I was watching tv, I think Friday night, and caught the end of Law and Order. I'm going to try to give you the scenario here without confusing you too much. I can't really remember what the crime was that started the show because it ran from one crime to the next.... It ended up in a Catholic School. And in this Catholic School, the inspectors spoke with a boy who headed up a Chastity group. He was very proud of it. Even spoke of his girlfriend taking the same vow of chastity as himself. They were going to be married and would be pure. "OK," I thought, "pretty cool. It's nice to see this getting out there." Well, I think I thought too soon.
Apparently, his girlfriend headed up 4 girls who planned to get pregnant together. It didn't matter who they slept with to do it. They just went out, had sex, and got pregnant. They thought it was so great that they could have their babies together. It ended up that the boyfriend killed the girlfriend in rage because she broke her vow to him and it hurt him deeply, obviously.
So the thing that got me was that it portrayed what a lot of shows portray: hypocrisy. Now, I know it exists in Catholicism, I do. It exists in every religion. But it really bothers me that Catholicism is at the center most of the time. Throughout the investigation, the parents were portrayed as immoral. When their daughters were being spoken to and they found out about what their daughters did, and heard the disrespect they showed the officers, the parents just sat there. Would you just sit there? I think not. I definitely wouldn't.
I for one send my children to Catholic School because I want them to get a good Catholic education. And I want our lives at home to center on those beliefs too. But there are others out there who send their children to Catholic School for "status." So they can say their child attends private school. For those kids, they get mixed messages and it's not fair to them.
So, how do we overcome these stereotypes? I'm not so sure that we can. The only thing I can do is to make sure that my children know what's important to us as a family by following God and putting the principles, laws, and rules of Catholicism first. We must live Catholicism. I'm not willing to be one of those parents who preach instead of live.
Speaking the Truth
We don’t like to speak the truth about evil because we’re going to hurt somebody. Let me tell you, you are going to hurt somebody, but that Somebody is God. If you would rather hurt God than your neighbor, there is something wrong with your spirituality. It’s your obligation to speak the truth and everyone can either take it or leave it. But truth must be in us. We live in such poverty of the truth today.
- Mother Angelica
- Mother Angelica