Question:

What is included in the foundation of Catholic Living?

Answer:

Maintaining a spiritual family life in today’s world often proves to be a great deal that many families find it hard to accomplish. Modern temptations, including smoking, drinking, and premarital sex, make prayer and devotion pale in comparison. Moreover, parents can model the foundation of Catholic living to their children by following the laws of the Church. Going for holy Mass, going to confession regularly, and praying the Rosary with each other sets an example that children will grow to be grateful for and include in their own lives. The Church, in fact, makes it easy to follow the foundation of Catholic living. Since the adoption of Vatican II in the early 1980s, the Church’s leaders have abandoned former practices that included abstaining from meat on Fridays and women having to cover their heads before going into the sanctuary. Modern Catholics are permitted to wear casual clothing to Mass and women no longer have to cover their hair with a veil. Women are permitted to serve their parishes in ministerial roles, such as being a Eucharist minister or a lector. Young girls now are permitted to be altar servers, a practice unheard of prior to the last twenty years.

As such, the Church demonstrates to modern families that it wants people to feel comfortable living by their faith. Even as the rules for everyday behavior have been loosened, the tenants of the Church are still in place. They still reflect Jesus’ true will and desire for His holy church. These tenants make the foundation of the modern Catholic family; these rules are the ones that make the Church’s families identifiable among other Christians. Even so, many young Catholics today shun the words of Jesus and look to trends and temptations to find their pleasure. The Church has not abandoned its warning against premarital sex. It maintains that sexual intercourse is a procreative and unitive activity sanctioned only for marriage. The act brings man and woman into a single entity, one in which God is present in their marriage and their commitment to each other. The fruition of this act is a child. Moreover, young people today view sex as a temporary pleasure designed only for fleeting physical pleasure. Parents who want their children to avoid premarital sex are urged to speak honestly and frankly with their children about the teachings of the Church in this matter. They can also model the ideal Catholic marriage by respecting and loving each other, and also by avoiding physical temptations themselves. Looking at questionable material on the Internet, watching explicit television shows, and making inappropriate comments about other people’s physical appearances can weaken their own marital bond with each other.

Modeling Catholic behavior also can be made easier by parents’ asking the blessed saints and angels to intercede for their family. Children should be reminded of their heavenly advocates, particularly the Blessed Mother, by witnessing their parents pray daily and asking for the intercession of the Virgin Mary, the saints, and others in Heaven. Prayer is central to the Catholic lifestyle.

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