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WMOF Catechesis Chapter One

Posted Nov. 24, 2014 by DOM No comments yet

World Meeting of Families Catechesis Series
The USCCB is excited about the World Meeting of Families (WMOF) being held in Philadelphia in September 2015.  We are presenting a series of short articles focused on the WMOF Catechesis Love is our Mission: The Family Fully Alive and its implications for our daily lives. We will follow the timing suggested by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia by exploring one theme each month leading up to the World Meeting.

Chapter One: Created for Joy
Sara Perla, Secretariat for Laity, Marriage, Family Life and Youth  (Nov. 20)

The first chapter of the WMF Catechesis focuses on the universal call of love. Each of us is “created for joy” and the Lord desires us to be with Him forever. He wants us to be happy!

Pope Francis’s Lumen Fidei [LF] is quoted here: “Promising love forever is possible when we perceive a plan bigger than our own ideas and undertakings, a plan which sustains us and enables us to surrender our future entirely to the one we love” (no. 52).  Many people today doubt the possibility of love lasting until death.  They fear the risk of taking a vow; of committing themselves to an unknown future.  It is, at its root, a crisis of faith. Do I believe in God?  Do I believe He loves me?  Can I, because of God, have enough faith in myself and in another person to say “yes” forever?

Flannery O’Connor wrote that faith is “trust, not certainty.” It comforts me that we can start small when we are practicing trust.  In my relationship with God, I have needed many small steps of trust before undertaking any bigger leaps.  The hard part, I find, is the seeming dissimilarity between human friendship and friendship with God. In human friendship, trust is built up as each person comes through for the other over time, but in our relationship with God, it’s more an act of conforming ourselves to Him and His will—because He is always there for us, just not always in the way we want or expect.

I trust God because He proved His love for me on the Cross—not because He gives me what I want when I want it. Likewise, I expect that when I, God willing, come before God to marry a man that I love, I will trust that man not because he conforms to my idea of who he should be, but rather because he has been given to me by God who is trustworthy. “God’s love is basic to our identity, and more fundamental than any anxieties, ambitions, or questions we may have” (LF, no. 16).

I have been created to love in trust: I have been created for joy!

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Pope’s Address at International Colloquium

Posted Nov. 17, 2014 by DOM No comments yet

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This week at the Vatican there is an International & Interreligious gathering centering on “The Complementarity of Man and Woman in Marriage.” Archbishop Cordileone of San Francisco, the Chairman of the Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage is among those attending.

The Holy Father opened the Colloquium with an address this morning, November 17. He reiterates:

“Children have a right to grow up in a family with a father and a mother capable of creating a suitable environment for the child’s development and emotional maturity. That is why I stressed in the Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii gaudium that the contribution of marriage to society is ‘indispensable’; that it ‘transcends the feelings and momentary needs of the couple’ (n. 66). And that is why I am grateful to you for your Colloquium’s emphasis on the benefits that marriage can provide to children, the spouses themselves, and to society.”

He continues, “May this colloquium be an inspiration to all who seek to support and strengthen the union of man and woman in marriage as a unique, natural, fundamental and beautiful good for persons, families, communities, and whole societies.”

Read the full text. 

Pope Francis also confirmed in this address that he will be coming to Philadelphia for the World Meeting of Families!

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