I’ll never forget February 12, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Admin, disaster, General Catholic, Papa, sadness.
The third anniversary of the tragic abdication of Pope Benedict XVI was yesterday, but I still feel betrayed and massively let down. I remember my wife telling me the news, and at first I thought it had to be a hoax. I refused to believe it until the evidence became overwhelming.
I know some feel he had every right, that he alone could judge his age and capacity, but I am convinced Pope Benedict XVI was “forced out,” or fell to the wolves around him. His resignation remains unparalleled, the comparisons to Celestine being really apples and oranges. It was the seizure of Vatican financial assets that compelled him to believe he could no longer govern, I think. We’ll likely never know for certain, in this life.
I also cannot believe what happened later that same day was just “one of those things:”
In less than a year, Jose Bergoglio will be 80. But mark my words, he will never resign. He is having waaay too much fun remaking the Church to suit his ideology. Progressives almost never give up power voluntarily.
Lament Like a Virgin February 10, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in Art and Architecture, awesomeness, Christendom, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Latin Mass, Lent, Liturgy, sadness, Tradition, Virtue.
A beautiful, mournful responsory from Holy Saturday Matins – Plange quasi virgo – “lament like a virgin,” will have to close out this abbreviated day of blogging. I will be off for the rest of this day of penance, I pray you have a blessed Ash Wednesday and a strong start to your Lent:
If I had more time, I would post the processional chant for the Good Friday Depositio from the 16th century Rite of the Diocese of Braga, but that will have to wait for another day. I do just have time to append the opening lines:
Alas, alas Lord, alas, alas, Our Savior, we are become orphans without a father; our mothers are as widows.
The crown of our head has fallen. Woe to us! For we have sinned.
The breath of our mouths, Christ our Lord,
has been taken captive for our sins;
The joy of our heart has vanished;
our singing is turned into lamentation
Forsaken is all happiness,
removed is the joy of the earth;
our life has grown faint in sorrow
and our years in groans.
No hippy dippy happy clappy stuff in the 16th century Church! Thank God!
Modern Problems: Male Girl Scout Has Trouble Selling Cookies in Drag February 5, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, disaster, disconcerting, General Catholic, horror, sadness, scandals, secularism, sexual depravity, sickness, Society, suicide.
I copied the lede from the link. Some might find it harsh, but it does have the benefit of actually describing reality. That’s where we are in these United States in the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand and Sixteen. 9 year olds pretending to be girls. Vast swaths of the populace insisting we go along with this epic mental divergence, and insisting still more that this manifest tragedy must be lauded and lionized by all as a brave embrace of someone’s true nature. No one is permitted to ask how a 9 year old boy could possibly come to feel this way, what terrible trauma he must have experienced to be so alienated from his own nature that he seeks to obliterate it. No, we are all just supposed to happily ignore reality more and more to please the soul-destroying progressives who dominate this culture. It’s either that, or just STFU and bear it in silence.
While I am loathe to see this child suffer still more, I am gratified to see there are still some people around sane enough, and honest enough, to say, no, I own’t buy cookies from a male “Girl Scout:”
A boy disguised as a girl scout tried to sell girl scout cookies to a man, who told him that he didn’t want to buy girl scout cookies from a boy disguised as a girl. This led to a major story in the Washington Post the size of an investigation into Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal. [Of course. Every single episode of resistance to the sexular pagan agenda, no matter how small, no matter how trivial, no matter how sensical and well-justified, must be excoriated, must be lambasted and shown to be totally unacceptable, pour les encouragement des les otres. The revolution has always been
“Nine-year-old Stormi set out last month to sell cookies just like every other Girl Scout — with a sales pitch and a goal.[Note the positive, humanizing coverage….]
But when Stormi, who is transgender, started knocking on neighbors’ doors near her home in Herrin, Ill., one man turned her away, saying: “Nobody wants to buy cookies from a boy in a dress.” [See what I mean? One man said no, and that merits national coverage?]
“It made me sad,” Stormi told BuzzFeed News. “Because I’m a girl.” [And I’m an armor plated, razor-toothed chipmunk. Don’t laugh! That’s coming, too. A Norwegian woman recently announced she’s actually a cat. Society’s insistence on the normalization of grave mental illness, all in furtherance of the sexular agenda, shows no sign of abating]
…..It turns out nine-year-old Stormi (probably not the child’s birth name) is a foster child, so that may contribute to his messed up background. But hey, he’s 9 years old, so he’s old enough to decide his gender identity, right?
Of course. And if old enough to decide one’s gender, then old enough to make “adult” decisions regarding sexual behavior, even with adults, right? That’s the ultimate goal. The making available of children, as guaranteed by law, for the service of adult desires.
