Is it not a delight to witness the unity of a couple whose every word and every action seem to be in absolute agreement?
Is it not pleasant to observe a family whose members appear to live in perfect harmony together?
It is not a blessing to live within a community of individuals whose primary concern in life is growth in holiness rather than living in a society of people who spend most of their time quarreling about pointless controversies and politics?
Such couples, families and communities are not very common in our era; however, thanks to be to God, His mercy, and the goodwill of the faithful, there are a few such places to be found!
One might ask, “Why is such harmony in life not commonly found these days?” or “What must we do to bring such benevolent peace, love and joy into the social structures of the places wherein we live?”
There are many intricate answers which more intelligent people than I could give to these questions, but the simple way to explain the situation is through two words: communication and compromise.
One of the primary causes of disorder and disunity in our society is a lack of communication.
In order to truly love someone, we first must truly understand them, and since we are not all-knowing (and not able to read the minds of others) we require communication in order to help us to better comprehend God and our neighbor.
It is a fact, lamented by the saints, that people often misjudge those around them. This is caused as the result of many individuals guessing what is in the hearts and minds of others rather than giving their neighbor a chance to explain what is bothering them or why they act as they do.
What better way is there to understand God than to read His words to us in form of the communication which He has left to us through the Bible, the writings of the Church, and the works of the saints?
What better way is there to understand our family, friends and neighbors than to ask them through communication what they are thinking, experiencing, and suffering?
Once we understand those around us better, and realize that they suffer as much (if not more) than we do, than perhaps we will not be so quick to judge them and be so hard on them...
It takes a lot of patience to make the time to listen to what others have to say.
It also requires a great deal of humility not to take over the conversations which we have with others, and give them an opportunity to express their thoughts.
Yet, such actions are necessary in order to fully understand our neighbor and truly love him and God.
In order for an ideal society to exist, not only communication, but also a great deal of compromising is necessary.
Compromise can be defined as: the letting go of our own will to adapt our actions to the will of another.
If a group of persons all put their own desires above the good of their community, then that society is doomed for utter failure. For, in such an unethical situation, everyone will work one against the other to their own ends, and there will be no order or harmony within their group.
To give up one’s own opinions and desires requires much restraint, self-denial, and love. Compromising one’s own will for the will of God and one’s neighbor is not easy, and many abandon the good of society, as a result of this, in order to satisfy their passions and weaknesses. However, without some concessions to to one's own inclinations an ideal society is impossible.
Let us gather strength and pray to God for the grace to be break away from the common errors of our day and age. Let us communicate better with our neighbors and be willing to compromise our own will when need be for the good of our spouses, our families, our fellow Catholics, the Church and all of those whom we love. If we do these things, then God may grant us the grace to see peace, love and joy reign in the hearts, minds, and souls of those whom we care for. And, perhaps, we will also be rewarded the grace of being able to live in a truly Catholic environment or at least playing a part to set up the corner stone for such a society to exist for future generations.