The Expectations of Marriage
#6
(11-27-2020, 08:16 PM)Sword of St. Michael Wrote: [Quotes from Casti Connubii and the Address to Midwives]

I have read both of these documents in full, and while it is pre-counciliar material, it's still so dangerously close to that era of upheaval that I tread cautiously.  I would love to see a papal document of the High Middle Ages that discusses this "unitive meaning".  Yes, I know it has been referred to in documents over the centuries, but only in the last century has this really been elevated to almost the level of the procreative meaning.

(11-27-2020, 08:16 PM)Sword of St. Michael Wrote: For us, we practice abstinence the night before receiving our Lord. Personal thing, not a required... My understanding is that this holds true even for married priests, must be celebrate before mass.

The latter case is what I have heard too for Eastern rites (which is why many of such parishes do not have daily Mass).

And speaking of daily Mass, your practice I would consider very reasonable, much along the same lines of the fast from food prior to Communion: It all helps with the preparation.  That being said, it would be very difficult to be a daily communicant if one was exercising their marriage rights so frequently.

This may be diverting off into a separate discussion, but even amongst traditional Catholics, I am surprised to find how few daily communicants there are.  I get that many travel from far away, but daily Mass is not out of reach for the majority of the parishioners, is it?  Should we not strive for that daily Communion above everything else?  (Full disclosure: I make it to Mass five days per week.  If my parish ever adds the two weeknight Masses that are missing from the schedule, I will then be a daily communicant.)

(11-27-2020, 08:16 PM)Sword of St. Michael Wrote: Something to keep in mind here, (1 Corinthians 7:5).

“Do not deprive each other, except perhaps by mutual consent for a time, to be free for prayer, but then return to one another, so that Satan may not tempt you through your lack of self-control.”

I may be naive here, but is the self-control element really that difficult?  I suppose every man has his own challenges (and every woman hers).  Frankly, unless I knew I had the proper supports in place for another child, financial and otherwise, I would be frightened to risk conception.  That's enough to regulate self-control for me.  I wouldn't want to be irresponsible, especially to my wife and children, by bringing upon them a burden exceedingly difficult to bear.

Allow me to be very clear: Children are a gift and not a burden.  That is very true, but I am sure all can agree that the proper supports have to be in place to raising a family (stable housing, steady income, etc.).  If my wife is exhausted full-time raising a six-month old, that being her first child, is it really responsible to have another so quickly (if capable), particularly if money is tight?  What would seem to me to be the better part of valour in such circumstances is to abstain.  Certainly not the practice of NFP, as if such circumstances would constitute "grave" reasons to try to deliberately avoid the fertile window.  I would highly doubt it.

(11-27-2020, 08:16 PM)Sword of St. Michael Wrote: The wife can and has rights to her husband's body due to the marriage contract, and likewise, the husband has rights to his wife's body for the same reason. Thus, since in a way your body is no longer yours but your spouses, any decision to abstain must be made by both parties, not just one. A refusal of sex for no grave reason is actually grave matter, something that is not mentioned much in today's world.

Agreed, but when this is spoken of, it is almost always in the context that the husband is more demanding of the marriage rights than the wife.  Has there ever been a traditional Catholic wife who requested the martial act more than her husband?

(11-27-2020, 08:16 PM)Sword of St. Michael Wrote: thinking on it, it would be easier for me to go into a dessert and live my life alone then to raise a family. Would not have to worry about others, just myself. Far easier to pray and contemplate God then to have a family to feed, a toddler destroying things and a crying infant. And that there is why celibacy and or very limited marital love is not for everyone. It is a way to holiness, but not the only way. I am made much more perfect if you will by having the family, having the chance for a large family while we can (biological clock), and having all the pride, ego etc exposed daily infront of me, at this point in my life, then if I was to be in a different situation.

Agreed.  It is still difficult for me, however, to view the contemplative life and it's austerity versus the married life with its physical pleasures as anything but a trade-off.  Sure, you get to experience bodily pleasures... and then deal with the responsibility of saving not just your soul but the souls of others.... and there will be sleepless nights and crying children (which, for the record, does not scare me away from marriage.  I understand it would require a lot of sacrifice, and fussy children are just one of them.).

(11-27-2020, 08:16 PM)Sword of St. Michael Wrote: Same, so many of the couples we know live like roommates, no kids, no future, just day to day, and they dont seem happy. They are living for themselves, not someone else, as marriage and later kids demands of you.

You have hit the nail right on the head.  It is the lack of demand in my state in life that has me greatly unsettled.

(11-27-2020, 09:27 PM)Some Guy Wrote: The Church has never prohibited the conjugal act simply because someone is incapable of getting pregnant from natural causes or is already pregnant. Sure Adam and Eve pre-Fall might have maybe been super rational about when they exercised their marital rights, but a married couple is allowed to exercise that right every evening as far as I am aware.

St. Thomas Aquinas said in the pre-Fall state, Adam and Eve would have exercised their marital rights with perfect ordering of their passions.  If I remember correctly, he also said it would have always resulted in conception (makes sense with the perfect ordering).  He did say too that all would be married, that every man would have a wife and vise versa.

(11-27-2020, 09:27 PM)Some Guy Wrote: My understanding is that in prior eras of the Church it was more common for married couples to abstain from the conjugal act during Lent and/or Advent. If that is correct, then clearly your hyper utilitarian approach to baby making was never the norm for married Catholics, other wise what would there be to abstain from during those penitential seasons?

"From the pleasures, of course.  How dare we experience so much happiness and joy in seasons of ‘sackcloth and ashes’ as penitential ones."  This is the line that's run through my thinking, and I would not say it is necessarily reflective of my beliefs, though I do believe abstinence during penitential seasons makes a lot of sense to growing in the spiritual life.

And again, as I mentioned above, it's still hard to wrap my head around the pleasures being anything but a trade-off.  Even in the austere, contemplative life, though, I suppose one can ensure his fair share of suffering.  Suffering is inevitable no matter what path in life you choose.  I have heard it said, and I am sure others as well have, that you should "choose the vocation that's most generous for you".  As a natural loner, the celibate life appears less generous to me than the married state would be.  I'd enjoy the solitude too much.
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Messages In This Thread
The Expectations of Marriage - by NSMSSS - 11-27-2020, 05:15 PM
RE: The Expectations of Marriage - by NSMSSS - 11-27-2020, 06:41 PM
RE: The Expectations of Marriage - by Some Guy - 11-27-2020, 09:27 PM
RE: The Expectations of Marriage - by NSMSSS - 11-28-2020, 11:36 AM



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