Dear Father Angelo,
My name is …, I’m 54 years old, I have been separated from my wife for 10 years and I have two sons (one of them is adult, while the other is not).
Since not long ago, I’ve found the “Amici Domenicani” website and your answers to questions that trouble us.
I’m talking to you as if I were in a confessional in order to explain to you what has since long been troubling me.
After the end of my marriage and many years spent in my parents’ house, I met a woman and we have been in a relationship for 7 years.
I must say she has always been on my side, she encouraged me to have a good relationship with my children, she suggested to me how to behave. So, she has helped me a lot.
In the meantime, my dad died and my mum was admitted to a long-stay health care facility.
At a certain point, maybe for very stupid reasons, she started accusing me of spending too little time with my children and then too much and neglecting her (!!) So, she forced me to leave the house on the day of my birthday (which was 5 months ago).
I tried to talk to her, but she remained resolute and blamed me for things that are not even true.
I believe in God and I’m a practicing Catholic but I’m not a “good example” due to my past mistakes. I’m asking you what I can do. How should I behave?
Can I pray B. Virgin Mary asking Her the Grace to fix my relationship?
Without being petty or falling into a “do ut des” kind of mentality, can I offer a vow to Our Lady? What can I do?
I thank you for the attention you’ll pay to my mail.
1. While it might have ended for the rest of the world, your marriage is still valid in front of God, at least until proven otherwise. You are still married to your wife, even if you are separated from her.
2. When you got married, you committed in front of everybody to love her and be loyal to her “as Christ loved the church and handed himself over for her to sanctify her” (Ep 5, 25-26). This commitment will last in good or bad luck. This is the sanctification path that you started and you were asked by God to follow.
3. I understand that, while you were alone, it must have been obvious for you to take comfort in a woman who was not your wife. But now that this woman wants to leave you and does not want to build anything with you, you should listen again to God’s call to sanctification. What seems to you as a misfortune, is actually a grace.
4. In order not to lose this woman, you would be ready to offer a vow to Our Lord or to Our Lady. But they can’t help you in going down a path where you crucify Jesus again in your heart. (Hebrews 6,6).
5. Your sons are not children anymore, but they still need to see you as a good father who is committed to his sanctification even in bad luck. It is one of the greatest lessons in life that you can give them, and it will help them if they go through similar experiences, because, in our life, sooner or later we are called to carry the cross.
6. I cannot pretend not to see that to be in a relation with a woman who is not your wife is a serious sin which prevents you from going to confession, being forgiven for your sins and taking the Holy Communion. Do not forget that God’s grace is worthier than life (Psalms 63, 4). And that even if you have to give up something, keeping in grace is the greatest sign of our love for God, because we have nothing without Him.
7. As you can see, I showed you some of the highest aspirations in our life. People who don’t believe in God may consider that what I wrote to you is insensitive. That’s because they can’t understand the love story between a person and Jesus, which is particularly strong in times of trials and tribulations. During those trials and tribulations that we endure in the love of God, Christ shows himself especially generous with us. He tangibly reciprocates your love for Him with a bigger and bigger love, which sometimes may move you to tears. It is this love, this feeling, this consolation that God wants to give you in this moment. Maybe you have already experienced it.
I will pray for you, I will remember you in the celebration of the next Holy Mass and I bless you.
Translated by Giulia Leo