Poor In Marriage

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Early in the morning, on Saturday, August 12th, knowing I was getting married in a few short hours, things didn’t really feel different. My family and friends had traveled from all over the country, but still things didn’t feel out of the ordinary. I wasn’t really anxious or worried; I knew what I was about to do was the right thing. I knew it was what God was calling me to. He made it very clear over the past year that I was supposed to marry this girl from Wisconsin, Lindsay Becher. It has been a very long and crazy journey to get to this point, and I never thought I would be living in Wisconsin, much less meet my wife there.

I saw Lindsay that morning. We took pictures and spent time with our families. The moment came when Lindsay and I are on our way to the wedding Mass; still things felt pretty normal. I walked my parents down the aisle. Then came in my best man and Lindsay’s matron of honor. Finally, Lindsay and her dad walked down the aisle. It began to set in; we were about to get married. Our wedding, which I’ve been thinking about for a long time, was about to take place.

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Lindsay and I chose the Beatitudes as the Gospel reading. This is fitting reading for multiple reasons. First, I have a great devotion to Bl. Pier Giorgio Frassati. Pope St. John Paul II called him the “Man of the Beatitudes" given that his life was consumed by following them, while striving for heaven. Second, the Beatitudes are a fitting point of reflection as we enter into marriage. The wedding day was super fun, but we knew it was only the beginning, not the end. The beatitudes are a great reminder on how we are to live our married vocation out.

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After the gospel, Fr. Joe Baker was ready to inspire us in his homily. He did a pretty amazing job; I wish we would have recorded it for y’all to hear. The one beatitude he focused in on was, “blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven" because it sets the tone for the rest of them. He explained that when we give ourselves to another, we pour our love out for them. The beauty of this love is that when we empty ourselves, embracing poverty of spirit, the Lord fills us right back up. Being able to love to the best of our ability is only possible if we submit to this poverty and turn to the Lord for His love. He is always willing to give His love freely to us. In turn, we are to spread His love to others. In marriage, and in relationships in general, we are called to give our love freely and totally to the other.

We’ve been married for 7 weeks, but it feels like we’ve been married forever. I absolutely enjoy marriage; it’s a fantastic vocation. It is difficult at times to embrace this poverty, in order to love full, but I am working at it. We are called to try out best; we aren’t perfect and the Lord knows that. When we fully give ourselves for the ones we love, Jesus can and will fully give himself to you.

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Jesus teaches us how to love; he is our model of what true love is. In my marriage, I look to the cross for guidance. When looking to the cross, we come to know what it really means to be poor in spirit.

Geno Finn | Director of Youth Evangelization and Discipleship at Blessed Trinity in Lodi and Dane