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Tuesday, March 24, 2009

People Just Don't Want To Hear The Truth!

I was at Mass the other day and after Mass a woman asked me if she could speak with me.
She stated that a few weeks ago I spoke about Catholic Schools and she wanted me to know that I offended her.
She went on to say that she has worked in public education for many years and that there were a great deal of good people who worked in public schools.
I stated that I agreed with her.
Then I asked what it was that I said that offended her.
She stated that I made a remark that the environment in a Catholic School was very much different than in Public Schools.
I responded by stated that I gave two examples of similar situations, real-life situations, that occurred each in a public school and in a Catholic School, and how the outcome was very much different.
She continued to stated that there are many good catholic teachers that even though they have limitations and restrictions, they work around them.
I am not sure what her point was, but I stated "how do you get around the mandatory sex education classes that support a rhetoric that is 100% opposite from our faith; education that is required to be taught to the kids."
She couldn't respond.
I then posed the question:
"Considering a complete view of education, Science, English, Math, Morals, and Values, which institution would provide an education consistent with who we are as Catholics, which institution would help us parents with forming our children, and which institution would attempt to tear down and belittle our beliefs and practices as Catholics."
She paused for a great deal of time, I am sure she was attempting to formulate a brilliant comeback, but was unable to come up with anything, so she finally responded with "Catholic Schools."

I am sure she was looking for an apology from me for offending her a few weeks ago.
She was likely looking for some degree of tolerance..... She had no idea that I just might challenge her.
I have many Friends that are public school teachers, and are very good people, and many are faithful and strong catholics.
My own Father taught Mathematics in public schools for 44 years. He dedicated his whole life to serving in public education.
However, at the end of his career, he stated that he hoped that we would never send our children to public schools. He stated that he had watched a progressive deterioration of the whole institution and that a catholic child would not be able to survive being immersed in such an environment.
I do not mean to judge them (catholic teachers), I am sure thay are doing their best to serve the children that they teach, just as my Father did.
And teaching in anything but a public school might not be an option for them, but lets not confuse what they are doing, and lets not elevated a public school education to be anywhere near a catholic education when you look at the entire "catholic" child.
They are teaching with their hands tied behind their backs.
Catholics cannot leave their faith at home or at the door. That is what is required when you are a public school teacher.
Our faith is who we are, it is taught in everything we do, yes it is in Math, it is in English, it is in P.E.
But the reality is that public education today includes so much that is contrary to our beliefs as catholics, that I cannot see how a parent, at least a catholic parent who is truthfully attempting to live their faith, and wanting to properly educate their children in the faith, could ever send their child to a public school.
The problem is:

Denver Archbishop Chaput tells seminary audience “40 years of American Catholic complacency and poor formation are bearing exactly the fruit we should have expected”

Click here to read what Archbishop Chaput has to say about this issue.

Lets not fool ourselves, People Just Don't Want to Hear The Truth! Hearing the truth means that they might have to actually evaluate their actions, their lives, and heaven forbid, make a change!

No, it is just too easy to be oblivious to the facts, oblivious to the reality that many catholics are only catholics in name, not in life, not in actions.......

Does speaking the truth create uproar and make some people unhappy, maybe even ANGRY.

Sure. But always attempting to make people happy, never trying to make people upset, never challenging situations or issues, doesn't help.

What would Jesus say about all of this:

"For this I was born, and for this I came into the world, to bear witness to the truth." THE TRUTH! There is truth—truth that comes from outside the world and gives meaning to the world. The world doesn't make this truth. It doesn't shape or change this truth. It is THE TRUTH, not a truth for me and a different truth for you. But THE TRUTH for all of us. Unchanging, absolute.

There may have been a generation or a century when this simple implication of the text would not need to be stressed:

that there is truth—truth outside of my own mind, truth that I don't create but discover, that I don't control but submit to.

There may have been a time when we didn't have to proclaim this as part of the Christian message.

But not today.

Quoting Archbishop Chaput:

“Catholics in America, at least the many good Catholics who yearn to live their faith honestly and deeply, can easily feel tempted to hopelessness,” he concluded. “It becomes very burdensome to watch so many persons who call themselves Catholic compromise their faith and submit their hearts and consciences to the Caesars of our day.”

Christians must never forget the words of Jesus: “In this world you will have tribulation. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

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