From picking and choosing Church teachings in a sort of “cafeteria Catholicism” to wholeheartedly desiring the full wisdom or “gourmet banquet” of the Church, a Catholic couple shared their journey of faith and love in a recent article for Our Sunday Visitor.
Bob and Gerri Laird, the proud parents of five children and seven grandchildren, currently reside in Virginia, with Bob Laird serving as Director of Programs for The Cardinal Newman Society.
A number of factors changed the Lairds’ marriage and family life for the better, including reading Pope Paul VI’s encyclical Humanae Vitae and other Catholic writings. They also learned natural family planning, through which they “rejected birth control and understood how to ‘read’ [their] signs of fertility and infertility” and “experienced how and why the marital act can be profound, holy and good.”
The Lairds’ write in OSV:
These changes made a profound impact on our marriage, but this was only the beginning. We were gaining a greater understanding of our Faith, but we needed to live it on a daily basis. We had to tell our children that our past ways were the wrong ways; we needed a new direction. We explained why we must pray before meals, make Mass and the sacraments a priority, and center our lives in Christ. Our children responded: among other things, the youngest learned to read because he wanted to lead the litany we recited as a family each evening during Lent one year; the kids pointed to pictures of Jesus and Mary if there was an argument during dinner, and they reminded us to check the Sunday Mass times when we were traveling. No more excuses! We had to live what we believed 24/7, and the kids were helping us do that.
…Our taste buds long for the richness of the Faith. ‘Cafeteria Catholicism’ will never satisfy. We no longer settle for the din of the cafeteria; we want only the truth, beauty and goodness of the banquet!
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