How can ordinary Christians find moral guidance for the mundane dilemmas they confront in their daily lives? To answer this question, Julie Hanlon Rubio brings together a rich Catholic theology of marriage and a strong commitment to social justice to focus on the place where the ethics of ordinary life are played out: the family. Sex, money, eating, spirituality, and service. According to Rubio, all are areas for practical application of an ethics of the family. In each area, intentional practices can function as acts of resistance to a cultural and middle-class conformity that promotes materialism over relationships. These practices forge deep connections within the family and help families live out their calling to be in solidarity with others and participate in social change from below. It is through these everyday moral choices that most Christians can live out their faith-and contribute to progress in the world.
Julie Hanlon Rubio is associate professor of Christian ethics at Saint Louis University. She is the author of A Christian Theology of Marriage and Family and coeditor (with Charles E. Curran) of Readings in Moral Theology No. 15. Rubio lives in St. Louis with her husband and their three sons.