On August 23, 2014, one of the world’s most recognizable couples wed in a small civil ceremony on their private estate in France. Of course I’m speaking of Brangelina, the celebrity duo otherwise known as Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie.
"I’m in a large public hospital in Manhattan, volunteering as an "abortion doula" with an organization called the Doula Project. My role is to provide women who are killing their children with emotional and physical support, offer comfort or distraction, answer their questions, and, most of all, just be with them during their first or second trimester abortions while their babies die."
Some of the most unabashedly childfree won’t keep their preferences secret when faced with rambunctious offspring. They’ll tell you in a “no-offense,” joking tone: “That’s why I’m never having kids.” Or, “Aren’t you sick of them?” Deep down, they mean it.
In recent years, society has brought social and legislative approval to all types of sexual relationships that used to be considered “sinful.” Since the biblical vision of what it means to be human tells us that not every friendship or love can be expressed in sexual relations, the church’s teaching on these issues is now evidence of intolerance for what the civil law upholds and even imposes. What was once a request to live and let live has now become a demand for approval.
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"Ten years ago John and I were newly married and hoping to become parents. As we navigated the first years of marriage, we realized we were unlikely to conceive and give birth. Somehow, difficult as that was–and it was–that journey made us only appreciate the miracle of fertility and value the gift of life more."
Meet Nicky. At just 26 years old, life had already taken a toll on her. In her past, she had been charged with a felony, lived in her car for a time given birth to and then surrendered sole custody of a little girl at the age of 16, and had bounced from abusive relationship to abusive relationship.
"The Church does not shame people about sex. It actually holds sex as sacred. It values the God-given function of the sexual act, to create life. And in doing so, it celebrates the other functions of sex, to give pleasure and bring two people closer together. The Church holds that, by separating sex from its main purpose of creating life, we change it and devalue it."
“It's going to be a long war, with changing strategies, so we have to teach our children, too, to be vigilant. The language of "choice" has to be part of their everyday vocabulary. That way they can't be silenced without it feeling unnatural.
Among the men and women Pope Francis was set to unite in marriage were Catholics who have been living together as well as couples who already have children.
Like many Americans, I have changed my mind on gay marriage—though my change of mind has gone the opposite way of most. My support for gay marriage was early and enthusiastic. In high school I wrote a research paper titled “Gay Marriage as a Constitutional and Human Right.”
"We are home. We are all fed and have all slept. Miss Courtney is no longer seizing. That can change at any moment but for now, we have even gotten a few smiles. God is so very good."
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