Conformed to the World?
More and more Catholic parents are home-schooling their children or sending them to independent Catholic schools. Why? We do have officially-sponsored Catholic schools, don't we?
Maybe these parents don't have confidence in the official Catholic schools in their area. In the Diocese of Oakland we have many Catholic schools -- some good, some middling, some worthless (which could probably be said about the Catholic schools in most dioceses). But for some Catholic parents, even "good" is apparently not good enough.
We were struck by a special feature in Oakland's diocesan paper (June 18) paying tribute to the high-school graduating classes of 2001 in the Diocese. The feature showcased two "outstanding graduates" from each of the nine Catholic high schools in the Diocese. These 18 graduates were asked: (1) Whom would you like to meet? and (2) What is the greatest challenge facing the world today?
Given that these students are graduates of Catholic high schools and that they are among the brightest, most attentive, most learned graduates in the Diocese, we expected that there would be a distinctly Catholic flavor to many, or at least some, of the responses. But no.
You have two options:
Subscribe now to New Oxford Review for access to all web content at newoxfordreview.org AND the monthly print edition for as low as $38 per year.
Single article purchase:
Purchase this article for $1.95, for viewing and printing for 48 hours.
If you're already a subscriber log-in here.
New Oxford Notes: October 2001
|Read our posting policy
||Add a comment
|Exactly why we are homeschooling our son through high school.
||Posted by: gespin3549
February 01, 2007 12:27 PM EST
|We had our children in Catholic school for 5 years all the while waiting for the promised "things are getting better" from the pastor and administrators (things being a return to true Catholic teaching and identity). We finally decided that changes were happening too slowly (if at all) to benefit our children and that we would have to take control...We are in our 2nd year of homeschooling and LOVE IT! Some people get offended when we tell them that Catholic homeschooling families are "just different" but anyone who homeschools knows that this is the truth! We haven't cut our children off from the world or their friends from Catholic School...but when we with our homeschool group/families I find peace, comfort, and a true sense we are at HOME.
||Posted by: rpkammerer
December 05, 2007 09:56 AM EST
|On 4/26/99 I contacted the the Assistant Director of Education for my former diocese. I never received a response. Accordingly, I immediately pulled my youngest son out of the purported "Catholic" school that he had been attending after Grade 3, and have been homeschooling him ever since. He's now a Senior in HS, and he is receiving a Catholic education in all subjects across the board. This is the best thing that I have done to date for my son as not only have I, with the help of God, given him a Catholic education, to particularly include Catholic apologetics, but also have ensured that he received an education, PERIOD, as his overall test scores in Mathematics, Grammar, and Reading were off of the chart compared to what they were previously. The explanation of why I did this follows in my letter to the ADE.
By accident I found out that there was a AIDS curricula in our Catholic schools mandated by the by the diocese of Altoona-Johnstown. This information came from friends who have children in Catholic schools in Altoona and Bellefonte PA.
This piqued my interest as I am one of two Catholic representatives on a local citizens group attempting to monitor similar activities in the public schools where there is a strong belief that parental rights are being usurped.
Over a period of two hours I read the full so-called AIDS curricula in detail. I took notes and will share them with you. At the outset I will tell you unequivocally that I could not recommend to any Catholic parent that they allow their children to be exposed to this program as I understood it for the reasons given below. In particular, you will understand where I'm coming from by examining the attachments as Catholic parents are fighting a culture war for the souls of their children.
First of all, it is my contention that the only thing my son in third grade needs to know about AIDS and, for that matter, the only thing ANY child needs to know about AIDS is that if you obey the laws of God, your probability of getting same is infinitesimal! There is no need, I repeat, no need to go into extraordinary explicit sexual detail involving homosexuality to teach this fact as is the bogus claim of AIDS curricula throughout the country to include what I read in the diocesan mandated program.
I was told by that these materials are age appropriate. It is my contention that the only people capable of making such judgments for their children are their parents. I will let the reader decide if "age appropriate" applies here.
