Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By John D. Meehan

9/16/2012 (2 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Most sane people agree that, in human existence, there is an integral connection between the innate desire to love and the personal need to be loved

Blessed Pope John Paul II gave the reason why it is no small matter whether a woman loves and is loved:  "A woman cannot live without love. She remains a being incomprehensible to herself. Her life is senseless if love is not revealed to her, if she does not encounter love, if she does not experience it and make it her own, if she does not participate intimately in it." Women need to discover or rediscover the truth of what it means to love, and what it means to be loved as a person. Women must know with certainty what it means to be a WHO.

Traditional Rajasthani women from India

Traditional Rajasthani women from India

Highlights

By John D. Meehan

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

9/16/2012 (2 years ago)

Published in Marriage & Family

Keywords: women, dignity of women, vocation, john d. meehan, feminism


HOOKSET, NH (Catholic Online) - On a visit to the United States, Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta spoke of the glutted bellies and emaciated hearts of the people in this country: "In the Third World, there is often a famine of the stomach due to the lack of food, but the people are rich in love. They share what little they have with one another. In developed nations like yours (America) there is an abundance of food. But there is often a famine of the heart due to a lack of love. The victims of this famine of love are the new poor. And who are these poor people? They are the people sitting next to you."

Blessed Pope John Paul II gave the reason why it is no small matter whether a woman loves and is loved:  "A woman cannot live without love. She remains a being incomprehensible to herself. Her life is senseless if love is not revealed to her, if she does not encounter love, if she does not experience it and make it her own, if she does not participate intimately in it."

Most sane people agree that, in human existence, there is an integral connection between the innate desire to love and the personal need to be loved. Pope Benedict XVI said this: "Love, then, seems to be both a state of being and of becoming. In fact, love poems and love songs continue to attest always to the inner urge of the human heart for a love that lasts, longing for an everlasting love, a hunger for eternal love. Love is . . . a journey, an ongoing exodus out of the closed, inward-looking self towards its liberation through self-giving, and, thus, towards authentic self-discovery."
   
To pursue the truth of genuine love, in order to live as fulfilled human beings, women living in modern culture, in the words of Saint Paul, will have to "acquire a fresh, way of thinking" (Ep 4:23). Why?

Women need to discover or rediscover the truth of what it means to love, and what it means to be loved as a person. Women must know with certainty what it means to be a WHO.

How will women learn to be a WHO? They must get a correct understanding of who they are as human beings before they attempt to find and live a life of genuine love as a female being. Thus, they must face the reality of what it means to be a person who is truly free. Pope Benedict XVI gives the reason:

At a deeper level, the real alienation, unfreedom, and imprisonment of a woman consists in her want of truth. If she does not have truth, if she does not know who she is, why she is here, and what the reality of the world consists in, she is only stumbling around in the dark.

"Life and love! What are they for? What do they lead to? These questions do not go away. They repeat themselves "more and more insistently.  Then, they demand replies. Like drops of ink always falling on one place, they run into one blot" (Leo Tolstoy).

For example, shall the body have its sensory desires, and the will have its desires for goods, and the heart not desire? Does the human heart, the inmost being of a woman, not have its desires? If the female heart is made to love, shall it not desire a beloved so she is loved in return? These kinds of questions demand truthful answers.

"So I lived. But, later something very strange began to happen to me. At first, I experienced moments of perplexity and arrest of life. Although I did not know what to do or how to live, I felt lost and became dejected. But, this passed. I went on living as before. Then, these moments of perplexity began to occur more often and more often, and always in the same form. They were always expressed by the same questions: 'What's it for?' 'What does it lead to?'" (Leo Tolstoy)

Let no woman ignore the truth. The human heart, indeed, has its own desires. Every person is drawn by desire - not by necessity. People move to a beloved because it is their desire to love. They are moved, not by compulsion, but by the desire for personal fulfillment as lovers.

Saint Augustine put it this way: "Show me a woman who loves. She knows what I mean. Show me one who is filled with longing, one who is hungry, one who is a pilgrim and suffering from thirst in the desert of this world, eager for the fountain in the homeland of eternity. Show me someone like that, she knows what I mean. But, if I speak to someone without feeling, she does not understand what I am talking about."
                       
A basic question, then, must be raised by every woman about her actual being: "Who am I?"
 
