Catholic catechesis is lousy because it’s based on the widely adopted liberal educational “model”

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Other denominations, I’ve observed, do a better job of offering meaningful adult faith formation, and it’s well attended. Yes, there is Sunday school for children, but that’s not considered the central formational focus of the community. There are logistical differences beyond the confessional ones here, of course. Episcopalians and Lutherans and Presbyterians rarely offer 6 back-to-back services on a Sunday morning, and don’t have the same need for childhood sacramental preparation as Catholics do. Many Protestant churches schedule formation opportunities for all ages on Wednesday evenings.

That’s part of the reason the adult formation classes and workshops we do offer are so poorly attended—adult catechesis just not a part of our regular expectation and structure. And adding it to an already overscheduled parish calendar doesn’t seem to be much of a solution.

So here’s my totally immodest proposal, audaciously presented on the virtual eve of the grand ComicCon of Catholic religious education, L.A.’s RECongress: Snap out of it. Let’s just stop catechizing children.

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Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery now off-limits for Catholic kids

“Catholic schools in the Diocese of Madison may no longer participate in any activities, workshops or field trips at the Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery,” wrote Michael Lancaster, superintendent of Catholic schools. “Any plans to do so should be halted immediately, and alternative, morally acceptable means of meeting the educational objectives should be utilized.”

The decision, approved by Bishop Robert Morlino, affects about 7,400 children at 44 schools in 11 counties, Lancaster said. However, only a handful of Catholic schools had been taking students to the facility, he said.

The diocesan investigation was triggered last spring by concerns from parents and priests, Lancaster said. While the research center offers many valuable educational programs that pose no moral or theological issues for Catholics, it also offers a workshop for middle and high school students in which they work with live human stem cells, he said.

“There is the possibility participants in this workshop may handle embryonic stem cells, which would clearly violate Catholic doctrine and teaching,” Lancaster said.

Embryonic stem cells are harvested from human embryos, requiring the destruction of early-stage embryos otherwise discarded at fertility clinics. The Catholic Church considers this the death of a human being and teaches that all human life is sacred and must be protected. The church does not oppose research using adult stem cells, which are derived from adult tissue samples.

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So Just Where is that Epistle to the Children?

When the apostles started out, they knew they had work to do. The whole world needed conversion. Everyone was pagan. That is, the world looked very much like it does today. The apostolic approach to the problem differed from ours.

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Peter, for instance, did not set up a single parochial school. Luke did not write a children’s gospel. Not one of Paul’s epistles were decorated with yellow duckies. In short, according to the Scriptures and Church history, the apostles didn’t bother teaching children the Faith. They taught only the adults. Why?

Because the apostles understood the principle of subsidiarity. Pope Pius XI in his 1931 encyclicalQuadragesimo Anno described the principle succinctly: “Just as it is gravely wrong to take from individuals what they can accomplish by their own initiative and industry and give it to the community, so also it is an injustice and at the same time a grave evil and disturbance of right order to assign to a greater and higher association what lesser and subordinate organizations can do. For every social activity ought of its very nature to furnish help to the members of the body social, and never destroy and absorb them.”

The apostles knew they could not replace parents. Through the sacrament of marriage, God endows parents with the ability to teach their own children about Him. The apostles only needed to teach the parents the Faith, it was the parents’ responsibility to teach their own children. So, what has changed in the last two millenia? The answer to that is simple. Nothing.

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If Catholic schools were factories, the end product would be lukewarm Catholics.

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A “theologically orthodox”
Catholic school teacher sounds off

I could recount many nightmarish stories of how most of the Catholic school educators and administrators I have encountered have been men and women of little or no faith in Christ and Church. Even in the religion departments it is common to encounter ex-nuns who feel the Church is in sin because they can’t be priests, homosexual men who are more interested in defending the lifestyle than in teaching the straight Catholic faith, and a range of those who are in dissent on some or another important Catholic doctrine.

