National Marriage Week concludes on Feb. 14, which is Valentine’s Day, when couples across the country will celebrate their love for each other with dinner, flowers and candy. An ideal gift for this week of family and love is Dr. Christopher Kaczor’s latest book, THE SEVEN BIG MYTHS ABOUT MARRIAGE.
The Catholic Church’s views on many marriage-related topics — contraception, divorce, reproductive technologies and cohabitation, among others — are often viewed as controversial, especially by the secular media. Appealing to reason rather than religious authority, Kaczor argues for the reasonableness of the Church’s views on the aforementioned topics and marriage in THE SEVEN BIG MYTHS ABOUT MARRIAGE.
The book’s interdisciplinary approach, following the precedent of Thomas Aquinas, looks to human happiness and fulfillment, properly understood, in seeking the answers to questions about how to live. It aims to show to skeptical readers that what the Catholic Church teaches about controversial issues is rationally justified by considering evidence from psychology, sociology and philosophy.
The foundation of Kaczor’s approach is happiness. We all want to be happy. Every day, in whatever we do, we seek this goal. But what exactly is happiness? And how can we find it? The saints and psychologists agree: there can be no real happiness without authentic love — erotic love, friendship love and self-giving love (agape). From this foundation of happiness, Kaczor explores the nature of marriage, and the love they promise to each other, which is agape, a self-giving love that is the choice to do good for the other. He also examines alternatives to covenant marriage, such as polygamy and same-sex marriage, as well as cohabitation.
The book also explores the value of children. To make sense of Catholic teaching on contraception, he says that we must first reconsider the value of fertility and having children. Only from this perspective can one begin to understand what the Church teaches.
“Christopher Kaczor is one of our finest young Catholic philosophers,” says Most Reverend José Gomez, Archbishop of Los Angeles.
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