23 August 2018
World Meeting of Families
The testimony of Carlos Comploy Osset (Toledo), “Dealing with the crises and wounds of marriage”
“My name is Carlos. I am born of the joy of love, and I was created for the joy of love. That is the ultimate end of my life.” This is how Carlos Comploy Osset, from the Diocese of Toledo, presented himself on the second day of the Pastoral Congress at the Dublin World Meeting of Families (21-26 August). He has been married to Gioia for 25 years, and they have three children. “I met Gioia during the 4th WYD in Santiago de Compostela,” he says, “After listening to the words of John Paul II, we decided to embark on a path of holiness in marriage. Four years later, we got married and, on our honeymoon, we went to Rome, where we had the great honor of receiving a personal blessing from Pope Wojtyla himself.” The path of Carlos and Gioia seemed without problems. Yet, that was not so for long.
“After four years of marriage and the birth of our second child,” he says, “I fell in love with a colleague of mine. As the weeks passed, she was increasingly at the center of my thoughts. I decided to bring the cross into daily prayer, to talk about it with Gioia, and to get away from my colleague. It took me nine months to forget her, but the Lord allowed me not to stain my marriage with any sign of infidelity.” The marriage of Carlos and Gioia was fraught with discussions and moments of confrontation. “There have been several occasions when it seemed that human motivations were pushing us to break our relationship,” recalls Comploy Osset, “but we overcame them all thanks to the love for our children and our faith in God the provident Father. There were also periods of darkness in the journey of faith, and forward striving remain faithful to the spiritual direction and keep the dialogue with my wife alive made me progress.” Carlos Comploy Osset emphasizes that the best remedy for dealing with wounds in a relationship is the reconciliation that comes from a sincere and respectful dialogue of the partner, reconciliation with God, “the disinterested advice of the spiritual father, who knows and loves us,” and being able to share problems in a group of families “where understanding and confidence reign.”
“Having gone through moments of crisis,” continues Comploy Osset, “has allowed us to help other families in difficulty. Between 2012 and 2013, we decided to launch the diocesan project “School of families” as lay leaders. Together with our eldest daughter, we also participated in the missionary experience of the “Family Night”: one night each month, Catholic families go into the streets to announce the Gospel to other families.” Then, five and a half years ago, the experience of separation entered the house of Carlos and Gioia. “In February 2013, our daughter Isabel was abandoned by her husband,” he says. In 2014, the delegate of “Family and Life” of the diocese of Toledo contacted her and other separate women and started the group “Santa Teresa,” which supports women who are separated or divorced. In 2017, Pope Francis received the group in the Vatican. Today, Isabel lives a full and active life, rooted in faith in Jesus Christ and in his Church.” In June this year, Carlos and Gioia, along with 58 other couples, celebrated their silver wedding anniversary in the cathedral of Toledo, in a celebration presided over by Bishop Braulio Rodriguez Plaza. “We both know,” concludes Carlos, “that we come from the joy of love and we are directed to the joy of love.”