Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
1 John 4,10

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We´ve found each other and stayed together

Andrea Hýblová

When we decided in favour of this concrete relationship we´ve had to keep investing all our energy in it ( for all our life ), otherwise we wouldn´t have a happy marriage.And pray for it every day. We´ve found each other and stayed together

I called to the Lord..and we´ve found each other and stayed together

I was happy to hear the supplications for the vocation to the married life in the week when we prayed for the vocation to the consecrated life.This is also a vocation! And what a vocation! I know priests who during intercessions always pray for the vocations to the priesthood and consecrated life and then they “breathe“ and add that they ask for the vocations to the Christian marriages.I´m very grateful for the fact that they´re praying for the future husbands and wives and they´re inviting the whole Christian community to pray for them.

Even the Pope himself made me very happy on the last Sunday of Good Pastor when he didn´t omit “marital vocation“ during the prayer Angel´s Lord.This time he spoke about priests, consecrated persons and married couples referring to the year of Saint Paul that is dedicated to the subject:The vocation in the service of missionary church.When the Benedict XVI talked about married couples he mentioned that their vocation is missionary as well.The married couples are called to live the gospel within families, at work, at parish and civil assosiations…“( you´ll find at the end of this contribution what he was inspired by ).

As an example and for the intercessions of the apostle of the nations -Saint Paulthat was the most significant missionary.

That´s why I decided to tell you „a very ordinary“ testimony of my friends.( I was baptized together with Susan and I stood as a godfather to her Tony ).As they´re expecting the birth of the baby, they didn´t send me a specially written text but points that they´d prepared for the Prague diocesan meeting where my sister Anne had invited them at the last moment.She told me that they´d been “cool“.And so it occured to me straightaway that their testimony could draw your attention and encourage you….
Susan:I´m 26 and I come from the atheist family, my father died when I was 5 and my mother died when I was 12.Since then I´ve started staying with my Christian aunt.At that time my auntie suggested that we go to Mass on Sunday morning.But because I didn´t understand what was going on there I didn´t want to go there.Later on my cousin started taking me among young believers.Their behaviour and qualities made an impact on me so I wanted to be like them.That´s why I decided to be baptized and after two-year preparation I was baptized in the year 2000.Unfortunately, it didn´t come up to my expectations.I began to feel alone and stopped going to church and get-togethers.I started going to the pub a lot.
Tony:I´m 43.I come from the atheist family as well.I first experienced some sort of faith when I joined the forces at the turn of the 1980 and 1990.Then I was married, my son is 21.About 20 years ago, I got divorced and since then I´d been living alone.
Four years ago, I met Susan at the punk concert and we immediately started living together.
Susan: We met at the time when I thought I was down in the dumps.Tony was my rescue from the loneliness.A new beginning.In the matter of time I started thinking about my life, I realized I was living in mortal sin and couldn´t receive the Holy Communion.I decided to change my life, I started praying and going to church again.
Tony: I knew Susan was a believer and started going to Masses with her although she first didn´t want to take me with her – she was trying not to force me her faith.She explained to me what was happening during the Mass.I went to church to take part in catechesis – I was touched by the sermons.Approximately at that time we decided to get married.
Susan:Then we decided to settle our lives and told one another that we wouldn´t sleep together until our marriage.As for me, I received the Holy communion after a long time and nothing prevented me from receiving it anymore.
Tony: We saw the priest and asked him for marriage but it turned out that there was a snag in it: The Church recognizes the civil marriage concluded between two persons that aren´t baptized.Although I was divorced for the state I was still married for the Church.So we needed the permission from Vatican.We went to the ecclesiastical court that deals with these things and we learnt that it´d take at least a year or up to five years to arrange it.At that time I was already converted and decided to be baptized – I began to attend the two-year preparation for the baptism.
Susan:Although we didn´t know when we´d get the permission to our wedding, we also started getting ready for the sacrament of marriage.However, we decided to wait for the permission – although we were dissuaded by the people in our surrounding ( It doesn´t matter after all!) or we even got offers to get married in another Christian church! We entrusted it to God´s hands and prayed for being able to get married.
Tony: At that time – especially owing to all these preparations – I realized what was the difference between my first marriage that was civil and the sacrament of marriage.Then we decided to get married without any preparation,deliberation, idea about life and sense of responsability….Nowdays the marriage isn´t thought to be a definitive status – it includes the divorce straightaway ( concluding the „premarital contract“ ).At the first crisis the married couple splits up, they don´t try to sort the problems out.It was very important for me what the priest, which prepared us for the marriage, told us: When we decided for this concrete relationship we´ve had to keep investing all our energy in it ( for all our life ), otherwise we wouldn´t have a happy marriage.And pray for it every day.
Susan: At the beginning of 2007 the permission arrived but we decided to wait for the Tony´s baptism so that he could receive the marriage as a sacrament.So our wedding ceremony took place in June.We prayed a lot for being capable of setting up home soon after our wedding and thanks to God it came true.At the end of April we were expecting a child.
Tony:We were conscious of the importance of the believers´congregation and as our friends are mainly atheists we wanted to found a congregation of newly married couples.We prayed a lot for it and confided in priest who helped us with the foundation of this congregation.

Simple but wonderful, isn´t it? I´ve known Susan since the time she was preparing for her baptism and I´ve seen her going away from God and at the same time she was still “a good soul“( she was one of the few ones who went to help me in the evenings and at nights ) then I started hearing from her about her Tony – my first reaction wasn´t very „positive“, I was afraid that she´d go astray with “a bloke“ like this.

Then she introduced me to Tony and we sometimes attended Mass or went to take part in the activity for the Christian youth.When we started preparing in our community the Friday adorations for the wide public, Susan and Tony began going to our place and stayed to have a chat over tea.And both of them were heads over heel in love! You could notice how Tony was changing how not only his reason but also his heart was taking an interest in the things of the faith and how Susan was trying to “remember“everything so that she might explain to him what the faith was about…I could keep on talking but it´s best to stick to their story.

 I´ve been unable to thank God for the gift of love, hope and faith that he´d placed in them.Both of them are the great testimony for me that partner relationship and marriage are demanding vocation as well.Without God´s blessing and without the aid of those who accompany them ( the priest, who took up their cause, might well disagree or might tell them he didn´t have time for „no-hopers“ – what had really occured when they demanded elsewhere ) I´d also like to live their patience, faithfulness and love in my exclusive relationship with the Lord.

I´m calling on all of you, who´ve read their story and have been touched by it, to pray for “the no-hopers“ and for the fact that we believers were good witnesses to those who are seaching and didn´t abandon those who are on the path of faith.

Will you often remember to intercede for good marriages and also for the relationships in difficulties, please?
Will you remember to intercede for the mummy Susan and her first baby?
Thanks, Andrea Hýblová, May 2008: borrowed from http://neposeda.signá /
P.S.The baby´s been born and she ( he ) is fine.So are daddy and mummy.



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