Baltimore Catechism No. 4 (of 4) eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 464 pages of information about Baltimore Catechism No. 4 (of 4).

Every person’s motive in getting married or in entering into any new state of life should be that he may be able to serve God better in that state than in any other.

291 Q. How should Christians prepare for a holy and happy marriage?  A. Christians should prepare for a holy and happy marriage by receiving the Sacraments of Penance and Holy Eucharist; by begging God to grant them a pure intention and to direct their choice; and by seeking the advice of their parents and the blessing of their pastors.

They should pray for a long time that they may make a good choice.  They would do well to read in the Holy Scripture, in the Book of Tobias (8), of the happy marriage of Tobias and Sara, and how they spent their time in prayer both before and after their marriage, and how God rewarded them.  Advice is very necessary, as marriage is to last for life, and is to make persons either happy or miserable.  They should ask advice from prudent persons, and should try to learn something of the former life of the one they wish to marry.  They should know something about the family, whether its members are respectable or not, etc.  It is an injustice to parents for sons or daughters to marry into families that may have been disgraced, or that may bring disgrace upon them.  Sometimes, however, parents are unreasonable in this matter:  they are proud or vain, and want to suit themselves rather than their children.  Sometimes, too, they force marriage upon their children, or forbid it for purely worldly or selfish motives.  In such cases, and indeed in all cases, the best one to consult and ask advice from is your confessor.  He has only your spiritual interests at heart, and will set aside all worldly motives.  If your parents are unreasonable, he will be a just judge in the matter, and tell you how to act.

I have now explained all the Sacraments, but before finishing I must say a word about the Holy Oils.  We have seen that oil is used in the administration of some Sacraments.  There are three kinds of oil blessed by the bishop on Holy Thursday, namely, oil for anointing the sick, called “oil of the infirm”; oil to be used in Baptism and in the ordination of priests, called “oil of catechumens” (catechumens are those who are being instructed for Baptism); the third kind of oil is used also in Baptism, in Confirmation, and when the bishop blesses the sacred vessels, altars, etc.; it is called “holy chrism.”  Therefore the Sacraments in which oil is used are:  Baptism, in which two kinds are used; Confirmation, Extreme Unction, and Holy Orders.


292 Q. What is a sacramental?  A. A sacramental is anything set apart or blessed by the Church to excite good thoughts and to increase devotion, and through these movements of the heart to remit venial sin.

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Baltimore Catechism No. 4 (of 4) from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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