May 14. Joan was shattered when she discovered that her husband, after 15 years of a difficult and sometimes abusive marriage had also been unfaithful since they moved into town from their rural family homestead. She was bitter and angry and at first refused to talk to him.  She just wanted him out of the house and out of her life. She was fortunate that she had a good friend who listened and counselled her.  “What about the children?” she asked. “At least for their sake can you try to see if the relationship can be mended.”  Her friend encouraged Joan and her husband to participate in the hurting marriage programme she knew about. It wasn’t an easy journey to recovery. They had talked and listened and come to realise how they had both contributed to the breakdown, in part when adjusting to the new environment. “It’s strange” Joan shared with her friend later, “your advice and the words of Jesus about a new commandment to love one another as he loved us were a real wake-up call for us. Working with the  UN INTERNATIONAL DAY OF FAMILIES MAY 15 theme: Families and the Impact of Urbanisation also helped me to understand our situation better.”

Reflect, share and act. Scripture.  Whatever you ask in my name I will do it that the Father may be glorified in the Son. John 14:7-14.  Pope Francis: Some families break up when spouses engage in mutual recrimination but experience shows that with proper assistance and acts of reconciliation through grace, a great percentage of troubled marriages find a solution. The arduous art of reconciliation which requires the support of grace needs the generous cooperation of others even outside help and professional assistance. AL236. Pray. Mary, forgiving mother, pray for us.