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Cultural Assimilation: A Threat to Catholic Identity
Crisis Magazine ^ | 1/8/13 | James Kalb

Posted on 01/08/2013 8:07:29 AM PST by marshmallow

For the most part, American Catholics have wanted to be like other people. They arrived in America as immigrants from places where they had a definite (if sometimes lowly) position. They left that for a country where social positions were fluid, they would be held in contempt if they stayed as they were, and they could rise to the heights if they Americanized.

So they became dedicated Americans. They were used to being part of the social whole, and that was the way to be part of it here. What they lost in security of position by moving to the New World they could, if they gave themselves whole-heartedly to their new way of life, gain in eminence and (as it seemed) freedom to go their own way.

And going their own way is what people want here. America’s the land of opportunity, where anybody can become anything. We’re all independent individuals, and we don’t like labels, so background and connections aren’t supposed to matter. If a candidate for office is Catholic that’s not supposed to be an issue. Each of us has a mind and will of his own, so we should be judged individually and not lumped together.

The strategy of conforming to individualism has been a roaring success in its way. American Catholics have become like everyone else only more so. If anything, they are to the left of their compatriots on social issues. Six justices of the Supreme Court are Catholics, and if John Kerry is nominated and confirmed as Secretary of State the first four offices in the line of succession to the presidency will be held by Catholics as well. As immigration proponents say, assimilation works!

Even so, something seems amiss, something about gaining the world and losing what is more important.

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Catholic; General Discusssion; Religion & Culture; Religion & Politics

1 posted on 01/08/2013 8:07:32 AM PST by marshmallow
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To: marshmallow

This article states some interesting truths. I think the problem starts in public schools. As as child I attended both Catholic ans Public schools, and preferred the much more lenient and laid back atmosphere of public schools. I have much less discipline, acceptance, tolerance, or concern of the needs of others as someone like my mother has, who is a very traditional Catholic. See innocently gave me the choice of schools. I don’t know how I survived. (Thank you God )

Thanks to public schools, I am generally lazy with details, and the demands of others, unless there is a reward attached, then I can accomplish anything. Except when it comes to my children, I want the best for them. The ridiculously superior academics and atmosphere of Catholic schools is something that I had to have for my children. Since they started in Catholic schools, getting acclamated wasn’t a problem.

My children are much more respectful and disciplined than I ever was. At one point I got annoyed with the frivolities of the strict uniforms, strict policies, overzealous mothers and teachers, an decided to put my oldest daughter in a much larger Christian school. It was Public School with values I thought. My daughter had a blast. After 2 years and a different set of problems, my daughter told me, “I hardly have to study, and this isn’t good. I’m not going to get into a good college like this.” She insisted I transfer her back. She is a junior in high school, and at a recent visit with her counselors they told me she will very likely go to Yale, her school of choice.

Any Catholic parent that doesn’t put their kids in a Catholic school is playing russian roullette with their child’s future. I see parents that sacrifice, cars, clothing, better homes, and anything to ensure their child’s formation, and those are real Catholic values.

2 posted on 01/08/2013 8:37:23 AM PST by mgist
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To: marshmallow

If one is out in public with lots of children, Catholic identity is pretty obvious. I also have a Knights of Columbus license plate.

That aside, I think Catholic Faith is the important issue, not “identity.” People can “self-identify” any way they want, but it’s their beliefs and the choices informed by the beliefs that really matter.

3 posted on 01/08/2013 9:14:08 AM PST by Tax-chick (Please explain how my being in a fuss would help the situation.)
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To: marshmallow

Many church-going Catholics no longer go along to get along.We are joing together with other religious believers and we are getting results.We are taught to be disciples.Our discipleship does not end with Church on Sunday.

4 posted on 01/08/2013 6:17:53 PM PST by ardara
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To: Tax-chick

I'm just putting this John Collier painting here because I think it's very interesting in its way, and I wanted to put it somewhere on FR. Even if it's not on topic.

5 posted on 01/10/2013 8:05:05 AM PST by Mrs. Don-o ("He Whom the whole world cannot contain, was enclosed within thy womb, O Virgin, and became Man.")
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To: Mrs. Don-o

That’s neat - I really like the lighting.

I had those shoes!

6 posted on 01/10/2013 10:27:04 AM PST by Tax-chick (Please explain how my being in a fuss would help the situation.)
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