The doorway expresses the liminality of the rhythmic gathering and dispersal that is part of family experience. Kathleen Beckman has written a fantastic book on the subject of spiritual warfare entitled, “A Family Guide to Spiritual Warfare: Strategies for Deliverance and Healing “. Every action within our families that strengthens the love among the family members is a holy and sacred action. The bonding does not go away even if the child leaves or dies. As we grow in our apprehension of what God calls us to, we struggle to awaken to the sacred quality of what … Nothing we do in our families is too small or too insignificant to be considered sacred or holy. Then we proclaim that humankind’s dearest hopes are fulfilled, that God does not simply enter into the substance of history but that God transfigures history utterly. One is to love God alone. …whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, … It is easy as a Catholic parent to be sucked into a narrow vision of what it means to be a Catholic family: to identify a set of criteria or choices and idealize those characteristics as the only way to be a successful Catholic family. Family life offers many spiritual opportunities that are unique to it and presents a valid and distinct path to holiness. Angry that the very church which so recently was the gathering of a spirited community now should be more like a concert performance with strict rules of decorum. Among the beatitudes, purity, or singleness of heart, has for some time arrested my attention. The door is the narrow passage through which the family enters to reunite and through which the family passes when its wholeness fragments into discreet parts. Their child, a boy, was born somewhat prematurely. Spiritual Growth within a Catholic Family. Each of us was created by God with a deep longing to love and to be loved. This is remarkably true of our Judeo-Christian legacy. The family shares this mission with the gathered church. We need to recognize each of these family activities as holy and sacred and set apart for a divine purpose. What would he be like at sixteen? The heart always remains molded by the shape of that love. Wendy M. Wright sets out to balance the traditional metaphor of the spiritual life as journey, pilgrimage and battle that was probably more tuned to celibate life with one she thinks more suited, for lay people and family life – the metaphor of home and dwelling. So I picked him up and headed for the back of the church. At the doorway we mark the transitions. Called to consciousness of our own baptismal promises, sprinkled with the cleansing waters that flew from the tips of a fragrant green bough, we proceeded to undress our tiny infant and offer him, naked and squealing, to the waters of the baptismal fount. The love that flows among the family members is the most important element of the spirituality of family. Yes, the women heard the radical nature of the call. Many of you may be tempted to call up this culturally treasured image when the word family is mentioned. A liminal state is a time of ritual power and danger between an old phase which is passing away and a new phase that has not yet come into being. (CCC 1655) Jesus Himself points to the Communion of saints, not biological or hereditary bonds, as His true family in faith, saying, “Here are My mother and My brothers!” (Mt. As we continue the celebration of National Marriage Week (February 7-14, 2017), we can reflect on the ways that Catholic marriage has a distinctive spirituality - sacramental, communitarian, and missionary. This is that the “more” we sense we are called to is not only discovered to be hidden in whatever is – the “more” is also an arresting call to become other than what we are at present. Others are more fearful: a family member missing, killed in a car accident, lost on the city streets of America to an unknown fate, estranged, dead of an overdose, suicide. To welcome a child is to accept responsibility for another person twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, for a good many years. The home as an image can reflect a sense of identity and meaning-making that contains within itself a clue to the way we understand ourselves and our world. Then we robed him in the white garments of his new life. College, career, marriage? It means entrusting what you most love to the expansive care and protection of God. God is indeed with us but not yet in fullness. To welcome a child is to recognize the surprising expansiveness of your own capacity to love and to confront the shattering truth of your own violence and self-centeredness. I thought of my own son, still so little. The domestic church enfleshes the Word of God in a distinctive way that must enrich the self-understanding of the entire church. The second snowy image is of a February day in Cambridge several years ago. The Diocesan Office of Family Life and Spirituality supports families to live out their call as the “Domestic Church” by becoming: The place of encounter with Jesus … Your homes will be equally diverse in appearance. Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers, known worldwide as the Dynamic Deacon, is a powerful speaker who has presented talks on marriage, family, and men’s spirituality all over the world.He is … Both of us were afraid, because of the gravity of the reports, that this might be the last time he would see her. Within this lived tension our spiritual lives are cultivated: the tension between the factuality of our daily lives with their monotony, opaqueness, limitations and sorrows, with occasional moments of insight and beauty, and the equally factual but less realized soarings of our hearts. At the far side of the graveyard a low tombstone caught my eye. What I hope is that through a process of association and imagination you will find your own home and family here. But being family as a spiritual discipline is, I think, a matter of the heart. By Annemarie Scobey, from the pages of At Home with Our Faith, Claretian Publications’ print newsletter for parents on nurturing spirituality in the home. Body of Christ5. Loyola Press provides resources to nurture Catholic family life and to recognize the grace of God in daily living. The love we share is an expression of our family spirituality. By this I do not mean to suggest that we imagine ourselves as other than we are. A congenital heart defect was discovered. So when you come across these people, you address them differently,” he says. A spirituality of marriage, therefore, is a way to help husbands and wives live out the vocation of marriage in light of faith. Marriage is sacramental because it is a sign of Christ’s … You learn patience and judgment and are confronted with your own very real and heretofore untested limitations. While this mystical dimension is the foundation of the family’s spiritual life, there is another profound human intimation that is common to our diversity of homes. Could it be so tested? (7). 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