On February 14 every year, couples around the world celebrate one of the heroes of Catholic history. As the story goes, Valentine was a Roman priest who married young couples in secret despite the decree of Emperor Claudius II forbidding all weddings.
About Francine & Byron PirolaFrancine & Byron Pirola are the founders and principal authors of the SmartLoving series. They are passionate about living Catholic marriage to the full and helping couples reach their marital potential. They have been married since 1988 and have five children. Their articles may be reproduced for non commercial purposes with appropriate acknowledgement and back links.
When we reflect on our life, two things stand out as needing a reset: resentment and stress. Both of these undermine our relationship.
If there is one thing that takes the edge off our Christmas joy, it’s the pressure of the consumer culture to give better, more unique, and thoughtful presents for an increasing
Advent is a season of penance in preparation for the Lord’s coming; not the first coming which we celebrate on Christmas Day (his birthday), but the second coming at an unknown
No matter how easy it is to fall in love, staying in love requires attention and effort. Most people drift into love, marriage and family without a whole lot of conscious
Our second granddaughter finally has a name. Born over a month ago, her parents took their sweet, merry time before committing it to official record. In the interim, this bonny lass
Many couples find the excitement of sex somewhat diminished within a few years of marriage. Their physical intimacy seems somehow perfunctory, unimaginative, even boring. Soon they are moving through life with
“How was your day?” It’s one of the most common questions couples ask each other and either leads to a dead-end response like, “fine” or “busy” (which usually means “I
Quiz people about the qualities that make a lousy spouse and things emerge like being a liar, secretive, disrespectful, selfish, temper prone, unforgiving. Yet, if we are honest with ourselves, almost
Lately, we’ve slipped into a not-so-good habit. After dinner, and after all the normal stuff is done, we collapse onto the couch in front of the TV. We settle into our