A Love Story: in two parts ~ by M. Connor – Reblog

Peanut Gallery: Please read the full story of this courageous woman – both the happy ending and the false start that preceded it.

Both are reblogged below for your convenience.
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Today IS My Wedding Day! (June 3, 2013) – reblogged from The Gospel Coalition

wedding-hands

God’s timing could not be more perfect. His grace saved me from making the biggest mistake of my life. Although I was living with the man I thought I would marry and our wedding was basically planned, I began to see that God promised much more for a relationship than I was setting myself up for in marrying a non-believer. At the point I called off our wedding, I had no idea if I would ever actually get married, but I was truly content being loved by the Lord.

Then, on the very day that I was supposed to marry someone else, the next chapter of my life began to unfold. While I was out of town visiting my best friend and trying to take my mind off things, I ran into a guy I had met at a church function a couple of months earlier. Through our initial communication, I was able to get a few important questions answered: he had a heart for God, he was around my age, and he was single.

The courting took off from there, and as our connection began to deepen through many lengthy conversations, I realized that he truly understood the Lord’s call to be a spiritual leader. Months went by as we continued to visit, meet one another’s families, and get to know each other on a deeper level. From our obsession with neatness to our feisty personalities (two areas where we constantly seek God’s grace), we were as compatible as any two people could be. Eventually he told me he loved me, and we knew we had to figure out a way to interweave our lives.

Then came a major roadblock. Although we had agreed to be celibate before marriage, my colored past of sexual sin had to be confronted. When he finally got up the courage to ask about it, I laid it all out there. Before I had a relationship with Jesus, I believed one of the world’s unfortunate lies: that I had to have sex with a guy if I was ever going to find someone to marry me. What I hadn’t planned for was the soul-tearing damage of layered sexual experiences that yielded a slew of disappointments. Over time, I became a severely damaged and broken soul.

Reading Sex and the Soul of a Woman by Paula Rinehart gave me hope to believe that God would follow through on his promises. “The freedom that comes from [the awareness of Jesus’ love] makes real love at the right time with the right man such a beautiful possibility,” she writes. “When the soil of your heart is primed to receive love, the courting dance is a clean and beautiful thing.”

And for me, it truly was. Through the healing redemption of the cross, I was set free and forgiven for my transgressions. Now this man who was trying to love me had to do the same. And since he had made the personal commitment to wait until marriage, it was an even tougher pill to swallow. But it was a perfect stage for God to reveal his grace. And he did.

Greater Meaning

When I think back to how our relationship began, I can see how the Lord was guarding my heart. His hand was at work—not only in the miraculous way he healed my heart, but also in how he brought true love into my life. Through this experience, I truly realized the depth of his love and began to trust in his ultimate plan for my life rather than my own. And through this suffering I was able to see things in new and different ways, learning to rely on him all the more.

During the time I was single, I got more involved in my church by joining the women’s ministry team, volunteering at Sunday service, and hosting a book club at my house, which afforded many opportunities to share my story. The more I shared, the more opportunities there were to help others struggling emotionally and relationally. In short, my story opened the door to meaningful conversations with people who had lost hope: single women who couldn’t seem to find love, people who were married to unbelievers, and those who were struggling to make their relationships work. At that point, it became clear that my suffering had much greater meaning. Through these interactions, others saw the possibility of another road—that healing and restoration were available to them through the grace of God and obedience to Christ.

Clothed with Joy

Today, by the grace of God, we join together as man and wife. Although I couldn’t see it at the time, and I wasn’t sure if I ever would, I never doubted that the Lord had a greater purpose and was at work through it all. We still have no idea what’s coming next (literally, we’re not even sure where we’re going to live), but we trust that God has a plan for us. And as we pick up our crosses and follow him, it will surely be revealed.