If there are problems of personnel inside the Religion departments, the other disciplines are almost completely immersed in doing exactly what they would be doing in a public school. I have often wondered what small percentage of Catholic high school teachers actually like the Catholic Church? It is obvious that in hiring these folks, the biggest unspoken question is not “Are you enthusiastic about your Catholic faith?” but “Can you tolerate pretending to be on board with the Catholic stuff you will encounter from time to time here?”

There’s lots more

Editor’s note: Be sure to see the reader comments … all of them.

New 7th grade Catholic catechism text: Three major modernist heresies in the first chapter, alone!

by Doug Lawrence

As many of you know, my buddy, AndyP/Doria2 passed away recently. Andy was a great Catholic catechist, totally dedicated to that great work. So, out of respect for Andy, and in an effort to keep everything in balance, I signed up to teach 7th grade CCD this year.

I got the text book and teacher’s guide last Wednesday, and finally had a chance to sit down and look at it. The book is very attractive, colorful, nicely organized, easy to read, and it’s supported by a full complement of CD’s, black line masters, a catechist guide, and a website.

That’s the good part. Now, for the bad …

The text includes many of the modernist heresies that have crept into the New American Bible, AmChurch, and virtually all Catholic schools, colleges and seminaries, since the close of the 2nd Vatican Council.

The text’s writers maintain … with no proof at all to back them … and contrary to the constant, official teachings of the Catholic Church:

That the inspired writers to whom the various books of the gospels are attributed, probably didn’t really write them. Hence …  contrary to the plain, written testimony of the evangelists, and of the Catholic Church itself … we have no real  “eyewitness accounts” of Jesus Christ. So everything we read in the Bible is either hearsay … or myth.

That all of the NT writings were produced very “late” … further bolstering their erroneous and unproven assertion that St. Matthew the Apostle most likely didn’t write the Gospel of Matthew, and St. John the Apostle probably didn’t write the Gospel of John, his Epistles (letters) or the Apocalypse (Book of Revelation), etc., etc.

That much of what we read in the Bible is actually in error … and that only stuff put in there specifically “for the purpose of our salvation” is totally reliable.

They also allude to the infamous and so far undiscovered “Q” source and to the nonexistent collection of “The Sayings of Jesus” … all of which is based solely on the very recent, liberal, modernist “theories” of various faithless skeptics … many of them not even Catholic.

The textbook writers claim that the documents of the 2nd Vatican Council provide their authority for all of this “BS” (100% Pure Bovine Excrement) but they don’t. Not by a long shot!

These guys actually learned this stuff in school … from other heretical modernists … quite probably their own teachers … who think they’re smarter than everyone who came before .. so they know better what to believe … better even than the authentic Tradition of the Holy Catholic Church … and of course … better than the God-inspired writers of the Holy Bible.

No wonder the world is suffering from a crisis of faith! This totally heretical stuff has been allowed to “fester” inside the Catholic Church  … unabated and essentially unchallenged … for over fifty years. And it’s been corroding the faith of various Protestant sects … from whence it originally came … for much, much longer!

All of which just goes to prove: Heretics are pretty much the same, from age to age. Only now, the misguided liberals who run the post-Vatican II Catholic Church have seen fit to include this nasty stuff in children’s catechism texts … instead of  going through the trouble of correcting their errors … or bringing the “faith-corroding bastards” up on charges … or better yet … burning them at the stake!

This was only chapter ONE! More to come…

Pope Leo XIII On the Study of Holy Scripture 

Catholic schools have become inexpensive private schools for middle class people who have little or no interest in the Catholic faith.

We may have a few parish schools still plugging along, but are they Catholic? It seems that all we have left to us is the threadbare cousin. All our resources and energies go to maintaining the private school in the building next to the church. While the world is starving for Christ, we are giving them bingo and bratwurst, raffles and dinner dances, all to keep the school going.

