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What God has joined cannot be divided

Jesus teaches that marriage is indissoluble. The Book of Genesis, in 2:22-24, which contains the oldest of the creation stories, tells a symbolic story depicting the world as God desired it before sin and disharmony entered the scene.

In the gospel reading for today’s liturgy, Jesus declares that in marriage, the two people become one flesh, one body, joined by God and not to be separated.

In the ancient Mediterranean world, marriages were not so much between two people, but between two families. The custom reflects something of the manner in which all of us were brought into this world. We did not choose our parents, but God did.

In the world of Jesus’ time, parents chose a marriage partner for their children.

So what are the implications of this for us today? Divorce is readily available in our society in Hong Kong and in every country of the world, except The Philippines, which has other ways of getting around it.

We know that not all marriages are good for the partners or for the children. So people need to choose a marriage partner wisely and be prepared to commit themselves to work at growing together as a loving couple.

Part of this initial wise choice can be participating in some of the pre-marriage courses which can help people to discern how compatible they are in decision-making, handling money and communicating on issues on which they may disagree.

There is a need to understand that an argument does not mean the end of a relationship. Problems need to be worked through. Help is available when necessary. Only the weak will not seek help.

Remember a marriage is the work of a life time. The wedding itself is just one day in that life-long journey together.

One of the models of the closeness of the relationship of marriage that we have is that of the role Mary plays in the Church. It is inseparable from her union with Christ and flows directly from it.

After her son, Jesus, ascended into heaven, Mary became an important part of the beginnings of the Church through her prayer. Through her association with the apostles and several other women, we also see Mary imploring the gift of the Spirit in her prayer, who had already overshadowed her in the annunciation.

A good suggestion for this week that would allow us to carry the theme of Sunday’s Mass into our everyday lives is to spend some time in meditation on the response psalm: “May the Lord bless us all the days of our lives. Let us give thanks for all the ways on a daily basis God enters into our lives.”

We cannot be aware of how God touches our lives unless we take time to reflect on the happenings of each day and the words of the psalm give us a good opportunity to put a few things into context.

          Diocese of Sandhurst