You have turned my mourning into joyful dancing. You have taken away my clothes of mourning and clothed me with joy, that I might sing praises to you and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give you thanks forever!
Psalm 30:11-12

M. Connor can be reached via email at mconnor0526@gmail.com. Her previous article, Today Was Supposed to Be My Wedding Day, was published on May 26, 2012.
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Today Was Supposed to Be My Wedding Day

May 26, 2012. It was supposed to be a momentous occasion—the day I would walk down the aisle in my mother’s lace wedding gown, peonies in hand, best friend at my side, family and friends looking on with joy. It was supposed to be the day I started a new chapter, the day my dreams would be fulfilled. Little did I know, God had other plans.

BrideWe met in the winter of 2010—me and God, that is. He always had his eye on me, but I barely even knew who he was. Once I began spending time with him, our relationship blossomed into something special. He cared for me and loved me like no other. He filled a huge void in my heart.

That’s how I came to know God. It’s also how I came to know the man I thought I would marry.

The relationship started out like many others, following cultural expectations rather than God’s design. Dating, sex, spending the night, meeting the parents, integrating the pets (him, a dog; me, two cats). After 10 months, on a snowy Sunday evening in front of the place we first met, he asked me to marry him. It was romantic indeed. Even strangers passing by yelled congratulations from their car windows.

I was excited to be engaged—to finally be moving toward marriage—but something never felt quite right. I sensed a resistance in my heart, like I wasn’t totally sure about something. But he was a good guy—the right age, handsome, fun, easy-going, from a decent family. What more could a girl want?

So I moved forward. Even though I had just bought my own home, I gave it up and moved in with him on a spring day in early March. Everyone has to make sacrifices for love, I reasoned. That’s where we’re going to end up anyway. Why not start now? At first, it was exciting and felt like the right thing to do. But a different story soon emerged.

After just a few months of living together, God shook things up. I accepted an awesome job opportunity in another state, so we left behind the house we just finished renovating and drove across the country (pets in tow) to set up our life far from home, family, friends, and church.

Shortly after we settled, a friend from work recommended we try out a small new Presbyterian church in the area. I was a tad leery, as I had recently been baptized in a non-denominational church, but I agreed to check it out. I immediately loved it and felt like this could be my church home. On my second visit, I filled out a visitor card, which asked a few questions about how I wanted to get involved. Did I want to join a life group? Be part of a ministry team? Have coffee with the pastor? Coffee sounded good. I checked the box.

Later that week, the pastor emailed me, asking when I wanted to get together. What a great opportunity to get to know him and learn more about the church, I thought. Maybe he would even be willing to officiate our wedding in a few months. High hopes turned to frustration when I mentioned the possibility to my fiancé. “Coffee? With a pastor?” he asked. “Heck, no. That’s just too weird.”

After weeks of my coercing, praying, hoping, and begging, he finally obliged. But we continued to fight about it—all the way to the front door of the pastor’s house. Regardless, I enjoyed myself and looked forward to hanging out with the pastor and his wife again soon. I could see them being our friends—a couple who would help guide our marriage and bring us closer to God.

Before we could marry, the church asked us to complete a series of counseling sessions, so we set up time to meet with our new pastor. He recommended we start reading the book When Sinners Say I Do by Dave Harvey. I ordered it online, along with Tim and Kathy Keller’s book The Meaning of Marriage. And in my determination to be the very best Christian wife I could be, I also ordered a copy of Carolyn Mahaney’s Feminine Appeal. I thought these books would help us get ready for one of the biggest steps we would ever take.

Help they did, but in a way I didn’t expect. As I started reading Harvey’s book, the first chapter stopped me dead in my tracks. He explained that faith is the most important part of a marriage. Faith? Really? Even though I was now a Christian, I had never considered this point before. Harvey explains that faith is like the first button on a shirt—if you get that wrong, nothing else will line up right.

I began considering how this idea played out in the episode at the pastor’s house, not to mention the weekly task of begging my fiancé to go to church, trying to convince him to join a Bible study, and asking him to remember to pray before dinner. Is it supposed to be this difficult?

