Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Catholic Studies Supplement --- time frame?

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    #16
    Re: Catholic Studies Supplement --- time frame?

    Originally posted by jbflick3 View Post
    Anita,

    Thank you so much for sharing all this. I just started teaching catechism at my church this school year (as I mentioned in another thread where I was asking about using Christian Studies in Sunday school), and it looks like I'm going to be a co-leader for the whole program for the near future. I'm new to this, having only ever taught my own children, and want very much to reorganize the program according to some standards--which as far as I can tell, has not been yet done with any kind of consistency at this church up to now--but also make it very friendly and approachable for everyone. I really appreciate hearing your experience so that I can make sure I go out of my way to welcome every kind of student who comes our way. I did have one fifth-grade student in my class this year who clearly was a special needs student, but I could not figure out what her issues were, other than she had trouble paying attention and didn't seem to understand everything I said. Her parents mentioned nothing about it, and I tried to gently broach the subject by just casually asking how she did in school and did she ever have any learning issues there, but they would only mention some vision problems. I don't know whether they are in denial, or just didn't feel like discussing it, but they didn't seem shy about talking about their children at all, so I don't think it was reticence. In any case, I decided to just treat her like everyone else because I didn't know what else to do. I mean, what else would there be to do, other than sitting down with her one on one and explaining the lesson more slowly or in a different way? Should special needs students have their own catechism classes, or be with the rest but not required to do as much?
    That, to me, is the perennial question. Inclusion or special ed, even with catechism. We are not sure yet if we will fight for Kate's homeschooling to count towards Sacrament prep or if we will fight to have her included in our parish's program. (I don't think inclusion will be as hard a fight, as I mentioned above the DRE wanting to work with me, but I am sure I will need to provide an aide for Kate - myself or my eldest boy.) But, is it in her best interests to be included? Would she fair better just being taught at home? Would the potential for picking up undesirable behaviors in class (we sometimes have extremely large 1st and 2nd grade classes that can be rambunctious) have her coming home with learned behaviors that can take an extremely long time to unteach? Would she even do well in a classroom setting, even if it's mandated she attend? (She does not like a lot of noise and isn't very comfortable in groups.) What if the parish withholds FHC even though we are teaching her thoroughly at home if we don't attend at the parish level? (I don't think this would happen knowing our priest, but who knows.) So many unknowns that never existed with my first three.

    Anita,

    I so love your passion and I completely agree with you on the need for materials that are beautiful for all children, including our children with special needs. After you responded regarding the Loyola's materials, I went in search of samples and was quite turned off by what I saw. I love the motivation behind the materials. But, honestly, they seemed to assume that there was no point trying to teach any truth beyond "Eucharist is not food" to children with special needs. I still hope to see them in person, but at the same time, don't necessarily want to draw attention to them in fear our DRE/priest will tell me to use them with Kate.

    I'm also very concerned about Reconciliation with Kate. I know a lot can change in 2 years, but as of now, she couldn't do it unless she went in with PEC type cards. But even then, I'm not sure. Our parish sister said she would more than likely be exempt from Reconciliation, but will be on track to receive FHC with her peers.

    Thank you for being an advocate for our children.
    Brit

    Catholic mom to five
    2019-2020:
    Ds '01 - College freshman: Thomas Aquinas College
    Ds '03 - 10th grade: MPOA Algebra 2, and a bunch of other stuff
    Ds '06 - 8th: MP Tiner science (chemistry, physics, and astronomy), 8M lit, 8M Exploring Planet Earth, ancient history, OLVS 8 Catechism
    Dd '10 (Down syndrome) - JrK with little brother and BOB books
    Ds '15 - JrK with big sister

    Comment


      #17
      Re: Catholic Studies Supplement --- time frame?

      Originally posted by Anita View Post

      In numerous conversations with clergy and religious education leadership, no effort has been made (or even suggested) for the parish to make any resources available to further our special needs children's religious education. Our pastor has outright said, "No," to allowing Winston to even try to learn First Reconciliation, even though he has never had a conversation with my son or spent more than a minute or two with him.

      The teacher for Religious Ed kindergarten will not allow us in her classroom, despite my sitting with both my older children and helping them through the entire class. We were allowed in about three classes last year. My kids were not disruptive, harmful, or disrespectful. They sometimes had a hard time understanding what was going on or following directions and they vocalized that through questions or observations to me. My son also got up to touch something across the room because he thought that's what he was being asked to do (I gently guided him back to his seat). But after that, we were asked not to return to class. I was told in no uncertain terms that we could not attend. *Scouts honor*. That's all it was.

      I never complained to the pastor, I never said anything to anyone in the parish. I didn't return to class and quietly continued our home catechesis. I also went out of my way to smile and greet the kindergarten teacher every time I saw her at Mass. But when I spoke with our pastor a few months ago about continuing options for the children's catechesis within the parish, he again said, "No," and wished me luck. (I was reminded that St Bernadette didn't receive Holy Communion until she was 13, something that didn't address my concerns at all, honestly.)

