Thursday, July 13, 2017

On the Son Rise Morning Show with Matt Swaim

Matt Swaim--back on the Son Rise Morning Show temporarily to help with hosting duties while Anna Mitchell is on maternity leave--and I will talk about Servant of God Rose Hawthorne Lathrop, aka Mother Mary Alphonsa. We'll talk about 7:50 a.m. Eastern/6:50 a.m. Central.

I wrote about Nathaniel Hawthorne's youngest child for the blog roll at the National Catholic Register. Part of her story how she and her husband became Catholics but then had to separate:

Rose Hawthorne’s conversion to Catholicism in 1891 shocked the family. Her father had died in 1864 and her mother moved the family to Dresden, Germany, where Rose met George Parsons Lathrop. Because of Franco-Prussian War, Sophia moved again, back to England. There she died in 1871; Rose and George were married later that year in an Anglican Church over the objections of her brother and sister; they thought it was too soon after their mother’s death and that Rose was too young and vulnerable to marry.

They had a troubled marriage; he abused alcohol and their only child Francis died of diphtheria in 1881. George edited The Atlantic Monthly and Rose wrote poetry. They lived in New London, Connecticut and took instruction from a Paulist, Father Alfred Young, and were received into the Church. Like many new converts, they were filled with zeal and worked for the Church together on several projects, including the Catholic Summer School Movement and a history of the Visitation Convent in Georgetown.

In 1895, Rose and George took the extraordinary step of asking the Catholic Church for a permanent separation—not an annulment of their marriage—because of George’s instability and alcoholism which endangered Rose. Neither would be free to marry until the other died so they demonstrated their belief in the indissolubility of marriage and in the Sacrament of Matrimony even as they separated. George died of cirrhosis of the liver three years later.

Years ago I read Sorrow Built a Bridge by Katherine Burton, herself a convert to Catholicism. As I recall, reading this biography was like reading a novel. It was an excellent portrayal.

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