No, it’s not, I learned from Harvey, Keller, and my pastor. I began to realize that just as my thinking had been flawed about sex as a prerequisite for love, I also had the wrong idea about the most important traits in a marriage. As I kept reading and talking to other Christians, no one said it was a good idea for me to marry someone with a different worldview. In other words, I had come to love Jesus and make my decisions based on him; my fiancé had not. That discrepancy became poison in our relationship—barely noticeable at first but eventually corrupting nearly every aspect of our lives. As I grew closer to God, I grew further from wanting to marry someone who did not have a relationship with him.

Keller’s teaching on Ephesians 5 helped clarify what I was discovering. Ephesians 5:25-27 says:

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.

Thankfully, the Holy Spirit spoke to me on a weekday in early January when my friend opened the Bible to this passage and showed me the truth. I came to understand that God intends for marriage to mimic Jesus’ selfless love for his people. I was awestruck. My husband is supposed to lead me closer to God? I immediately broke down crying. I kept digging, trying to understand how I got so far off base. “He’s a good man,” I argued. “Yes, but is he a Christian? Does he know Jesus?” people asked me in response. “But if I leave him, won’t I be going against what God says, by not loving the unbeliever?” Surprisingly, no. I was not yet married. I had not made a covenant with him before God. I was not bound to him. As much as it would hurt to say goodbye, I knew this was not the relationship God intended for me. He promises much more, and I wasn’t going to find it in a marriage with an unbeliever.

As this devastating realization sunk in, we began the process of disentangling our lives. And within a few weeks, my ex-fiancé headed back to his home with his belongings, including the dog I had come to love and all of my hopes and dreams for a lifetime of happiness together. We both knew he had to find God on his own terms, in his own way.

Who could have guessed that simply checking a box on a church form would eventually end in heartbreak, financial loss, and unwanted singleness? Difficult and sad as it was, God was there every step of the way. He was there in the simple way it ended, despite our lives being intertwined in nearly every way. He was there in the support and love our family and friends provided. He was there to give me a sense of peace that transcended all understanding. Left to myself, previous breakups had knocked me down to my lowest points in life. But this time, with more riding on the relationship than ever before, I was truly okay. I suppose obedience to God made the difference. As much as it hurts, God is always there to pick up the pieces.

Marriage and family are still the two things I want most in life, but I know that they’re in God’s control—not mine. Before I knew God, I tried to control my relational life by making poor decisions and sacrifices that brought little reward. Now, I find fulfillment in God. He is my rock, the one who deserves my love and attention. While it is a daily struggle to trust him with the things I care about so deeply, he has proven that he’s looking out for me. I leave my future in his hands.

Editors’ note: Read the follow-up article from M. Connor, “Today IS My Wedding Day!”

9 Things You Should Know About Marriage in America (Reblog – The Gospel Coalition)

9 Things You Should Know About Marriage in America

This week Americans celebrate National Marriage Week, a collaborative campaign to strengthen individual marriages, reduce the divorce rate, and build a stronger marriage culture. Here are nine things you should know about marriage in America:

1. The median ages of people when they first marry (as of 2010) was 28.9 for men and 2010 for 26.9 women.
avg-age-marriage

2. The marriage rate in the U.S. is currently 31.01, the lowest it’s been in over a century, according to the National Center for Family and Marriage Center at Bowling Green State University. That equals roughly 31 marriages per 1,000 unmarried women. In 1920, the marriage rate reached its peak at 92.3. Since 1970, the marriage rate has declined by almost 60 percent. In real terms, the total number of marriages fell from 2.45 million in 1990 to 2.11 million in 2010.

3. Most people now live together before they marry for the first time. An even higher percentage of divorced persons who subsequently remarry live together first. And a growing number of persons, both young and old, are living together with no plans to marry eventually.

4. Unmarried cohabitation—the status of couples who are sexual partners, not married to each other, and sharing a household—is particularly common among the young. It is estimated that about a quarter of unmarried women age 25 to 39 are currently living with a partner and an additional quarter have lived with a partner at some time in the past. More than 60 percent of first marriages are now preceded by living together, compared to virtually none fifty years ago.

