Skip to comments.The Collapse of Cultural Catholicism
Posted on 01/28/2011 9:32:34 AM PST by marshmallow
Shery Weddell at the St Catherine of Siena Institute reports that 32% of Americans raised Catholic abandon the identity altogether by their mid twenties. An additional 38% retain the identity but rarely practice their faith. 30% of those who call themselves Catholic attend Mass only once a month. On a given Sunday only about 15.6% of American Catholics attend Mass.
What is the reason for these disastrous statistics? Basically because for the last forty years Catholics themselves have not taught Catholicism to their children. They've taught 'American Catholicism' which is a watered down blend of sentimentalism, political correctness, community activism and utilitarianism. In other words, "Catholicism is about feeling good about yourself, being just to others and trying to change the world." The next generation have drawn the obvious conclusion that you don't need to go to Mass to do all that. You can feel good about yourself much more effectively with a good book from the self help shelf, or by attending a personal development seminar. You can be involved in making the world a better place without going to church.
If only 15% of Catholics go to Mass on a given Sunday, look around and see how many of them are old. Even the 15% who are there won't be there for very long.
The solution is simple: we must return to the supernatural realities of the historic faith and evangelize like the Apostles of old. The big difference is that the Apostles knew their targets were pagans and the pagans knew they weren't Christians. We're dealing with a huge population of Americans (Catholics and Protestants alike) who are pagan but who think they're 'good Christians.' It is very difficult to evangelize people who already think they're fine just as they are. We don't know what we don't know, and the vast majority of poorly catechized, lazy and worldly Catholics aren't aware that there's anything wrong.
What will it take for us to wake up?
1. Is or was there really a "Catholic" culture, or is it more accurate to say that there were "Italian Catholic", "Irish Catholic", "German Catholic", etc. cultures? If a person's Catholic religion was tied at the hip with his ethnic background, as was true for a large number of Catholics, then as people became more homogenized into the American culture they may have lost their cultural connection to their church as well.
2. Being Catholic in America has always been more problematic than being Protestant. Lots of Catholics are made to feel inferior by their Protestant fellow citizens because either they came from "southern Europe" where all those "lazy, criminal" types come from. Or they are agents of a foreign state, i.e. the Vatican. Or they are superstitious and sentimental with their belief in saints and reverence of Mary, etc. So lots of Catholics are taunted or cajoled into distancing themselves from their faith. They shouldn't be ashamed of it, but when huge numbers of their neighbors, schoolmates, etc. constantly harangue them then what do we expect them to do?
3. The Catholic Church is a single large institution. Any stain on the smallest part of the Church reflects on the Church as a whole. Those who sequester themselves in small "non-denominational" groups are only affected if their particular cult is infiltrated by a jackal. As a large, long-standing organization the Church can accomplish amazing things on a global scope. However, its members can also make horrible decisions on a global scope as well. The faithful need to be reminded of the great good that the Church has accomplished despite the errors of its members.
4. Fraternal and sororal organizations such as the Knights of Columbus need to be reinvigorated. Catholics who get together on a regular basis to socialize and do good works (Calvin forfend!) are more likely to attend church on a regular basis.
5. Instruction associated with First Holy Communion and Confirmation needs to be significantly beefed up. The instruction has to make it very clear why Catholicism is the best choice. Especially during Confirmation, the kids need to be forewarned about the attacks on their faith that will come from the atheists, agnostics, and Protestants. Their critical thinking skills need to be honed so they can see through at least a couple layers of the sophistry that will be firehosed in their direction.
6. They should be exposed to religious threads on FR so they can directly witness the "love and compassion" of their Protestant brothers and sisters.
To whatever degree the RCC facilitates anyone
authentically drawing close TO GOD AND GOD ALONE
To whatever degree it facilitates folks engaging in idolatry, blasphemy, and sliding willy nilly to hell . . .
GOD FORBID AND CORRECT.
BTW, thanks for your sweet language. Very touching.
I’m sure Mother Mary was quite pleased.
Thankfully, as Scripture says, I KNOW IN WHOM I HAVE BELIEVED AND AM PERSUADED THAT HE IS ABLE TO KEEP THAT WHICH I HAVE COMMITTED UNTO HIM AGAINST THAT DAY.
When folks get outrageously and over the top indignantly, haughtily wound up
about a human RELIGIOUS organization--particularly such a duplicitous, convoluted, hypocritical, contradictory, UNBiblical . . . grossly flawed . . . human organization . . . it is evident to me that the organization has a greatly higher priority than God at the heart level. That kind of idolatry is frightful.
Very frightful . . . in terms of their soul's spiritual health.
BTW, I've served 4 years in the Navy. I've worked at a fire station. My wife was an RN. I don't know of a raunchier language'd 3 groups than those. However, thanks for being so terminally WRONG yet again.
AND being terminally wrong on key theological issues will be increasingly troublesome regardless of the label on the door or yard sign.
Thank you for your post 101, where you said,
Just remember Christ never promised easy. I have many, many friends who are not Catholic. They are Christian down to their very marrow. I love and esteem them highly.
= = =
Thanks for that reality statement, it’s heartening to me to read that you actually acknowledge that some who are not Roman Catholic can be Christian and that you love and esteem them highly.
May the Lord Jesus cause you to reap mightily the grace and respect that you sow.
but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.
Are you familiar with what Yah'shua shalom b'SHEM Yah'shua HaMashiach
thinks of those who call others "fool" ?
Mat 5:22 But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his
brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment:
and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca,
shall be in danger of the council:
but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.
I will be judged. And I am not ashamed for what I shall be judged for. I have much to answer for, as any must be.
Thanks for your kind post.
I don’t think we’re in that Millenial reign period yet . . . .
however, I still think it’s a very hazardous thing to risk—particularly without sufficient cause.
I gather tracking the same topic that many lines in a row is a challenge.
My references were only to note that I was no stranger to bad language.
However, please do continue your rants. It helps lurkers characterize better the sorts of personalities who are so gah gah slavishly addicted to a grossly flawed
Vatican Alice In Wonderland School Of Theology And Reality Mangling fossilized, corrupted edifice of a pretend “Christian” organization.
It is persistently the RC’s on FR who document their disbelief of The Word Of God.
Proddys are quite the contrary.
shalom b'SHEM Yah'shua HaMashiachMat 5:23 "Therefore if you are presenting your offering at the altar,
and there remember that your brother has something against you,
Mat 5:24 leave your offering there before the altar and go;
first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and present your offering.
You assume I argue against my Brother. It is not so!
LOVE THOSE VERSES.
Answer to what?
IIRC, I asked you a list of specific questions you haven’t touched.
I gather the saying
DO AS I SAY AND NOT AS I DO
is a major dogma of the Vatican AIWSOTARM edifice!
Are you trying to advertise that you have no clue what the criteria for a caucus designation is . . . or what?
BTW, thanks for your kind labels. It is encouraging to know that I’m hitting paydirt to that degree.
JESUS has a different perspective.