My husband and I spent our free time the weekend after the release of Amoris Laetitia reading the document, and we would both say that it was really good for our marriage. We liked what we read in the document about marriage and family life as it was full of theological truths and many times practical ways to live out marriage. We have also had many conversations with friends about the document, read many commentaries of it, discussed what really is going on with Chapter 8 (which I am not going to add to the buzz there). One of the concerns a friend had (besides all the issues surrounding Chapter 8) was that the pope really did not state anything new about marriage. What was the whole point of the document if he was just going to reiterate the same teachings on marriage that the Church has always held?
The summer we moved to St. Paul we were very eager to attend Holy Mass at St. Agnes. In addition to Sunday Masses, we went almost every day to the daily Mass in the lower chapel. At those daily Masses, for the first time since I had fallen in love with the Church’s liturgical traditions did the OF seem like it followed from those traditions. We had been daily Mass attendees at many other OF Masses, but this one was different.
This recent New York Times article about how some babies are easier than others rang true for me this week, but I did not need an article to tell me that. When we had our first baby seven years ago, her different needs changed a lot of my presuppositions about parenting. For example, we never wanted to use a pacifier, but she was so oral we ended up giving her one. Our second baby had different needs, and we did things differently with her. Our third baby could fall asleep unassisted from the time she was a newborn.
Our fourth baby took all my nighttime parenting confidence and threw it out the window. With him I had to give up on all my human efforts to help/make him sleep, and prayed a novena to St. Jude, the patron saint of impossible causes…
I am honored, humbled, and pleased to share that I will be blogging a few times a month over at the National Catholic Register.
Click through to read the whole of my first article for the Blogs:
The CDC recently released new guidelines for women of childbearing ages: if you are going to be drinking, you better be using contraception. Their concern is with fetal alcohol syndrome, which is a legitimate concern, but their solution to preventing it does not respect women at all. They seem to think that young women are ignorant, helpless creatures who cannot make good decisions without the government to help them along.
They go on to recommend that health providers tell women to stop drinking if they are not using some form of contraception to prevent pregnancy. Women are going to have to face even more pressure to use contraception. And further those who follow Church teaching and do not use contraception are going to be pressured to not drink alcohol at all, ever.
This new recommendation by the CDC has a glaring truth to it that the Church has always embraced: a new human life is one of the ends of the sexual act.
I was in the confessional, feeling particularly bad about my list of the usual sins, when a priest gave me one simple prayer for a penance. I wanted to say, “But wait, I have been doing the same things over and over and over again. Didn’t you just hear all the things for which I deserve a just punishment?
And then it struck me: This was mercy.