Is marriage becoming obsolete? - Catholic Courier

Is marriage becoming obsolete?

An opinion survey was just released by the Pew Research Center and TIME Magazine, based on interviews with 2,691 adults during October. Headlines reported that nearly four out of 10 Americans surveyed (39 percent) agree with the statement that "marriage is becoming obsolete."

The good news comes from giving this report a more positive spin: More than 60 percent of Americans disagreed; they affirm that marriage is far from obsolete.

In fact, according to the poll, Americans are much more optimistic about the future of marriage and family (67 percent say they are optimistic) than they are about the future of the U.S. educational system (50 percent optimistic), its economic system (46 percent), or its morals and ethics (41 percent).

And Americans still venerate marriage enough to want to try it. The survey found that only 5 percent of respondents under age 30 have no desire to ever get married. Fully 95 percent of these young adults are already married or dream of one day tying the knot. And 70 percent of all U.S. adults have already been married at least once, according to the 2010 Census.

Our current understanding of family has expanded beyond two married parents with children, but survey respondents prefer to see children being born within such a union. More than two-thirds of those surveyed see it as best to have children inside a marriage. And 69 percent see it as less desirable for single women to become mothers.

Once upon a time, couples got married for financial security, for sexual companionship and for rearing children. Today, individuals find it easier to fulfill all these goals outside the bonds of marriage.

Instead, couples today marry for much more romantic, self-actualized reasons — they marry because they love each other and they want to be joined together.

"This is a great mystery, but I speak in reference to Christ and the church" (Ephesians 5:32).

Tags: Catholic Marriage
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