Happy Valentine’s Day

“When our pastor preaches about marriage, he likes to talk about the seasons of life – the springs, summers, falls and winters of marriage.

It’s a beautiful idea.

And I’d like to suggest, as well, that marriage can also be measured by liturgical seasons.

There is the Advent of expectation – for a wedding, or a baby, or a new home. There is the Christmas of celebration, the happy events, birthdays and anniversaries. There is what we experience most of the time, which is Ordinary Time. The every day ups and downs that mark most of our lives.

And then there is Lent. The season of sacrifice, of ‘rending your heart,’ as the prophet Joel puts it.

So I would like to challenge those who are married to ask yourselves, during this penitential season: what is the Lent in your marriage? How do you “rend your heart” for one another? What do you give up, out of love, for love?

And I would ask those who aren’t married: above and beyond these 40 days, what is the Lent in your life? In your relationships? In your friendships? Your work?

And, more importantly, what is the Easter? Where in your life do you find resurrection? Joy? Renewal?”

from a Homily for World Marriage Day, 2008