Christ or chaos. Our world has chosen the latter, seemingly definitively. The nightmares will not end. And you will be made to bend to their will, or suffer the consequences.
Mass failure: Brooklyn parish holds “Star Wars” Mass February 1, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, asshatery, Basics, different religion, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, Liturgy, sadness, scandals, secularism, Society, the struggle for the Church.
St. Bernard Parish in Brooklyn scheduled, and apparently yesterday held, a “fun” Star Wars themed Mass. Kids were invited to dress as their favorite characters – many adherents to a Buddhist-Shintoist religion, some of whom are guilty of genocide and other acts of depravity on an unimaginable scale – and further denigrate the sanctity and vitality of the Mass:
The theme in the Church these past few decades really seems to be: when you totally run out of ideas, ape pop culture! Pop culture is popular! Maybe some of that popularity will rub off on us!
We wish this was just a joke. It is not. It is pure sacrilege taking place in a parish in Brooklyn, New York. Not only does the Diocese of Brooklyn know about this abomination … it actually helped advertise it on facebook!…….
……..According to the advertisement, the Mass itself was to be “Star Wars” themed.
First, this Mass did take place. Parishioners have confirmed it did.
Some of those tried to downplay the event, saying the Mass was not Star Wars-themed, itself, except for the kids dressed up like little Sith and Jedi. They say there was a Star Wars party concurrent and after the Mass, instead. But the flyer clearly spoke of a Star Wars themed Mass, so……..
As I said, when the Mass undergoes a transformation from the re-presentation of the Sacrifice of Calvary, the confecting of the Real Presence of Our Lord Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity, into a closed circle celebration of us, awesome, awesome US, this kind of thing is bound to happen. Indeed, it is almost inevitable, and there is even room to argue it is surprising it doesn’t happen more often than it does (instead, we tend to see a proliferation of not-so-obvious abuses). Such a fundamental dereliction of the ends of the Mass, from Adoration, Contrition, Thanksgiving, and Supplication, to “let’s cheer for the choir,” Eucharistic Prayer II, and “active participation means everyone scurry around” reveals a profoundly humanistic, even attention-seeking ethos. Instead of reaching children by sharing with them the unspeakable glory of the Gift God makes available to us every time we assist at Mass, we get Star Wars, clown, and balloon Masses.
And the vast majority of those kids fall away. 50 years of abject failure have proven that to an irrefutable degree. Instead, those in the vast majority of the Church, be they lay, priest, or bishop, continue to try absolutely anything, no matter how disordered, no matter how irreverent, except that which worked – demonstrably, provably – so very well for 1950 years, give or take a few.
It’s very difficult to see in that steadfast refusal to return to what worked so well, for so long, something other than a revolutionary intent revealing the mindset of an incompatible religion. It was through the Liturgy that I first came to recognize the crisis in the Church, and that continues through to this day.
Hideous, glowing WaPo report on “homosexual” priests February 1, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, asshatery, different religion, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, priests, sadness, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sexual depravity, sickness, Society, unadulterated evil.
Uff da. They may be right that half or more of current clergy are inclined to same-sex attraction, but that only indicts the horrific dereliction that has afflicted seminaries and dioceses going back decades, to before the Council. Suffice it to say, a cadre of ideologically motivated and perversely inclined men started entering the priesthood in deliberate, focused fashion in the mid-20th century, rose to occupy many levers of power in the Church, and remade the institutions they controlled into something radically different from what they were intended to be. Their presence was a key element in the revolution within the Church. The continuing influence of avowedly “gay” priests is a cancer eating away at the heart of the Church, as these men are ultimately living a lie and are, on some fundamental level, gravely handicapped, if not totally unsuited, for the sacred office they hold (happily celibate men who eschew their disordered inclination are a special case I won’t get into in this post. I’m speaking of the unapologetic types identified below).
