Holy Family

Holy Family

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Feast of Saint Polycarp

Good morning. In today’s Gospel from the book of Luke we are told that if we wish to follow Jesus we can expect to suffer and we are to do so willingly. “If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.” In marriage this invitation by Our Lord to take up the cross is especially relevant. Often times in marriage we not only need to take upon our shoulders the pains and sufferings of our own life situations, but out of love and compassion for our spouse we often take upon our shoulders the pains and sufferings of the other. In marriage we come to feel with and for our partner, we come to rise above our own selves and take on our shoulders the cross of the other for the sake of the ‘we’, for the sake of the marital union. True love cannot be without this willingness to take up on our own shoulders the cross of the other partner. Marital love requires sacrifice and the willing gift of one’s self, the willing carrying of the cross for one another. This is the covenant we make, in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health, to love and honor all the days of our life. Marriage is a journey we take together to assist one another in following Christ, and anyone who wishes to follow Him must be willing to put aside their own wants and needs and be willing to take up that cross daily. This doesn’t necessarily have to always be about sackcloth and ashes. Doing more of what brings joy to each other is part of doing for one another. So, just do more of what works. Make a great day!

Today we recall the good life, gifts, and work of Saint Polycarp of Smyrna.

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