Monday, February 14, 2011

I love 1st graders! Week 15

You know what happens to elementary school students on ValenTIME's Day? They eat a lot of sugar.

It was Halloween part II, but they were still very manageable. This week's topic was "God's family and my family," so we got to hear a lot of interesting comparisons:

* We all Love each other.
* We all go to church on Sunday.
* Mary and Joseph don't eat spaghetti anymore, but I do.
* Jesus doesn't wear shoes in heaven, but moms make you wear them.

The most jarring part about the lesson was learning our "faith words," matrimony and marriage. As I was reading out the simple sentences explaining that matrimony is what a man and a woman enter into when they love each other and want to commit to be together for the rest of their lives... I knew I was reading to a room half-filled with the products of divorce.
I don't own the rights

The statistics were better than I'd hoped, but I think three out of ten had divorced parents and they are still at the age that sharing this is just a fact. The emotional tire marks have been left, but I don't think they have processed them consciously yet.

Immediately I reverted to my semi-childish and certainly simplistic confusion about divorce. I understand that there are abusive situations and those are tough. I do not presume to understand divorce from a first-hand perspective.

HOWEVER, there have to be moments while a couple is dating or is engaged when the hesitant thoughts or red flags perk up, suggesting it is not right. "I am not really willing to commit to this person, for better or for worse."

As a puritan, I firmly believe sex plays a big role in keeping people on the path to marriage when it's not the right path for the couple. I also know that many people don't trust that they can find someone for whom they would not be settling. People do not want to be alone.

So they take a leap that was never meant for them. And now their kids are in my classroom and I have to teach them about this holy sacrament through a vocabulary word and a definition.


Leah said...

My friends at college agree that they wouldn't date someone who wasn't willing to have sex "because it wouldn't be worth it" "because it wouldn't be a real relationship." I disagree, but they insist I couldn't possibly feel that way if I'd had sex. Call me a puritan, but I can't see how sex can possible be that important. What will they do when they have children?

Elizabeth said...

You're a puritan.

I'm with ya, I don't either. But my friends have told me the same thing. You know what I have to say to them: self-control.

Homeboy McCoy said...

In this vocation, I'm seven years away from wedding bells. If marriage required the same discernment and formation, I bet we'd have more lasting marriages... and, more consecrated religious.

Elizabeth said...

True that. Especially the second half. I think if the world spent less time watching wedding dress reality TV shows, women would more readily entertain a calling to the religious life.

vitaconsecrata said...

I agree so much with both you and homeboy. Sooo much.

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