The source is the Washington Post, so you can expect these men – who entered the priesthood knowing the Church’s clear Doctrine on the disordered nature of same-sex attraction and the manifest evil of sodomy – receive a sympathetic ear. This is in fact a push piece intended to stir up sodomitical radicalism in the Church, but it’s important to know what we’re up against (my emphasis and comments):
At a time when the phrase “coming out” is starting to sound almost quaint, the Catholic priesthood may be one of the last remaining closets — and it’s a crowded one. People who study gay clergy believe gay men make up a significant percentage of the 40,000 ordained priests in the United States, including some who believe they may even be the majority…….[Maybe. Which doesn’t make it OK, it just shows the depths of the crisis and the derangement that has afflicted the Church in the past few decades]
The Catholic Church is in the throes of a historic period of debate about homosexuality. Between Pope Francis’s now-famous “Who am I to judge?” line and two high-profile, global meetings he called in the past year to open up discussion about sex and family, there has perhaps never been as much dialogue among Catholics about how far to extend the welcome mat to gay people. [We shall never be rid of that damnable statement. It will continue to scandalize and serve as justification for noxious sin and revolution in the Church for decades to come]
……..Gay priests are invisible in this debate; the church does not research the topic. However, interviews with a dozen priests and former seminarians who are gay, and experts on gay priests, reveal a group of men mostly comfortable with their sexuality. Many express no urgency for the church to accept it. Some, however, say the priesthood remains sexually repressive; one said there is an “invisible wall” around the topic among priests. [Chastity is not repression. Sheesh the worldliness, the hedonism of these guys. I’ll just add that some of the worst child abusers in the priesthood – like those at St. John’s Abbey in Minnesota – were those who “embraced” their sexuality and had no shame whatsoever about it.]
……..The Rev. Warren Hall decided to join the tiny number of out priests after he was removed as campus minister of Seton Hall University last May. Officials noted he had supported a group on Facebook that advocates for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and racial justice……..
…….“Priests want to be good priests, they want to do their job,” said Hall, who was reassigned to a Hoboken, N.J., parish. [So he’s still in service. C’MON!]
………Priests who have come out — in some cases citing the need to confront anti-LGBT discrimination — say they have found scant support among other priests.
“Parishioners were very supportive. [Gee, a priest with a huge skeleton, something that he knows is not rightly ordered to the priesthood, raises up morally indifferent people. Color me shocked!] Religious women were very supportive. [The most disordered cohort in the Church. Shocked!] One group that was silent were my brother priests. Gay as well as straight,” said the Rev. Fred Daley, a Syracuse, N.Y., priest who came out in 2004 after he was angered by people blaming gay priests for the global clergy sex abuse crisis…….[Please. Nearly 90% of the victims were boys. Give me a break. And yet another open priest still in service. Is he celibate? Note that Syracuse in the disastrously liberal upstate NY dioceses]
The mixture of fealty to God and the church and concern about harming parishioners or their standing in the priesthood has led some gay priests to gauge each situation before opening up. [So then on some level they are fundamentally dishonest. Is that a desirable characteristic in a priest? Notice how all this revolves around THEM. More below]
A New York priest says he comes out only in rare private circumstances, when counseling someone struggling to accept their homosexuality. “I’ve been in multiple situations where someone will say: ‘I’m a piece of s—.’ I’ll say: ‘Do I look like a piece of s— to you? God made me this way.’ ”[I am so tired of hearing this. This priest is destroying who knows how many souls, as an authority figure who invincibly convinces them that their sins are No. Big. Deal. Most will never overcome that tragic experience]
A Pennsylvania priest says he’s “quietly subversive,” speaking acceptingly of gay people but not to just anyone. Even the confessional is not a truly safe place for him to tell someone who is gay that it’s not a bad thing. “We have too much to lose. I’ve invested my life in this business.”
That last bit really encapsulates the, I would say diabolical, nature of these men. First, it’s all about him, again. Second, we see the self-serving revolutionary mentality, “quietly subversive.” Thirdly, we see his incredibly disordered approach to the priesthood – “this business.” Fourth, we see a mentality that defines self around one’s sexual predilections to a disconcerting degree, which weighs heavily against the right conduct of a priestly office. But that’s what many priests have been formed to be, mid-level managers in Amchurchcorp and occasional “sacramental administrators,” whose personal life is held to be as inconsequential as that of a McDonald’s manager.
A self-identified “gay” priest argues towards the end of the article that the newer generation of priests is more conservative but just as “gay” as the preceding generations. Which, I pray is not true, but I would not be shocked to know that the lavender mafia controlling the vast majority of seminaries continues to weed out non-disordered men. I really do tend to think this kind of thing is much less prevalent in the few traditional seminaries, but I’m sure the crisis extends even there but to a dramatically lesser degree. We should bear in mind, however, the self-serving nature of the priest’s claim – he has an obvious ax to grind, his conduct of the priesthood is bolstered if he feels like it’s inevitable, “everyone is doing it,” and even the more conservative priests are “just as bad.” It could be BS.
BUT…….reports like this do highlight the grave crisis afflicting the priesthood. It’s going to take a long time for this consuming illness afflicting the priesthood to recede to more historic norms, if not be excised almost entirely. Unfortunately, with the culture losing its mind and all but trumpeting this inclination as not just equivalent to, but in many ways superior to a well-ordered, moral life, it may well get still worse. That seems incredible, but we live in unprecedented times.
