When Sts. Louis and Zélie Martin were canonized in 2015, they were the first spouses to be declared saints as a couple. Their lives are proof that God works through ordinary families to draw his future saints—like St. Thérèse of Lisieux, Louis and Zélie’s youngest daughter—toward holiness. Even before their first encounter in the small town of Alençon, France, God was preparing Louis and Zélie for marriage. Later, he continued to sustain them powerfully in their married love and family life.
Rooted in Love: Louis and Zélie Martin: Models of Married Love, Family Life, and Everyday Holiness explores the stages of Louis and Zélie’s marriage, from the joys of parenthood, through the sorrows of bereavement, and ultimately to the challenges of single parenthood—experiences which many families face today. Author Annette Goulden demonstrates how, amid both the joys and the sorrows of family life, these saints grew in their understanding of God’s love for them. From the initial urge to earn God’s favor with sacrifices and sufferings to a deeper understanding of God’s unconditional love even in the minutiae of daily life, God was their guide on the path to holiness, a path that is open to all married couples.
This book is for both families and individuals—to offer them light and guidance to live their ordinary everyday life in closeness with God. No matter one’s vocation in life, Louis and Zélie exemplify how everyday experiences, such as being a working parent, running a business, or raising a difficult child, can be sacramental if one is open to a trusting relationship with God, even when he seems to be absent. Whatever the situation a married couple find themselves in, this saintly couple shows how daily actions and choices—however small and ordinary—are highly valued by God and can lead to holiness, to a close relationship with him, and to forming children who are strong in faith, maturity, and joy.