The Catholic Family Handbook, Fr. Lovasik
Model your Home Life on the Holy House of Nazareth
The Holy Family lived in a plain cottage among other working people, in a village perched on a hillside. Although they did not enjoy modern conveniences, the three persons who lived there made it the happiest home that ever was.
You cannot imagine any of them at any time thinking first of himself. This is the kind of home a husband likes to return to and to remain in.
Mary saw to it that such was their home. She took it as her career to be a successful homemaker and mother. And there was never a voice raised in that home.
You cannot not imagine Joseph shouting at his spouse and Mary screaming back at him, or the child Jesus answering impudently. You cannot imagine any of the three sulking or being moody and uncooperative.
In establishing your home, adopt the characteristics of the holy house of Nazareth.
In proportion as you do so, you will have fashioned for yourselves a replica of the happiest home that ever was on earth. The thought of the Holy Family suggests the love of simplicity.
Domestic and marital happiness are closely bound up with the simple but good things of your state of life.
Seek your happiness within the range of your income and your social, domestic, and family circles, and you will spare yourself many heartaches.
Husband, be fair to your wife and family in trying to provide the necessities and ordinary comforts of life.
Wife, strive to live within the income that is provided.
Be loyal to each other in periods of trial, and confidently seek the blessing of God at Mass, Holy Communion, and prayer.
Pray often to the Holy Family to sanctify your family by their example and intercession, so that you may reach the ultimate goal of your marriage: the eternal possession of God.
In all your family needs and problems, confide in the intercession and help of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph.
They will protect, guard, and keep you in holy fear, in peace, and in the harmony of Christian charity.
By conforming yourselves to the divine model of this Holy Family, you will attain eternal happiness.
Above all, through their prayers, you and your children will be enabled to honor God by a virtuous life so as to be worthy of a heavenly reward.
Every other consideration should yield to the thought of aiding each other to attain that goal.
Only when religion permeates your daily life does your marriage fulfill its purpose. You and your children will find real happiness in direct proportion to your efforts to make God the very center of your married life.
In this, the Holy Family should be your inspiration. As a truly Catholic parent, try to copy the example of the Holy Family and to see in a hidden life of prayer, work, and daily fidelity to the commonplace, the surest steppingstone to sainthood.
As a family, try to lead a hidden life with Jesus in the Holy Eucharist. Through holy Mass, offer yourselves through Mary’s hands as a sacrifice with Jesus; at Holy Communion, you will be changed into Jesus by divine grace so that you may live His life; by your visits to the tabernacle, you will enjoy His friendship ship in the midst of the many problems of life.
If you have faith, you will discover His presence and see His veiled glory.
If you love Him in the Holy Eucharist to the extent of making the Eucharist the center of your life, He will pour out His grace into your hearts and breathe the peace of God into your souls and make your burdens light.
If you speak to Him, your God, with reverent familiarity, He will enlighten you about His Providence in your regard and strengthen you to bear the crosses He sends you.
Devotion to the Holy Eucharist is the surest and easiest way of making your family resemble the Holy Family of Nazareth.
Joseph, the honest workman, is still the guardian of families. Mary, the Mother of God, is the blessed mother of every Catholic home. Jesus, subject to the model of every child.
Through their intercession, may you and your family find your joy in God in this life, and may you be reunited to enjoy Him for all eternity in a family! Follow St. Paul’s counsel
In his letter to the Ephesians, St. Paul gives us some general principles to follow in order to make family life truly Christian.
To the entire family, he says, “Always and for everything [give] thanks in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God the Father. Be subject to one another out of reverence for Christ.”‘
To wives he says, “Wives, be subject to your husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife as Christ is the head of the Church, His Body, and is Himself its Savior. As the Church is subject to Christ, so let wives also be subject in everything to their husbands.”‘
To husbands he says, “Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the Church and gave Himself up for her…. Even so husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.”‘
To children he says, “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. `Honor thy father and thy mother’ (this is the first commandment with a promise), `that it may be well with you and that you may live long on the earth.’”
To fathers, he says, “Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.”‘
This is the perfect solution to a major family problem. Let the wife be subject to her husband as if he were Christ. Let the husband love his wife as Christ loves the Church.
If such a relationship existed between husband and wife, they would be in harmony as the Church and Christ perfect love and peace. Finally, let children obey and respect their parents. If they do, God will bless them and grant peace to that family.
A Rule of Life for a Catholic woman, no matter what walk of life she may be in, is very valuable. It will save her from caprice and will help her to accomplish much in her vocation and her personal journey of sanctity…
Here is a marriage blueprint that every woman can follow. Happy marriages do not just happen, they are made. It takes three parties to make a good marriage; the husband, the wife, and the Lord. This book is concerned with helping the woman to become the wife desired and therefore loved that every man worth having wishes to find and keep.<P> This book sold over a quarter of a million copies shortly after its publication in 1951, and it was read by Catholics and non-Catholics alike. It is a practical manual. It should be read by every woman considering entering the matrimonial state and also by those women who are already married. It can also be read by men who may wish to see what a real challenge it is for a woman to live up to their expectations and how grateful they should be if they are blessed to find the woman of their desires…
Armed with Barbeau s wisdom, you’ll grow closer to your wife and to your children, while deepening your love for God. You’ll be able to lead your family to holiness amidst the troubles and temptations that threaten even the best of families today: infidelity, divorce, materialism, loneliness, and despair.
The Father of the Family makes good fathers and good fathers are the secret to happy homes….
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