Definition Of Marriage

Submitted By tkline1713
Words: 1576
Pages: 7

Taylor Kline
Dr. Johnson
T/RS 225
27 April 2014
Personal Essay- Stage 2 The topic of marriage has always interested me, mainly because I did not know much about it other than I knew that is what most people do when they get older. However, through the multiple readings and passages I read, I have gained a much better understanding of marriage and it has affected me in a positive manner as I approach closer to marriage myself. There were many topics that influenced me, but contraception, the purposes of marriage, sensuality vs. sentimentality, and the concept of vows influenced me the most. I thought I knew what the definition of marriage was, but after reading I realized marriage is much more than I thought it was. “Marriage is a lifelong partnership of the whole of life, of mutual and exclusive fidelity, established by mutual consent between man and a woman, and ordered towards the good of the spouses and the procreation of offspring” (Love and Life in the Divine Plan, 7). I have been blessed to see this definition of marriage in action by living with my parents. They are very good at always trying to enhance each other’s qualities, which according to the Catholic Church, is essential for marriage. I may not have known what marriage was as I was growing up watching my parent’s marriage, but after I learned the definition of marriage I look back and realize that they display the marriage that I want to have. They show the two purposes of marriage: Unitive and Procreative. The two ends or purposes towards which marriage is directed at is the good of the spouses and the procreation of children. The Catholic Church teaches that marriage is both of these and “that it is inseparably both” (Love and Life in the Divine Plan 11). I have been influenced by the unitive aspect of marriage especially after learning about the creation stories and how it dates back the whole way to Adam and Eve. Pope John Paul II’s theology of the body means that, “the human body by its very nature signifies that we humans are directed to relationship” (Love and Life in the Divine Plan 12). This theology dates back to the creation of Adam and how he was lonely before Eve was created. At the arrival of Eve, Adam became over joyed and that he had achieved the “original unity” (Love and Life in the Divine Plan 12) that all humans seek. Married love itself, like mentioned earlier, is not just based off of “original unity,” but instead a combination of that and the procreation of children. Having children can bring families closer by the joy they bring to your family and in fact can give their parents guidance in an indirect way; “children are a gift in a myriad of ways” (Love and Life in the Divine Plan 14) from the reasons just mentioned. I have never been taught that marriage had set purposes to complete a marriage, but since learning about these purposes I have watched my parents and relatives more closely to see how they carry out these purposes of marriage, and in fact I see it in all the married couples I know. I personally live in a household that both parents carry out the two purposes of marriage by always looking toward the good of eachother and I have three siblings, so they have set a good example of how to have a happy marriage. After learning these purposes of marriage I find myself analyzing marriages more closely, and I am learning how marriage should be like so it can be a happy and strong marriage. Contraception is one of many challenges that can break apart the two “inseparable” purposes of marriage. Sexual intercourse happens in all marriages, but the church teaches that man and/or woman cannot and should not “break between the unitive significance and the procreative significance which are both inherent to the marriage act” (Love and Life in the Divine Plan 17). By using contraception, such as a condom, you are intentionally intervening with the procreative aspect of marriage, which in turn separates the two aspects that