Friday, April 04, 2008

Results of Survey on Catholic Marriage

The US Bishops' Committee on Marriage and Family Life has released the results of its survey on Catholic Marriage. You can find the results at http://www.usccb.org/laity/marriage/marriage_report.pdf.

It makes for interesting reading and examines the marriage question from all angles - generational differences, differences among people who attend mass frequently compared to those who don't, those who were married in the Church compared to those who have civil marriages, and those who are currently married with those who are currently separated or divorced. It looks at difficulties people have in marriage, their feelings on Catholic marriage,and their thoughts on cohabitation before marriage among many other topics. One topic that was notably absent was thoughts on birth control. "Openness to life" was a topic but perhaps the bishops simply did not "want to go there" with the birth control question as it such a bone of contention among many Catholics.

Of course, now that this information has been gathered, the question is what will be done with it? How can we help pass on to our children the sacramentality and beauty of a Catholic marriage? How can we help convince them that it does matter? While much was discouraging in the report, there are some hopeful signs that the youngest generation has less tolerance for divorce. Perhaps they have seen first-hand that it is not the cure-all so many think it will be.

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