On the bright side, we will never run out of things to pray for.
Is the barbaric behavior of muslim “immigrants” a sign of ignorance, or is it a sign of domination? January 29, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, disaster, error, foolishness, General Catholic, Immigration, persecution, sadness, scandals, secularism, Society, suicide, the enemy.
A little of column A, and a little of column B, perhaps?
Bookworm notes that many of Europe’s governments from the local to the national level seem to be operating on the belief that the incredibly offensive, timorous behavior of many recent immigrants stems from the ignorance and barbarism of the immigrants themselves. Thus, there are mass campaigns underway to try to educate these immigrants in Western-ways, to, in effect, de-islamify and de-barbarize them.
But Bookworm posits another theory. These muslims are not so backwards that they do not know that doing despicable things – like defecating in public swimming pools and gang raping women – is not acceptable behavior. They are doing these things deliberately, and to a specific end:
Open any website dealing with the Muslim refugees in Europe, and you’re sure to find two different kinds of stories. The first kind of story tells about Muslims engaged in all sorts of inappropriate behavior, such as assaulting women,urinating or defecating in swimming pools, raping little boys, or just plain old killing people. The second kind of story tells aboutthe ways in which Europe intends to address these decidedly anti-social behaviors: They’re educating the refugees. The sophisticated Europeans have concluded that the refugees are so stupid and simplistic that they need to be taught good manners. Otherwise, how will they know not to rape, poop, or kill?
It strikes me that the really stupid, naive, unsophisticated people here are the Europeans who actually believe that this anti-social Muslim behavior comes about because Muslims are primitive people who are, for the first time, confronting an advanced society. To hold this position, Europeans must be willfully blind. Didn’t any of them notice the number of migrants who showed up with smart phones intact?…….
……….Here’s what I think is going on: The refugees are acting as they are, not because they see themselves as charity cases, but because they see themselves as conquerors. They know perfectly well that one doesn’t defecate in a pool in which people (especially children) are swimming. They’re doing it because they are performing the literal equivalent of the expression “I don’t give a —- about you.” They know you’re not supposed to rape women . . . that is, unless those women are the products of conquest, in which case raping them is one of Mohamed’s commandments.
I think Bookworm is onto something here. These millions of migrants see themselves changing Europe forever. I’m certain more than a few – probably those who engage in such disgusting behavior – see themselves as conquerors. That doesn’t mean they are, yet, anyway. But they could become so if policies are not reversed or if there is not some kind of reaction, much more than government signs and pamphlets begging immigrants not to behave in atrocious ways.
Is it too much to see in this developing crisis similarities to the fall of Rome? Note that the barbarian invaders did not have to outnumber the native, Romanized population when they started pouring through the no longer defended frontier in the 5th century. There had been barbarians in the Empire for years, for a number of reasons, but that rapidly accelerated in the 400s and led, within a lifetime, to the total collapse of the Western Empire. By the time they reached 10% of the population, the Western Empire was finished.
There have been barbarians/immigrants in Europe for years in this modern context, but now, suddenly, something has happened and the floodgates have opened. I don’t mean to say that Europe is finished at this point, but I am saying that each day this invasion in permitted to continue increases the likelihood of at least a nightmare internecine conflict as incompatible peoples sort themselves out, if not the actual implosion of Europe as bastion of Western civilization (such as remains, anyway).
At this point, I’m really not certain which is more likely to play out – a nativist awakening and struggle to eject (or at least contain) the invaders, or the gradual slipping away of all that has made Europe, Europe. It’s really up to the Europeans. Not that we are in substantially better shape. Our country, too, has been largely remade through immigration over the past 50 years, but it has been immigration of a much different, and less problematic, type. Having said that, there is no way Ronald Reagan could be elected governor of California today. That California is gone.
Does your kid really need that smart/camera phone? January 28, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, Basics, disaster, Domestic Church, family, General Catholic, horror, paganism, sadness, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sexual depravity, Society.
Just a quick bit of data that might dissuade parents from letting their kids have internet-capable/picture-capable phones:
Somebody’s lying about the sending and receiving. I’m guessing boys don’t want to own up to what they’re sending.
So almost half of highschoolers – who will admit to it! – have received porn via text on their phones. Nice.
For any teen boys reading this, and Lord I pray you are not: if you ever get the fool idea to take a lurid picture of yourself, just know that there is a very good chance that “pretty girl” on the other end isn’t a girl at all. It’s a dude. Another motivation not to do it. And you young ladies, that hot stud on the other side may well be a big fat ick. Or someone looking to sell some amateur porn. Virtually all such images eventually wind up on porn sites. And the internet is forever.