      No one has once said to me, "We know how hard this must be. What can we do as a parish to help? How can we make your family feel more comfortable or included?" (Because special needs families are always worried that they are bothering the parish when their children even squeak at Mass -- we got our share of dirty looks and comments when we started attending our current parish; no, not making that up.) No one has said, "What are your children's strengths? What are their challenges? Do you need prayer?" Or even, "This is beyond our scope of expertise, but here are some resources for guidance and comfort. Please keep us posted as to how you are doing and how you are adjusting to worship and community here."
      I want to do my part to change it, however small, with humility, charity and courage. The best way to do that is to rear my own children well; secondary to that is showing other families how to advocate for their own children and to help them feel welcome in the Heart of the Church.
      I had a response started in a different vein, but this breaks my heart, Anita.

      Have you investigated other RE programs in your diocese? Spoke to the Bishop?

      It frustrates me, because I see the need being expressed here and in other groups of which I am a part. Over in a FB group called Raising Poppies (support for gifted and twice exceptional children), there was a loooong thread about Sacrament Prep and what to do when what your parish offers isn't right for your child.
      Plans for 2019-20

      DD1 - 24 - College Grad and rocking her own bakery business
      DD2 - 13 - 8A Louisville HLS Cottage School and MPOA
      DS3 - 11 - 4A Louisville HLS Cottage School
      DS4 - 11 - 4A Louisville HLS Cottage School
      DD5 - 7 - MP2, Louisville HLS Cottage School
      DS6 - 5 - MP K

      [url]www.thekennedyadventures.com/all-about-our-memoria-press-homeschool[/url]

      Comment


        #18
        Re: Catholic Studies Supplement --- time frame?

        Anita,
        Wow, you have had a cross to bear with the parish response to your family. This brings me such sadness, and I can completely understand your passion. There must be goodness to come for God to have trusted you with a mission...Deo Gratias!

        And this is such an important conversation...it gives me great hope that we are part of the new evangelization that JPII wanted so badly. You all have my support and prayers!
        AMDG,
        Sarah
        2019-2020 - 9th Year with MP
        DD, 18, Homeschool grad; Art major/philosophy minor
        DS, 16
        DD, 14
        DD, 12
        DD, 10
        DD, 7.5
        DD, 5.5
        +DS+
        DS, 18 months

        Comment


          #19
          Re: Catholic Studies Supplement --- time frame?

          Originally posted by jbflick3 View Post
          Anita,

          Thank you so much for sharing all this. I just started teaching catechism at my church this school year (as I mentioned in another thread where I was asking about using Christian Studies in Sunday school), and it looks like I'm going to be a co-leader for the whole program for the near future. I'm new to this, having only ever taught my own children, and want very much to reorganize the program according to some standards--which as far as I can tell, has not been yet done with any kind of consistency at this church up to now--but also make it very friendly and approachable for everyone. I really appreciate hearing your experience so that I can make sure I go out of my way to welcome every kind of student who comes our way. I did have one fifth-grade student in my class this year who clearly was a special needs student, but I could not figure out what her issues were, other than she had trouble paying attention and didn't seem to understand everything I said. Her parents mentioned nothing about it, and I tried to gently broach the subject by just casually asking how she did in school and did she ever have any learning issues there, but they would only mention some vision problems. I don't know whether they are in denial, or just didn't feel like discussing it, but they didn't seem shy about talking about their children at all, so I don't think it was reticence. In any case, I decided to just treat her like everyone else because I didn't know what else to do. I mean, what else would there be to do, other than sitting down with her one on one and explaining the lesson more slowly or in a different way? Should special needs students have their own catechism classes, or be with the rest but not required to do as much?
          That's a wonderful question. The answer is not clear-cut, however. It depends on the child. It sounds like you did your part, though. If the parents are not on board, there's not a whole lot you can do other than to try to do your job for that particular child with love, charity and patience. The ultimate responsibility belongs with the parents. I applaud you for your effort on her behalf and for your willingness to engage this issue. Truly, even if you don't get everything right (how could you? You're mortal and just one person! This is a complex issue!) just your willingness to try and to love all children goes miles and miles. Don't ever forget that!

          Originally posted by MyLittleWonders View Post
          We are not sure yet if we will fight for Kate's homeschooling to count towards Sacrament prep or if we will fight to have her included in our parish's program. ... is it in her best interests to be included? Would she fair better just being taught at home? Would the potential for picking up undesirable behaviors in class have her coming home with learned behaviors that can take an extremely long time to unteach? Would she even do well in a classroom setting, even if it's mandated she attend? What if the parish withholds FHC even though we are teaching her thoroughly at home if we don't attend at the parish level? So many unknowns that never existed with my first three.
          There are so many uncertainties with special needs kids that aren't easily answered.
          1) Yes -- Keep in mind how other children might impact your little Kate. But never underestimate her impact on other children. She could be the best thing that ever happened to that classroom. You just have to discern as you go.
          2) Don't worry. I know it's hard not to, but don't. God will absolutely take care of this. How can I be so confident? Keep reading.

          Originally posted by MyLittleWonders View Post
          Anita,
          I so love your passion and I completely agree with you on the need for materials that are beautiful for all children, including our children with special needs. After you responded regarding the Loyola's materials, I went in search of samples and was quite turned off by what I saw. I love the motivation behind the materials. But, honestly, they seemed to assume that there was no point trying to teach any truth beyond "Eucharist is not food" to children with special needs. I still hope to see them in person, but at the same time, don't necessarily want to draw attention to them in fear our DRE/priest will tell me to use them with Kate.

