Table of Contents Table of Contents
Previous Page  404 / 904 Next Page
Information
Show Menu
Previous Page 404 / 904 Next Page
Page Background

404

Part Two

1617

The entire Christian life bears the mark of the spousal love

of Christ and the Church. Already Baptism, the entry into the

People of God, is a nuptial mystery; it is so to speak the nuptial

bath

111

which precedes the wedding feast, the Eucharist. Christian

marriage in its turn becomes an efficacious sign, the sacrament of

the covenant of Christ and the Church. Since it signifies and com-

municates grace, marriage between baptized persons is a true

sacrament of the New Covenant.

112

Virginity for the sake of the Kingdom

1618

Christ is the center of all Christian life. The bond with him

takes precedence over all other bonds, familial or social.

113

From

the very beginning of the Church there have beenmen andwomen

who have renounced the great good of marriage to follow the Lamb

wherever he goes, to be intent on the things of the Lord, to seek to

please him, and to go out to meet the Bridegroomwho is coming.

114

Christ himself has invited certain persons to follow him in this way

of life, of which he remains the model:

“For there are eunuchs who have been so from birth, and

there are eunuchs who have been made eunuchs by men,

and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs

for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. He who is able to

receive this, let him receive it.”

115

1619

Virginity for the sake of the kingdom of heaven is an

unfolding of baptismal grace, a powerful sign of the supremacy of

the bond with Christ and of the ardent expectation of his return, a

sign which also recalls that marriage is a reality of this present age

which is passing away.

116

1620

Both the sacrament of Matrimony and virginity for the

Kingdom of God come from the Lord himself. It is he who gives

them meaning and grants them the grace which is indispensable

for living them out in conformity with his will.

117

Esteem of virgin-

ity for the sake of the kingdom

118

and the Christian understanding

of marriage are inseparable, and they reinforce each other:

111 Cf.

Eph

5:26-27.

112 Cf. DS 1800; CIC, can. 1055 § 2.

113 Cf.

Lk

14:26;

Mk

10:28-31.

114 Cf.

Rev

14:4;

1 Cor

7:32;

Mt

25:6.

115

Mt

19:12.

116 Cf.

Mk

12:25;

1 Cor

7:31.

117 Cf.

Mt

19:3-12.

118 Cf.

LG

42;

PC

12;

OT

10.

796

2232

1579

922-924

2349