When Ralph and I wrote our marriage vows, we were so in love that we changed the words “from death do us part” to “from this day forward”. We didn’t want to think that someday we could be separated by anything, not even by death.
In the Catholic faith, we understand that we are never fully separated from our loved ones who have died — we are forever connected in the communion of saints. The communion of saints are all those who have believed in Jesus and choose to follow Jesus through death to new life in the resurrection that he gained for us when he rose from the dead after taking our sins with him to the cross.
Saints are made by baptism. In baptism our sinful nature is replaced, through God’s grace, with God’s own divine nature. For the rest of our earthly lives, to be true to ourselves we have to continually work at being who God has graced us to be. We have to continually turn away from the old sinful nature.
Without Jesus and what he did for us on the cross and in his resurrection, we cannot become saints. Without the Holy Spirit, we cannot be saints, for holiness comes from God, not from within ourselves.
So what happens to our love relationships when one of us dies?
This is a disturbing question if only one of us is a follower of Jesus.
When Ralph and I married, we were blessed to be starting out on the same spiritual journey. The Vocation of Marriage is the calling to help each other grow closer to Christ and come fully alive in the Holy Spirit so that we can spend eternity together. When we ignore our vocation, we endanger much more then we can imagine.
- How close to Christ do I want my beloved to be?
- How sure am I that I will spend eternity with my beloved?
Strengthen your relationship:
Describe to each other what you think heaven is like. What are your ideas based on? Pray together asking the Holy Spirit to increase in you both a deeper commitment to help each other grow closer to Christ. Tell Jesus why you want to be more involved in sharing the journey of faith as a couple.
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© 2018 by Terry Modica of Good News Ministries