Friday, April 6, 2018

Marriage, Family and Identity

Guiseppe Magni
As a child I was proud of my family.  I have good parents and so I was able to always speak up in their favor and brag about their excellent qualities.

Some children are not this fortunate.  But I want to move on to understand the effect and benefit that a good marriage has on the children:

The bond of father and mother in marriage gives a child his first sense of belonging.  He makes a connection from his own father to God the Father and is awash in gratitude for what is his, if only his small family unit.  When a child has a good mother he gravitates toward the Secret of Mary, projecting a lifetime of confidence.  He begins to understand love and devotion which- if the parents direct this to God- become virtues of responsibility, loyalty, honesty, trust and Faith.

I know that it is healthy for boys to withdraw from the mother in teenage years to become more independent, mature, and learn about the world.  The father must be there to guide and befriend them during this time.  Today this is seldom done and likely results in less masculine men.  Masculinity and femininity are diametrically opposed natures that when respected, very much enrich each other and family life as a whole.  Throughout his early years, a child absorbs lessons from the ways of his father and mother that powerfully form his ideas of God and of the world.  When childhood is infused with supernatural grace from the sacraments, the child becomes able to transcend easily and spends his time contemplating and bonding his allegiance to God, the Church, his family and every other natural truth.

Some people have this type of devotion to their towns and countries also and it is a very good thing.  Private property allows people to learn to love a cause.  It gives us something to fight for and something to defend.  If we feel that something belongs to us, we have a healthy foundation for our own identity.

This is important in today's world.  People are very mixed up when it comes to who they are.  We pretend we can be anything we want in a culture of relativism and whimsical careers and so we loose objective truth sometimes altogether!

Good Christian marriages can restore this to society.  The man and woman who are willing to sacrifice their lives for one another sanctify society in a way that is very beautiful.  They want to strengthen their bond to one another and so in the sacrament of marriage they form a family.  This family belongs to them and they naturally feel responsibility and accept the difficulties of that responsibility.  They learn dependence on God and on the Church and this wisdom along with unique ways of life formed along the way- traditions- are imparted to their descendants.

A good marriage is very powerful then and children are indescribably effected by the relationship between their parents.  To the extent that husband and wife follow the grace of marriage, every aspect of the family is impacted.  This is a dynamic tool for the restoration of Christian civilization: encourage good marriages.  Because a good marriage will support a good family.  And the family is the cornerstone of civilization.



  1. This is a great post. Parents have the grace of state to perceive the strengths and weaknesses of their children. They must foster the former and fight the latter. So many parents today think their children are like pets, all you need to do is feed and water them and they will be fine. That couldn't be farther from the truth.

    Also, the way that the mother and father treat each other, especially in front of the children, is crucial. Children are very keen observers and they learn a lot about life, God, and relationships, virtue, good, and evil from observing their parents. An emotionally absent father or controlling, nagging mother can cause issues in the children that last their whole lives. Your comments about fathers and mothers sacrificing themselves for each other is the key point. Marriage, like any vocation, is about sacrifice. Christian civilization is dying partially because parents are selfish and don't care to sacrifice for their spouse or children or for anyone. Christian civilization will only be restored when families learn to love sacrifice and suffering. This love of suffering must be taught in the home, beginning with the mother but continuing with the father as the children grow older.

    1. Thanks so much for this...actually your meeting on Way of the Cross really helped me begin to think about how vital this concept is to vocation and to the entire Christian life. I just got around to listening to it a couple months ago and never finished but probably will this week. It seems like our generation is more selfish than ever before as we just go from one thing to another to please ourselves! Sadly, this is probably why the idea of sacrifice was such a novel idea to me!! This is the lifestyle of spoiled children, not one to restore civilization. Yes, you are right that children are treated like pets! So much materialism, screens, drugs, "activities" because we just want to distract ourselves from the reality of Original Sin, our fallen nature, the Church and God's Laws and Eternity. The parents who truly love their children will instead teach them self-denial and ability to marvel at God in all of Creation!


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