Some of the goals which I saw in my two hour examination of this K-12 curricula follow:
K - know how it feels to be sick,
1 - weigh safe and dangerous choices,
2 - identify choices as good or bad
3 - refuse risky or dangerous behaviors,
4 - deal with peer pressure,
5 - say no to illegal drugs,
6 - identify causes of AIDS
The following statement was made:
"Homosexuality is neither the cause of HIV/AIDS nor a cause for disrespect."
It is reinforced throughout the curricula that AIDS is not a punishment from God. How can we be so sure of that? Aren't there consequences for our actions anymore? In the context of getting burned when we get too close to a stove, isn't God trying to tell us that recognizing right from wrong will protect us physically as well as spiritually given the truth of the Natural Law written on the hearts of men? Isn't He trying to show us that there are dire consequences for ignoring His laws given to us out of unconditional love for our own physical and spiritual well-being?
Repeatedly in this curricula AIDS is not referenced as a homosexual disease. This is true only in so far as AIDS is prevalent in the heterosexual community in greater numbers because they are greater numbers of heterosexuals than homosexuals. The CDC control stats clearly show that in terms of relative populations, HIV/AIDS occurs by well over 2-1 in the homosexual community.
The above statement also makes no distinction between a cause of disrespect for the person and a cause of disrespect for the behavior which is demanded if one is to avoid the occasions of sin - something that should be paramount in Catholic school curricula.
The following information is provided in reference to a letter from someone, who identified himself as president of the local AIDS Project, which appeared in the State College PA Centre Daily Times which implied that homosexuals do not make up the predominant category of those afflicted with AIDS/HIV - a contention repeatedly reinforced by the AIDS curricula in our Catholic schools.
I would recommend reading a book entitled HOMOSEXUALITY AND THE POLITICS OF TRUTH by Dr. Jeffrey Satinover, M.D. which should carry the warning "caution, this book may be hazardous to the psyche of the politically correct." Dr. Satinover commits an unpardonable sin by writing an objective, unemotional report on homosexuality which deals with cold, hard, incontrovertible facts.
The book represents current research on AIDS/HIV. "One out of a thousand adult Americans is now infected with HIV. This is 0.1 percent of the adult population. Because roughly half the population is male and 2.8% of all males are homosexual, 1.4% of the adult population consists of homosexual males, which account for about 30% of all AIDS cases. Thus the likelihood of a randomly selected heterosexual man or woman being infected with AIDS is roughly 7 in 10,000 (0.07%).
Dr. Satinover goes on "But shockingly and frighteningly, yet consistent with the concentration of AIDS cases among high-risk populations, epidemiologists estimate that 30% of all twenty-year old homosexual males will be HIV-positive or dead of AIDS by the time they are thirty. This means that the incidence of AIDS among twenty- to thirty-year old homosexual men is roughly 430 times greater than among the heterosexual population at large."
Continuing, Dr. Satinover states "It is also estimated that a single act of unprotected intercourse (not taking into account whether it is homosexual or heterosexual, anal or vaginal) with a known-to-be-infected male carries with it a transmission risk of roughly 1 in 500. If we multiply this rough measure of the transmissibility of the AIDS virus by the average risk of encountering an HIV-positive heterosexual, this means that in the absence of any information about one's partner's HIV status, age, demographic group, and so on, a single act of heterosexual intercourse of any type carries with it an average risk of roughly 1 in 715,000 (calculated by 7 in 10,000 x 1 in 500 = 7 in 5,000,000). In fact it must be less, as acts of heterosexual intercourse are by far mostly vaginal, and the 1 in 500 transmissibility figure includes acts of anal intercourse as well. Of course, if the partner is a known IV-drug abuser or prostitute, for example, the risk is much greater. But a single act of unprotected intercourse with a twenty- to thirty-year old male homosexual carries with it a transmission risk of roughly 1 in 165."
