Dear Father, my case is a little delicate, but perhaps not uncommon. It can be presented as follows: I am married to a good woman, but she is not practicing the faith; she is Catholic but disagrees with some teachings of the Church; for example, with confession. I would like to help her and encourage her to approach confession. What can you advise?
On the other hand, she does not agree with natural methods of family planning, whereas I do accept them. I don’t know how to help her understand the situation of our marriage; In the meantime, I’m using protection, which is the only thing my wife accepts, and while I understand the spiritual harm it brings me, it’s the least harmful method I can find. What can you advise me on all this?
I briefly answer your inquiries:
To bring another person to confession, there is nothing better than personal example, penance, and prayer. We have no other way of penetrating the heart of our neighbor. This answer is completed with the following.
2) Explain to your wife the serious and profound reasons why there is an essential difference between natural and artificial methods. As Pope John Paul II says, it is an anthropological difference, that is, two opposing visions of the human being and of his dignity and his relationship with God. In respect to this you can read the article I have written (NATURAL METHODS OF REGULATION OF NATALITY). And be consistent with what your conscience tells you. With great difficulty will you get your wife to approach God if you, who have a clear vision of what God asks for, cave in something as important as accepting a non-Christian vision of the human being. (Don’t take this with all the bluntness of expression, but I’m trying to get you to understand how someone non-practicing like your wife would see your behavior). In short, as always happens, one implicitly says to others: “Do as I do, not as I say, because I really think like I act, because our true convictions are the ones that are capable of translating into works.” For this reason, if you, for reasons of conscience and true love of God, are willing to die rather than betray your conscience and the divine commandments, then in the long run (if not the short one) our neighbors will be convinced.
Count on my prayers for this very important task.
In Christ and Mary.
Fr. Miguel A. Fuentes, IVE
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