From the Pastor

Celebrating Marriage and Family

This last week has been a week of celebrating marriage and family. As I reflect on this past week, I cannot imagine life without family – without my parents to make sure I had food to eat, my health taken care of, a good education, and always caring for who I hung around with. They would teach me many life lessons on character, integrity, goodness, etiquette, how to balance a checkbook, and general hygiene. It is in the family that I learned how to get along and not to respond with fighting all the time. In the family I learned the dignity of every human being and that every human being is a human person, made in the image and likeness of God. Family does not just teach this, but puts the dignity of every human being into practice and gives us the tools to become citizens that contribute to the good for any person we may come across.

A good society starts with good homes where children learn these most essential things in life. The family is the domestic church where children learn to love one another and to grow in virtue. It is where we learn right from wrong, and it is a place where God’s love is experienced. That is God’s plan for marriage and the family. I hope all people can have this experience. This can be anyone’s experience, even when they are on their bumpiest roads in family life.

Family life has been so demeaned in these last years that many people treat the idea of family at best as a foreign object, and for many as an evil that one has to endure. Some of this is due to indoctrination by the popular culture in media and, sorry to say, some schools. Family is viewed in mere practical use, where appreciation for family is frowned upon. Parents are demeaned and grandparents are relegated as the inept and bumbling fools. Yet these parents and grandparents keep on their way, loving and being the backbone of their children’s and grandchildren’s lives. They continue to love as Christ has loved them.

Family is far too a precious gift. Each family is far too precious a gift. Every family is a community in itself that builds culture, learning and loving. No family is perfect, but in every family will be the perfect combination of personalities and diversity in character that can keep everyone challenged to grow in goodness and in good will for others. Siblings may not get along at times, but when push comes to shove, family is family, and family sticks together. I hope you can pause and appreciate the goodness of your family. I hope you can support them towards goodness as all Christians are called to.

Ultimately, God’s plan for marriage and family is that they would be an experience of God’s love for you. Are you willing to be a part of that plan for your family? I pray that all people are willing to accept God’s plan for families.

Father Barr