Dr. Satinover concludes "It is important under all circumstances to know or estimate the likelihood of one's partner being infected in a heterosexual encounter. But in homosexual encounters, this knowledge - and the willingness to act on it - is of life saving statistical importance. The sequence of life saving steps would include the following, for both partners:
1. Being tested for HIV
2. Knowing the test results
3. Communicating the test results to one's partner(s)
4. If infected, refraining from knowingly engaging in sex with an uninfected partner
5. If not infected, refraining from knowingly engaging in sex with an infected partner.
But here, too, as with the degree of successful risk-reduction through avoiding unprotected anal intercourse, the insufficient regularity with which homosexuals take these steps is startling and grim. Indeed, a body of opinion has recently arisen in the scientific literature arguing that the benefit (pleasure) of high risk sex outweighs its risk (death)."
It is to be noted that all of the above statements are heavily referenced in Dr. Satinover's excellent book.
I will conclude with the observation that, whether we use statistics from the World Health Organization or those pertaining solely to the U.S., an irrefutable fact is that an inordinate number of homosexuals contract AIDS or HIV compared to the heterosexual population. I would conjecture that the statistics in Satinover's book regarding 30% of cases occurring in 1.4% of the homosexual adult male population would be similar for any comparable sample of homosexuals/heterosexuals worldwide exclusive of some third world countries, i.e., the risk to homosexuals would be upwards of 400 times greater than among heterosexuals at large. In such places as sub-Saharan Africa, where promiscuity is the cultural norm across much of the populations with a high intersection of homosexual and nonhomosexual circles, the HIV virus has spread uniformly. Gay activists like to talk in terms of these specialized "third world statistics" in order to obscure the powerful statistical connection between AIDS and homosexuality by emphasizing the truth that the virus itself does not "seek" homosexuals, can infect anyone, and has already infected many other people. While it may be the case that the majority of people infected with AIDS worldwide might not be homosexual, due mainly to the fact that male homosexuals consists of such a small fraction of the population, nevertheless, when most people think of homosexuality as risky, they think of AIDS because the statistical association is so self-evident. The statistics given in the Satinover book and in the most recent issue of the HIV/AIDS Surveillance Report below prove the truth of this self-evident association.
Has the politicized campaign against AIDS been successful in halting the spread of this disease? In Europe, Asia, and the United States, AIDS has not exploded into the population at large as many feared it would, as it has in parts of Africa. Satinover suggests "Perhaps this is due to the success of 'safe-' later renamed 'safer-' sex campaigns that started in homosexual communities." He goes on to report "But a recently published, widely respected survey on the sexual practices of Americans, SEX IN AMERICA, shows otherwise. On the one hand, the researchers point our that AIDS is likely to remain contained within certain groups and is not likely to spread to the population at large. This containment, they discovered, is rooted in the traditionalism, fidelity, caution, and restraint observed by the great majority of Americans when it comes to sex. On the other hand, the politicized form of intervention has not been nearly successful enough among homosexuals. Indeed, the homosexual community has paid the highest price. Fifteen years into the epidemic the American Psychiatric Association Press reports that '30% of all 20-year-old gay men will be HIV positive or dead of AIDS by the time they are age 30' because they are resuming 'unsafe sex' anyway."
Satinover's summary is given in the form of twelve concluding propositions of which a few will be summarized here.
"Because deeply engraved behaviors are so difficult to modify, homosexuals, like all people, have two choices: to capitulate to the behavior and its consequences or to depend on others, and on God, for help."
"Secular programs that modify homosexual behavior are more numerous and more effective than popular opinion is led to believe."
"Spiritual programs that lead people into dependency on God, and support them there, are even more effective. The best of these integrate into their spiritual approach the best that is offered by the secular approaches as well."
"The modern change in opinion concerning homosexuality, though presented as a scientific advance, is contradicted rather than supported by science. It is a transformation in public morals consistent with widespread abandonment of the Judeo-Christian ethic upon which our civilization is based. Though hailed as 'progress,' it is really a reversion to ancient pagan practices supported by a modern restatement of gnostic moral relativism."