NUMBER OF COHABITING, UNMARRIED, ADULT COUPLES OF THE OPPOSITE SEX, BY YEAR, UNITED STATES
unmarried

5. The average age for childbearing is now younger than the average age for marriage. By age 25, 44 percent of women have had a baby, while only 38 percent have married. Today, only 23 percent of all unmarried births are to teenagers. Sixty percent are to women in their twenties. Today, the average woman bearing a child outside of marriage is a twenty-something white woman with a high school degree.

6. Marriage has shifted from being the cornerstone to the capstone of adult life. No longer the foundation on which young adults build their prospects for future prosperity and happiness, marriage now comes only after they have moved toward financial and psychological independence.

7. The national divorce rate is almost 50 percent of all marriages. But for many people, the actual chances of divorce are far below 50/50. The “close to 50 percent” divorce rate refers to the percentage of marriages entered into during a particular year that are projected to end in divorce or separation before one spouse dies. Such projections assume that the divorce and death rates occurring that year will continue indefinitely into the future—an assumption that is useful more as an indicator of the instability of marriages in the recent past than as a predictor of future events.

8. The presence of children in America has declined significantly since 1960, as measured by fertility rates and the percentage of households with children. Other indicators suggest that this decline has reduced the child-centeredness of our nation and contributed to the weakening of the institution of marriage. It is estimated that in the mid-1800s more than 75 percent of all households contained children under the age of 18. One hundred years later, in 1960, this number had dropped to slightly less than half of all households. In 2011, just five decades later, only 32 percent of households included children. This obviously means that adults are less likely to be living with children, that neighborhoods are less likely to contain children, and that children are less likely to be a consideration in daily life.

9. If a person has been to college, has an annual income over $50,000, is religious, comes from from an intact family, and marries after age 25 without having a baby first, their chances of divorce are very low. Here are some percentage-point decreases in the risk of divorce or separation during the first ten years of marriage, according to various personal and social factors: Annual income over $50,000 (vs. under $25,000) (-30); Having a baby seven months or more after marriage (vs. before marriage) (-24); Marrying over 25 years of age (vs. under 18) (-24); Family of origin intact (vs. divorced parents) (-14); Religious affiliation (vs. none) (-14); College (vs. high school dropout) (-25).

The Common Good FAQ | Marriage Unique for a Reason – USCCB

Peanut Gallery: Here’s a basic primer from the USCCB on why the marriage between one man and one woman benefits civil society. You might find it helpful in discussions with your friends.

Please click on link below to go to the USCCB website.

The Common Good FAQ | Marriage Unique for a Reason.

Overview: The Common Good and Human Dignity: FAQs
1. What does “intrinsic dignity of the human person” mean?
2. What does marriage have to do with human dignity?
3. Does the Church believe that people who experience same-sex attraction have equal dignity?
4. What does “the common good” mean?
5. Isn’t marriage a private relationship? What does it have to do with the common good?
6. Isn’t marriage just a religious issue that the government should stay out of?
7. What are basic human rights?
8. Is marriage a basic human right?
9. What’s the harm of same-sex “marriage”?
10. But isn’t it unjust discrimination to not allow two men (or two women) to marry?
11. What about civil rights?
12. Isn’t allowing two men or two women to marry just an extension of allowing interracial couples to marry?
13. What about equality and fairness?
14. What about “civil unions” or “domestic partnerships” between two persons of the same sex?

1. What does “intrinsic dignity of the human person” mean?

The Church firmly teaches that each and every human being is a unique and irreplaceable person, created in the image of God (see Gen 1:27). Because of this, every man, woman, and child has great dignity and worth, a dignity that can never be taken away (i.e., it is intrinsic and inviolable). Respecting a person’s dignity means treating them justly. It also means helping them to flourish as a human being. The intrinsic dignity of the human person should be the starting point for all moral principles.

