Dear Father Angelo,
First and foremost, thank you for the wonderful and untiring service you offer and for the beautiful answers that I am always very glad to read.
I have been married for a few years, after a short engagement. My husband and I would have loved to have children, although we are aware we were not so young anymore… unfortunately, after a miscarriage, we were not given any more babies. People tend to discuss chiefly about methods of contraception and assisted procreation, especially in Catholic environments. What about couples who cannot have any children? I have trust in the teachings of the Church, therefore, as jointly agreed with my husband, I do not want to resort to any assisted reproductive technology (neither homologous or heterologous artificial insemination). Nonetheless, I find it ever harder to uncover the fecundity of my marriage and in my marriage. I tried suggesting to my husband that we should either adopt or foster a child. However, although my husband loves me very much, he does not really share my views about these options. Dear father, what should I do to make not only happy, but fertile my marriage, and to feel I am a wife like a fruitful vine within my home [t.n.: cf. Psalm 128, 3: «Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your home, your children like young olive plants around your table»]?
I heartfeltly thank you again and I send you a prayer for you and your religious community.
the instruction concerning bioethics Donum Vitae, released on the 22nd of February 1987 by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, says:
Whatever its cause or prognosis, sterility is certainly a difficult trial. The community of believers is called to shed light upon and support the suffering of those who are unable to fulfill their legitimate aspiration to motherhood and fatherhood. Spouses who find themselves in this sad situation are called to find in it an opportunity for sharing in a particular way in the Lord’s Cross, the source of spiritual fruitfulness. Sterile couples must not forget that «even when procreation is not possible, conjugal life does not for this reason lose its value. Physical sterility in fact can be for spouses the occasion for other important services to the life of the human person, for example, adoption, various forms of educational work, and assistance to other families and to poor or handicapped children» (DV II, 8).
2. Adoption is a meritorious work, and it is certainly blessed by the Lord. In the above-mentioned instruction, the Church presents it as the first source of spiritual fruitfulness.
But it goes without saying that the spouses must choose this option by common accord.
I understand your husband’s uncertainty. Sometimes the adoption process is way more difficult than a normal fatherhood. It is necessary to have uncommon qualities, especially from the psychological standpoint.
3. Along with the works suggested by the instruction Donum Vitae, I recommend you attend mass on a daily basis.
If you start going to mass every day, the whole of mankind will greatly benefit from it.
In addition, I suggest you commit yourselves to the parish or to other charitable organizations.
4. Not to mention, obviously, the offering of your daily life, as is required of every good Christian.
For all their [scilicet the laypeople’s, t.n.] works, prayers and apostolic endeavors, their ordinary married and family life, their daily occupations, their physical and mental relaxation, if carried out in the Spirit, and even the hardships of life, if patiently borne — all these become «spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ» (Second Vatican Council, Lumen Gentium, 34)
and they cooperate for the material and spiritual sake of everyone.
Thank you for your prayers.
I wish you and your husband all the best, I entrust you to the Lord and I bless you,
Translated by Alessandra
Verified by Michele