.

  If you would know what happy
    homes should be,
  Or probe the cause of ill we
    daily see,
  Go and behold with mental gaze
    and awe What angels reverent, oft in
  Nazareth saw
    Beneath the roof where Jesus
    childhood passed,
  Where Mary dwelt, and Joseph
    breath'd his last,
  And learn there from how ev'ry
    home should prove
  A shrine of peace, a place of joy
    and love!

MALAYA CATHOLIC LEADER, SATURDAY, 14th DECEMBER, 1935.


VOCATION TO MARRIED LIFE.

THE FAMILY IS THE

FOUNDATION OF STATE

AND KINGDOM

 

EVERYBODY has a vocation, and

all vocations are essentially one

to know, to love and to serve God

and this knowledge, love and

service is first and foremost the

duty of each individual, so that

none can put the entire blame of

his failure in these matters on

another.

 

But God did not make us to live

our whole lives as solitary individual s; from Him also come the

institution of the family and the

State. Consequently in our family

life and in our public life we must

also know God's will, we must seek

to please and serve Him.

 

Everybody's vocation then, is

the loving service of God; but to

carry out our vocation in its fullest

measure of perfection, we must

seek light from God, and have the

right motives for embracing it.

In the ordinary course of life,

vocation, according to God's will,

is the married state. That is necessary

for the propagation of

mankind as well as for the continuance

of the Church. It can be,

has been, and is a vocation of

Sanctity. The number of married

living Saints to-day exceeds that

of any other calling. The names

of Canonised Saints who had received

the sacrament of Matrimony

are found in the Canon of

the Mass, and in the Lives of the

Saints for every month of the

year.

 

The mutual attraction of a man

and a woman which tends towards

marriage is one of the most powerful

of mental forces. As the

family is the foundation of all

social order and government, so it

is most fitting that the bond, in

which the family itself is founded,

should be a powerful influence—

capable of inducing those under

its sway to great, even, heroic, acts

of self-denial; and not merely of

inspiring single actions, but also

of producing a complete change of

outlook, sufficient to modify the

whole future life. Although many

of the extreme sacrifices ascribed

to human love may perhaps only

exist in the pages of fiction, still

the writers of those fictions are

witnesses to the ideal, not only of

what they themselves feel possible,

but also of what they hope

will find an echo in the hearts of

their readers.

 

This great motive force has

been given in order that a man

and a woman, when uniting together

for life in the bond of marriage,

may be willing, with God's

grace, to undertake any, even the

most painful and lasting of sacrifices

if only it will lead their partner

to a higher life and an increase

of God's grace.

 

It is for this reason also that

there has been instituted the

period of "engagement" so that

the two may seriously study each

other's character, and thus may

learn how they can best help t h a t

other to self restraint and greater

virtue, while acquiring that true
love which will make any sacrifice
easy.

Titles, honours, wealth, position,

personal charms, accomplishments;

without the blessing of God and

mutual love can mean only failure.

 

Having to live together until

death thorough agreement is necessary.

This cannot be expected

in the absence of the essential—

love, strong love, mutual love,

sacrificing love—in other words to

love and be loved. This is quite a

different thing from its mere semblances—

emotion, fascination, passion—which are not love. They

lack the continual, unwavering

union of hearts and wills that

characterise the love of Holy

Matrimony—the flow and reflow

of love that gives joyous happiness

while filling the heart. But, the

unity of love is not enough, lt

must be strengthened by unity of

religion, religious belief and sanctity of life, otherwise a bridgeless

chasm exists.

 

Mere natural love, no matter

how strong, is insufficient to sustain

the trials, sorrows and difficulties

of married life. Many forget

this in time of courtship, and

God is not consulted by prayer

and by the reception of the sacraments.

 

Religious indifference, selfishness,

love for excitement and

pleasure, bad temper, are seldom

cured by marriage, of course, there

have been miracles of God's grace,

but such miracles are not the ordinary

course. Marriage includes

a tremendous responsibility to the

wedded pair, to the children—resulting

in happiness or misery—

both unspeakable. Good parents

realize their apostolate. They

watch over the first dawning of

reason to turn their children's

hearts to God. They confirm their

words by the example of Christian

virtues. A visit to such a

home, no matter how humble, is

an effective sermon without words.

 

Surely the Vocation to Married

Life is high, magnificent, and even

sublime!

 

The devil, the world and sensual

pleasures will strive for mastery in the children. What a

privilege for parents to be, not

only guardians of their virtues,

but trainers of it, to be associated

with their Creator in the work of

their sanctification.

 

If you would know what happy

homes should be,

Or probe the cause of ill we

daily see,
Go and behold with mental gaze

and awe What angels reverent, oft in

Nazareth saw

Beneath the roof where Jesus

childhood passed,

Where Mary dwelt, and Joseph

breath'd his last,

And learn there from how ev'ry

home should prove

A shrine of peace, a place of joy

and love!

MALAYA CATHOLIC LEADER, SATURDAY, 14th DECEMBER, 1935.

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