Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
February 2, 2009
Couples need meaningful communication
Sister recounts the mystery of being united in one flesh
Sr. Timothy Prokes holds out hope for loving sacramental marriages.
BY LASHA MORNINGSTAR
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER
Society, says Sister Timothy Prokes, is “wired into a global Tower of Babel. In these turbulent times, we are immersed in so many voices, so many sounds and the visuals are just so many gyrations.”
The challenge then for a couple caught up in the secular world is to carve out a time and place for meaningful communication.
Prokes, a professor of spirituality and theology at Notre Dame Graduate School of Christendom College in Alexandria, Va., will be at Holy Trinity Church in Spruce Grove-Stony Plain to speak at 2 p.m. on What Makes Marriage Beautiful for the Feb. 15 celebration of World Marriage Day.
A husband and wife need to invest in time for each other, Prokes said.
“Meaningful things are harder to do because there are so many activities that involve a couple. So there must be real choices, real decisions to do this, as desirable as so many other good activities might be. And it isn’t even so much the length of time – it is the quality and honesty.”
Without that time, a couple “misses one another.”
Speaking in an interview, Prokes talks about general trends in society revolving around what is missing in many of today’s marriages.
“What has been partly lost is the mystery — being called to be two in one flesh,” says Prokes. “As Pope John Paul II said in his audiences, God’s intent in creating human beings was to make us in the image and likeness of God. But God is a communion of persons. And so when we say what is missing, it is a mystery that is so powerful, so profound we never exhaust that.”
True mystery, says Prokes, “brings awe and reverence. Really we never probe the fullness of any mystery.”
LOSING THE MYSTERY
As one who links theology with real life situations, Prokes follows this up with the comment, “I tell my students the day a spouse turns to the other and says ‘I know everything about you,’ it is all over. That means the mystery has been lost.”
It also means the couple did not do the work, did not submit to the sacrament of marriage and gave up, “rather than going deeper and deeper and realizing the more you know the more you don’t know of the person.”
And too, marriage, to be fulfilled, must be rooted in the foundation of truthfulness.
“In today’s society it is so easy to change what seems to be reality, change it from moment to moment and make it what you want it to be,” Prokes observes. “It is so pervasive in society, it seems there is no such thing as enduring truth. And when one finds it in marriage, it is a treasure.”
Truth is an all-encompassing mandate for marriage.
“To lie to one another in any form – bodily, word – is such an attack and it just makes it impossible to create the full meaning of one flesh,” states Prokes.
Despite the temptations of the secular world, Prokes embraces profound hope for loving, sacramental marriage.
“I see it happening a great deal. I see it in the people that I teach.”
And with a gentle assurance, Prokes adds, “It’s not the perfection of it, it is the working towards it.”
Prokes will also talk at the second evening of Nothing More Beautiful at St. Joseph’s Basilica Feb. 12 at 7 p.m. She will speak on The Human Body in God’s Creative Design.
Giving the lay witness at the evening will be Michael and Terese Ferri of Pembroke, Ont.