Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Wedding Anniversaries

Gilbert and Frances celebrated 35 years together, and that was tremendous. From 1901 till Gilbert's death in 1936, they remained together in love, companions on the journey of life.

Love is a strange thing. So many young people today are tossing love around like it was meaningless, worthless, or heartless. They hook up and unhook almost as often as they change their brand of sneakers. They live together long past the point of honeymoon, then decide they couldn't ever stay together for life. They chemically induce sterility to keep that idea out of the picture. They go right past that natural urge to join their two lives together as one for life, and join up anyway, without permission and they know it, and it eventually fails, and they know why, but do it anyway. It must be right. TV says so. Movies say so. The culture says so. David Letterman says so. Maybe I'll be the one prove it works.

The long term implications of this current catastrophe are going to be disastrous for the culture. Well, they already are. Kindergartners are witnesses to mom and dad's loose morals. How will they grow up differently?

Perhaps some will choose the path of rebellion. To rebel today has all the excitement of virtue: marry; marry young (meaning in your 20s), marry innocent, have children, stay together. Revolutionary ideas, I know. But if you want to rebel against the culture and against your parents, maybe that's the path you might choose.


  1. And yet it's heartening that romantic comedies and films still hold up marriage as the idyll! Four Weddings and a Funeral is one of the few exceptions (since Hugh Grant and Andie McDowell decide never to get married at the end).

  2. Yes, even the movies often bow to the currents of the culture (drifting with the stream instead of swimming against it, right?). It's one reason I love old movies. "He can't stay here overnight, we're not married!" and all that. I want and need my kids to see that and not the current stuff. One reason the movie "UP" was so popular: it showed a lifelong marriage commitment that was beautiful and touching.

  3. You might be interested in the book Hollywood vs. America, by Michael Medved, which was written in 1992 (though it's been updated since) and makes the point that Hollywood's revenues have actually suffered since turning against religion, marriage, patriotism, etc. but that so many people in the movie industry are committed to aggressive liberalism that they think it's worth it. I know it's not really immediately relevant to your post but I just finished reading it a while back and it's really eye-opening. The year that the Hayes Office was closed was actually the most dramatic drop in American movie revenues, ever!

  4. I think you hit the nail on the head concerning rebellion. Many of my peers, whose parents where hippies, married early, have a bunch of kids and joined the Catholic Church, all to their parents dismay. Long live this kind of rebellion.

  5. That looks like a good book, Maol, and completely relevant to the topic. Thanks for letting me know about it.

  6. I agree Nancy. Do you know of anyone? Many of us want to rebel in the way you've said, but it's not always easy to find a Catholic spouse.

  7. Peter Kreeft has some worthwhile things to say about Love here

  8. Anon: this is the difficulty, finding someone who believes in the same kind of rebellion you do. I've seen a few things on line like CatholicMatch and I think there is another one. Attend stuff like Theology on Tap, or NCYC or plan to go to Spain next year for World Youth Day? Sometimes just getting involved in your own parish, you find that one other person...pray for your future spouse...ask the Holy Spirit to help you to meet. God bless!

  9. "Being surrounded by every conceivable kind of revolt from infancy, Gabriel had to revolt into something, so he revolted into the only thing left -- sanity." -- from THE MAN WHO WAS THURSDAY, Chapter 4

  10. lol

    Thank you Nancy, yes we have done all of that, and more. Again. And Again. And Again. I am 17 years and counting using that plan! Many of my friends have been praying and being 'involved' for 30 years, so I can't complain. My penance for anyone that sends me to an online site (many cruel and worldly men are on the site you recommended) or suggests I 'get involved in my parish,' is that they have to find a nice, single, Catholic man in their parish and a nice single, Catholic lady in the parish and introduce them!

    (Love ya, Nancy, that's why I'm here. But if it were as easy as praying, we of the barren generation would all be married by now! I know that God has something in mind for us, and for some reason is allowing so many faithful Catholics to stay single, but I've noticed that those who God allows to meet their spouses in their 20's often don't know how desolate it truly is and how much it hurts when we are encouraged to 'be open,' or 'get involved' when we have been. What we need is for you to pray for us! And introduce us!)

    (I know it's hard to convey a tone online--while my words are serious, I am not angry at all in this post, I really do love you Nancy, and I am smiling--but I believe that the 'silent singles' need have more a voice on this subject. We have answered the call, but sometimes God has other plans. It's not because we're selfish, we really want to be married and have large families. This is a problem I have not seen addressed on the site --or magazine--and yet it is epidemic among the faithful)

  11. Anon: I began praying for you at my own wedding, 21 years ago. I wrote a petition for "all the single people looking for love" and have been praying for you all ever since, including my sisters and nieces and nephews. You ARE being prayed for and whenever possible, introduced. I don't mean to sound dismissive, I know it isn't easy. I had a hard time, too, finding someone, but I kept the faith that I would and I did (finally, at 24, when I felt old-maidish) and after thinking I was going to be going to India with Mother Teresa--surprise, I met my husband during that whole discernment period.

    I think the days of meeting one's spouse in one's neighborhood or at high school or even in one's own town may be over. I believe many young faithful people are now meeting at World Youth Days or things like NCYC or even (and this is absoloutely true) being involved in the American Chesterton Society.

    I agree that the pool of eligible potential spouse material for a faithful young person is shrinking, but not that it has dissappeared. In the homeschooling world, there are many young men and women being raised with character, morals, values and the committment you share. Not that the homeschooling world is perfect, it isn't. But I find a higher percentage of good Christian and Catholic young people seem to come from that environment.

    I remember thinking my parents were the most old fashioned and strictest parents alive. I've since thanked them for raising me as they did. And in turn, my children believe we are the strictest and most old fashioned parents alive. I believe someday we'll be thanked, too.

    I have a daughter who is 17, Anon. I know what you mean and what it's like. It's awful out there and young people that age are derided for wanting to maintain their purity until marriage. And to our society's shame, these things are openly talked about as if they mean nothing. It isn't easy being a young person these days, it takes moral courage and fortitude, and a huge amount of rebellion against the current tide.

    Anon: I'm praying for you!

  12. Thank you, Nancy, that's really what we want to hear. We're too old now for WYD etc., but we're never too old for people to pray for us, or ask us to join their family for dinner!

    And by the way, I completely agree with your article:)


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