Evangelization is hard work…and it starts in our bedrooms

Posted by Christine Burrows

The election is over, and there’s no friend of religious freedom in the White House. Does that mean, as some might fret, that the Catholic Church (and all its affiliated organizations) are about to be forever subverted?

I choose not to believe this.

I won’t lie. I am disappointed with the outcome of the presidential race.  Maybe you are, too.  But does that mean we fold our arms, sulk, run and hide, or instead figure out how to save the things we treasure so deeply about our faith by becoming true evangelists?

I choose the latter.

We clearly have our work cut out for us.  Many current cultural and political trends run contrary to our beliefs; we are paddling upstream..This work must start, not in city hall, but in our neighborhoods, our homes – and in our bedrooms.

Our bedrooms?  Yes. That’s where we begin to nurture the most important relationship we have – our marriage. Through the marital embrace and open communication, one plus one equals one.  When two become one, we are stronger. In this strengthened state, we can begin to evangelize in our families. Then, if we’re lucky, some of these seeds will take root in our children, friends, siblings and parents. They, in turn, may then grow in confidence to share the message of our faith with their friends and spouses – and so on.

I saw a Facebook post the other day. It was one that had been liked by thousands of people before my kid’s elementary school classmate posted it. It was a picture of a husband and wife turned away from one another in bed. The accompanying story described a husband who asked his wife for a divorce so that he could marry another woman. His wife asked him to agree to carry her out of their bedroom every day for one month before she’d agree to the divorce. No spoilers here… the mere act of reconnecting with her physically drew the husband toward his wife and away from his desire to divorce….just too late.

Not everyone who read that post took from it what I did, but there’s a simple point to remaining physically connected with our spouses. Sharing home or parenting responsibilities with a spouse isn’t enough to preserve the marriage. That’s just co-habitating or co-parenting.

Real marriage involves a physical and emotional connection that doesn’t happen in any other relationships. And, when that intimacy is nurtured and God is blessing it, we can do just about anything… handle the grueling routines of raising kids, deal with unexpected hardships, and even do the hard work of preserving our faith and religious freedom.

So, let’s start our evangelization efforts in our bedrooms, and fortify ourselves for the harder work of evangelizing the rest of the country.

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What if Politicians Put a Focus on Families and Marriage?

Yesterday was the Indiana Senate debate between Republican Richard Mourdock, Democrat Joe Donnelly and Libertarian Andrew Horning.  The debate got national attention when it came to the topic of abortion. The candidates where asked about their views of abortion when there is rape and incest involved and Mourdock’s words got twisted and the media interpreted him saying God intended rape to happen.  (You can read the story here. )  I believe this is not what Mourdock meant to say and I believe he meant that even in the worst circumstances the child was still created and is a creation of God.

But yesterday’s Indiana Senate debate got me thinking about the Pro-Life vs. Pro-Choice argument that has been going on for years.  This topic creates a lot of arguments about freedom to choose to abort a pregnancy or not.  But what about the physiological effects abortion has on so many women and relationships?  Why don’t the politicians talk about that?  Couldn’t the politicians use this topic to talk about improving families and marriage?

What if Politicians Talked about families?
So, in yesterday’s debate what if one of the politicians responded with the something along the lines of  –

“No, even in this horrible incident abortion is not acceptable because there is a life in the womb.  But if I am elected I will put my focus on creating organizations that help these women and families. Abortion or no abortion if a woman is in this horrible situation the woman still has to deal with so much more psycholgically.  We are putting so much focus on the ability to choose but not on educating society on the importance of families and waiting to have sex until marriage.  How can we as a society live with ourselves knowing that we only care about the choice?  So my stance is that abortion is illegal in all instances but I want to fix the root of the problem and improve our view of marriage and families.  Sex is a wonderful gift given to us from God and it allows us to build our families in His image and likeness.  We are in a society where being a family is not the norm.  We are both in a society and a country that is in trouble because we are losing the meaning of family and marriage.  Many counties and states  within our country live with divorce rates above 50%, many teens believe it is acceptable to have sexual relations and our cultural is much more scandalous then ever before.  The most ideal starting point to fix our country is in the homes where we can strengthen families.  Not only do we have to watch over the present but we need to plant the seeds for the future and if we don’t make a dramatic revolution towards improving families and marriages then we will be doomed”

Why can’t politicians say something like this?

A Rich Young Man and Poor Unborn Child

Catholics Supporting Obama

We are in the heat of the presidential election with just over 2 weeks to go until the election.  Four years ago I was hurt that the Catholic vote went to President Obama – someone who was in favor of Pro-Choice and very clear on what he intends to do if elected.  So, here we are, four years later and we as American Catholics have a chance to rewrite history and go into the voting booths knowing exactly what the Catholic church teaches about life and the protection of the unborn.

Voting Nuns

Over the past few months I have been proud to see the Catholic church speak louder than it did four years ago.  From the USCCB to our local parishes I have heard a constant message – to know the Catholic church’s stance on the political issues.  Over forty years ago our country created a liberal society which included a sexual revolution making sex more about “feeling good” rather than what God intended it to be.  This revolution created the mindset that it was acceptable not to marry and to avoid having kids at the expense of satisfying oneself.  We’ve had enough and as Catholics we want to make it clear that this needs to stop.  It is our time to shine and help the pendulum swing in the direction that favors marriage and families.

While reflecting on today’s homily at Mass and the approaching presidential election I felt compelled to share with you the homily given by Fr. Adam Mauman at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel in Carmel, IN from last week, October 14.  Fr. Adam titles this homily “A Rich Young Man and Poor Unborn Child” and explains that human life is sacred and that ultimately we will not be judged while at the polls but rather before the Lord while on our knees.

Listen to Fr. Adam’s homily.

~God Bless