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The Graces Conferred in Matrimony

The Sacrament of Matrimony confers upon Christians who embrace that state both an increase of sanctifying grace, and in addition the special graces necessary to enable them to discharge the duties required of them.

The special graces annexed to this sacrament are: (1), The mutual affection of those who receive it is confirmed and sanctified; (2), Strength is given them to preserve inviolable fidelity to one another, and bear with patience the ills of life. For as soon as a man is married, he is no longer free as when single; no longer absolute master of his will, his time, his goods, his person, but he is in a measure dependent on the will of his wife; he wears the yoke, “for marriage,” as St. Ambrose says, “is a yoke, a double yoke which rests on the neck of both husband and wife, obliging them to pull together.” To this is added many trials such as ill health, the faults and failings of the other, which must be borne with; troubles with the children, etc. Finally grace is given to discharge the most important duty of all, that of bringing up their children in the fear and love of God. “Unhappy those,” says Pope Gregory XVI., “who enter upon the married state from merely earthly motives, or for sensual gratification, and do not think of the graces and mysteries which this sacrament confers and represents.”


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