          I'm also very concerned about Reconciliation with Kate. I know a lot can change in 2 years, but as of now, she couldn't do it unless she went in with PEC type cards. But even then, I'm not sure. Our parish sister said she would more than likely be exempt from Reconciliation, but will be on track to receive FHC with her peers.

          Thank you for being an advocate for our children.
          1) You are in charge of Kate's education and ultimately, her spiritual formation. Your pastor cannot override that. If he "requires" you to use Loyola, use it. And add beautiful elements to it that you know will feed her soul. I don't think the Loyola materials are a bad thing -- they fulfill the minimum requirements for children with special needs. And, like you said, the intent behind them is a good one. They serve a lot of families who have no other resource. But, for some parents, they're just not enough. So -- just add beauty and depth to them; put meat on the bones of the basic program. Nothing wrong with that.

          2) You're too kind. I'm just fumbling along like everyone else, trying to figure this out as I go. But I will not let my children, who cannot defend themselves, be left defenseless. Nor will I see them neglected or passed over because they are different. "The LORD shall fight for you." "Suffer the little children to come unto Me; hinder them not, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these."

          ************+JMJ+************

          My husband had total mercy on me and took the kids for the majority of the day. (Glorious.) Then I went to vigil Mass at another parish I've been investigating and praying about for awhile. Hubby stayed home with the children so I could worship without distraction, something that rarely happens. I am on duty all the time, but especially at Mass. My cup doesn't get filled very often because I am so busy filling cups! And we are looking ahead to our new little one -- a wonderful blessing, but a challenge as she will need to be with me almost constantly. So Mass was a great refreshment, for many reasons.

          The church itself is gorgeous. Very Catholic. The sights, smells and quiet peace were an immediate comfort. And I met a few parishioners in the confession line who were warm, funny and very kind. None of us made it to the confessional, however, as the line was long and the clock ran out.

          Before Mass began, I prayed and lit a candle for my children, that God would make a way for them to come to Him in the Sacraments. It's something that I've prayed for so often, I almost don't feel any sentiment about it anymore. It's become a little shorthand between me and the Lord. He knows what they need. He'll meet every one.

          I took my place on a pew near the front. My mind was occupied with the architecture, the upcoming Mass (and the quiet) when two caregivers wheeled in two young adults in wheelchairs. Both had severe needs. But they were obviously familiar to the parish. Many loving eyes followed them as they were taken to their places. The Mass went on faithfully, and I was caught up in prayer and worship (and investigating the liturgy, honestly, to see if it would be a good fit for our family). I forgot all about anyone out of my direct line of sight, and it was so quiet and peaceful, no one else made themselves truly known.

          When it came time for Holy Communion, though, Father didn't stand at the front and wait for communicants to come to the altar rail, he went straight to the first wheelchair and held the Eucharist slightly above the head of the young man who was waiting patiently for Our Lord, his mouth open wide in a grin, his eyes bright with excitement. Nearly every set of eyes in the first few rows were glowing with love as they watched him enjoy Our Eucharistic Lord.

          My tears caught me totally by surprise. And I cried almost all the way through the rest of Mass. I haven't seen something so beautiful for a long time. Too long. After Mass I waited until everyone had gone and tried (chuckle -- TRIED) to introduce myself to Father without blubbering. I was miserably, joyously, unsuccessful. I managed to get out my name, my children's names and why I was crying to this poor, unsuspecting priest -- who was just minding his own business when this hysterical pregnant woman hijacked him, cried all over him and hugged him. (That poor man!) But he said almost everything I said I needed to hear in my previous responses almost ver batim. He was enthusiastic that I was there, wanted to meet with our family as soon as possible, told me about their special needs Sunday school program and blessed me. For my part, I promised to call or email him and set up an appointment -- and not to cry the next time we met.

          My children may get to have their Eucharistic Lord sooner than I had ever hoped. Truly, the Lord is close to the brokenhearted. And He hears every prayer, even the ones we say in the silence of our souls.

          Today has been a great encouragement, after so many years of doubt. Thanks be to God. And to everyone who is praying for our family and families like ours. Thank you.
          Boy Wonder: 10, MP2/SC4 (Special Needs)
          Joy Bubble: 8, MP2 (Special Needs)
          Snuggly Cowboy: 6, MPK
          Sweet Lightness: 2, Reverse-Engineering Specialist

          “Have no fear of moving into the unknown. Simply step out fearlessly knowing that I am with you, therefore no harm can befall you; all is very, very well. Do this in complete faith and confidence.”
          ~Pope St John Paul II

          Comment


            #20
            Re: Catholic Studies Supplement --- time frame?

            Oh Anita...

            I have been following this thread and this last one had me in tears...leave it to you LOL!

            I am so very happy and grateful to hear of your experience.
            PAX,
            Theresa

            ds -27-ICU Nurse
            ds -24-Grad school: DeSales U. Physician's Assistant Program
            dd -21-Working and taking online courses for vet tech
            dd -12-7M along with some MPOA classes

            "I am a product of long corridors, empty sunlit rooms, upstairs indoor silences, attics explored in solitude, distant noises of gurgling cisterns and pipes, and the noise of wind under the tiles. Also, of endless books." -C.S. Lewis

            Comment


              #21
              Re: Catholic Studies Supplement --- time frame?

