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Recipe for Peace: Overcoming Loneliness

December 21st, 2014 No comments

Love_BlogChristmas is the saddest time of the year in which to feel lonely. We can feel alone in a crowded room, when we feel no one really knows or understands us. We can feel alone because we literally have no one around us. There are so many reasons today why people are estranged from their families. Christmas loneliness may be one of the great unsung stories of our time.

How to overcome this loneliness? Read more…

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The ambiguous legacy of The Pill

December 3rd, 2014 Comments off

Contraceptives didn’t solve all of women’s problems. In fact, they created whole series of new ones.

by Jennifer Roback Morse

This article was first published at Mercatornet.com on December 3, 2014.

I am in the process of writing a book which argues that the Sexual Revolution has been a rich person’s hobby horse from the beginning. The rich and powerful like the idea of separating sex from child-bearing. While this idea is sometimes wrapped up in a disguise of helping woman and the poor, the fact remains that the rich and powerful pioneered and implemented these ideas, quite often at the expense of women and the poor. Read more…

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Tough Love is Still Love

November 19th, 2014 Comments off

My Latest, over at MercatorNet. November 19, 2014

The recent two-week-long synod on the family in the Vatican has been an on-going source of headlines around the world, and not just in Catholic media. After a year of reflection, it will resume next year. In the meantime, many critics are claiming that it is impossible to reconcile traditional Catholic teachings on sexuality with 21st century compassion. Jennifer Roback Morse sees things differently.

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My husband I attended a marriage preparation retreat in a small town in central California a few weeks ago. We were by far the oldest people there. The retreat was developed by an order of priests who are very orthodox in their teaching about marriage, family and human sexuality.

They do not soft-pedal anything. They do not cut corners. In fact in the small-group breakout sessions, one of the young couples said “this is not the easiest place in town to get married.” All the other young couples in the group nodded in agreement. “But this is my parish. This is where I was baptized. We wanted to get married here.”

So I feel confident when I say that these priests are holding the line on orthodoxy. Over the course of the weekend, the presenters told their personal faith journey. Almost all of the presenters at this conference had had some significant irregularity in their marriage situations.

What I saw was the Church “welcoming sinners.”

One couple recounted their journey from civil marriage to sacramental marriage. Their priest asked that they live together “as brother and sister” in the months leading up to the con-validation of their marriage in the Church.

For the uninitiated, this means: they had already been married civilly for some time and had children. One party had become Catholic. They Read more…

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New York appeals court unanimously OKs some incestuous marriages

November 6th, 2014 Comments off

by Ben Johnson

This article was first published October 31, 2014, at LifeSiteNews.com.

The New York state Court of Appeals has trimmed back a state law banning incestuous marriages, allowing an uncle and niece to marry one another. The decision allows the woman, a Vietnamese immigrant, to avoid deportation. Read more…

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The Inhumanity of Marrying Up

October 24th, 2014 Comments off

by Samantha Schroeder, a Ruth Institute “It Takes a Family” 2012 conference attendee

This article was first published at ethikapolitika.org on October 9, 2014.

Why is it that we continue to refer to “marrying up” in predominantly socioeconomic terms, as if we’ve just signed a contract for a kitchen renovation instead of a nuptial covenant between two loving persons?

The oft-discussed idea of “marrying up” pervades online journalism, from a New York Times piece by Stephanie Coontz, “The M.R.S. and the Ph.D.” to Kate Bolic’s piece in The Atlantic about the “radically shrinking pool of what are traditionally considered to be ‘marriageable’ men—those who are better educated and earn more than [women] do.” The ideas expressed Coontz’s article—that the material concerns of intellectual and fiscal prosperity trump all others—reminded me of a comment that my mom and my grandmother made of my last college boyfriend: “You can do better, you know that, right?” Read more…

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It is not their fault: why I am not angry at the lesbians suing the sperm bank

October 9th, 2014 Comments off

One only has to look through a few comments on websites, Left or Right, to see that the lesbian lawsuit for breach of warranty and wrongful birth over a mixed race baby has struck a very negative chord.  Decent people, Right and Left, feel all wrong about a mother suing the sperm bank because she didn’t get the child she ordered.

I certainly agree that it is all wrong.  I just want to put the blame squarely where it belongs. Not on the sperm bank for “medical malpractice.”  Not on the lesbian mother for saying, “I’m not going to let them get away with not being held accountable.”

They love the baby: who wouldn't love this little sweetheart?

They love the baby: who wouldn’t love this little sweetheart?

No, I place the blame on the Elites who have imagined, sustained and defended the Sexual Revolutionary ideology.  This ideology is indefensible, unsustainable and is causing unimaginable misery.

The mother, Jennifer Cramblett, is just the latest in a long string of ordinary people who have built their lives around lies. Fantasy ideologies may look good on paper or in a legal brief. But when a real person tries to build her life around ideas that are untrue, that real person can run into real problems.

