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

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Disappointed in Faith and Family

I recently came across an article on the website, Faith and Family Live! I was tremendously disappointed that they would allow this article to be on their site, promoting a book series that the Pope has clearly denounced as good Catholic reading, Harry Potter.

While I have not read the books, I do not ever intend to.  The Devil is very sly.  He can sneak into our heads and hearts and we could not even notice.  Our children are even more at risk than we are.  They are vulnerable and still being molded to be soldiers for God.  We have a responsibility to keep them on that path until they have all the spiritual weapons they need to lead their own battle against evil.

I am extremely disappointed that Faith and Family Live! allowed this writer to put this on a Catholic site.  I will see what comments follow my own before I remove them from my blog.  As it stands now, I will not be promoting them.


Karen said...

OK yeah, I will not be promoting that site. And I really liked that site too.


Thanks for your comments on F&F. I agree with your concerns. It is insidious how Satan can work to dull our minds & hearts to something in the name of "entertainment"... especially when it is aimed at children.
God bless,


Karen said...

Thank you Patricia. Satan injects just enough truth to make things look right. He is constantly finding ways to infiltrate our faith and Church. It's important that we stand up and not be silent. ;) And I won't be, even if it's Faith and Family. It definitely disappoints me though because I really liked the site. :(

Jenny said...

Last summer our Diocese, at the leading of our Bishop, held a conference for the priests on the occult, satanic influence and exorcisms. Our priests were in attendance and brought back the message, straight from the "experts" to avoid at all costs the Harry Potter series. Each member of the panel agreed that it was a soft introduction to the world of the occult. Now, does that mean every person who reads the book will go to the other side? Of course not! What it does mean is that after reading the books people will now have been introduced, ever so gentle into the world of the occult. Occult ways and terms that were once unfamiliar have now taken up residence in the mind and soul of the reader. From there they can remain and never grow, please God, or in the right circumstance, they can begin their slow growth.

The stern warning from our priests and our bishop are enough for me to avoid at all cost the HP books. Actually, that's not entirely true because these warnings just came last summer. Just the possibility of it somehow being occult related, the mere possibility, was enough for us to make the decision that our family would be avoiding the HP series.

I applaud your courage to stand publicly against such an article on F&F.

Elena said...

I have listened to all 7 books on audio tape as narrated by Mr. Jim Dale. In addition, I gave the books to my mother about a year or so before she passed away. Mom converted to Catholicism in her late teens and was a very strong Catholic and dutiful prayer warrior.

We both were extremely moved by the Christian message in the books. We found then to be inspiring, uplifting and well written. I have had no problem with my children listening to the audio books or reading the novels and in fact my third son was inspired to go on and read C. S. Lews and the Narnia books after he finished the Potter series.

It's up to you whether you want to read them or not, but how can you speak with any authority on the books when you haven't read them?

Karen said...

Elena, just to get one thing straight, I'm not speaking with authority on the series. I'm going on what Cardinal Ratzinger says. It is my responsibility as a Catholic to stay away from anything I have been warned about that may take me further from my faith. That is all I'm trying to do. I have made the mistake before of reading things that directly contradict my faith, and it creates doubt in me. I don't like that.

So, like I stated, if a *Prefect* of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith warns me of the dangers HP holds, then I'm going to stay away from it. No disrespect to you or your mother, but I don't care what faithful Catholic says about being OK to read them. I believe an authoritative figure in our Church warned against it and it is *his* opinion I value and wish to follow. You have the freedom to follow whatever you feel is best for you and your family. I respect our Church for not trying to run our lives and put out an official statement banning us from reading a book series. But there are serious warnings about it. I choose not to engage in reading it.

I do not have the time to quote others' posts from F&F that argued against the series, I'm sure you have seen them. There are some great arguments over there from both sides. In the end, we can all make our own choice, obviously.

I really thought this was all done with, but obviously there is something I have said/written that has deeply bothered you and you felt compelled to come here to my private blog to let me know how much you disapprove of my opinion. But there is nothing you are going to say that is going to change my mind, as I'm sure there is nothing that I'm going to say that's going to change yours. I just state the facts about what happened with Cardinal Ratzinger and Kuby, and then people can make up their minds from there. I'm pretty sure that I'm allowed to have an opinion.

Elena said...

The Pope didn't send out a warning to Catholics to stay away from the Harry Potter books. All we know is that he told Kuby it was good that she enlightened people about Harry Potter. We have no idea what she wrote to him. We have no idea whether or not he read the books. He certainly never came out with so much as a pastoral letter to the bishops warning them about the series. So I think it is very very important to take things in context and not to overstate what was actually written.

