Holy Matrimony

Pilgrim on a Long, Long Journey

So Erich Segal penned Love Story and it became a career turning point for Ryan O’ Neal (who played Oliver Barrett) and Ali MacGraw (who played Jenny Cavilleri). It opened, cleverly, on Valentine’s Day 1970. The movie was a powerful tearjerker about two college students who were absolutely crazy about each other. Let the word crazy not be lost on you.

Oliver and Jenny had been raised on “different sides of the tracks.” The couple married against his father’s (played by Ray Milland) will and Oliver was disowned from a fortune.

Soon they tried to conceive a child. They were having difficulty. Medical evaluation revealed Jenny had leukemia. She died soon thereafter.

It was a movie that grabbed at my heart strings but also that of millions of Americans. It was about the in-love phase of a powerful relationship. The in-love phase is that portion of time when both people…

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“To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact you must give it to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements. Lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket, safe, dark, motionless, airless, it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. To love is to be vulnerable. CS Lewis, The Four Loves

Those of us with long lived marriages appreciate each of us has wrung at the heart of our loved one with words we so wished we could have back. But we cannot. We nevertheless are in a mutual agreement in which God can so teach us to love. It is a connection so precious that it cannot truly be put into words.