2. What does marriage have to do with human dignity?

Marriage protects and promotes the dignity of men and women, the dignity of children, and the dignity of all persons in society. First, the lifelong partnership of marriage is the only place where men and women can truly “speak” the language of sexual love – total, faithful, forever, and open to children. Only within marriage can sexual relations mean what they are supposed to mean as an expression of self-giving love between a man and a woman (not selfish use). The promises of a husband and a wife speak a high level of mutual trust and invite the confidence that sex will not be exploitative but will manifest true union and life-giving love. Second, marriage provides a context within which the rights of children to a mother and a father are legally protected.  Marriage also helps assure that children will be welcomed as gifts; apart from the life-long commitment of marriage, children are likely to be viewed as threats or acquired as products. Finally, the family, founded on marriage, is a place where a person can exist for his or her own sake (see LF, no. 11). Marriages teach society not to value persons only for their usefulness.

3. Does the Church believe that people who experience same-sex attraction have equal dignity?

Of course! Every single human person has great inviolable dignity and worth, including those who experience same-sex attraction. All persons should be treated with respect, sensitivity, and love. The Church calls everyone to a life of holiness and chastity, and to live in accord with God’s will for their lives. For more information on the Church’s ministry to persons with same-sex attraction, see USCCB, Ministry to Persons with a Homosexual Inclination (2006).

4. What does “the common good” mean?

Quoting Pope Benedict XVI, the common good is “the good of ‘all of us,’” the good of every member of society (CV, no. 7). A society focused on the common good upholds the fundamental dignity of each person, and progresses “from less than human conditions to truly human ones” (PP, no. 20; cf. CV, no. 8). In short, the common good is “the sum total of social conditions which allow people, either as groups or as individuals, to reach their fulfillment more fully and more easily” (GS, no. 26).

5. Isn’t marriage a private relationship? What does it have to do with the common good?

Marriage is a personal relationship, but not a private one. In fact, marriages play a crucial role in society. By publicly joining hands in marriage, husband and wife enter into a unique communion and sharing of their whole lives that not only joins their distinct families into one, fostering greater connections between people, but also provides the essential context for welcoming new human life. By being open to children, each marriage is the foundation of a new family, rightly called the “key cell” of society (CCC, nos. 2207). In fact, because of its procreative aspect, marriage can be said to be the very source of society (see CSDC, no. 214), the “cradle of life and love” (CL, no. 40). Furthermore, both the irrevocable bond that unites husband and wife in marriage, as well as the sacrificial love that fathers and mothers show their children, create a “dynamic of love” that makes the family the “first and irreplaceable school of social life” (CSDC, no. 221; FC, no. 43). By practicing loving interdependence, husband and wife teach society to reject individualism and seek the common good for all. In modeling love and communion by welcoming and raising new human life and by taking care of the weak, sick and old, marriages and families provide social stability and thus foster the principles of solidarity and subsidiarity.

6. Isn’t marriage just a religious issue that the government should stay out of?

No. The social value of marriage is great and is apparent even to those who do not share the Catholic understanding of its religious meaning.  Marriage as a lifelong, faithful, and fruitful union between husband and wife serves the good of all – it serves the good of the spouses, the good of the children who may issue from their marital union, and the good of society in assuring that reproduction happens in a socially responsible way.  To be sure, these goods are affirmed and reinforced by most religions. But they do not rely on any religious premises; they are based instead on the nature of the human person and are accessible to right reason. The government has the responsibility of promoting the common good and the best interests of all people, especially the most vulnerable, and upholding authentic marriage does precisely that.  The fact that the responsibility of government to promote and protect marriage coincides with widely held religious convictions is not a reason for government to abdicate that responsibility.

7. What are basic human rights?

Basic human rights flow from the nature and dignity of the human person. To know what counts as a “right”, we must know what it means to flourish as a human person, as a man or a woman. According to the Second Vatican Council, basic human rights include “everything necessary for leading a life truly human, such as food, clothing, and shelter,” as well as education, a fair wage, and so on (GS, no. 26). Rights are inseparable from duties and responsibilities (see CV, no. 43). Since genuine rights promote the good of the whole human person, and all people, they should never be in competition with each other.