“But,” I can hear you say, “this is our major form of evangelism!” Aren’t you paying attention? The few kids from our schools who go to church don’t go because the school has converted them. They go because they have parents dedicated enough to bring them every Sunday, even in summer. Even in soccer season. Those kids may end up Catholic, not because they went to our schools and religious education programs, but because their parents were the first and best of teachers.

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Editor’s note: Be sure to scroll down to the reader comments section.

Take one of the most powerful institutions in history and change it so radically, in all the wrong ways, that in the span of 50 years, it will be a shell of its former self…

In the tumultuous 1960s, the world was on fire as secularism and moral relativism were in vogue. Rather than fighting those concepts, the church went in the opposite direction. Vatican II allowed Catholics to be “Catholic” in any way they wanted, playing into the hands of the Woodstock culture. Unwittingly, that carte-blanche decree served as a launching point for the now-dominant “do whatever makes you feel good” mentality.

In an instant, what made Roman Catholicism the world’s dominant force vanished. To many, the “rock” upon which St. Peter built the church no longer seemed solid, but more “flexible.”

Read more on Newsmax.com: Catholic Schools Suffer From Vatican II
Editor’s note: Let no man deceive you by any means: for unless there come a revolt first, and the man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition Who opposeth and is lifted up above all that is called God or that is worshipped, so that he sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself as if he were God.
Remember you not that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things? And now you know what withholdeth, that he may be revealed in his time.
For the mystery of iniquity already worketh: only that he who now holdeth do hold, until he be taken out of the way.
And then that wicked one shall be revealed: whom the Lord Jesus shall kill with the spirit of his mouth and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: him Whose coming is according to the working of Satan, in all power and signs and lying wonders: And in all seduction of iniquity to them that perish: because they receive not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. (2:10)
Therefore God shall send them the operation of error, to believe lying: (2:11) That all may be judged who have not believed the truth but have consented to iniquity.   (2 Thessalonians 2:3-12)
Related notes from the Haydock Bible commentary

Obama deliberately alienating Catholic voters, to show how “tough” he is.

In the past year, Obama’s Justice Department has argued in court that defenders of traditional marriage — the most visible segment of which are observant Catholics and bishops — should be regarded in law as the equivalent of racists. His National Labor Relations Board has issued rulings against two Catholic schools, St. Xavier University in Chicago and Manhattan College in New York, saying that they are not sufficiently Catholic to warrant religious exemptions from federal labor law —a stunning breach of the precedent in which religious bodies, not government officials, decide who qualifies as a member of a particular church. Those rulings followed on the heels of a highly publicized crusade by Obama’s Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to punish North Carolina’s Belmont Abbey College for removing contraception coverage from its employee health plans, a move the Catholic school made to conform to church doctrine.

And just last week, Obama’s Justice Department argued before the Supreme Court for the effective gutting of the longstanding “ministerial exception” that allows religious bodies to hire and fire employees without government interference.

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Editor’s note: Obama knows it’s safe to “bully” Catholics because the majority of Catholics were so easily taken in during his run for the presidency, and he has yet to perceive a significant backlash. Any politician worth his salt knows how to exploit weakness and division. That’s exactly what POTUS is doing … with Catholics … and with the Republicans, in Congress.

Teachers at Catholic schools ill-prepared for their jobs, says president of Catholic Education Institute

Catholic schools aren’t Catholic enough and are failing in their mission because teachers are not adequately prepared for their special role, the president of the Catholic Education Institute told attendees at a recent three-day conference at Marin Catholic High School.

“For teachers preparing to work in Catholic elementary or high schools, most [Catholic colleges and universities] offer little that is specifically Catholic,” Jesuit Fr. John Piderit told participants at the second annual ‘Substantially Catholic’ conference at Marin Catholic, the archdiocesan newspaper Catholic San Francisco reports.