Reader skeinster had sent me a link to an excellent article on this subject but I had a hard time turning the content into a post. So I never got around to it. But it’s well worth checking out. If you take naked snaps of yourself, you’re playing a fools game with eternal consequences, and I don’t just mean in the next life. There are hundreds of thousands of porn images floating around the internet from the 50s, 40s, 30s, even the 1800s. There is a whole genre of porn called “vintage.” You think that Parisian prostitute who got her picture taken in flagrante delicto thought she’d still be ogled 130 years later?
The point is……..don’t do it. And don’t give kids even the chance to do it. My kids have a very basic phone with no camera. They cannot text. It’s for emergency communication only.
Innocence, once lost, can never be regained. The scarring effect of exposure to such permanently damaging material cannot be overstated. You are really never quite the same person afterwards. Sadly, I got exposed to such filth at a very young age, and it caused me enormous problems later in life. I will likely never have the degree of chastity and purity I should, because those memories, those images, can never be fully erased. I would so much prefer to be a great innocent like Saint Therese or Venerable Teresita than be afflicted with the self-induced traumas I have to deal with.
Don’t be like me. Don’t know about this garbage. Don’t fall into satan’s #1 trap for us. Our Lady told the children at Fatima that more souls fall into hell over sins against the 6th and 9th Commandments than anything else. Don’t even start down that path, because you cannot control it. It – and satan – will control you.
Flightline Friday Monday Edition: The Navy That Was January 25, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in disaster, Flightline Friday, foolishness, fun, history, non squitur, sadness, scandals, silliness, Society, technology.
I was stunned to read in the latest issue of Combat Aircraft that the United States Air Force is down to 54 fighter squadrons (and still dropping). That includes the Air Force Reserve and National Guard. In 1987, the USAF had 38 1/2 fighter wings numbering over 130 squadrons. So the Air Force is less than half the size of it’s Reagan-era peak.
Speaking of bygone glory days and steadily deteriorating capability, I got this excellent photo off Foxtrot Alpha showing a whole bunch of ships from the late 80’s which have been entirely retired:
That’s BB-62 New Jersey followed by BB-63 Wisconsin with CGN-9 Long Beach and a Sprucan and a couple of maybe Knox-class frigates in the tail. That’s a whole lot of firepower, and it’s all gone, gone gone.
Long Beach was the world’s first nuclear powered cruiser. She was paid off in 1995. All the Spruance class destroyers, built at great expense in the 70s and 80s, were retired in the 90s and early 00s – at least a decade or more early – even though they were still immensely capable. But Navy BLACK shoe surface warfare types decided it was more important to keep building billion dollar destroyers than to adequately maintain and recapitalize the Navy’s air fleet. Now carriers go to sea with maybe 50 aircraft, instead of the 90+ they used to. And, there are only 9 carriers, down from 15 in the 80s.
The Knox Class frigates were not particularly good ships, they were another questionable product of McNamara’s time as SECDEF, had limited capability and were not good handling ships with their single screws. But, they were useful for convoy escort and could carry a helicopter, making them valuable for antisubmarine warfare work. But no particular loss there. The bigger loss is that once again, the Navy retired an entire class of ships (the later, much more capable Oliver Hazard Perry (FFG-7)) built in the late 70s and 80s during the 90s and 00s. I guess a few struggled on into this decade. They are to be replaced by nearly worthless ships called the “Littoral Combat Ship,” which was the product of a zany and possibly unstable man named Admiral Cebrowski who always wanted to build a vast fleet of small, not very capable boats (the same highly flawed mentality is resident in the Air Force in types like Pierre Sprey and Chuck Riccione, who forever argue for “cheaper” (re: less capable, apt to get more pilots killed) aircraft. Discount everything they have to say).
The problem is, the numbers never get built and even if they do, they aren’t much more than targets in their present configuration. They have almost no anti-aircraft or anti-missile defense, and what they have defends nothing but themselves (they are not good for convoy work or defending other ships, like amphibious warfare craft).
The Navy has also developed the ~$10 billion dollar, 15,000 ton (that’s a WWII heavy cruiser, plus) “destroyers” of the Zumwalt Class. Those are so expensive only one or two will be built, and their core design was horribly compromised 15 years ago by something called “tumblehome.” Tumblehome = sinking almost immediately if hit and being very unseaworthy. Think of a boat built upside down with the wide part way down in the water, and the hull narrowing as it goes up. So for every foot of water the ship takes on, it wants to sink faster, as there is less and less buoyant surface to keep it afloat.