              Anita,
              Praise God, indeed! Please keep us informed as to how this goes for your family!
              AMDG,
              Sarah
              2019-2020 - 9th Year with MP
              DD, 18, Homeschool grad; Art major/philosophy minor
              DS, 16
              DD, 14
              DD, 12
              DD, 10
              DD, 7.5
              DD, 5.5
              +DS+
              DS, 18 months

              Comment


                #22
                Re: Catholic Studies Supplement --- time frame?

                Originally posted by KF2000 View Post

                I have known and been close friends with DRE's all over the place - one is Godfather to two of our children. I also have so many priest friends who share the challenges of addressing the youth of today. There is so much they want to do, but are often stymied by what is available to use even for the standard kids. When I was reviewing materials to help with the Catholic supplement, most of the time I felt as you did about the Loyola materials - ranging from sad to angry that this is the dribble that kids are given.


                AMDG,
                Sarah
                Indulge me for a moment ......

                We left our local parish's RE program, because after years of sending the children there, I wasn't satisfied with what they were learning. I didn't have it in me to approach our priest and explain what we were studying in our homeschool, etc, so I looked for a parish where I would be satisfied with their RE.

                Do you think that we, as classically educating parents, expect more of our children and their religious education, than the status quo? That's not meant to be an elitist or snob comment -- but an honest to goodness question. If we (the folks on this thread, the folks waiting on the MP Catholic addition) think that much of what's offered in the parish's RE is junk, then why is it still being used?
                Plans for 2019-20

                DD1 - 24 - College Grad and rocking her own bakery business
                DD2 - 13 - 8A Louisville HLS Cottage School and MPOA
                DS3 - 11 - 4A Louisville HLS Cottage School
                DS4 - 11 - 4A Louisville HLS Cottage School
                DD5 - 7 - MP2, Louisville HLS Cottage School
                DS6 - 5 - MP K

                [url]www.thekennedyadventures.com/all-about-our-memoria-press-homeschool[/url]

                Comment


                  #23
                  Re: Catholic Studies Supplement --- time frame?

                  Originally posted by DiannaKennedy View Post
                  Indulge me for a moment ......

                  We left our local parish's RE program, because after years of sending the children there, I wasn't satisfied with what they were learning. I didn't have it in me to approach our priest and explain what we were studying in our homeschool, etc, so I looked for a parish where I would be satisfied with their RE.

                  Do you think that we, as classically educating parents, expect more of our children and their religious education, than the status quo? That's not meant to be an elitist or snob comment -- but an honest to goodness question. If we (the folks on this thread, the folks waiting on the MP Catholic addition) think that much of what's offered in the parish's RE is junk, then why is it still being used?
                  Oh, boy, Dianna...

                  That's a heckuvva question! Whole books have been written on the subject. I totally defer to Sarah on this one, but my short answer would be "the 20th-century collision of Progressivism, the sexual revolution and the abuses of Vatican II".

                  It's complicated. And good, faithful DREs (and Bishops, and priests, and deacons, and seminarians, and laity) are, unfortunately, a minority anymore in the Church -- you could say things have always been that way, mankind is sinful. But (...thinking...) I would say for the parish education crisis (and it is a crisis) Progressivism might get the lion's share of the blame. The Catholic schools and the state of religious ed followed, in large part, the general decline of education in the public sphere. And the confusion of Vatican II -- timed perfectly with the explosion of the sexual revolution and things like birth control, abortion, the decline in priestly vocations and the abuses of seminarian formation, etc. -- created a bit of a perfect storm.

                  But again, I defer to Sarah. She can surely speak to this better than I can. (No pressure, Sarah! LOL!)
                  Boy Wonder: 10, MP2/SC4 (Special Needs)
                  Joy Bubble: 8, MP2 (Special Needs)
                  Snuggly Cowboy: 6, MPK
                  Sweet Lightness: 2, Reverse-Engineering Specialist

                  “Have no fear of moving into the unknown. Simply step out fearlessly knowing that I am with you, therefore no harm can befall you; all is very, very well. Do this in complete faith and confidence.”
                  ~Pope St John Paul II

                  Comment


                    #24
                    Re: Catholic Studies Supplement --- time frame?

                    Originally posted by Anita View Post
                    Oh, boy, Dianna...

                    That's a heckuvva question! Whole books have been written on the subject. I totally defer to Sarah on this one, but my short answer would be "the 20th-century collision of Progressivism, the sexual revolution and the abuses of Vatican II".

                    It's complicated. And good, faithful DREs (and Bishops, and priests, and deacons, and seminarians, and laity) are, unfortunately, a minority anymore in the Church -- you could say things have always been that way, mankind is sinful. But (...thinking...) I would say for the parish education crisis (and it is a crisis) Progressivism might get the lion's share of the blame. The Catholic schools and the state of religious ed followed, in large part, the general decline of education in the public sphere. And the confusion of Vatican II -- timed perfectly with the explosion of the sexual revolution and things like birth control, abortion, the decline in priestly vocations and the abuses of seminarian formation, etc. -- created a bit of a perfect storm.

                    But again, I defer to Sarah. She can surely speak to this better than I can. (No pressure, Sarah! LOL!)
                    My to be read list is already ginormous, lady.

                    I just find it interesting/puzzling/though-provoking.

