from Cana is Forever by Charles Hugo Doyle
Having once established the fact that marriage is a topflight
career, it naturally follows that the same rules govern its success
as govern those of other careers. Every successful career demands
adequate preparation, intelligent earnestness, persistent industry,
and the will-to-win, but marriage demands all these, plus the
anointed strength of love.
As a youth, Edison spent long dreary hours practicing on the tiny
telegrapher’s key, learning the code and manner of sending and
receiving messages. There was a four-day walk from Port Huron to
Boston in search of work. There was the penniless arrival in New
York and a chance job repairing a telegraphic communication
system in a stock exchange on Wall Street that led to financial
betterment, but it was dogged determination to succeed that made
him so outstanding as a scientist.
Take, for instance, Edison’s work on the carbon filament. In
October, 1879, he determined to make his experiment work if it
was the last thing he ever did. So convinced was he that the carbon
filament was utilizable that he refused to leave his laboratory until
he completed his work. On the second night he said to his
associate, Charles Batchelor, “We will make a lamp before we sleep
or die in the attempt,” and make it he did, though it took four
sleepless days and nights before the now famous Edison
incandescent light was invented and the whole lighting system
revolutionized in the world.
Edison’s career was successful solely because he brought to it a
determination to succeed no matter what the cost. Success in any
field rarely comes without great sacrifices. One has only to read
about the life of Madame Curie and her devoted husband and
follow the discovery of radium to evaluate the cost of success in a
Madame Curie’s sufferings as she worked in the smoke-filled shed,
cold in the winter and stifling hot in the summer, defy description.
The work of days became months and years, and failure dogged
her every minute of the time, but Marie Curie, with terrible
patience, continued to treat kilogram by kilogram the tons of
pitchblende residue. Poverty hampered her in the acquisition of
adequate equipment. The obstacles seemed insurmountable in the
forty-five months of experimentation, but in the end the Curie
work produced radium.
Who could look at the great Marie Curie as she lay on her
deathbed, after thirty-five years’ work with radium, and see her
tired, burned, scarred hands without realizing the awful cost of
success in a career?
Success in marriage depends upon acceptance of the fact that it is
a career and upon the readiness and willingness to bring to it all
the determination possible to overcome every difficulty and
obstacle on the road to success. If a marriage breaks up, it is not
because a man or woman must accept defeat but because the
defeat is willed.
A kite cannot be made to fly unless it goes against the wind and
has a weight to keep it from overturning. No marriage will succeed
unless there is readiness to face and overcome difficulties and a
willingness to accept the responsibilities of a parent, for
parenthood is the weight that keeps most marriages from
When Divine Love Incarnate came to Cana of Galilee to sanctify
forever pure conjugal love, He came to that marriage fresh from
His terrible bout with Satan.
Since the first man and his wife had succumbed to temptation in
the Garden of Eden, it was divinely planned that Christ, the New
Adam, should permit the same tempter to attack Him and be
ignominiously defeated and thus set a pattern for all to follow in
the resistance of temptation. His sacred presence at the wedding
was ever to be an earnest of the help and special graces He would
grant those called to the marriage career who would likewise resist
the onslaughts of Satan. Yea, more, Our Lord would elevate
matrimony to the dignity of a Sacrament and make of it a veritable
channel of special graces.
It is worthy of note, however, that while en route to Cana, the
Master called His first five apostles, one of them being Nathanael
(St. Bartholomew), a native of Cana of Galilee. The timing of
Nathanael’s call to the apostolate was, doubtless, to indicate the
primacy of dignity and honor of the priesthood and religious life
over marriage, and that, in that very order, they would form a
trinity of top-flight careers.
It was only after choosing a nucleus for His priesthood that Christ
went down to the marriage at Cana of Galilee.
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