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Awesome read for fathers – Fr. Ripperger’s Parental Roles and Leadership December 2, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, awesomeness, Basics, disaster, Domestic Church, error, family, General Catholic, sadness, scandals, secularism, sickness, Society, Spiritual Warfare, Virtue.

One of the biggest crises afflicting the culture, and the Church, is the utter collapse of male responsibility and leadership.  Too often, men simply fail to perform the duties their vocations require.  In fact, it seems as each generation comes around, this problem only grows worse and worse.  We all know the scandal that almost half of all babies born in the United States are born to women without husbands.  This is simply one example of the crisis.  There are myriad more.

Of course, none of this is to say that men are solely responsible  – women have certainly, in a collective sense, done a tremendous amount to help destroy the family as an institution, to erode male leadership, to attack the traditional family model, etc. But even with that being the case, it is STILL men’s duty to lead, to overcome all that, and keep sacrificing for the greater good. By and large, men have just stopped doing so.

I don’t want to turn this into a diatribe against men – part of the reason for my railing is simply awareness of my own inadequacies – but I do it to highlight a very valuable resource that was forwarded me by occasional reader TB, who sent me Fr. Chad Ripperger’s paper on Parental Roles and Responsibilities.  This is a great piece for all parents, but especially fathers.  Some excerpts highlighted by TB:

Whenever a father fails to pray, suffer and do good works in order to merit graces for his wife and family, he fails in the most important task of husband and father. …When a father sees a moral or spiritual fault in his wife or child, he fails to provide for them if he merely temporarily admonishes them.  Rather, he must spiritually do what he can to merit grace as well as direct his children and wife through his commands to lead them to virtue.  (You can see the priesthood of the father in this respect.)

The father, by virtue of the office of fatherhood, has rights over his wife and children, and so when the wife and children submit to the father, they enjoy the fruits of those rights, i.e. spiritual providence and protection.  The wife should not view her subjection to her husband as a loss of freedom or control, but as a form of protection and providence, i.e. by means to her own holiness and spiritual safety.”  [This is a great and  important point. We all receive great graces from faithfully submitting to those in authority over us, painful as it may be at times. This fact reveals a fundamental problem with our current cultural model of liberty and the exultation of the individual, which constantly carps against authority and tries (successfully) to subvert it.  I’m sure this statement will be unpopular with some, however, but we must remember that the father was instituted by God as not just the head of the family, but a figurative priest in charge of the domestic flock.  This is a deadly serious responsibility. ]

“The merits of a father to ward off the demonic are more powerful by virtue of his office as husband than of his wife’s.  Since the demons must respect the order of authority, the father enters more efficaciously into the spiritual warfare with the demonic since ultimately they must submit to the order of authority established by God.”

He (father) must protect his authority in order to protect his wife and it is here that we can see the massive failure that has led to our feminized culture. The collapse of fatherhood is NOT due to women, it is due to men.  Men have not been men, women have been allowed to take positions God never intended them.  Men are responsible for the feminist movement” [I would say, yes, this is true. But it is the culture of “enlightenment” with corrosive rhetoric of unlimited individual rights (without concomitant duties) that undergirds men’s failure to perform their duties.  In short, enlightenment “liberal” thinking eventually became so pervasive that answers to feminist demands were lacking and men eventually retreated from their roles as natural leaders of families instituted by God.  I think there is plenty of blame to go around for this most invasive development.]

“Men lose their authority by (a) not observing their proper authority of the wife over the children as mother; (b) by not consulting her when prudence dictates and (c) not treating her with the dignity that is due her, either as a human or according her to office as wife. …Men often experience a certain rebellion from their wives because of mistreatment or a lack of legitimate concern for their wives.”  He lists examples of when it’s prudent to consult the wife on Page 10.

“If the husband without good reason contravenes the mother’s governance of her children, he weakens his own governance.”  (It’s crucial to be on the same page in regards to raising children.)

In respect to the office of wife…when the wife takes care of the home and makes the meals, in justice the husband owes her gratitude and not ridicule or disrespect.  Each time he fails to act in a manner that shows gratitude, he demeans the office of wife and thereby, disrespects the office which God himself has established; in a phrase, he sins.

“If the husband is incapable in fulfilling some aspect of the leadership of the home, the wife may take over if necessary. (Father says it must be a grave and serious matter for the wife to assume authority.)

If he fails in his responsibility, he will pay a greater price than his wife.  In this respect, it is easier for a woman to save her soul than a man, because original sin has left men with a wound of not wanting to take responsibility, at time, for his family because the task is arduous. (It’s much easier to spend the weekends on the lay-z-boy watching football then tending to the spiritual and temporal needs of one’s family.)