Ms. Cramblett is not a celebrity lesbian.  She does not have a law degree or work for a prestigious activist organization or have a TV show. She works at an ATT store. I do not see any of the Establishment Gay Legal organizations hovering around her case. (I’m guessing they Read more…

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PROPOSAL: gender-based civil unions

October 7th, 2014 Comments off

Proposal from the Ruth Institute:

Gender-Based Civil Unions

Since an essential public purpose of civil marriage in the United States has been to attach mothers and fathers to their children and to one another, and since this essential purpose is being overwritten and therefore discarded due to gender neutral marriage and parenting laws, we propose the following:

To establish civil unions that are gender based–one man and one woman. With respect to taxation, parentage, federal benefits, etc. (reference), they will be legally equivalent to (now gender neutral) marriage in everything but the name. The legal doctrine that was formerly known as the marital presumption of paternity, which existed in order to attach the father to the family, was distorted into the marital presumption of parentage under gender neutral marriage and parentage. It shall be restored to its former function of attaching the father to the family for these civil unions. Gender based terms shall be used to describe the parties, such as male, female, mother, father, etc.

Male/female couples who were previously considered married under the gender neutral system may opt into a gender-based civil union. Churches who uphold marriage as the union between a man and a woman can perform these ceremonies under whatever name they wish. If they wish to call it marriage, they can do so. There will be no speech restrictions regarding what individuals, churches, or other private entities call these unions. However, with respect to the legal code, they will be called civil unions.

Regarding divorce: generally, we prefer the state to have a higher bar to overcome before getting involved in a divorce for these civil unions than it does currently for civil marriage. Michael J. McManus, in the Spring 2011 edition of The Family in America (reference), proposes what he calls “Three Achievable No-Fault Reforms.” They are:

  1. Mutual Consent.
  2. Parental Divorce Reduction Act.
  3. Responsible Spouse/Fit Parent.

We are open to discussion about any of these or other reasonable proposals. Our primary goals are to reaffirm sex differences in the legal code and to reaffirm the father’s attachment to the family. Secondarily, we see these civil unions as an opportunity to make long-needed reforms to divorce laws.

If you like this idea, we encourage you to share this post with your friends. You can also support our work by making a donation today. Donate safely via Paypal.

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Building a Better Fatherhood

October 4th, 2014 Comments off

Self-giving love is the best foundation for family life

By Scott Yenor

This article was originally published at fathersforgood.org on September 21, 2014.

Cultural support for fatherhood has collapsed in the past 50 years, and there are few signs of a renewal. In light of this, how can fathers summon the courage to fulfill their mission?

Their mission is two-fold: to love their wives and commit to providing for the total welfare of their child. Each of these requires from men a conscious attitude of self-giving love. This admirable attitude does not come always naturally to us, and it is increasingly under siege in our culture that emphasizes independence and self-fulfillment. Read more…

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Stand Up to Elites to Stand for Children

September 23rd, 2014 Comments off

Why should we stand for the family, or for marriage, or for life or for any of the culturally-conservative issues?

Ordinary People Standing for the Family in Utah

Ordinary People Standing for the Family in Utah

Living in California during the Proposition 8 debates, I had a front row seat watching the “elites” mangle the meaning of marriage. The judicial elites have handed down a disastrous series of federal court decisions, solidifying governmental commitment to the ideology of the sexual revolution. The entertainment elites seem to celebrate every family form except the natural family of a loving father and mother
married faithfully to one another and raising their own children together. The media elites continue their shameless manipulation of public opinion. The economic elites pour money into political and propaganda campaigns designed to prop up the structure of the sexual revolution. Academic elites continue behind-the-scenes scribbling, advocating for recreating marriage, the family, and even the human body, in their own image. Read more…

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Family Secrets and Embarrassment

September 10th, 2014 Comments off

A note from a Facebook friend prompted me to reflect on family secrets and their potentially toxic impact on relationships.

I want you to know why I have not responded to your call to “share our stories.” I cannot tell the whole of my story until some in it are no longer living- I guess we all keep our secrets to some extent. I just wanted to let you know I’m paying attention, even if there is no evidence of it. Keep the faith!! 

Family Secrets: hush!

Family Secrets: hush!

Here is my response to her:

Thank you my friend. This means a lot to me.  I do not know that I would speak out so boldly, if my own parents were still living.

Having said that, let me encourage you to consider this:

Family secrets can be poisonous. Be on the lookout for situations where hidden information is burdening someone unnecessarily. Sharing parts of your story could be very healing for younger members of your family.

Sometimes, younger family members have suspicions about some Forbidden Topic. No one is willing to talk about the subject at all. The suspicions never get confirmed or denied. The Read more…

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