The great vocation of a Catholic Wife and Mother taken principally from the writings of St. Peter Julian Eymard, (Eucharistic Handbook).
Duties towards her neighbor. – The duties of the faithful wife and mother towards her neighbor fall into three classes: duties towards her relatives, duties towards her friends, and duties towards her social acquaintances.
Duties towards her relatives. – These duties are part of her Christian obligations. They are not always easy. Jealousy, self-interest, and the spirit of discord often make it difficult to keep the union of peace and charity. Thus, the faithful and duty-conscience woman should in all charity and prudence spend herself in furthering the bonds of love among her relatives, in reconciling minds at variance, in smoothing over hurt feelings without compromising the truth. She will always be successful in her mediation if she seeks only the glory of God and the spiritual good of her neighbors by setting aside her own interests and self-love. She will always be a bond of union if she is ever charitable in her words towards all, full of consideration and deference for their rights, and seeks rather to serve than to be served, to be ignored than to shine. This duty is often particularly challenging with in-laws, yet she may view this as a means afforded to her by Divine Providence for greater merit and growth in sanctity.
Duties towards her friends. – From a motive of divine charity, the wife and mother should not, as a rule, seek to have friends outside her relatives since her principle sphere of activity has already been defined by the family. If however, in that respect, she happens to be isolated, and God has given her friends with the same spiritual ambitions, let her love those friends as a sisters and count on them for strength and help. But she should not forget that detachment is the salt of friendship. This reserve or detachment makes the Christian woman always pure in her affections, always prudent in her confidences, always noble in her sentiments, always modest in her manner of living. She should, therefore, be discreet concerning her sorrows and difficulties at home. One imprudent word is enough to destroy union in the family, to irritate wounds only half closed and ignite the flames of discord. She should be reserved in revealing the defects of her own; honor and charity make this a duty, and prudence makes it a rule of conduct. A friend may not always be discreet.
Lastly she should be reserved in the pouring out of her heart, especially in moments of sorrow and sadness. It is difficult to find a friend who, in such circumstances, can truly console and strengthen in God a distressed soul. Happy the soul that is satisfied with God and finds everything in God.
Duties towards social acquaintances. – Due to the obligations of her state of life, the wife and mother is often required to have dealings with the world. These duties fall into three classes: those arising from politeness or good manners, from business, and from social proprieties.
The original author of this blog passed away in July of 2016. RIP Father Carota.