Sorry for all the detail that probably goes over most people’s heads. The long and short of it is that the Navy has been spending a very large procurement budget (larger than the other services) on exceedingly questionable priorities. Surface ships have seen very, very little combat since Vietnam. But aircraft have been employed constantly in warfare going on over two decades straight now, and the Navy has given short-shrift to the aviation budget since the end of the Cold War.
I – and I am far from alone (but I’d like to hear what our resident Naval aviator has to say) – believe that is due to the Navy still being dominated by surface warfare admirals, who tend to favor funding for “their” sector of the Navy at the expense of their black shoe aviation rivals (and it most certainly IS a rivalry). This is a prime argument to me for keeping a separate Air Force, as you need at least one service whose core mission is air power and which cannot be placed on a lower priority as aviation sometimes suffers in the Navy and Army.
See how much I can read into one pretty pic?
BTW I am not an advocate of putting the battleships back in service, as Trump recently advocated. They are manpower hogs and while almost unsinkable by modern weapons (OK, torpedoes remain a grave threat) they don’t really represent a capability that is lacking anymore.
What the Navy and Air Force do need is planes, newer and somewhat cheaper (than the F-35) planes. We cannot afford an all stealth fleet. They cost too much to build, too much to operate, and they are very costly and difficult to keep in operation. I actually saw a proposal to put the F-22 back in production from a serious source within the Air Force. That is almost as stunning as the admission at the top. But that won’t happen as long as the fool who cancelled the greatest fighter aircraft ever built (except for the Crusader!) after 187 were built (and all development paid for, and flyaway price plummeting) leaves office. Yes, I’m looking at you, fool:
A few thoughts on homeschooling, parishes, and family “failure” January 20, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in catachesis, Domestic Church, family, General Catholic, Interior Life, Revolution, sadness, secularism, Society, Spiritual Warfare, the struggle for the Church, Tradition, Virtue.
I guess there was quite a bit of coverage I missed last week on a piece posted to Life Site News regarding children of homeschooling Catholic parents not turning out the way their parents intended. A corollary piece appeared here at Liturgy Guy that argued that raising holy kids requires more than just a homeschooling family, it requires a holy, traditional parish.
Both are well-written and thoughtful pieces. If you haven’t read them yet, they are well worth your time. I am not going to excerpt either, but instead, simply add my own thoughts on the matter in a somewhat scattershot manner.
First, I agree that no matter how much one tries to be holy and faithful and turn out kids who are similar, having kids that fall away and embrace the world is always a possibility. We exist in a culture today that is a veritable sewer, there are so many ways for kids to fail, and I think we all know certain “black sheep” who have always seemed hell bent to do just the opposite of everyone else in a family, and who seem to glory in infantile rebellion.
Having said that, I did notice several things from the list of ways in which kids might have a meltdown, and several things struck me. All of them involved things that seem to be at least controllable, if not largely preventable. Before I get into that, however, the questions below are not an attack on anyone’s parenting, we all do the best we can and we all have different circumstances. You might consider them sanity checks stemming from the LSN post:
How can kids get into porn on the internet if you have a really strict blocker/reporting system like Covenant Eyes?
Why do your high school kids (or younger) “need” to be on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Tinder, or any other social media?
Do your kids really need a smart phone with texting and all the rest?
Kids are not fully mature at 18. Does it make sense then to send them off to secular or even nominally Catholic colleges (or even really Catholic colleges) where they will be totally on their own for the first time? Why not have them live at home for at least the first year or two and attend a local college, if that is an option? Is college even necessary for most kinds who are not going into business, hard science, engineering, etc? What about vocational programs? Do you know how valuable a one year class in Pro/E, Solidworks (MCAD), or Allegro (ECAD) is?
Are you really monitoring your kid’s friends? Do you know what they get up to?
Regarding the second link above, I strongly recommend finding a traditional parish if at all possible, and involving the family exclusively in that parish. There is a massive difference between a deliberately, specifically traditional parish, and one that offers the occasional TLM or a Novus Ordo parish. It is literally night and day, especially in terms of the degree of devotion to the Faith, the virtue of the children to whom your children will be exposed, the general prevailing moral standard, the catechesis received, and perhaps most importantly, the synergistic effect that comes from all these things and more taken together in toto. Surely kids do flake out from homeschool trad families, too, but the crashes tend to be much less severe, and occur less frequently.