                    Over the past year, I decided to make the effort to cultivate more relationships in our Catholic homeschooling community. It was a decision that has paid great dividends for myself and my children. As I've gotten to know more of that circle, I've noticed that those of us who use a classical model also tend to be the ones who gravitate toward the more traditional parishes in our area. I heard a talk about it a few years ago (Classical Panel at GHC Cincy with Martin, Christopher Perrin, Andrew Kern and Andrew Pudewa) ---- the question was brought up, and if I recall correctly, it seemed to be connected to ordering our loves, etc.

                    I have one foot planted in both camps, honestly. Our local parish is 5 minutes from our house, and that's where we attend Mass most often. The children then attend RE at another parish downtown. We've never attempted Mass here with the kids, partly due to my work schedule (I work every Sat/Sun) and partly because it's a giant cathedral without a cry room. (Think Communion rail, etc) I've attended a Holy Hour there for families, and while I thought it was lovely, my children ---- oooph. The boys were rolling their eyes, Daniel fell over the kneeler and bumped his head, and I had to chase Maeve down the aisle before she escaped without me. We're also on the roster at the biggest parish in town --- we used to attend here when the boys were small and I was working another weekends only job. It's also where the kids play sports, lots of opportunities to volunteer, etc. I like a BIG, BUSY parish. (It's the ESTJ driving force)

                    Reading my own words ..... I haven't found a parish home that fits us perfectly. Our local parish is filled with lovely people, but the 'casual-ness' irks me. I'm trying to teach my children respect for our faith, but it's hard at times. The more traditional parish soothes my spirit, but combined with a spirited preschooler and restless toddler, is a recipe for disaster. My poor husband is all about convenience -- what's closest is best. Maybe I should spend some time this summer sorting through it a bit more.

                    And after that rambling response, I think I need more coffee.
                    Plans for 2019-20

                    DD1 - 24 - College Grad and rocking her own bakery business
                    DD2 - 13 - 8A Louisville HLS Cottage School and MPOA
                    DS3 - 11 - 4A Louisville HLS Cottage School
                    DS4 - 11 - 4A Louisville HLS Cottage School
                    DD5 - 7 - MP2, Louisville HLS Cottage School
                    DS6 - 5 - MP K

                    [url]www.thekennedyadventures.com/all-about-our-memoria-press-homeschool[/url]

                    Comment


                      #25
                      Re: Catholic Studies Supplement --- time frame?

                      Originally posted by Anita View Post

                      My husband had total mercy on me and took the kids for the majority of the day. (Glorious.) Then I went to vigil Mass at another parish I've been investigating and praying about for awhile. Hubby stayed home with the children so I could worship without distraction, something that rarely happens. I am on duty all the time, but especially at Mass. My cup doesn't get filled very often because I am so busy filling cups! And we are looking ahead to our new little one -- a wonderful blessing, but a challenge as she will need to be with me almost constantly. So Mass was a great refreshment, for many reasons.

                      The church itself is gorgeous. Very Catholic. The sights, smells and quiet peace were an immediate comfort. And I met a few parishioners in the confession line who were warm, funny and very kind. None of us made it to the confessional, however, as the line was long and the clock ran out.

                      Before Mass began, I prayed and lit a candle for my children, that God would make a way for them to come to Him in the Sacraments. It's something that I've prayed for so often, I almost don't feel any sentiment about it anymore. It's become a little shorthand between me and the Lord. He knows what they need. He'll meet every one.

                      I took my place on a pew near the front. My mind was occupied with the architecture, the upcoming Mass (and the quiet) when two caregivers wheeled in two young adults in wheelchairs. Both had severe needs. But they were obviously familiar to the parish. Many loving eyes followed them as they were taken to their places. The Mass went on faithfully, and I was caught up in prayer and worship (and investigating the liturgy, honestly, to see if it would be a good fit for our family). I forgot all about anyone out of my direct line of sight, and it was so quiet and peaceful, no one else made themselves truly known.

                      When it came time for Holy Communion, though, Father didn't stand at the front and wait for communicants to come to the altar rail, he went straight to the first wheelchair and held the Eucharist slightly above the head of the young man who was waiting patiently for Our Lord, his mouth open wide in a grin, his eyes bright with excitement. Nearly every set of eyes in the first few rows were glowing with love as they watched him enjoy Our Eucharistic Lord.

                      My tears caught me totally by surprise. And I cried almost all the way through the rest of Mass.
                      I haven't seen something so beautiful for a long time. Too long. After Mass I waited until everyone had gone and tried (chuckle -- TRIED) to introduce myself to Father without blubbering. I was miserably, joyously, unsuccessful. I managed to get out my name, my children's names and why I was crying to this poor, unsuspecting priest -- who was just minding his own business when this hysterical pregnant woman hijacked him, cried all over him and hugged him. (That poor man!) But he said almost everything I said I needed to hear in my previous responses almost ver batim. He was enthusiastic that I was there, wanted to meet with our family as soon as possible, told me about their special needs Sunday school program and blessed me. For my part, I promised to call or email him and set up an appointment -- and not to cry the next time we met.

                      My children may get to have their Eucharistic Lord sooner than I had ever hoped. Truly, the Lord is close to the brokenhearted. And He hears every prayer, even the ones we say in the silence of our souls.

