By: Sister Carmelina, OCD
A loving family begins with a loving couple. So let’s start this month with a few practical ‘time honored’ tips for a strong marriage which is the foundation of a happy and holy family.

These are some suggested questions for couples as you work toward building a ‘holy’ family.

1. Do I pray with my spouse? Have we ever talked about praying together?
Many couples testify that praying together on a daily basis has helped them to be aware of the inner, heartfelt concerns that frequently go unmentioned in casual conversation. They even suggest that praying over the phone when their spouse is away, has helped to keep them ‘connected’ more than regular conversation.

2. How often do I say, “I Love you”?
Recent Research has found that saying, “I love you,” tells your spouse that you are committed to your relationship, unconditionally, now and in the future. It expresses a pledge to that person, at that moment and especially when you are apart. In other words it is conveying your love and your continued promise to protect your covenant of marriage.

3. When I come home from work, do I start our conversation with complaints or with positive comments and sharing?
Experienced couples can vouch for the problems caused when they ‘pounce’ on each other with difficulties and criticisms of the day as their first words. Whereas starting with a smile, “I love you”, and positive comments, can prepare both spouses with a positive mindset to deal with the difficulties and challenges that can later be discussed.

Naturally there are many other good tips for a stronger marriage, but these are good starters for this years’ theme: “The Family, Created for Love.”