Saturday, December 27, 2008

Politically Incorrect, OCP and where the rubber meets the road

Before last night's Friday meeting, I promised to choose the most politically incorrect readings for the coming Sunday, the Feast of the Holy Family. If you follow the link to the USCCB site you'll see that the readings for the first and second readings are Sirach 3:2-6, 12-14 and Colossians 3:12-21, and the optional first and second readings were Genesis 15:1-6, 21:1-3 and Hebrews 11:8, 11-12, 17-19.

When we opened the missals for the coming Sunday's readings, we found that OCP had deliberately only printed the optional readings, with only a passing mention of the other readings. From a courageous start of opposing the KKK, OCP comes to the present by deliberately choosing to be spineless.

You don't need to be a rocket scientist to figure out that the "offensive" words are in Colossians 3:18-21

Wives, be subordinate to your husbands,
as is proper in the Lord.
Husbands, love your wives,
and avoid any bitterness toward them.
Children, obey your parents in everything,
for this is pleasing to the Lord.
Fathers, do not provoke your children,
so they may not become discouraged.

The first reading in Sirach reflected the same order, that children obey and honor their parents. Although I playfully suggested that the pitchforks would come out on the line that wives be subordinate to husbands, the fact is that we really didn't dwell on this. Experience has shown that, except for the most bitter of feminists, most women think that the pair "Wives be subordinate to your husbands/ Husbands love your wives" is a fair deal if the husbands truly love their wives as Christ and the Church commands them to.

The conversation was very rich, and centered about the modern thinking of children as property that which leads to the abuse of children. Any summary I make here is not going to be fair to the actual comments made at the meeting, but I'll do my best to highlight the comments here in what I see to be a logical progression, and not how the conversation chronologically unfolded.

Seriously, this is where the rubber meets the road, and the lay people in America are starving for the Truth guarded within the Magisterium. It does no good to avoid controversial readings for the sake of those who really aren't interested in what the Church has to teach. As Jesus commanded Peter, "feed my lambs."

The Holy Family is an icon of the Holy Trinity, and as such, so are families icons of the Trinity as well. We live in a secular society where that model is broken. Catholic families are using contraceptives, they're aborting their children, and they're bringing children into the world through illicit means such IVF.

Having children (or not) is viewed as a right, and the consequence of this is that children are viewed as property, and an extension of the parents, not as individual persons. It's not a coincidence that parents demand their children be perfect, and that 80-90% of suspected Downs Syndrome children are aborted. Mother Teresa said that a society which aborts their children is a society which is abusive toward children.

Someone suggested that this couldn't be right. That today, perhaps parents love too much. Parents are now expected to fawn over their children, and no way be negative such imposing their values and rules upon their children. Give them toys and a roof, but skip the stuff which would ruin their self-esteem. But all this fawning is an abuse too. It's not love in any proper sense. Children need the love that structure and rules provide. Children yearn for that sort of love.

So we've gone full circle. Order in the family is the order of love. Liberation from that order, is a liberation from that love which is so necessary for a family to survive. If the family is the domestic church, it would be great if our local pastors would show us this love by teaching what the Church Universal teaches.


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