                      Today has been a great encouragement, after so many years of doubt. Thanks be to God. And to everyone who is praying for our family and families like ours. Thank you.

                      See .... that's exactly what I was TRYING to say in my previous post --- there are times when I walk in to a church and think 'AHH! This is it'. The architecture, the statuary, the windows -- all pointing us upwards.

                      A line for the confessional! That's a good problem to have.

                      What a blessed Mass for you ---- isn't it amazing and wonderful to hear Our Lord saying, "Relax. I've got this. Rest easy and follow me."

                      You're bringing Him your baskets, sweetheart. And He will fill them 10 fold.
                      Plans for 2019-20

                      DD1 - 24 - College Grad and rocking her own bakery business
                      DD2 - 13 - 8A Louisville HLS Cottage School and MPOA
                      DS3 - 11 - 4A Louisville HLS Cottage School
                      DS4 - 11 - 4A Louisville HLS Cottage School
                      DD5 - 7 - MP2, Louisville HLS Cottage School
                      DS6 - 5 - MP K

                      [url]www.thekennedyadventures.com/all-about-our-memoria-press-homeschool[/url]

                      Comment


                        #26
                        Re: Catholic Studies Supplement --- time frame?

                        You know... The biggest problem with the Church? It's full of people "Traditional" does not always = good and "casual" does not always = bad. You just have to try a little of each and see where you can find a happy medium.

                        For our part, we went about as traditional as you can get when we moved here, and this series of posts is the result. My faith and prayer life was also slipping, inch by inch, until I felt pretty empty. So, the opposite happened from what one would expect in such a "safe" environment. There are very sweet devoted people there who really love the Lord. And there are people who do not.

                        But stepping out into Wacky Land was not an option for us. There's actually a parish church within walking distance from our house. I have walked the dog and the kids around their courtyard many times, just to say hello to Jesus in repose. But we would not attend Mass there voluntarily. It's WAAAAAY to casual. (Not "judging". I assume their practices are licit... They are under the Bishop's authority and their priest's, not mine. None-a-my-beeswax. We just don't do praise bands, no kneelers and a missing Tabernacle. Not our thing.) I know there are also sweet, devoted people there who really love the Lord, as well as those who miss the mark. It's the same dynamic wherever you go. (With a few exceptions.)

                        Talking to myself here, and anyone who finds themselves in this boat: I think as classical educators and parents we have a double-duty -- to make sure our children get a quality education and rearing in our homes, while carrying that light into the outside world, but also being real people who have patience and love with the world. It's a loose parallel, but we can be "in the world, not of it" and we can use the world for the benefit of our families. If we fail to do the latter, we lose opportunities to love and grow -- and to be loved and known. We also slowly devolve into -- let's face it -- Pharisees. And nobody wants that, least of all Our Lord.

                        The parish I attended last night was solid on almost every front. The few things I might take exception with are minor -- but perfectly licit, I might add. However, the reverence with which the Mass was undertaken, the love the parish showed and the absolute charity the priest showed made any minor legalistic squabbles in my head totally disappear. It was nice to be able to relax -- for the first time in years. And I realized, honestly, how wrong I've been to be so nit-picky about things... Very humbling. (Another post for another day.) I really hope we've found our home. It's no fun being "homeless" or feeling like you have to shuttle back and forth from parish to parish in order to get some peace.

                        Anyway -- more coffee! And thank you, Dianna.

                        EDIT:
                        ESTJ!
                        http://www.personalitypage.com/ESTJ.html
                        Makes total sense.

                        ISFJ, right here!
                        http://www.personalitypage.com/ISFJ.html

                        Hubby is an ENTJ -- which should not jibe with my personality, but we're good for each other.
                        http://www.personalitypage.com/html/ENTJ.html
                        Last edited by Anita; 05-01-2016, 09:01 AM.
                        Boy Wonder: 10, MP2/SC4 (Special Needs)
                        Joy Bubble: 8, MP2 (Special Needs)
                        Snuggly Cowboy: 6, MPK
                        Sweet Lightness: 2, Reverse-Engineering Specialist

                        “Have no fear of moving into the unknown. Simply step out fearlessly knowing that I am with you, therefore no harm can befall you; all is very, very well. Do this in complete faith and confidence.”
                        ~Pope St John Paul II

                        Comment


                          #27
                          Re: Catholic Studies Supplement --- time frame?

                          Anita and Dianna,
                          You both are experiencing what I have seen firsthand as well. We have lived in six different states, with six very different dioceses. We met in college, where the priests at our Newman Center gave us excellent formation. They said if we ever had a chance to pick where we lived, we had a choice of three dioceses in the entire country. THREE!!! This was in the mid-90's. Moving around over the years gave us exposure to the wide spectrum of what passes for a Catholic parish - and sadly, yes, we felt it necessary to parish-shop, a notion which I hate but is a consequence of the spectrum. You guys have already highlighted what is often involved in the range so I will not repeat your descriptions, but yes, we saw it too.

                          We followed our priests' advice and settled in one of the three dioceses they had recommended to us. But not before we were present at the ordination of a new bishop in our diocese in Missouri, a man who is doing wonderful things there. We have also seen a dear friend of ours be ordained a bishop in Wichita, Kansas. We have seen friends settle in Lincoln, NE because of the great bishop there. Last week one of our Goddaughters visited from NY state, where they have a new bishop who is doing great things. There are now more excellent dioceses than we could have imagined twenty years ago. Are there still a majority that need work? Sure. Changes are coming, it just takes time.

