The attack on marriage is really an attack on the human person, and his dignity, for the devil seeks to pervert our true purpose, to pervert God's holy design. For many of us, we cannot march in protests or write dozens of letters or call numerous times to urge legislators to vote for the Truth. But one thing we can all do is pray and fast. We have designated one day each week to fast for these intentions:

1. That marriage may be preserved, promoted, and understood as God's plan for creation.

2. For all marriages that they may reflect the love of the Trinity.

3. For broken marriages that Christ bring healing and conversion to the spouses' souls.

4. For those who are married, for the sanctification of their marriage and their spouse. For those who are single, for their future spouse and vocation.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

September 2nd Fast


"There is a good zeal that can lead a married couple to God and everlasting life.  Practice this zeal, then, with most fervent love.  Be the first to show respect.  Support with patience one another's weaknesses, whether they be of body or of character.  Compete with one another in showing mutual obedience.  Do what you consider useful for yourself.  Love one another with sincere affection, and a have a loving fear of God.  Prefer nothing whatever to Christ."  (St. Benedict)

It does not take very long in married life to discern one another's weaknesses.  What does take quite a while (usually, a whole lifetime) is to be patient with those weaknesses.  In any relationship, there are many times that a similar moment repeats itself, and we become frustrated with what we perceive as the other's inability to do something a certain way, our way in fact.  But, it is quite possible that such weakness could become a strength in the marriage, furthering the friendship, because it gives us an occasion for charity.  In those times, we can almost anticipate beforehand that we will be annoyed or frustrated by some character flaw.  We can then similarly anticipate loving that person in that moment and refuse to yield to our own emotional desires.  We should learn to "yield cheerfully in matters of personal preference." 

 To be efficacious, our fast must include acts of mercy.  How many times throughout the day, God gives us opportunities to show others mercy!  Let us pray to the Father of Mercy, the Source of Divine Love to help us practice these little acts of mercy today and everyday.  What a beautiful spiritual bouquet we will offer Him!  God Bless you!    

Thursday, August 4, 2011

August 5th Fast


In order to promote this fast, I have decided to start up a blog.  I have included our first reflection from last month.  Rather than email, I will be posting a reflection each month on this site.  Please sign in as a member and sign up with your email (look to the right-hand column on this page)  to continue to get reminders.  And please share this site with others so that we may have many who will join us in strengthening the family as a whole.  

From strong marriages come strong and virtuous families, from strong and virtuous families come strong and virtuous children, and from these children come righteous leaders.

August 5th Fast

    "Parents begin to educate their children by their love for each other.  If a child perceives that his parents have little love for each other, he feels disoriented, insecure, alone with his problems, and he starts out with a handicap on the long road of education. . . By observing his parents' mutual affection, the child knows by intuition, even without reasoning, that his home is secure, and he is more serene and open to a good education.  Wise parents know this, and if their child has been a chance witness of one of their bad-tempered moments, they make sure he is present at their affectionate reconciliation, in order to cancel the unfavorable impression made on his soul! 

 Love, for the child then, they say should begin at the engagement period. . . Simone Weil said,"There is not a single thing in me that does not have its origin in the meeting between my father and mother. . . "  Piguy wrote,"Every cradle is the meeting place of the Magi."  Their  child's cradle too.  The husband and wife themselves are the Magi, who deposit their gifts at the foot of that cradle every day: privations, anxieties, nightlong vigils, detachment.  They receive other gifts in return, new impulses to live and become holy, a joy purified by sacrifice, the renewal of their mutual affection, and a fuller communion of souls."  
(Pope John Paul I, Servant of God)

Fasting and prayer will help preserve marriage when they are complemented by true love and self-denial.  Our fasting can be an extension of the self-denial we practice daily since love is not just thinking of another's needs first, but actually attending to those needs before our own.  How difficult it can be to forget our own stresses, fatigue, moods, etc., and joyfully attend to our spouse, our children, our neighbors' needs.  And yet, how much peace comes to a house when this spirit of self-sacrifice reigns!  The crucifix reigns in our homes not just as a symbol of our salvation, but also as a constant reminder of what true love is.  And when we ascend to the cross (for Christ was lifted up from the Earth when he was crucified) we ascend to heaven, and bring others with us.  God Bless you!