But there are dangers even there. I have observed that traditional Catholics tend to be very much Type A personalities. There is more than a little “my way or the highway” going on. Some of this is on matters of import, some of it is not. So just as a sort of check your motives exercise, I think it important to consider from time to time whether one’s manner of homeschooling and child-rearing is really about turning out holy kids, or controlling your environment? The latter is far more likely to foster rebellion than the former. Kids do need to be able to express their own individuality. Suppressing that in a heavily regimented home environment can create pressure that could lead to an explosion later. I’ve seen that more than once.
Do some kids need to feel like they are rebelling? I say that in this sense……there are people who are simply contrarian. For whatever reason, they feel a need to show they are somehow different, better, smarter, whatever, than the status quo around them. Is it better to permit some contained rebellion than to risk a total meltdown later?
A kid going very far into rebellion does not mean failure. Look, as far as my parents knew, I was purt’ near the “perfect child,” I made straight A’s, I never (substantially) got into trouble with the law, I did “date” probably a little more, ah….aggressively….than they would have preferred, but there were no accidents or crises. I never got in trouble at school, I worked various jobs, etc. But partly to blow off steam from much self-induced pressure, and partly simply because I really, really liked it, little did they know, but I got blitzed pretty much every Friday and Saturday night from age 14 on. I was pretty wild, and had some wilder friends. We “garage hopped,” stealing things from open garages at night (mostly beer), we drank, we drove like wild men, we fought, we had huge gatherings dang near every week in the most unlikely spot imaginable……our senior high parking lot. We got busted by cops many times who inexplicably never took us home or to jail. While I had the discipline to study and apply myself scholastically just about every moment I wasn’t drinking or working, my friends would crush two liters of Sun Country wine coolers (remember those?) at lunch, smoke out, and even got into much harder things as high school wound down. But every single one of those guys are now happily married, responsible adults with families and professional jobs. They aren’t practicing Catholics, to be sure, but they weren’t then, either.
The point is not to recount my “glory years.” They weren’t glorious, they were stupid and I got lucky 1,000 times over, and not just with regard to my parent’s image of me. I nearly died on several occasions, including a 110 mph wipeout on Plano Parkway just before starting college. The point, however, is that what looks like failure at 16 or 19 or even 27 may not be look so bad a few years later. One of those friends who were most wild got his girlfriend pregnant at age 19. They got married and he finished school. They have five kids and are still together. He is very successful, materially. Conversely, what looks like success at 18 may not turn out that way in the long run.
Some people just have to learn the hard way. Some people, like me, must endure much self-induced misery before coming to the conclusion that all that “fun” wasn’t so great. So never give up, and never assume that just because you’ve “lost one” that all the others are going to turn out similarly, or that the lost sheep will never return. The school of hard knocks is very painful, but also very effective.
I’ll say a bit more. In my experience, the acorn don’t fall very far from the tree. That is to say, I am generally amazed at how similarly many of my now adult friends from childhood resemble their parent’s behavior. Now, in the cases I’m thinking of, that’s not always ideal, but it should give hope to homeschooling parents afflicted with a rebellious child. They may be rebellious now, but odds are they’ll settle down and wind up being more like you than you imagine possible right now when they hit their 30s or so.
Perhaps the above is obvious. I hope it is not offensive. This is a subject I think about a lot. And I worry that sometimes our balance isn’t quite right. The thing is, what works beautifully for one or several kids may not work well for all. They’re all different. And when you have a bunch of kids it can be hard to tailor the environment exactly to maximize success (a holy soul) in each one. So I pray a lot about that, and hope that any mistakes we make God will correct or overcome through Grace.
It’s not easy, and it’s only going to get harder. There are so many temptations in the world, our kids will hear so many voices that tell them we are crazy, extreme, reactionary, etc., and many of those voices will come from within the Church (another huge reason to find a traditional parish!). And souls simply sometimes fall into sin in spite of our every best effort. It does happen.
The key thing is to never, ever give up. Never stop trying. Always love and pray for your kids, even if they repudiate you in the most hurtful manner possible. Some may never come back, but some will. It may take a long time, but they will.
Don’t place too much hope in a constitutional/Article V convention January 20, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, Christendom, error, foolishness, General Catholic, persecution, Revolution, sadness, scandals, secularism, Society, suicide.
A reader who shall remain nameless sent me this link, to an article discussing a growing movement among conservatives to call an Article V constitutional convention. I am as skeptical of anything positive coming out of this as is my correspondent. A brief excerpt from the link:
Article V of the U.S. Constitution authorizes two methods for amending the Constitution: (1) The congressional method, in which Congress proposes an amendment by a two-thirds vote of each house and sends it to the states for ratification (three-fourths of the states are required); and (2) the convention method, whereby, if two-thirds of the state legislatures (34 states) apply to Congress to call a convention for proposing amendments (commonly referred to as an Article V convention, a constitutional convention, a Con-Con, or a convention of states), Congress shall call such a convention. Congress would send any amendments proposed by the convention to the states for ratification (three-fourths of the states are required).
