The tide may be turning, just a little, on the education front, as Indianapolis Archbishop Charles Thompson stripped a Catholic school of its Catholic title – as is his prerogative and duty in Canon Law – when one of the teachers ‘married’ his same –sex partner. Brebéuf Jesuit Preparatory School – alas, named after one of my favourite saints – may no longer us the term:
I, the Most Reverend Charles C. Thompson, D.D., J.C.L., with great sadness, acknowledge the choice of Brebeuf Jesuit Preparatory School to no longer retain Catholic identity according to the doctrine and pastoral practice of the Catholic Church and, therefore, to no longer remain as a Catholic institution in the Archdiocese of Indianapolis
Of course, the school administrators and teachers still consider themselves Catholic, whatever the Bishop says, appealing in Lutherian style to the ‘formed conscience’ of the teacher in question.
Well, there’s formed, and then there’s ‘formed’. People seem not to understand the notion of scandal, of right conduct fitting for a teacher in a Catholic institution, and of the formative power of example, good or bad, that those in authority wield. Father Brian Paulson, S.J., head of the Midwest Jesuit Province, apparently realizing that conscience on its own is not enough, is himself appealing the Bishop’s decision to Rome – not to Caesar, as Saint Paul did, but to the Pope – who stands a bit higher than Nero ever did.
We will see what unfolds, but here’s hoping Bishop Thompson is vindicated, and solidly, and that his own good example influences a lot of others in our all-too-silent hierarchy. There are a lot of people and institutions ‘Catholic in name only’, and it’s time that name were taken away, so they may be revealed more clearly for who and what they really are.
Meanwhile, the tide also turning the other way, as a pregnant Nigerian woman in Britain – who has a learning disability – has been ordered by a judge to undergo an abortion, presumably since she cannot care for the child, so the State will take care of him for you, mafia style. The woman’s mother – the child’s grandmother –said she would care for the child, if the mother cannot. And there are a lot more people who would care for that child, even if granny couldn’t.
I have wondered at what point ‘elective’ abortion would become ‘non-elective’, and, as in China with its roving ‘abortion vans’ and its one-or-two-at-the most child policy, the murder of the unborn would no longer be matter of ‘choice’, at least, not the choice of the mother, but of some God-less and face-less apparatchik. Of course, abortion is never purely a matter of choice. Many, if not most, women-with-child, who know there is a baby growing within them, are coerced into abortions, by circumstances, by boyfriends or husbands, or parents, or the media, or by the ‘counsellors’ themselves. And the child, we should state quite clearly, obviously never has a choice.
Fittingly, Pope Francis has chosen tomorrow’s solemnity of Corpus Christi (in the new liturgical calendar) to consecrate all physicians to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. He is right to do so, for this is a war not of earthly laws and judges, who will pass away, but of principalities and powers, an eschatological battle that is now becoming more evident, as the masks slip off, and the occult powers behind the evil make themselves known.
So join in prayer, at Mass, in your Rosary, and whatever other petitions you make to the good and true God, through His mother and all the saints and angels. Regardless of the sufferings we must endure, whichever way the transient tides may turn, we may hold on to the assurance that we are in the end on the winning side.