Bishop Schneider’s Twelve Steps to Keeping the Faith in Heretical Wasteland June 1, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, Domestic Church, episcopate, family, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Interior Life, Restoration, sanctity, Society, Spiritual Warfare, the struggle for the Church, Tradition, Virtue.
Via LifeSiteNews, Bishop Athanasius Schneider gives the twelve steps he believes Catholic parents/families must take to survive the rampant heresy and widespread abuse of a Church in grave crisis with their faith intact. See what you make of these, via reader skeinster, with my comments:
- See persecution as a grace from God for becoming purified and strengthened, not simply as something negative.
- Become rooted yourself in the Catholic faith through study of the Catechism. [I generally stay away from the 1990’s Catechism. I recommend the Catechism of the Council of Trent, or reading Ludwig Ott and/or Denziger. ]
- Protect your family’s integrity above all else. [Not sure if this is simply a reference to avoiding divorce, for example, or something more broad, as in, homeschooling etc.]
- Catechize your children as your first duty. [Agreed. Not the school. Not the priest. YOUR first duty. The problem today is, so few adults are catechized themselves, very few know where to start. And apparently not many are ready to read 300 books over 8 years on the Church as I have.]
- Pray with your children daily, such as litanies and the Rosary.
- Turn your home into a domestic church. [More on that below]
- In the absence of a priest and Sunday Mass, make spiritual communion. [Not as much a problem here in the US, yet, but widespread in Europe]
- Withdraw your family from a parish spreading error and attend a faithful parish, even if you have to travel far. [Could not agree more! I am very much in favor of this.]
- Withdraw your children from school if they are encountering immoral danger in sex-ed. [Or leftism generally]
- If you cannot withdraw your children, establish a coalition of parents to fight for that right. [Homeschooling is illegal in a number of countries, especially in Europe. Coming soon to the US?]
- Fight for parental rights using available democratic tools. [Are these effective at all anymore? I guess I’m kind of hypocritical,
- Be prepared for persecution in protecting your children (see first point).
A few words about that last item. This is a really tough one. What if the state’s response to homeschooling your children is to take them away? What if the state’s response to being “too Christian,” whatever that means, is also to take them away? Are your children served by being removed to foster homes or adopted out, where you will never see them again, at least as children? I pray God I never have to face that situation, where the choice comes down to inculcating my children in the Faith, and being able to have them at all. I pray for the families in Germany and Norway and other places who do have their children taken away, even little babies, because they observe Christian morality. I don’t think those days are too far off for this country.
Finally, a bit about turning one’s home into a domestic Church; this means more than “just” praying the Rosary, litanies, novenas, and the like. It means more than reading the Bible or homeschooling your kids, though all of the above are wonderful and necessary things. It also means, possibly with greater importance than any of the above, structuring your family life in a manner that emulates the Church, with the father the true material and spiritual head of the family, the wife deferring to that leadership willingly, and instilling discipline in the children. I see this last bit missing in quite a few even very devout traditional families. One of the most common failings is weak father figures (of which I fear I am guilty of to an extent)or men who try to shirk their duty, and mothers/wives trying, I’m certain unconsciously, to assume a bit too much of that leadership role, or perhaps undermining the father in subtle ways. Kids pick up on so much even non-verbal communication, they can sense when the parents aren’t performing their roles properly, and the long term consequences can be devastating.
It’s a very difficult balance to strike, for both fathers and mothers. Of course mothers have a leadership role, but it’s different from the father’s and should be ultimately subordinate to him, even if they think he may be wrong. Our modern society has taught girls for decades now that a woman should and even must do everything a man does, and that has caused a lot of tension in many families. Men have been taught to deal with this female assertion of authority by escapism. Or perhaps it’s just a reaction to that undermining.
Anyway, I’m not trying to pick on any particular group, I’m merely reporting what I’ve observed, which of course comes from a male perspective. But I know, from talking to priests, that the problems I outline above are real, and they are common. Even among some people trying very hard to be faithful.
Unfortunately, satan knows us even better than we know ourselves, and he knows just how to trick us. Pray for guidance from God in leading your family and in performing your proper role in the domestic Church! It is so vitally important.
I do appreciate Bishop Schneider’s helpful list. The whole article is worth reading, as he does expand on the items above. Unfortunately, such shepherds are exceedingly rare. Which, of course, is the primary cause of the crisis in the Church, and always has been, whether today or 1600 years ago.