162. Celibacy can risk becoming a comfortable single life that provides the freedom to be independent, to move from one residence, work or option to another, to spend money as one sees fit and to spend time with others as one wants.
But not for long. The witness of many married couples is worth emulating:
In such cases, the witness of married people becomes especially eloquent. Those called to virginity can encounter in some marriages a clear sign of God’s generous and steadfast fidelity to his covenant, and this can move them to a more concrete and generous availability to others. Many married couples remain faithful when one of them has become physically unattractive, or fails to satisfy the other’s needs, despite the voices in our society that might encourage them to be unfaithful or to leave the other. A wife can care for her sick husband and thus, in drawing near to the Cross, renew her commitment to love unto death. In such love, the dignity of the true lover shines forth, inasmuch as it is more proper to charity to love than to be loved.(Cf. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae, II-II, q. 27, art. 1.
Pastoral ministers know these stories of commitment quite well. Clergy and religious impact institutions and can have a wider influence in the community and in the Church. Often married persons give very powerful witness to the Gospel values of commitment and self-sacrifice, but do so in unknown places, mainly within the walls of a home.