                          Another thing our priests in college told us was that following any major Church Council, such as we had with Vatican II in the mid-1960's, there is a major period of confusion that lasts for about 50 years. This is the period where the people of the Church are confused as to what was really decided during the Council. Many erroneous interpretations are produced. Many people who desperately want to see the Church go in a certain direction try to forcibly push the Church in that direction and blame it on the Council. And sadly, few people actually take the time to read the documents and decisions of the Council, adding to the general spirit of confusion.

                          If you take 1963 as a general date of VCII, and add 50 years, you end up with 2013. Viewed in the greater picture of history you see that our Church is still very very close to that atmosphere of confusion surrounding the Council. I see the changes in bishops that are taking place as a sign of great hope. I see the number of faithful religious orders that have been gaining ground in the last two decades as a sign of great hope. I see the availability of faithful seminaries with wonderful young men in them as a sign of great hope. Is there still A TON of work to be done? ABSOLUTELY! But I see even more great hope in the conversations such as this one...where people of great faith, with deep love for the Church, sincerely want to do their part to help heal and repair our Church.

                          If you want to read a great synopsis of the current environment, and be inspired to help participate in the reconstruction, a book I would recommend is "Evangelical Catholicism" by George Weigel. It is a fascinating read, and hits home about the divisions that have occurred amongst ourselves: the various "you're only a good Catholic if...." sorts of thinking. It also provides a response of what will be constructive moving forward.

                          And yes, this means that we desperately need new and better resources for continuing to address the crisis and confusion, especially for our children. I see folks like us being very instrumental in helping to move that cause forward. It is extremely difficult to sift through and find the truth, to be in the position of balance, without letting the pendulum go too far to either direction. That is the task ahead of us all though as we seek to participate in the life of the Church. My sincere hope is that we will bear good fruit by whatever we do - whether it is by actively working, by encouraging others, by supporting our parishes, or simply by the most important thing of all....our prayers.

                          AMDG,
                          Sarah
                          Last edited by KF2000; 05-01-2016, 01:59 PM.
                          2019-2020 - 9th Year with MP
                          DD, 18, Homeschool grad; Art major/philosophy minor
                          DS, 16
                          DD, 14
                          DD, 12
                          DD, 10
                          DD, 7.5
                          DD, 5.5
                          +DS+
                          DS, 18 months

                          Comment


                            #28
                            Re: Catholic Studies Supplement --- time frame?

                            Hi, this reply is for where the conversation was sometime yesterday (I didn't have time to respond until now). Our very small church has a considerable number of children with special needs, so I thought I would contribute from that perspective (we are not Catholic, FYI). First, our church elders employ an expository method of preaching with considerable exegesis. This allows for a great depth of understanding and further study/exploration for the adults and older children, but also allows the younger kids and learners with special needs to have a considerable amount of exposure time to the passages being taught. Later in the week, we have a follow-up discussion time with questions prepared by an elder to encourage further study and to address questions. (Side note: I get really excited about the parallels between classical education and how our church does things, but I have to be careful in my excitement--most of the families in our church homeschool, but very few fully employ classical methods!) There have been many moments of encouragement for us when we see that our children with special needs are learning. A young boy with considerable learning and life skills disabilities encouraged us all a few weeks ago by enthusiastically shouting out the answer to our Pastor's rhetorical question. It was such a blessing to see and hear evidence that he was listening, he understood, and he was excited about God's Word! Praise God! So my point is--I hope that our church leaders never discount the ability of our children to understand the Bible--a book that is beyond the understanding of the wisest of the world yet can be understood by our children.

                            Second point: Our church is rather small, being a church plant of a church that desired to give away, so to speak, rather than grow larger. We meet in a space we rent only for Sundays, otherwise meeting in each others' homes. We have no amenities to offer or special setup for special needs. However, we all know each other and see each other a few times per week. Our older kids watch out for the younger kids; there is a unifying love of the saints and love for God's Word. As one mother of a boy with special needs put it: "For years we thought we needed a big church that was equipped to deal with our son, but I am so glad we are here. Y'all love [kid's name]." I think this is important for all of our children--that they are being taught God's Word by those that truly love them--but how much more so for children with special needs! Children have a sense for when a person is a fraud or doesn't care about them--I know I did! We have seen these children adapt so well in the children's Sunday School classes (We do classes before the main service and Sunday evenings.). The teachers of the children's classes discuss issues and questions as needed with all parents. For children with special needs, they try to understand what they should expect from the children and typically talk with parents a few minutes here and there most every week. (Our church employs other methods and such, but none that I can think of that directly relate to the topic...)

                            So, just wanted to share a little of my observational experience, as seeing our children with special needs loved dearly and taught carefully has been a major blessing to me.
                            Michaela
                            Daughter: Age 11 MP 6A (MPOA for TFL, 6th grade math, and composition)
                            Son: Age 6 1st Grade MP Traditional Spelling, Literature, Math, and Handwriting
                            for 2019/2020 school year

                            Comment


                              #29
                              Re: Catholic Studies Supplement --- time frame?

                              Originally posted by pschaeffer View Post
                              Sadly we don't. We've gone back to the drawing board so many times that we haven't made as much progress as we expected.

