TWO BY TWO NEWSLETTER December 2017
From the Office of Marriage & Family
Marriage
Marriage is more than a piece of paper.

Marriage makes a difference! Did you know marriage has a transformative effect on the behavior, emotional health, and financial well-being of adults, especially men? Watch the video above to learn more about the benefits of marriage. Reported by Abstinence Clearinghouse.  t
How sad it is that many couples are not seeking help from the Church when they find themselves going through difficult times in their marriage. Lately, we’ve been hearing about couples not even going to family for help or support. In fact, they are divorcing first and then informing their families of their actions, after the divorce is final. We would assume that the thought of prayer never crossed their minds. Many of the problems we experience in marriage is a result of the fact that we are not living marriage in accord with God’s plan. ~ Greg & Julie Alexander from thealexanderhouse.org

Reflections:
  1. Do you seek out the Church’s teaching to live out your marriage? Check out the Catechism of the Catholic Church, starting with Article 7 – paragraph 1601.
  2. Examine your conscience today and identify 1 – 3 things you need to ask your spouse for forgiveness and do it!
  3. Have you thought of asking St. Raphael to intercede for your marriage? If not, recite the prayer below or share it with someone in need. I’m sure you know many who can use this prayer right now.
St. Raphael Prayer for Troubled Marriages
O Glorious St. Raphael, Archangel of healing,
intercede for our marriage today.
Bring our marriage the same heavenly gifts you brought Tobias and Sarah, the celestial graces of healing, deliverance, and marital unity.
Infuse into our hearts the peace and confidence
that nothing is impossible with God concerning the renewal of our marriage. Rekindle in our marriage new forgiveness, new humility,
new grace, new peace, new purity, new trust, and new love.
O St. Raphael, one of the seven who stand before the throne of God, intercede to the Merciful Father
for the miracle of peace and reconciliation in our marriage,
through the infinite merits of Our Lord, Jesus Christ,
and the consoling power of the Holy Spirit.
O blessed Raphael, guide us on the pathway of marital peace and unity. Most loving Archangel of healing, I believe in you,
I trust in you, and I thank you. Amen.
Love & Responsibility
The Marriage Unique for a Reason blog  has been running a series on Karol Wojtyla's (St. John Paul II) book Love and Responsibility. This book is still tremendously relevant to anyone who seeks to understand love (all of us!). St. John Paul II, "The Pope of the Family," teaches us what it means for man and woman to love one another in truth.
It is time the truth about pornography is made mainstream. This article from JT Waresak sheds light on pornography.

  1. 1. Pornography hurts everyone.
  2.  2. Pornography doesn't fulfill sexual desires.
  3.  3. Pornography destroys families.
Parenting
New Resources for Advent 2017
on our web-site
TV and Video Games in Kids’ Rooms
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According to a 2014 study published in JAMA Pediatrics, 59 percent of kids ages 10 to 14 have a TV in their bedroom and no one is telling them what to watch or not watch. The consequences of this oversight are far-reaching, affecting kids’ health and overall happiness.

recent study  by Iowa State University published in Developmental Psychology found that children who have a TV or video game system in their room are watching and playing more violent, aggressive shows and games than children without a TV or game system in their room. It was reported that these children are also spending less time reading and sleeping.

Douglas Gentile, lead author and professor of  psychology says , “It’s a lot easier for parents to never allow a TV in the bedroom than it is to take it out. It’s a question every parent must face, but there is a simple two-letter answer. That two-letter answer is tough, but it is worth it.”

“Putting a TV in the bedroom gives children 24-hour access and privatizes it in a sense, so as a parent you monitor less and control their use of it less,” Gentile stated. Likewise, clearing tablets, phones and computers from the bedroom prior to bed allows parents to monitor content that is viewed and ensure that it is appropriate for their age and temperament. Reported by Abstinence Clearinghouse.
Partnership Parenting: How Men and Women Parent Differently—Why It Helps Your Kids and Can Strengthen Your Marriage - Book Review
Partnership Parenting fortifies couples in their relationship by providing insight into the unique strengths of both the mother and father. The Pruetts also covers other important topics of discussion and provides questions and surveys to help foster deep communication between the couple so they can foster intimacy and strength in their marriage, while meeting their parenting goals. A strong co-parenting relationship—vital to the health of the family and ultimately, society—requires planning, work, friendship and mutual respect. Parents interested in raising happy kids in a happy marriage will find a thorough guide with a great deal of practical advice and numerous real-life examples in the Pruett’s book, Partnership Parenting: How Men and Women Parent Differently—Why It Helps Your Kids and Can Strengthen Your Marriage. For full review, click here .
Respect Life
21 Eye-Opening Quotes from Planned Parenthood Founder Margaret Sanger
6. “The most serious evil of our times is that of encouraging the bringing into the world of large families. The most immoral practice of the day is breeding too many children…”
— Sanger, Margaret (1920) Reported in Lifenews.com
Pope Francis: Abortion is a “Sin” That Results in “Killing Children
Nov 22, 2017 -  As an example, Pope Francis brought up the mass  killing  of innocent, unborn  babies  in abortions  throughout the world. “Before, it was a  sin , you couldn't  kill  little children, but today you can, it's not seen as a big deal,” the pope said. “It is a perverse new state of affairs.” Catholic League president Bill ... From Lifenews.com
Natural Family Planning
Would you like to gain a better understanding of yourself as man, woman, and couple? Advent is here and is the season of preparing and making straight our path. Jesus’ coming and incarnation reminds us of the importance of how we love with our bodies. Learn about your gift of fertility and true love. Why wait to learn and use Natural Family Planning?

