Today is Father’s Day
Traditional marriage is the only institution that brings together a man and a woman for life providing any child who comes from their union with the secure foundation of a mother and a father.
Our culture has taken for granted for far too long what experience, common sense, and God’s wise design all confirm: the difference between a man and a woman matters, and the difference between a mom and a dad matters to a child.
It matters for a child to have a mother and a father of his own flesh and blood. It matters for a boy to have a father who is the model of Christian manhood as he grows up. It matters for a girl to have a mother who models Christian womanhood as she grows up.
A father and a mother bring unique qualities endowed by nature and nature’s God. They are indispensable. Children are vulnerable and are threatened by the absence of a father and mother.
Civil law has always extended special privilege to traditional marriage.the law has always recognized that marriage between a man and a woman is privileged in virtue of its aptness for the generation of children.
Traditional definition of marriage under the law has nothing to do with discrimination. It has everything to do with a community of life and love between a man and a woman who are open to the procreation of children. Marriage between a man and a woman who are open to life did not originate with society or with evolution. God himself designed marriage.
Today is Trinity Sunday
The mystery of the Most Holy Yrinity is the central mystery of our Christian faith. The community of life and love between the persons of the trinity is the model of the community of life and love between a man and a woman in traditional marriage.
God creates as God is. God is a family of persons and so he created another family of persons when he created your family and my family.
God creates as God is. The only place besides the trinity where persons come together in a communion of love and beget another person is the human family.
The unity of husband wife and child is an echo of the family in the blessed trinity. God made people into families to reflect his own nature. We call those people mother, father and child.
The body was God’s idea from the beginning. Sex was God’s idea from the beginning. Sex was good from the beginning and it is still good. It was an idea from the mind of the living trinity and so no one must ever call it evil.
These are wonderful ideas that God put into existence. And the most wonderful of all was his idea that the love of a male person and female person would produce another living person. That’s human sexuality.
We can see from what we have said about the trinity and marriage that the church’s teaching on marriage and human sexuality is not based on feelings, or customs or cultures or what everybody is doing at any given time. The teaching of the catholic church on human sexuality and marriage originates from the very nature of the blessed trinity itself. That is why it cannot be redefined.
Pope St. John Paul ii developed this theme in his theology of the body. Everything the catholic church teaches about marriage and human sexuality stems from our understanding of the communion of life and love that exists in the trinity.
While the culture has failed in many ways to live up to the model of life and love that exists in the trinity we must not give up on traditional marriage. Marriage is not simply a mechanism for delivering benefits: it is the union of a man and a woman in a loving permanent, life-giving union to pro-create children.
At the end of the day in spite of what the law or the supreme court decides in the future about traditional marriage no one can change our instinctive understanding about what marriage is. No one can change human nature as created by God. No one can change marriage as it models the trinity. That is the bottom line and we will hold to that no matter what the world decides to do. We will not follow the world’s plan. We will follow God’s plan.
Today is Father’s Day
Thoughtful people have an obligation to promote the timeless institution of marriage. Fathers, you are the protectors of your family. You are the teachers of your children. You have an obligation to be vigilant whenever a small group of people endangers the culture and values that are designed to protect your children.
Fathers, you need to be men of faith. God the father honored you and empowered you when he gave you the same title as he gave himself.
Fathers, you need to be spiritual leaders in your home. You need to know what you believe you need to have a strong conviction about what you stand for and what you would die for. Your children need to know what you would die for.
You need to guard your children. What are the outside forces that are invading your home and influencing your children? Why should TV, the internet and the street shape your children’s values?
Does the world love your children more than you do.? Is that why you are allowing the world to teach your children values that you don’t agree with?
I know that you love your children more than the world loves them. You must reach them first with your ideas and your values. You are empowered by the holy trinity to do this.
We honor fathers because it is not easy to be a father today. But easy or difficult, there is a growing body of evidence from research that fathers are very important in the development of their children.
A father acts as a model for his son’s growth into Christian manhood. He models for his daughters the traits they should look for in judging the character of men their age, especially any prospects for marriage.
A man permits no one to threaten or upset his wife—and this includes their own children. A hugely important part of a father’s job is to defend his wife against their children’s rudeness, insolent disobedience, and impulsive aggression.
I know a man who took his children aside an said to them in a no-nonsense voice: “I want you to know that she is not just your mother. She is my wife. And I don’t allow anyone t treat my wife with disrespect”. Then he looked at them and said: “don’t force me to get physical about it. Just be nice to her.”
Fathers, memories are all your children will have after you are gone. How do you want your children to remember you? That you loved them; that you were a man of good character; that you were a man of faith; that you taught them their prayers; that you led them to the confessional; that you never missed mass on Sunday if you could possibly get there; that you were kind, generous and forgiving; that they were proud of their father because he was an honorable man?
On this Father’s Day I congratulate every father and grandfather in this church. I challenge you to be strong men of God for your children.