"For individual homosexuals, for each of us in our own circle of brokenness, as well as for our civilization as a whole, the choices today are as clear as they were for the Jewish nation living amidst their pagan neighbors centuries ago:
'This day I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live and that you may love the Lord your God, listen to His voice, and hold fast to Him. For the Lord is your life, and he will give you many years in the land he swore to give to your fathers.'"
"We must make a choice: shall we determine good and evil for ourselves - viewing the ancient serpent either as an irrelevant fable from the childhood of our race or as the great messenger of consciousness-raising - or shall we stand on a word outside ourselves, a word from the One between Whose first word of creation and last word of judgment we live our fleeting lives?"
Finally, FYI, it was the office of the aforementined AIDS Project rep that gave us that blasphemous condom ad in the CDT which blatantly promoted the "virtues" of "men having sex with men" in a "positively erotic workshop" with a backdrop of the CREATION from the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican showing God the Father handing a condom to Adam. This information was supplied to me in a reply to my letter of protest to Governor Ridge, Senator Corman, and Representative Rudy. Specifically, the PA Health department told me that the ad was local to the State College office and that considerations for the feelings of the constituents would be taken into account in the future before a similar attempt to target at-risk groups for dissemination of AIDS info. It is the opinion of many in this community that the AIDS Project could have done this without offending the sensibilities of a large portion of the population.
The following is an irrefutable fact from HIV/AIDS Surveillance Reports. This quote was taken from the U.S. HIV and AIDS Cases Reported Through December 1995 Year-End Edition Vol. 7, No. 2
The results are similar for subsequent reports.
"Men who have sex with men continue to represent the largest number and proportion of persons estimated to have AIDS."
In another section of the Catholic AIDS curricula I found the following goals:
K - God loves all people sick and well to include showing positive signs of of affection and affirmation,
1 - Jesus cares for the sick, how to identify who can be trusted, (a question asked to 1st graders is "name significant adults with whom you can share secrets and important information"). My reaction to this is why should my child be sharing any secrets with anyone other than their parents? The word "parent" is significantly missing from the question for these children.
2 - meaning of contagious, learn how germs are spread,
3 - AIDS virus not caught through child activities, rules promote health and safety,
4 - Three ways child can get AIDS, risks in using unsterile needles,
5 - body's immune system and its destruction by AIDS virus,
6 - Four ways AIDS virus is transmitted, basic/Scripture/Church teaching on chastity, sexual intercourse, and homosexuality,
7 - introduction of sensitive terminology,
8 - morality and risks involved in homosexual behavior and in using condoms,
9 - more info on four ways to be infected by AIDS virus,
10 - distinction between homosexual orientation/activities, morality and risk involved with oral and anal sex,
11 - Church documents related to HIV/AIDS,
12 - replace myths re HIV/AIDS with facts.
My first reaction to the above is whatever happened to a latent period of innocence for our youth? Why do they have to be exposed to the evils of the world when all that is required is the example set by their parents, their primary teachers, that living by God's laws is the blueprint not only for salvation for eternity but also for physical well-being recognizing the truth of the Natural Law rooted in the Decalogue.
In reference to Church teaching, the only solid refs that I saw in the bibliography presented were Cardinal Ratzinger's pastoral and something from William Bennett. Anytime Cardinal Ratzinger's pastoral was referenced, it was taken out of context in that the only paragraph quoted was that saying discrimination (meaning invidious discrimination) against homosexuals cannot be tolerated giving the impression that the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the highest teaching authority in the Church apart from the Pope himself, had absolutely nothing to say about the inclination to homosexual behavior being objectively disordered, that the living out of this inclination to homosexual behavior is NOT an acceptable option, and about the behavior itself being ordered to an intrinsic moral evil. These truths are conspicuously absent. Nowhere is there any admonition to the Faithful that sin can be JUSTLY DISCRIMINATED against! In contrast there were plenty of refs from the National Catholic Education Association, the same group that is opposing the implemenation of Ex Corde Ecclesiae, the directive from Rome insuring that our Catholic schools and universities are Catholic in more than name only as a remedy to the apostasy resulting from the bastardization of Catholic doctrine by dissenting theologians like Richard McBrien, who interestingly enough, is also referenced in the Catholic AIDS curricula.