                              Paul,
                              Do we have an updated time frame for Catholic Studies? Beta? I'm looking ahead to the fall and keeping my fingers crossed.



                              Originally posted by DiannaKennedy View Post
                              I have one foot planted in both camps, honestly. Our local parish is 5 minutes from our house, and that's where we attend Mass most often. The children then attend RE at another parish downtown. We've never attempted Mass here with the kids, partly due to my work schedule (I work every Sat/Sun) and partly because it's a giant cathedral without a cry room. (Think Communion rail, etc) I've attended a Holy Hour there for families, and while I thought it was lovely, my children ---- oooph. The boys were rolling their eyes, Daniel fell over the kneeler and bumped his head, and I had to chase Maeve down the aisle before she escaped without me. We're also on the roster at the biggest parish in town --- we used to attend here when the boys were small and I was working another weekends only job. It's also where the kids play sports, lots of opportunities to volunteer, etc. I like a BIG, BUSY parish. (It's the ESTJ driving force)

                              Reading my own words ..... I haven't found a parish home that fits us perfectly. Our local parish is filled with lovely people, but the 'casual-ness' irks me. I'm trying to teach my children respect for our faith, but it's hard at times. The more traditional parish soothes my spirit, but combined with a spirited preschooler and restless toddler, is a recipe for disaster. My poor husband is all about convenience -- what's closest is best. Maybe I should spend some time this summer sorting through it a bit more.
                              .

                              Anita,
                              I had to laugh at my own response here to you a year ago --- waffling between my 'home parish', the mega parish, and the more traditional parish in the city.
                              It's funny how time changes the landscape.
                              This spring, my boys made their First Holy Communion at the very traditional parish, and it's quickly become our church home. My littles are fairly well behaved - even the 3 year old knows that something special is happening. At this parish, the boys will be able to serve this summer --- there's no formal training, but more of an apprenticeship, where the older boys guide the youngers through the process.

                              How are things with Winston? Any news on the Sacrament front?
                              Plans for 2019-20

                              DD1 - 24 - College Grad and rocking her own bakery business
                              DD2 - 13 - 8A Louisville HLS Cottage School and MPOA
                              DS3 - 11 - 4A Louisville HLS Cottage School
                              DS4 - 11 - 4A Louisville HLS Cottage School
                              DD5 - 7 - MP2, Louisville HLS Cottage School
                              DS6 - 5 - MP K

                              [url]www.thekennedyadventures.com/all-about-our-memoria-press-homeschool[/url]

                              Comment


                                #30
                                Re: Catholic Studies Supplement --- time frame?

                                Originally posted by DiannaKennedy View Post
                                Anita,
                                I had to laugh at my own response here to you a year ago --- waffling between my 'home parish', the mega parish, and the more traditional parish in the city.
                                It's funny how time changes the landscape.
                                This spring, my boys made their First Holy Communion at the very traditional parish, and it's quickly become our church home. My littles are fairly well behaved - even the 3 year old knows that something special is happening. At this parish, the boys will be able to serve this summer --- there's no formal training, but more of an apprenticeship, where the older boys guide the youngers through the process.

                                How are things with Winston? Any news on the Sacrament front?
                                Ohhhh, Dianna.... That Holy Spirit is a joker, no?

                                We went to the "new parish" (that was more special needs friendly) and the kids LOVED IT. However, my husband did not (understatement of the year). We kept going until I finally realized the children's catechesis was going to come at the cost of my husband's faith. Not an ideal compromise. So we discussed it (loudly -- LOL) and started going back to the Latin Rite parish. It's been no issue.

                                I've done some soul searching and left all this up to God and my husband. They'll work it all out for the good. I married a very wise, very intelligent (very stubborn) Portuguese man. He sees things I don't. He fights when I retreat. So he can represent our cause with our pastor quite well.

                                In the meantime, I've come to realize that our pastor wasn't wrong. Maybe a little too direct, maybe a little uncompromising, but not wrong. We were a hair away from enrolling Winston in Faith Formation for First Holy Communion at the "new church" but pulled back because we realized, on our own, that he wasn't ready. (Holy Irony, Batman!) Our pastor, in hindsight, has actually *never* steered us wrong. It's a little infuriating, actually. (LOL) But I respect the heck out of him, even when he makes me mad. Isn't that what Jesus does? Confronts us with hard, inscrutable Truth? Don't we love Him for it, even when it makes us stamp our feet and tantrum like a little child?

                                Faith Formation has ended for the year. So we will see if he and his sister are ready come Fall. In the meantime, I will be teaching them from Faith and Life and the St Joseph's Catechism, along with MPs excellent academic helps.

                                Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of Your faithful ....
                                Last edited by Anita; 06-04-2017, 05:23 AM.
                                Boy Wonder: 10, MP2/SC4 (Special Needs)
                                Joy Bubble: 8, MP2 (Special Needs)
                                Snuggly Cowboy: 6, MPK
                                Sweet Lightness: 2, Reverse-Engineering Specialist

                                “Have no fear of moving into the unknown. Simply step out fearlessly knowing that I am with you, therefore no harm can befall you; all is very, very well. Do this in complete faith and confidence.”
                                ~Pope St John Paul II

                                Comment

                                Working...
                                X