Marriage





GOSPEL OF ST. MATTHEW

Chapter 19; Verses 3 -11

3. And there came to him the Pharisees tempting him, and saying: Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause?
4. Who answering, said to them: Have ye not read, that he who made man from the beginning,
5. Made them male and female? And he said:. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.
6.
Therefore now they were not two, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined toget
her, let no man asunder.
7.
They say to him: Why the did Moses command to give a bill of divorce, and to put away
8.
He saith to them : Because Moses by reason of the hardness of your heart permitted you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so.
9.
And I say to you, that whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and he that shall marry her that is put away, committeh adultery.
10.
His disciples say unto him: If the case of a man with his wife be so, it is not expedi
ent to marry.
11.
Who said to them: All men take not this word, but they to whom it was give

MARRIAGE

The family is the most important factor of the state. If the family dies out , so does the state. Rome is an example. There are other instances at home. The old stock is fast disappearing instead of increasing. That is nature's judgment on man's violation of her laws. Any attempt at interfering with God's rule of the world is fatal. Now God in His providence ordained that the continuation of the world should be accomplished by the family. Any increase of the human race outside the family produces disorder. Marriage is the basis of the family; hence it importance.

H
uman nature is human nature. You have to take it as it is. It is very fickle. The family is a most serious proposition. It has duties and responsibilities. Men and women need help to enable them to be constant and true as man and wife. If God blesses their union with children, there is added duty and charge of parents . To bring up children in the fear and love of God calls for faith, patience, tact and sacrifice. God understands all this much better than we do.

Hence He instituted the sacrament of matrimony to give stability to the marriage contract and to give parents the aids to discharge their duties in the Christian spirit. Therefore is it that He declares that He Himself
is the one who performs the marriage ceremony.
"What God has joined together, let no man put asunder." The priest who officiates at the marriage is only God's agent. It is God Himself
who joins the man and woman together and makes of the two but one--One inseparable union.

Genesis tells us that "God created man to His own image: to the image of God He created him." Afterwards He said: "It is not good for man to be alone, let us make him a help-mate like unto himself." God Himself presented Adam and Eve, and blessing their union, said: "Increase and multiply and fill the earth." God thus established the marriage state and performed Himself
the first marriage.

Scripture adds: "Wherefore shall a man leave father and mother and shall cleave to his wife, and they shall be two in one flesh." Mark that it says two, not three, four or more. Human passion often mars God's
arrangements, but passion violates all laws. It is in order to check and govern passion that Christ made marriage a sacrament, a holy thing, that, being sacred, it would be the more respected. St. Paul, referring to matrimony, says: "This is a great sacrament but I speak in Christ and in the Church." What are we to think of those to-day who regard it as a mere business transaction.

There is but one Church in the world today that regards marriage as did Christ and the apostles. If there were no other argument for the divinity of the Catholic Church, that would suffice. For marriage, of all things in the world, offers the greatest field for hum
an willfulness.

Man's heart is so changeable in its affections that it is constantly seeking a devise to remove the barriers of restraint. All other religions in the world made concessions to this tendency except the Catholic Church. Truth is always the same; it changes not to suit the times or the passions. The Catholic Church could have held all England in its fold if it were willing to make concessions to Henry VIII on marriage. Can we imagine Christ making compromise with sin? Neither could His
representative.

Marriage has as great difficulties for Catholics as it has for Protestants or infidels, but they meet it as God
directs, and in the end they are gainers by it. A man and wife may have their differences, but if they know that their union is indissoluble, they patch them up. But if they feel that they can make a new alliance, the breach widens and soon a chasm yawns between them. And what becomes of the children.

Again, if a man and wife fear dissolution of the marriage, they may take precautions against having children. Suppose their fathers and mothers did that, where would they and their children be now! If the thing is lawful, one has much right to do it as another, And soon where would the world be! So we can readily see that there is need of a powerf
ul influence in the world to keep it from the vagaries and ruin of passion.

There is but on influence on earth today that safeguards marriage, and that is the sacrament of matrimony of the Catholic Church. The sex instinct is the strongest human passi
on. Among every race it is the hardest thing to control and is the source of untold evils.

The Catholic Church alone, as the voice of God, speaks out authoritatively and uncompromisingly on this matter. If she were not divine, she could not have the courage to stand up before the tide of sensuality that has swept aside every other barrier. By her lofty ideals, by her example of virginity, by her sacraments, and by her perpetual reminder of the judgments of God,
she gives man a power to rise superior to the baseness within him.

Mankind
should welcome an institution which makes the family secure, brings respect to father and mother, and safeguards the virtue of son and daughter.

GOD AND MYSELF

By: Fr. Martin J. Scott, S.J.