“‘Why is this important for administrators?” asked Father Piderit’s colleague Melanie Morey, senior director of research at the institute,” continued the Catholic San Francisco story. ‘Every year you bring young faculty into your schools’ and they are by and large unprepared to teach specifically as Catholics, she said.”

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Some see home schooling as a threat to Catholic schools, while others recognize it as valid option

According to the Second Vatican Council’s Declaration on Christian Education (Gravissimum Educationis), parents are the primary educators of their children, and Catholic home-schoolers take that commitment seriously. For them, their homes are places where authentic Catholic education occurs, and many members of the clergy and hierarchy agree with them. Several dioceses explicitly recognize home schooling as a valid option for Catholic education.

But not all priests and bishops agree. At the Third Plenary Council of Baltimore in 1884, the bishops wrote that parents have an obligation to send their children to parochial schools, and some clergy members today say Catholic home-schoolers abrogate that responsibility.

The latest skirmish flared earlier this year when the Holy Family Homeschoolers Association invited Austin Bishop Joe Vásquez to celebrate a blessing Mass at the beginning of the next school year. The response came not from the bishop’s office but from the Catholic schools superintendent, Ned Vanders, who wrote:

“Bishop Vásquez received your invitation to celebrate a Eucharistic liturgy for the fall home-schooling blessing Mass.Bishop Vásquez believes Catholic education, and in particular Catholic school education, is an essential part of the life of the Diocese of Austin. As you know, Catholic schools are at the heart of the mission of the Church.“Bishop’s presence at the home-schooling Mass would convey a contradictory message equating the importance of Catholic school education with Catholic home schooling; therefore, Bishop Vásquez must respectfully decline the invitation.Sincerely in Christ,Ned F. Vanders, Ed.D.”

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The Catholic (School) Difference

In 2004 President George W. Bush spoke to Catholic Educators in Washington D.C. for the centennial celebration of the National Catholic Education Association.  He described Catholic education as a “noble calling” and praised our schools as “models for all schools around the country.”  He stated, “Catholic schools have a proven record of bringing out the best in every child, regardless of their background. And every school in America should live up to that standard.”

The United States Department of Education reported that Catholic School students are consistently high in reading, math, and science skills, and are especially effective in educating minority and low-income students.  Ninety-nine percent of Catholic secondary school students graduate, and 97% go on to post-secondary education.

During last year’s Catholic Schools Week, Bishop Paul Zipfel spoke of the value of a Catholic education during a Mass at our high school.  He explained that it is about so much more than just academic records.  “Research also shows that graduates of Catholic schools are more closely bonded to the Church, more deeply committed to adult religious practices, have better images of God, and exhibit a greater awareness of the responsibilities for moral decision making,” he stated.  “Although it never replaces the primary education that must take place in the home, it is one of the best investments we can make in the future faith of our children.”

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“You have more than enough to do to correct the propensity of man to sin without getting into the fringes of economic policy.”

It is revelatory that very little is generated by the mitered ones on something they have great responsibility for: the safeguarding of morals in the priesthood and the training of young people in Catholic schools on the articles of the faith.

Read more at TomRoeser.com

Its time to “recover the evangelizing muscle that characterized the early church.”

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… the Catholic Church for too long took for granted the Catholic culture, “when it was presumed that you would go to Sunday Mass, that you would marry a Catholic and be married in the Catholic Church, when it was presumed that you would always remain in the faith, with tons of priests and nuns and Catholic schools to serve you.”

Those days are gone, and now he says its time to “recover the evangelizing muscle that characterized the early church.” This means putting an end to the “wavering” that has too often characterized the Catholic Church since the Second Vatican Council and a return to a clear and confident message.

“Very often even the word Catholic even the word church has had a question mark behind it,” he says. “Does it know where it’s going? Does it know what its teaching? Is it going to be around? There was a big question mark. A young person will not give his or her life for a question mark. A young person will give his or her life for an exclamation point.”

-Archbishop Timothy Dolan of  New York

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