The introduction of any "sensitive terminology" should be the responsibility of the parent not the school. And why do I want my child exposed to using condoms or any of the horrendous sex-ed being fostered by SIECUS in a Catholic school?
Item 10 above is incredible. Would you want your son or daughter to discuss in any grade the risks involved with oral and anal sex? Again, any such discussion if required, and it should not be if parents are setting a Catholic example, is reserved for the privacy of the home. This item is unconscionable to me.
Given the above observations, I as a Catholic layman cannot be confident that Church documents related to HIV/AIDS and the replacement of myths re same will be handled correctly. Again, the school is not the educator here; the parent is per the pontifical Council for the Family's recent document on human sexuality.
I noted throughout the entire examination of the curricula that the term sexual orientation is used as if it were fact not fiction, the latter being held by NARTH, the National Association of Research and Therapy for Homosexuality. The term "sexual orientation" implies an innateness, a finality that just isn't there in regard to heterosexuals who have homosexual attractions, a better descriptor per NARTH, the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality, and Fr. John Harvey, the founder of COURAGE, a Catholic outreach to homosexuals. (Please reference attachments.)
I also noted in the curricula that students are to show sensitivity to those with same sex attractions. What does this mean? Does this mean acquiescing into the lie of Always Our Children that those inclined to sin must be left alone? (Please reference attachments re well known problems with Always Our Children.)
The following disturbing quote was observed.
"What is communicated in educational settings or in families can profoundly affect individual students who are struggling to integrate their sexuality."
What the heck does that mean, "struggling to integrate their sexuality?" Any struggles along this line needs the loving advice of parents and schools that students should be inclined to objectively "ordered" as opposed to "disordered" acts.
Also noted this quote in the same context.
"All young people need to find compassion, understanding, and acceptance of themselves as persons as they search for their sexual integration and its morally responsible expression."
This statement is dangerously close to saying that if homosexuality is OK for you, it's OK for me. That is not what the Catholic Church is charging the Faithful to say. We are not called to be compassionate for sin. We are not called to do nothing when we see young people being inclined to sin.
More goals for grades follow:
2 - articulate the morality of drug use and risks involved for unsterilized needles,
3 - discuss Christian response and health hazards related to any experimentation with sex or drugs,
- identify four ways AIDS virus is transmitted or prevented,
I don't know about you but it will be a cold day in a place many in the Church today no longer believe exists before I will allow my son to be exposed to this destruction of his innocence at an age that he certainly doesn't need to know about drug use or sex experimentation.
What is sadly lacking in this program is the admonishment to "go and sin no more". God had compassion for the sinners, but HE had only HATRED for the sins putting them at risk of being separated from Him for eternity. That's what missing in the watered down version of Catholicism many are being subjected to today.
It is a LIE to say that you can't teach about AIDS without going into explicit detail regarding homosexuality, e.g, oral genital and anal sex. The cure for AIDS as for any plethora of STDS is simple, obedience to the laws of God and abstention from sexual activity until monogamous, heterosexual marriage. It's sad that the adjective "heterosexual" must be used here but such is the work of the devil! And that's all our children need to know.
|Posted by: stlouisix
December 05, 2007 10:54 AM EST
|Add a comment
U.S. bishops announce a new four-part plan on abuse, including full investigation into the charges against McCarrick and into the responses
to those charges.
Cdl. Ouellet, prefect of the Congregation for Bishops, says women should help screen seminarians and participate more in the training
A press report claims that 20 of 39 senior clerics were involved in covering up abuse of children between 1945 and 2010.
A CNN poll finds only 48% of Americans have a favorable view of Pope Francis, down from two thirds a year and a half ago.
The Pope tells a large group of Jesuits that the abuse scandal 'has behind it a Church that is elitist and clericalist.'
Pope Francis calls all presidents of the bishops’ conferences of the world to meet at the Vatican in February to discuss child abuse.
more news links...