Sunday, January 12, 2003

That's the way it is supposed to happen

In my parish over the past few months I have noticed a beautiful young woman attending with a young man. The woman (I don't know her name; my wife and I call her "The Russian Spy," since that is what she looks like--pale, blonde. and delicate) goes up to communion, and the young man remains at his seat. He has been reading along in the liturgy book, and tries very hard to cross himself and bow at the appropriate times; it is a Ruthenian Catholic church, and liturgies are a bit complicated to those who are new. I suspected that he and she were engaged, and that he was thinking of joining the Catholic Church.

Today during Liturgy, the pastor stopped before the final blessing and invited the young man up to the front of the church. He announced that Derek (that's his name) was to be married in the church this December, and that he was taking instruction because he had chosen to become Catholic, so as to be one with his future wife. Further, Derek was being called up on active duty this week. There was a beautiful blessing (all Byzantine prayers are beautiful) given to ask God to protect him and grant him long life and many happy years.

This is a perfect example of how male-female relationships are supposed to work. You see, men are pigs, or as the Pope puts it in Love and Responsibility, the man is much more susceptible to sexual desire than the woman. If the Russian Spy had not been chaste and faithful, if she had moved in with young Derek, if she had "given him the milk for free," chances are that Derek would never have made the journey to the fullness of the Faith. We men are very happy to substitute physical satisfaction for spiritual fulfillment. If the women hold themselves as the treasures that they are, men will be more likely to stretch and to achieve great things. The old fairy tales have it right: men will go slay dragons for the sake of the fair maiden. If women are good, men will become better.

If you have a moment, could you say a prayer for the young couple, and for all those who may be going off to war?

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