Marriage: Beautiful, God’s Gift, and in Danger

Gretchen R. Crowe, OSV Newsweekly

OSV Newsweekly recently interviewed Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone, chairman of
the USCCB subcommittee for the promotion and defense of marriage, on the themes
included in the fourth chapter of “Love is Our Mission: The Family Fully Alive.” Excerpt
from the interview follows.

Our Sunday Visitor: “Love is our Mission” quotes the theology of the body, particularly
where Pope St. John Paul II talks of a certain “interior freedom” and “self-mastery” that
spouses need in order to give themselves to one another in love. Can you explain?

Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone: (This concept) ties into what St. John Paul says
about the virtue of chastity, which I think is very insightful. The popular idea of chastity is
that it’s a deprivation or it’s kind of an emotional restraint one exercises on one’s self.
But he speaks about how chastity is really what enables one to love according to the
true meaning of what love is, and that it affirms the intrinsic dignity of the other person at
all times and in all ways, and never crosses over to using the other person as a means
to the end for one’s benefit or pleasure. If we understand chastity in that sense, it’s
affirming the good of the other.