“San Francisco is one big singles bar” someone told me a few years ago. Young adults migrate to the cities for tech jobs and other thrilling employment; they find lots to keep them excited in cities; the years go by and they remain single.

I moved to San Francisco after college in 1983 and found it very exciting, even for a daily-Mass-going, daily-rosary-praying, pro-life activist college graduate. My little brother and I arrived with one small suitcase each; both of us found girlfriends, but neither of us married them. When he did marry, my brother moved to a sensibly small town, and when I married it was to the Church as a Roman Catholic priest in a sensibly suburban diocese. And yet I missed the city, and eventually the city missed me: the archbishop gave me an assignment in the city.

When I returned to the Big Singles Bar on the Bay eight years ago, the Archbishop gave me a task: establish a Catholic Young Adults group. I did so, and Star of the Sea has one of the city’s most successful Catholic singles apostolates. When our young adults marry (24 of them have done so over the last 18 months), they drop out of the Young Adults Group and most leave the city. I greatly miss them, but I am happy that they have found love. Mission accomplished.  

But many young adults do not find love. They spend years, perhaps the rest of their lives, searching for love and suffering disappointment. Certainly those who marry will also suffer disappointment, but at least they have found love in sacramental matrimony. Matrimony, by the way, means “mother-hood” or “baby making” from the Latin mater. Although marriage is not perfect, it will save the spouses if they remain open to what matrimony was designed to do; that is, to bear children and educate them for heaven.

Matrimony is a good thing in itself, even if no marriage is perfect. The Sacrament of Matrimony works well enough, however, like a car that doesn’t run perfectly but gets you where you need to go, or like a job that annoys at times but pays the bills and contributes some good to society. Marriage is like any friendship that has points of irritation but is better, in the end, than no friendship.

Full story at frilloblog.com.