————End Quote————-

And what we see today is a vicious circle of men checking out, seeking escape in video games, TV, “man-caves,” drugs, illicit sex, and many other avenues. This feeds a vicious circle, where the man gives up his duties and responsibilities, which many times women then take up, which further alienates the man, leading to further withdrawal, followed by more feminine involvement, etc, until we have about half the men out there running around acting like rutting bucks, very happy to enjoy female pleasure (which they are all too willing to give away), while taking no responsibility for the children that result. Thus, the collapse of the family, the collapse of morality, the advance of decadence and perversion, and eventually – if this continues, civilizational collapse.

Your cheery thought for the day.




1. Janet Baker - December 3, 2013

To be frank, I don’t think this kind of ‘culture’ is Catholic. The rigid assignment of sex roles, of authority to the male and obedience to the female, is the product of the protestant rebellion, not of Catholicism, in which the parish priest was the authority over both in matters under dispute. I urge the study of the English martyrs and recusants to see the role women played in the Church at that critical time and see how much or how little leadership they exercised. Although it could be argued that feminism appeared at the time of the so-called reformation, it can just as easily be argued that so did socialism as a reaction to protestantism’s capitalism. Save for holy orders, women did just about everything in the early church, just as they do now. If it is time for men to step up and lead holy lives, amen to that, but it is not necessary for women to step down from anything. This kind of thinking may be found in some SSPX circles as well, but the chief proponent of it has been expelled, and for me, this part of his teaching is well gone.

tantamergo - December 3, 2013

I would say, you raise good points. It’s a particular perspective being presented, a pretty hardcore one in some respects, that might be going to excess in places as a reaction to the excesses of the culture. But as a call to men, in particular, to realize some sense of their duties, I thought it had some merit.


2. TG - December 3, 2013

I think we are too far gone. The only way for this culture to change is for God to intervene and bring a great chistement. Most of the evil people will have to be dead in order for there to be any change. Sorry for gloomy attitude.

3. LaGallina - December 3, 2013

I, for one, am so tired of the fact that a Catholic blogger can’t even mention the traditional roles of men and women without some feminist jumping in and whining, “That’s not fair. Anything you can do, I can do better. Girl power. Equality for all.” Meanwhile the men in our world are emasculated, cowering in their corners when the women show up. No wonder they escape into sports and pornography.

I am so tired of the fact that my husband and sons have effeminate priests and gaggles of ladies and alter girls as examples of Catholicism. The number of men in Mass on any given Sunday could be counted on one hand. And don’t even think about looking for any younger than 65. They don’t exist, except when I go to the Traditional Mass. That’s where men know they can be themselves. Men are longing for a return to masculinity. Women are too, we just don’t know it yet because our culture is constantly beating us over the head with “equality.”

God gave men and women different roles – period. My husband does not have the least inclination to change diapers and keep house. I do, and somehow it brings me great satisfaction. He does have an intense drive to protect his home and family, and to provide for us.

St. Paul makes quite clear that men are to be the head. I used to hate St. Paul back in my feminist days. Now I understand that we need different roles. Everybody can’t be the leader. God was simplifying things when he gave us our roles. We don’t have to reinvent the wheel every time a marriage begins. That’s probably one reason for such a high divorce rate. Couples are trying hard not to follow traditional roles and are constantly in a state of upheaval because of it.

I very reluctantly and sadly gave up my status as “feminist” when I refused to leave my child in daycare and go to work. I slowly began to realize that feminists were not really interested in “women’s rights.” (And I was still proud to be a feminist agnostic.) They are really only interested in the rights of women who want to be more like men.

My husband and I have slowly weaned ourselves from feminist-think, and have slowly learned to embrace traditional roles. And somehow we have become happier and more in love, 7 kids and a few gray hairs.

The Catholic Church (and the SSPX, for that matter) have never taught that women were inferior. From Our Blessed Lady to the many, many amazing female saints, we know that the Church holds dear the women in Her history. And, sure, I suppose I could learn to do guy things like change tires and fix the plumbing. But I sure am grateful for my husband who LIKES doing those things.

Sorry for the 500-page novel, tantamergo. I think we cannot reiterate enough the need for a return to true masculinity and true femininity.

tantamergo - December 4, 2013

No, good comment. I figured that post was going to attract some fire. I think there are bits and pieces in Fr. Rippberger’s paper that are arguable, but I think as a starting point for men and women to examine their consciences and the structure of authority in their families, it has a lot of merit.

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