8. Is marriage a basic human right?

The Church does speak of a “right of marriage”: “No human law can abolish the natural and primitive right of marriage, or in any way limit the chief and principal purpose of marriage…‘Increase and multiply’” (RN, no. 9). But having the right to marry does not mean having the right to enter into a relationship that is not marriage, and then to force others by civil law to treat it as marriage.  All persons have the right to marry, but not the right to redefine marriage.  Relationships between two persons of the same sex are not, and can never be, marriages, because two people of the same sex fail to meet a basic defining element for a married couple (sexual difference); they are not denied the right to marry any more than different-sex couples that fail to meet the other basic defining elements of marriage (e.g., age, consanguinity).  Thus, the right to marry does not include the right to a so-called same-sex “union.”

9. What’s the harm of same-sex “marriage”?

Marriage has great public significance (see question #5, above). And laws always promote a vision of “the good life.” Because of this, redefining civil “marriage” to include two persons of the same sex would have far-reaching consequences in society. Law is a teacher, and such a law would teach many bad lessons, backed by the moral authority, financial resources, and coercive power of the state, such as the following: that marriage is only about the romantic fulfillment of adults and has nothing to do with legally attaching parents to the children they procreate, so that each child may have his or her right to a mother and father safeguarded, and his or her development and well-being served to the greatest extent possible; that mothers and fathers are wholly interchangeable and, in turn, that gender is inconsequential, both to the development of children and more broadly; that same-sex sexual conduct is not merely morally permissible, but a positive good equal in moral value to marital sex, and so worthy of the same protection and support of society by law; that people who adhere to the perennial and universal definition of marriage are bigots, whose beliefs can only be explained by hatred for persons with a homosexual inclination, and whom, in turn, the state has a duty to punish and marginalize for persisting in those beliefs. 

10. But isn’t it unjust discrimination to not allow two men (or two women) to marry?

Treating different things differently is not unjust discrimination. Marriage can only be between a man and a woman. There’s nothing else like it. Only a man and a woman are capable of giving themselves to each other so that “the two become one flesh.” And only a man and a woman are capable of sexual activity that may yield children.  The government has a very strong interest in protecting the right of those children to a mother and a father, and in reducing the likelihood that those children will become wards of the state.  The civil law of marriage serves both these interests by legally bonding adult couples to any children they may create, and to each other.  The sexual activity of two persons of the same-sex never yields children, so the government’s interest in bonding same-sex “couples” is different and weaker.  Government is thus eminently reasonable, and in no way unjust, in distinguishing between two persons of the same sex and a different-sex couple in conferring the rights and duties of legal marriage.

11. What about civil rights?

Respecting everyone’s civil rights is unmistakably important, and the right to marry is unmistakably a civil right. But the “right to marry” is the right to enter into a very particular kind of relationship having distinct characteristics that serve important social purposes; the “right to marry” is not the right to enter a relationship that is not a marriage, and then force others by law to treat that relationship as if it were a marriage. Advocates for same-sex “marriage” ignore this distinction.  Far from serving the cause of civil rights, redefining marriage would threaten the civil right of religious freedom:  it would compel everyone—even those opposed in conscience to same-sex sexual conduct—to treat same-sex relationships as if they represented the same moral good as marital relationships.

12. Isn’t allowing two men or two women to marry just an extension of allowing interracial couples to marry?

There is no valid analogy between the goal of “redefining” marriage to include persons of the same sex, and the historical movement to allow interracial couples to marry. The sexual relations between a man and a woman are simply not the same as the sexual relations between two men or between two women, regardless of their ethnicity. The intimate acts of husband and wife are able to unite them fully and to enable them to welcome children. Sexual difference is an essential characteristic of marriage; ethnic sameness or difference is not.  Marriage is rooted in nature: two people of the same sex are no more being denied the “right” to marry than a man is “denied” the “right” to gestate and nurse a child. (As was said above in number 7, authentic human rights flow from the nature and the dignity of the human person, a nature that includes sexual difference.)