In either of the two methods for proposing amendments, Congress has the option of sending the proposed amendments to either the state legislatures or to special state conventions for ratification……..
………Since most of our nation’s problems stem from a lack of adherence to the Constitution, the best solution is to bring about a large-scale, grassroots constitutional education campaign to inform voters sufficiently so that they hold elected officials accountable to the Constitution. As Thomas Jefferson famously said, “If a nation expects to be ignorant and free … it expects what never was and never will be.”
Solutions such as the Article V convention movement, which depend on changing the Constitution rather than on creating an informed electorate, cannot restore our constitutional republic. [And I would argue, even more important than an informed public, is one grounded in Christian morality and practice. Do you believe the United States of 2016 is more moral, more Christian (and especially Catholic) than it was in 1789?]
Not only would changing the Constitution without informing the electorate not work, but subjecting the Constitution to revision in a convention of the sovereign people, such as an Article V convention, would be to expose the Constitution to revision by a body with the right to alter or abolish our form of government and to institute new government. During such a process the entire Constitution and Bill of Rights, as well as the ratification procedure, would be subject to revision. See “The Solution Is the Constitution, Not Article V” for more information.
Although a “convention for proposing amendments,” as provided for in Article V, is absolutely constitutionally sanctioned, and the right of the people to alter or abolish their government is sanctioned by the Declaration of Independence, it is unwise, given the current lack of understanding of and support for constitutional principles by our leaders and voters, to work toward holding such a convention. The solution is to create an informed electorate, not to change the Constitution.
Here is what my correspondent had to say:
Article V Constitutional Convention. Many neo-cons, like Mark Levin, are calling for one and putting a lot of effort into it.
I share the opinion that a Con-Con could well be a Trojan Horse. I do not believe there could be a sure guarantee that a Con-Con would not run away and leave us in an inferior position. Of course that is opinion.
But the part that is senseless is the following. Is there a problem with our current Constitution? Can we improve on it by committee? I rather doubt it. The real problem is that the government that is created under that Constitution finds it inconvenient, which is the whole purpose. So the government just wholesale ignores the Constitution. The problem is not coming up with a better Constitution, or a better amendment. The problem is in forcing the government to obey the Constitution.
And if we are unable to force the government to abide by the current Constitution, maybe Mark Levin and those of his stripe can explain to us how we will force the government to abide by a “new, improved” Constitution.
That pretty neatly sums up my own concern, as well. I would say even more, that given the fact that conservatives are generally outnumbered in this country 2:1, that the left is better organized, funded, and has the total backing of the media, and the general ignorance and immorality that abound in our nation today, the likelihood that a constitutional convention would have a happy result, and would not turn into a runaway even resulting in ane ven more directly authoritarian government, is exceedingly slight. In fact, I think it very near a pipe dream.
We should also bear in mind the experience of the first constitutional convention. What started out as a convention to reform the Articles of Confederation quickly morphed into a small group of self-proclaimed enlightened men completely scrapping the existing national government and proposing a total replacement. Now, it certainly had a lot of pluses and worked quite well for a long time (at least materially), but it also ushered in a far more powerful, centralized national government and ultimately laid the ground work – for all its brilliance – for the point we have arrived at today. That is to say, as good as it was, and it was in many respects excellent (but did have the paramount failure to place Jesus Christ clearly as the ultimate Source from which governmental authority was derived, and point to Him as our perfect King), it has still failed to prevent a tyrannous government from arising. The checks and balances were insufficient to prevent the document from simply being ignored, or distorted beyond the conception of its creators.
And we think we might do better, today, with this cast of characters running the show? I’m sorry, that seems the height of hubris, and folly.
I don’t think this nation can be turned around, “saved,” if you will, by political means. A country wherein the vast majority of the populace is rabidly amoral (and blindingly ignorant) is not the seed-bed from which liberty flows. We get the government we deserve, and all that. You may disagree, but I really don’t see, practically, how conservatives would have a prayer of dominating at any such convention, and that is what it would take.
No, I fear if a constitutional convention is called, we could kiss what religious liberty, what freedom of speech, what freedom of press and assembly, and what freedom to keep and bear arms we have today pretty much goodbye. But we’d probably get constitutionally assured “free” contraception,
sex changes bodily mutilation, STD testing, and abortions.
Only one person can save this nation now: