A very high calling is ours, where we must strive to go the extra mile….
In the earthly paradise of the true Christian home, the wife is a helpmate, the equal of her husband, neither his inferior not his servant. It is not in such homes that our modern theories or discussions about “Woman’s Rights,” or “the Sphere of the Woman,” have originated.
No woman animated by the Spirit of her Baptism, filled with the humility and generosity which are the soul of that self-sacrificing love indispensable to husband and wife in the performance of their undivided life-labor – ever fancied that she had or could have any other sphere of duty or activity than that home which is her domain, her garden, her paradise, her world.
There, if she is truly a wife, all are subject to her, even her husband. There never existed a true-souled Christian man who did not believe himself and demean himself from his bridal hour till his dying day like a willing and loving servant of his wife inside his own home.
This is true especially of the home of the wealthy and the great, where reigns and should ever reign the infinite respect and reverence of man for woman, in whom Christian faith bids us see the majesty and purity of her who is Mother of Christ.
There is no excuse for the high-born and the wealthy, when they fail to honor themselves, by doing service inside their home to mother, wife, and sister.
The difficulty will here be with the poor man, the laboring man, coming home at evening worn out by the toil of the day, faint with hunger too, and fearful it may be of the morrow. Has he not to be served rather than serve?
The answer is an easy one, and easily understood, where minds are enlightened and hearts are upright. If the poor man’s wife has done her duty throughout the day, she will have found in her home-work enough to weary.
The very labor of preparing for her husband and her sons, perhaps, the meal which is to restore their strength, and the care required to brighten up that home so as to make it look a paradise of repose for them, – is the task of her who is the natural helper in the household – and whose blessed help consists precisely in making the home what it ought to be, man’s heart-rest from all outside cares.
But that is enough about the fundamental notion of equality between husband and wife, the father and the mother in the Christian family.
Both are necessary to each other, they ought to have but one heart and one mind in the pursuit of the one great purpose of their lives, – the happiness of their home and the rearing to the practice of all goodness the children whom God send them.
Understanding this, their only true position toward each other, the husband never can entertain any notion of domineering over his wife, not the wife feel any sense of servile inferiority toward her husband.
But the love which binds her to him is an enlightened love which makes her view their respective labors as only two distinct parts of one task.
Besides all that she accomplishes in ordering, brightening, and warming the home, – there are a thousand ways in which she can be a helpmate to her husband, beyond what is required for mere companionship.
For it is one thing to be delightful company to a person one is traveling with, by being able to converse with him in his own language, or to discuss with him every favorite topic, or to enter into his recreations and amusements with zest, and thus to lighten the weariness of the road and charm away its dullness; and another to be a helper.
One’s companion may fail in strength, or be beset with dangers and difficulties: – and then it is that the office of the helper begins.
It is precisely when man’s heart fails him, and his courage yields to disappointment or difficulty, that woman comes to his aid.
And if this help is most sweet and welcome and above all price in moments of professional weariness, of business difficulties, or when all seems dark and bleak and hopeless to the stoutest heart, – how much more valuable is it in matters which concern the soul’s welfare, in trouble of the heart, in the dark and stormy hours of temptation!
“Being humble means recognizing everything good and beautiful in my life (my qualities, the good I can do, and so on), as a gift from God. There is more to life than negative things; sometimes we are happy with ourselves, with what we experience and have been able to achieve, and this is justifiable, provided we recognize God as the ultimate source of all those good things.” – Fr. Jacques Philippe, The Way of Trust and Love, Beautiful Book: http://amzn.to/2minNMv Painting by John William Waterhouse 1908 (afflink)
A very beautiful book!
The Story of Sister Maria Teresa Quevedo. “For Him alone I have lived.” The Story of a Nun. Venerable Maria Teresa Quevedo 1930-1950. Maria Teresa Quevedo was a lively modern girl-a talented dancer, an expert swimmer, an outstanding tennis player, who devoted herself to generous works of sacrifice. Her life can be summed up by her own motto, “May all who look at me see you, O Mary.” This book is the first full-length biography of Maria Teresa Quevedo that has been written in English. Teresita, as she was called by her friends and family, was a Spanish girl who was born in 1930 and who died in 1950 at the age of twenty. Throughout her life, Teresita was an inspiration and a delight to everyone around her as she calmly strove to exemplify Christian virtue in her everyday life. Teresita tried to do everything perfectly. As a girl living with her parents, she was an obedient child. With her friends, she was not only respected but popular. As a sodalist, she gave evidence as being a born leader for Mary. As a tennis player, she was an expert. As captain of her basketball team, she consistently led the group to victory. At any young people’s gathering which she attended, she was the life of the party. When Teresita entered the Congregation of the Carmelite Sisters of Charity, she did so because she desired to become a saint and to devote all her life to Jesus and Mary. But, in her own words, she wished to become a “little saint, for I cannot do big things.” Teresita’s cause for canonization is now under examination in the Sacred Congregation of Rites. “You will find the story of this popular beautiful girl an inspiration. It is a happy biography . . . Don’t miss it.” -Herbert O’H Walker, S.J.