13. What about equality and fairness?

All persons deserve fair and equal treatment, in recognition of their great dignity. But protecting and promoting marriage as the union of one man and one woman is not denying equality or being unfair. Every person has the right to marry, but those who seek to enter same-sex unions seek something other than to marry; instead, they seek to have the civil law force others to treat their non-marital relationships as if they were marriage. But the relationships are not the same, either functionally or morally. Defending marriage is not unfair, it’s just respecting reality — the reality of marriage as the total, fruitful union of man and woman. Real fairness, real equality, depends on truth.

14. What about “civil unions” or “domestic partnerships” between two persons of the same sex?

Marriage is a unique good in itself. Nothing compares to the unique partnership of husband and wife, who through their sexual difference form a life-giving communion. No relationship between persons of the same sex can be the same as that between a man and a woman, nor should they ever be treated as analogous to marriage in any way. Thus, legal categories such as “civil unions” or “domestic partnerships” that claim equivalent or analogous status to marriage are wrong and unjust, harmful both to the person and to society. Legal categories such as “civil unions” or “domestic partnerships” should never be treated as analogous to marriage. Such legal approval of “civil unions” contributes to the erosion of the authentic meaning of marriage. As such, they are never acceptable. Basic human rights are not protected but violated by the erosion and redefinition of marriage.

BBC News – Thousands on Paris anti-gay marriage march | 2013 – Officials still say “NO”

Peanut Gallery: Follow-up “La Manif Pour Tous” – thanks to public catholic for bringing this to our attention.

Sadly – the march did not change the Socialist Government’s mind –

“French Official Says ‘No’ to 800,000 Marchers, Will Push Ahead with Gay Marriage” – click on headline for full story.

La Manif Pour Tous

French Morality Rally – La Manif Pour Tous – reblog from Public Catholic

Peanut Gallery: Who’d have thunk we’d be getting moral guidance from the French? And yet, some folks in France recognize that “gay marriage” is an oxymoron… a contrivance designed to gain the “blessing” of Church and State on sin-filled relationships.

Well good for them. Vive la France! And thanks to Public Catholic for bringing it our attention. BTW: I wonder if the French Muslim community will join this rally? Just a thought.
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Hundreds of Thousands Expected at Paris Rally for Marriage

January 9, 2013 By  4 Comments

Paris, France, Jan 9, 2013 / 04:02 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Supporters of traditional marriage expect hundreds of thousands of marchers to turn out for an upcoming national rally in opposition to President Francois Hollande’s “marriage for all” proposal.

Set to go before France’s parliament Jan. 29, the draft law proposes to redefine marriage as a union “contracted between two persons of different sex or of the same sex.”

The law would also allow “married” same-sex couples to adopt children while also replacing gender definitive titles such as “Mother” or “Father” with “Parent 1” and “Parent 2.”

Some opponents of the proposal say doing so would strip society of sexual differences and would create framework for a “new anthropological order” based on sexual preference rather than unique “sexual otherness.” Opponents also say the move would deny children the biological right of having a mother and father, and that the proposal should have been presented as a referendum to the people.

“La Manif Pour Tous” or “March For All,” a demonstration organized by French satirist Frigide Barjot – whose real name is Virginie Télenne – drew tens of thousands of supporters in the regional demonstrations held throughout France in November and December.

A modest estimate for the first national rally to be held Jan. 13 is projected to draw some 350,000 supporters, one of the organizers, Lionel Lumbroso, told CNA Jan. 4.

“The bigger we are, the more difficult it will be for the government to ignore us,” he said.

Although the “vast majority of the base is Catholic” and founder Frigide Barjot is a Catholic re-convert, Lumbroso said that the movement represents a much greater diversity of the French people because people of different faiths and political beliefs are coming together for a common goal. (Read more here.)