-----

John D. Meehan has been involved in the lay apostolate of the Catholic Church since the close of the Second Vatican Council.  He resides in New Hampshire with his lovely wife Elizabeth.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for July 2015
Universal:
That political responsibility may be lived at all levels as a high form of charity.
Evangelization: That, amid social inequalities, Latin American Christians may bear witness to love for the poor and contribute to a more fraternal society.



Comments


More Marriage & Family

Surrogate mothers forced into practice by husbands, boyfriends Watch

Image of Women from a poor demographic have become an increasing interest in the multi-billion dollar surrogate industry, with most mothers being forced or coerced into volunteering as a surrogate.

By Elise Harris, CNA/EWTN News

Women from a poor demographic have become an increasing interest in the multi-billion dollar surrogate industry, with most mothers being forced or coerced into volunteering as a surrogate. Washington D.C. (CNA/EWTN News) - "Surrogacy depends in many cases on the ... continue reading


'God is ready!' Letter from young girl to her grandfather touches the entire family as the man passes away Watch

Image of (WDAM)

By Talia Ramos (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Children never fail to bring hope in the purest form. A Mississippi man died peacefully a night after he received a heartfelt note from his young granddaughter.  The 7-year-old girl said, through the note, that God is waiting for him and He is ready. MUNTINLUPA, ... continue reading


Medical chimps abandoned in the jungles of Liberia, left to starve and die Watch

Image of Abandoned chimps at the jungles of Liberia

By Linky C. (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Sixty-six chimpanzees were left in the deep jungles of Liberia after being used for medical experiments. Animal charities are seeking desperate help to save these animals. MUNTINLUPA CITY, PHILIPPINES (Catholic Online) - The animals were used on the controversial virus ... continue reading


A step in the right direction: Number of sexually active teenagers in America drops

Image of

By Hannah Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that Americans teenagers are less sexually active. Through a new survey, the research team found out that the decline is greater among teenage boys, compared to data from  1988. Young adults who opted to become ... continue reading


3 things women need from their husbands now Watch

Image of

By Atarah Haely (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

When a man and woman decide to tie the knot, they both have expectations for the relationship. These eventually become needs to be fulfilled by each other in order to live with the sanctified union in peace and harmony. Men have certain needs from their wives, which ... continue reading


Former POW, Jessica Lynch shares what life is like 12 years after rescue from Iraqi captivity Watch

Image of

By Atarah Haely (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Although many expect Jessica Lynch to be perfectly fine now, she explains that she still battles with the emotional and physical trauma from her captivity during the Iraqi War twelve years ago. Lynch was just 19 when she was abducted by Iraqi troops and assaulted after ... continue reading


Gay man sues Bible publishers for 'emotional stress' over manipulated 'homosexuality is a sin' verses Watch

Image of

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A gay man filed a $70 million lawsuit against Bible publishers claiming their alleged translations of the Bible brought him "emotional distress." LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to Bradley LaShawn Fowler, the man fighting with Bible publishers, the ... continue reading


Do black lives really matter in New York City? Maybe not to Planned Parenthood Watch

Image of [Photo by: Sri and Jana Photography, http://www.photosbysri.com/]

By Nikky Andres (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

In 2012, more black babies were killed by abortion in New York City than were born and the black children killed formed 42.2 percent of the total number of abortions in New York City, according to a report by the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. ... continue reading


Gay baker stands up for Christian bakers punished for not making same-sex wedding cake Watch

Image of

By Nikky Andres (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Christian bakers who refuse to make same-sex wedding cakes have been hit with harsh criticism from many people, especially those in the LGBT community. A gay baker and chef has come forward to back up the Christian bakers, explaining that those forcing them to make ... continue reading


'You won't destroy their spirit': Christian couple weds in ISIS bombed church Watch

Image of Couple weds despite their church being in ruins.

By Talia Ramos (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

ISIS militants blew up a Christian church, leaving it in ruins, but the spirit of Christianity and love among the people within its community continued to prevail. A young couple wed in the rubble and the celebration of the sacred union was full of brightness and ... continue reading


All Marriage & Family News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Exodus 32:15-24, 30-34
15 Moses turned and came down the mountain with the ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 106:19-20, 21-22, 23
19 At Horeb they made a calf, bowed low before cast ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 13:31-35
31 He put another parable before them, 'The kingdom ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for July 27th, 2015 Image

St. Pantaleon
July 27: St Pantaleon came from Nicomedia, near the Black Sea, in Asia. ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter