I’ve posted this Valentine’s Day message in FB (2/14/2016), as part of my “Marriage is Beautiful” reflections. Now I’m posting it in this blog’s REFLECTIONS.
Today is the feast day of St. Valentine – a saint with an ambiguous history, but from him sprouted a very popular tradition.
Consumerism has romanticized the celebration, but what Valentine’s is all about is in fact, the “marriage of couples within the Christian church” – where “marriage is sacred between one man and one woman“. The celebration today is relegated to material things that you can give to a loved one instead of committing yourself to someone in the bond of matrimony blessed by God.
Yes, flowers and chocolates play a part in boosting your loved one’s emotions especially when photos of which are posted in social media’s status and others “LIKE” them. But they are just frills, “icing to the cake”. The most important thing is renewing this commitment to each other in God’s loving presence and offering prayers for all the couples you know especially those whose marriages are currently facing trials and oppression. We also offer our prayers for those who have suffered the breakdown of marriage and who are left to assume both responsibilities of a home’s pillar and light, that they may find strength and comfort in the Lord who never forsakes those who put their trust in Him.
Today, Christian family is under attack. The solemnity of a Christian marriage is now brought down to the grandiose banquet, that without it, a marriage is just optional. Let us also offer our prayers for those who are living together but have not yet received the sacrament of matrimony, that they may find the true joy of living under the kingship of the Lord Jesus Christ, and building the “Church of the Home”.
To bring back the importance to what Valentine’s Day is all about, our group requested our parish priest to bless our “Marriage vows” renewal. After the post-Communion prayers, Fr. Migz, the life behind the newly erected parish of Pope St. John XXIII parish, called our group to go in front of the congregation and invited other married couples to join as well.
Before he proceeded with the “renewal of marriage vows”, he told the congregation especially the youth:
“walang aalis, i-witness nyo na tunay nga na merong ‘FOREVER’.”
It was a short ceremony but a meaningful and a tear-jerker one. While solemnizing the ceremony, in 2 or three occasions, his voice caught for he also remembered his parents who just had their golden wedding anniversary. Like a virus, we were all affected by his emotions.
So today, when seemingly church marriage is an option, we who have been at it for quite a time, will have to testify:
“Truly, Marriage is Beautiful!”
May the good Lord bless you and your family.