I commend you for guarding your heart. You and you alone know what is right for your own spiritual path.

But this is not an issue that should be dividing Catholics. Your not reading the books does not make you a better Catholic than other people who have read them. My mom, I'm sure, was practically a saint and she certainly found much merit in them.

Karen said...

Like I said before, I do NOT think I'm a better Catholic than anyone else. That is by FAR what is going on here. I have an opinion, and that's it. If I have said anything that insinuates I think I'm better, I didn't mean it that way. Ratzinger stated the dangers of the series in his letter back to Kuby. That is enough for me. It's not enough to others. Like I stated before, I am grateful our Church lets us make up our own minds in regards to matters like this. I don't see this as dividing Catholics, but as an opportunity to understand each other and that we have different opinions, and those opinions don't make either one any better than the other.

Priests do all sorts of things. There are priests that endorse divorce and will even justify an abortion. Now, please, I'm not comparing reading a book series to abortion, I'm just trying to make a point that just because they are a priest, does not make them right. And I'm not insinuating your mother is less Catholic than anyone else. Just making a point that no matter how "Catholic" we think we are, we are still not perfect and don't always make the right choices.

My choice is not to subject myself to the books, nor my children. I don't think we'll be missing out on anything.

Elena said...

Let's be clear about what exactly happened.
1. Gabriel Kuby sent HER book about Harry Potter to Cardinal Ratziner.
2. We do not know if he actually read any of the Harry Potter books.
3. Gabriel Kuby's book was obviously anti-Potter. We do know Cardinal Ratziner read her opinion of the book.
4. Cardinal Ratzinger responded to her book.
5. Seems to try to pass it off to Mr. Peter Fleetwood.
6. and her request to publicize his endorsement got buried in a pile of mail - which doesn't make it seem like top priority stuff.

What he wrote exactly (or as exact as you can get with language translation)was: "you enlighten people about Harry Potter, because those are subtle seductions, which act unnoticed and by this deeply distort Christianity in the soul, before it can grow properly."

It begs lots of questions.
What exactly did she "enlighten people" about. What were the subtle seductions" and by "distort Christianity in the soul before it can grow propertly" did he mean that perhaps in a mature soul or in proper Catholic/Christian paradigms these subtle seductions might not exist? Of course, as an anti-Potter apologist you will neer be able to answer the first two questions in a compelling manner because you haven't read them.

and true, you will probably live a long and happy life without ever reading the Potter series. I felt the same way about Uncle Tom's Cabin until I was forced to read it last year with my homeschooled 15 and 12 year old - it is now one of my favorite books. ; ) To each his own!

Karen said...

Elena, you are right. I have not read the series and cannot argue well against them if I have not read them. I have read enough reviews, on both sides of the aisle, presented on F&F that convince me that I'm making the right decision for myself and my family. I don't mean this in a bad way, but I don't care what you do with yourself and your kids. There are compelling arguments made against the series, as well as for, and I choose to believe the former before the latter. I have engaged too many times reading articles and websites online that directly contradict my faith and it put me in danger of doubting. I am still learning about what it means to be Catholic, and that is why I have this blog. I'm sure there are many out there like me who are constantly looking for information and learning about Catholicism. I would like to share what I find, and maybe get some nuggets from others in the process. I will NOT engage in reading a book series if I have the LEAST bit of doubt the direction it would take me and my children. Like I said, you do what you think is right for you, and I will do what I think is right for me.

I have said it before, and will say it three times: I overreacted when I saw the headline on F&F. Once I realized it wasn't an "official" position from the Church, I stopped being so critical of F&F and I did read both sides.

I'm not sure why you came here to comment. You're not going to teach me anything and you're certainly not going to change my mind. Like I said before, I can respect your decision if you can respect mine. I will give you the last word if you want it because I can assure you, I will not be responding to you again. I don't have the time for this back and forth where we get to say the same things over and over again with different words. This is simply my opinion, that I have posted on MY blog.

Elena said...

For your first two paragraphs- fair enough. I know when I reverted back to my Catholic faith in the early 90s it was hard to sift thrugh what was wheat and what was chaffe and maybe I did tend to swing more to extreme orthodoxy after spending years in the desert of my faith.

As to why I came here - I just happened to have a little down time and decied to pop in on F&F and saw the Potter article featured on the top of the blog page. I read Mr. Granger's article. Saw your name in the comment section, clicked on it and it brought me to your blog. Then I saw your posts and that they were relatively current so decided to leave a comment. That's really all there was to it.