This article is for the single folk out there…and for parents of young adults (this is always good information for parents so we can instruct our children properly).
This book is an excellent choice to help one on the path to choosing a good mate.
Solemn engagement of my daughter and son-in-law with Fr. VanderPutten:
Clean Love in Courtshipby Father Lovasik
Be on your guard against elements which make for separation and divorce. One of the chief causes of these disorders is that the couple discovers after marriage that they are mismatched; they have little in common. They are uncongenial in temperament and disposition; they differ in moral character and in religious outlook, in culture and tastes.
Association loses its charm; boredom sets in and finally leads to aversion. Test yourself to find out if you are really called to married life with this particular person. As soon as you realize that such a union does not and cannot appeal to you, gently discontinue the courtship regardless of consequences.
It is better to part as friends in good time than to be compelled either to live together very unhappily for life, or to separate as enemies later on. After all, it is the purpose of courtship to learn this very thing.Courtship should be entered upon with a deep sense of responsibility and mutual respect.
Intelligent choice of a mate must not look only to mutual physical attraction, but more so to harmony of tastes,feelings, desires, aspirations, and of temperament. It must weigh spiritual more than physical values.
What has begun as a mere sex intimacy is not likely to end in a happy marriage. In courtship you must also be honest and honorable towards your partner.
Reveal yourself and your family and personal stature with sincerity and truth to the extent to which he or she has the right to this information. However, there are certain things of a family or personal nature one need not and must not tell, such as personal repented sin. They are best left buried and forgotten.
No one except God should ever know of past sins. As soon as you know that a person has no prospect whatever of marrying you, you are in duty bound to discontinue receiving his attentions.
After you are engaged to be married, you can no longer keep company honorably with others, as long as this engagement holds.Listen to the wise voice of the ancient Church which has seen millions of young couples through happy marriages and has only their earthly success and eternal happiness at heart.
The Catholic Church warns you in advance that you will pay a heavy penalty for negligence, haste, and rashness in choosing a partner.
Before she admits candidates to the priesthood, she requires them to spend long years in training and discipline, meditating all the while on the seriousness of the step they contemplate.
Yet Holy Orders imposes no obligation of greater duration than that imposed by matrimony. Refrain from beginning to keep regular company too soon. If you begin to do so at sixteen or seventeen years, you expose yourself either to the danger of a premature marriage with its frequent mistake of poor choice or you court the hardly lesser evil of an immoderately long courtship with the attendant disadvantages.
You tie yourself down to one person and thus lose the social advantages and contacts that will have a great influence upon your later life. You expose yourself in a special way to temptations against chastity, because this love affair may be a very prolonged one, and the danger of violating chastity increases as the affection is prolonged.
If you begin “to go steady” while you are a student, you will find it almost impossible to do justice to your studies.Since courtship limits your interest to a single person, it should not be undertaken until you are in a position seriously to consider marriage in the not too distant future.
This presupposes that you have attained the age to understand the great responsibilities of marriage and that you have enough financial resources to establish and maintain a home.
Marrying in haste nearly always means repenting bitterly at leisure. Do not prefer to be sorry to being certain.While the Church warns against courtships of undue brevity, she likewise counsels against those of excessive length.
No hard and fast rule can be laid down determining the exact length of courtship. It should be of sufficient duration to allow young people to learn the character and disposition of each other quite well.
This can usually be done in a period ranging from six months to a year. Ordinarily regular company-keeping should not be protracted much beyond a year. Aside from the obvious moral dangers involved, long courtships are undesirable because they often end in no marriage or in an unhappy marriage.
Grievous injustice can be done to the girl if the man terminates the courtship after monopolizing her attention for several years, and depriving her of other opportunities. Courtship is not the end but the vestibule leading to the great Sacrament.
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There will be some things, of course, that very soon they will not want to do for her..dull, dreary things, fetching, cleaning, carrying. But these also they must be trained to do. The mother will often want to save time and trouble by doing them for herself, but if she does she will hurt her children’s character. She must train them young to work for others, to be unselfish, to give. -Dominican Nun, Australia, 1950’s www.finerfem.com
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