Here's my weekly installment for my continuing review of the above book. Please pardon me today, since I am still working through a cold and I am not at 'full throttle' just yet. I do not wish to easily dismiss this week's chapter since it continues to delve deeply into our Domestic Church, but my post may not be as lengthy today. If you would like to follow the reviews from the beginning of the book, start with this post.
This week's focus:
The Nursery: The Blessings of Little Souls
This chapter discusses the gifts of the souls of our children, conception and contraception and the role mother's have been given in their special communion with the mystery of life.
How beautiful and precious is life! How wonderful the gift of children in our marriages and in our domestic church! Unfortunately, how often that is not seen by our society, our government, our friends or even our family. Sadly, we live in a world where life is not necessarily valued everywhere as precious and unrepeatable. In a society of convenience, too often children are viewed as an inconvenience to be avoided at all cost. The Church does not share those views and therefore teaches that each and every marriage act remain open to the transmission of life. Married couples should regard it as their proper mission to transmit human life and to educate their children; they should realize that they are thereby cooperating with the love of God the Creator.
While we live in a world with 'contraceptive mentality' filled with negative values, we must have continued determination to act with responsible parenthood and with a respect for the conjugal act in marriage. It is a precious and valued gift we have as spouses and often it is one that is attacked and undermined in our marriages.
Motherhood plays a role in the special communion it has with the mystery of life, especially in the beginning as it forms in the woman's womb.
Whether it occurs biologically or through adoption, a mother's contribution in the early stages of her child's life is "decisive in laying the foundation for a new human personality".
A mother's love increases as her child grows within her and as God gifts her with motherly graces, causing her heart to expand to love other human beings in a deeper way as well.
True, children are wonderful blessings to our Church and our little domestic ones as well, but tough days in mommyland can make it difficult to find the motherly grace I need and rely on. Anyone else with me? Many times I have to remind myself that this is my vocation and I must embrace it with joy and love and bring that to my home. And then there's this reminder from the Catholic Catechism: "Children in turn contribute to the growth in holiness of the parents"(CCC, 2227) I've found this to be true on a DAILY basis! Thankfully, God arranged it perfectly when he came up with this one: Mothers are given the task and responsibility of raising their little souls to heaven and while doing so, the children will, by God's grace, also be helping to sanctify their parents' lives. We all need our domestic church and its members for us to work toward Heaven! No one is insignificant or 'useless' in our homes, none without value, each unrepeatable.
**The author cites that if you would like to read more essential teachings of the Church regarding husband and wife's cooperation with God in transmitting human life, you can find it in Familiaris Consortio available at Catholic bookstores or on the Vatican website.
Blessings on you as you embrace the gift of the little souls in your household and continue to be open to life!
Next Week: The Living Room!