Married love is not about receiving but giving

Re: “Witnessing the effect of a joy-filled Catholic wedding” (Openers, July 1). 

While reading this column, I was antithetically broadly smiling and simultaneously shedding tears. They were tears of joy and I thought how much I wish the photographer, to whom you refer, could have been at the wedding of my wife and myself.  

We made our vows with the clear understanding that they embodied what each and both of us would bring into the union in the sense of each seeking always to serve the other. “Please,” “thank you,” copious hugs and kisses were, for 51 years, a daily and invariable part of our life together. Often I reflect how wonderful it would be if young people contemplating marriage could understand that love is not in receiving but in the total and constant effort to seek to give everything to the other. 

After the happiest marriage I can envision, my dear wife died suddenly this spring. Perhaps I am justified in saying that her absence is a terrible loss, because I am no longer able to fulfill my primary purpose of caring for her. However, I cannot ignore that eternal life is a tremendous gain for her.  

May your cousin and all young people have joy-filled weddings and married lives such as that with which I have been so extraordinarily blessed. 

Edward A. Rohde, St. Louis, Mo.

Blasphemous photo?

Much as I have welcomed and appreciated each issue of Our Sunday Visitor over the years, I was taken aback by the front-page photo of the July 8 issue. When I retrieved the newspaper from the mailbox it was folded in half, and I first saw only the bottom half. The photo enlargement of the tongue seemed disturbingly graphic.  

At first glance I expected an article about receiving Communion on the tongue. I was appalled when I turned the paper over to the top half and read the headline about the morning-after-pill being “tough to swallow.” 

The photo is just too disturbingly suggestive of reception of holy Communion on the tongue and to my sensibility almost smacks of blasphemy, which I know is the last thing OSV would ever be accused of!  

With the conclusion of the extremely important Fortnight for Freedom on the Fourth of July, a photo relating to that or some other patriotic theme would have been more timely and welcome this week. 

A. Martin, Cleveland, Ohio

Life issues are at top

Re: “More balance needed” (Letters to the Editor, July 8). 

J. Rohr stated that he regretted picking up a copy of OSV, because he felt it was too conservative, too pro-life and too critical of the president’s Affordable Care Act. Rohr said that OSV ignored social justice issues, and that’s why he and many Catholic Democrats were going to vote for President Obama. 

I’m a former life-long Democrat who became a registered Independent in 2009, since neither party fully represents my views. I’m against abortion, same-sex marriage, and capital punishment.  

I support gun control, war only under extraordinary circumstances and government assistance for the poor, elderly, disabled and other vulnerable people, as long as it doesn’t create a culture of dependency.  

I received a bachelor’s degree in special education in 1990 and have worked with special-needs persons in various capacities for 25 years.  

I’m on disability myself, and work part-time as an in-home health care aide for a young man with muscular dystrophy.  

“Obamacare” will force the closure of Catholic hospitals and other religious hospitals that object to dispensing abortive drugs. Think of the misery that will result when secular hospitals are overwhelmed with the homeless, poor disabled, and anyone else who needs health care. According to a June 16 Associated Press report, one out of six Americans receive care from Catholic hospitals. Social justice is certainly important, but the right to life of innocent unborn babies and their mothers is the core moral issue of our time. 

Let’s all work together as a united front to oppose threats to the religious freedom of all Americans. 

Tim Donovan, via email

‘Perfect’ family

I have been an Our Sunday Visitor reader for many, many years.  

I am appalled to see an ad in OSV Newsweekly falling for “the perfect family of four” — mother, father, daughter and son.  

We see enough of this stuff on TV without a Catholic newspaper falling for the same thing.  

I am proud of my family of eight, including one Poor Clare nun. God has been good to us. We have 29 grandchildren and soon to be 14 great-grandchildren. 

Please turn to page 18 of July 1 issue and see if you have the same reaction. 

Dick Antram, via email 

Editor’s note: An advertisement on Page 9 of the July 1 issue failed to meet our standards. We regret its publication. 

Correction: The cover article, “Do morning-after pills count as abortifacients?”, in the July 8 issue, correctly identified a key ingredient of the Plan B drug as levonorgestrel (LNG-EC), but also incorrectly said Plan B contains a large dose of progesterone, which is a natural hormone. Instead, levonorgestrel is a progestin, a synthetic imitation of the hormone. We regret the error.