A First Instruction in the Billings Ovulation Method will be offed in:

  • Little Falls: Tuesday, December 5 & January 2 at 7:30 PM
  • Long Prairie: December (call to schedule) & Monday, January 22 at 7:00 PM 
  • Rice: Monday, December 4 & January 8 at 6:30 PM
  • St. Cloud: Thursday, December 21 & Monday, January 15 at 6:30 PM
  • St. Michael: Monday, December 11 & January 8 at 6:00 PM
  • Wadena: Friday, December 22 & January 26 at 5:30 PM
How the birth control pill messes up mutual attraction
Studying the behavioral and psychological side effects of hormonal birth control is a relatively new field, but one that deserves our attention. I am continually intrigued by the way a medication that is intended to halt fertility could have such a far reach that it actually influences our levels of attraction and attractiveness. How can the birth control pill affect who a woman is attracted to? Furthermore, how can it change how attractive she is to men? 
Chastity
Jason Evert explains how to eliminate the confusion and drama of modern dating relationships. "If you win him with your body, you will keep him with your body," Jason explains. Physical attraction can be replicated in the same way pleasure can be replicated in relationships that are not grounded in commitment. Winning a guy over with who you are as a person is important because you can not be replicated! A marriage relationship grounded in commitment and trust is the only relationship that allows for true intimacy. 
Waiting For The One
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If you are anxiously waiting for “the one” you are not alone! A recent  survey  from the Pew Research Center found that the main reason single adults are not married is because they have not found the right person. With all the negative news on divorce and infidelity, it is encouraging to know that people still value marriage and the person they marry. Another promising result from the survey found that 58% of adults stated they want to get married someday. Unfortunately, our media does not model how to find the right person or display marriage in a positive light. Say no to the lies our culture tells about cohabitation, sex before marriage and pornography. Instead, say yes to purity and virtue. You are worth the wait!  
Save the Date!!!
Catholic Men’s
Conference

Men of Integrity: 
A Call to Responsibility

Saturday, February 3, 2018
8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Humphrey Auditorium
St. John’s University

Damon Owens,  international speaker and evangelist, founder and executive director of  Joy To Be , the first executive director of the  Theology of the Body Institute , and served as Chairman of the 2016 International Theology of the Body Congress. Damon and his wife Melanie taught Natural Family Planning (NFP) for 14 years, and served as NFP Coordinators for the Archdiocese of Newark (NJ).  

Title of his talks:
  • "When a Man Loves a Woman"
  • "We are Missionaries of Joy"
Catholic Women’s Conference

  Why the Pope was Right:
A Day of Reflection

Saturday, March 10, 2018
9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Church of St. Anthony
2405 North 1 st  Street, St Cloud

Dr. Janet E. Smith, Ph.D  is   the author of  Humanae Vitae: A Generation Later  and of the  Right to Privacy.  She is serving a third term as a consulter to the Pontifical Council on the Family and serves the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. Prof. Smith has appeared on many news shows plus various series on EWTN. More than 2 million copies of her talk, "Contraception: Why Not” have been distributed.  

Title of her talks:
  • “Why is Sex so Complicated?”
  • “Hormones R’ Us”
Events
Healing Hearts of Suicide Survivors - December 5th
Healing Hearts is a support group that assists when a loved one has died by suicide, working through the complex emotions. With support and hope of other survivors, members of the group walk alongside each other "through" the grief. For more information contact Roxann at (320) 248-1563
Vespers For Life, Sunday, January 21, 2018
Held at the Church of St. Anthony, 2405 N 1st Street. Rosary at 3:30 p.m. and Vespers at 4:00 p.m. Vespers includes music, prayer, scripture and reflection for the over 59 million children who have been aborted since 1973. Monetary donations accepted to Mother Mary’s Fund to assist crisis pregnancy centers in the Diocese of St. Cloud. 
March For Life, Monday, January 22, 2018
Join us on the bus for a Prayer Service and the March for Life on January 22nd at the Cathedral of St. Paul. The bus will leave after the 7:15 a.m. Mass at St. Anthony Parish parking lot in St. Cloud, picking up in Foley and Clearwater, and will return at approximately 3:00 p.m. A free-will offering will be accepted to help defer the cost of the bus. To reserve a space for the bus ride, register online or contact the Office of Marriage & Family at (320) 252-4721. 
Life After Divorce, February 1 through March 8, 2018
H eld at the Pastoral Center, 305 Seventh Ave N, Suite 100, St. Cloud, MN 56303. This six-week program is specifically designed to address the challenges separated/divorced Catholics encounter – offering support and healing so individuals may live a full faith life. If you have any questions, please contact Chris Codden via email  ccodden@gw.stcdio.org  or call her at (320) 252-4721 Ext. 325 The cost is $25.
Marriage Ministry Evening, Friday, February 2, 2018
Held at the Church of St. Anthony, 2405 N 1 st  Street, St. Cloud from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. The toughest topic to discuss with youth and young adults is the Church’s teachings on contraception. Join Damon Owens, internationally known speaker, as he shares insights and wisdom about the beautiful teachings of Blessed Pope Paul VI’s encyclical Humanae vitae. The keynote will be “We are Missionaries of Joy”
  Worldwide Marriage Encounter
Worldwide Marriage Encounter For more information, call Alan & Missy Block at 888-455-3496 or click here. The next weekend is Feb 9th in Buffalo, MN
Retrouvaille Weekend
Retrouvaille weekend for couples struggling in their marriage. For more information, call 320-255-5314 or click here.
The next weekend in St. Cloud is Feb 16th. 
Married Couples Retreat at St John's
Feb 9-11, 2018  with Bernadette and Ed Dunn  
For more information, click her e or
call Saint John's Abbey Guesthouse 320-363-2573