Love stories, courtesy of National Review, where you will find Charmaine Yoest, Elizabeth Kantor, John J. Miller, Richard Brookhiser, and many others talking about their favorite love stories.
I’m in there, too. Were I holier, I would simply have said “The Incarnation” but since I am a sinner and self-obsessed, I told about “How I met my husband; aka An Irish Love Story”:
At age 20 I began the process of discerning a vocation as a contemplative religious, specifically as a Poor Clare nun.
My parents were as dead-set against this idea as they had always been about any scenario that didn’t end with me either giving them grandchildren, or embracing a noble and care-taking spinsterhood that could assist them in their dotage. As a nun, I could serve neither of those ends, so — as much as they might have respected Saint Francis and Jesus — it was ixnay on this ride-bay of ist-kray. “Over our dead bodies” kept escalating, until I feared entire cities were at risk, were I to take the veil.
In the meantime, the opportunity arose for me to return to New York, where I had been born — a glamorous-seeming opportunity to work and finish school and get to know cousins who had, up until then, been nothing but names on Christmas cards.
Mere days after I had arrived, one of those cousins invited me to a “going away” party for another cousin, who was about to become a Capuchin friar.
Hours before the party, holding an encouraging letter from the Abbess with whom I had been corresponding, my ears ringing with yet another parental promise of international doom if I dared their wrath, I knelt before the Blessed Sacrament and delivered a daringly prayerful harangue, born of utter trust. “You have to do this,” I told Christ. “If you want me in the cloister, you’ve got to make that happen, because I’m getting nowhere! If you have something else out here for me, then you’d better show me what it is, because you’re supposed to love me, not leave me hanging!”
As I said the words, I felt a shift, and was overcome with a strange and wonderful stillness. I’d heard the scriptural phrase “peace beyond understanding,” but this was my first taste of it. In that moment, I knew that I did not have to give this issue another thought, and that everything would soon be apparent and unambiguous.
And a gift from me to you:
Michael Novak On Saint Valentine.
Max Lindenman: 50 Shades of (Russian?) Blue.
Rebecca Lane Frech: Husbands, it’s not really about the flowers and chocolate
Marriage: “…is what brings us together, today” says Bishop.
Will Duquette: Catholic Pick-up Lines
Kate O’Hare: All About Sex with Cradle Catholic Heather McDonald