It is interesting times that we find ourselves in, with a Canadian government that won’t allow money to be given to any Catholic charity that want to hire a summer student but won’t/can’t check the box to say they support abortion. We have a provincial government that attacked the Catholic School Board for even investigating the right to teach human sexuality from a Catholic perspective, accusing us of teaching that rape is okay. We have a new masculinities studies program at the U of C that seem to blame hetro-sexuality for the #MeToo problem. We have a Prime Minister that has a problem with the word “mankind”! These are are all very troubling problems that we must face and work to resolve. That being said it troubles me a great deal to see what’s going on inside our church. How many Sunday masses are there, where it is only women serving on the altar to assist the priest, to do the readings and girls the altar servers. Recently I have witnessed baptisms where there are no Godfathers present. The question I find myself asking is why? Is there no man in the lives of these families that stands out as a godly man, that they would like to ask to be the Godfather to their child. Are there no boys serving on the altar because they do not see any men serving within the church? Is there a shortage of priests because we have not encouraged our young men to discern and follow that path.
I remember a young women asking a question many years ago at our parish retreat.”Where are the Catholic Heros?” That was an excellent question which I took to heart. We know watching our kids grow up that they mimic what they see. Do our young men witness men being an active part of the church. How many are ready to step up and step out to be seen? There are places in the world where the men have died to practice their faith. Here where we have had the freedom to practice our faith openly for over a century. With this freedom we continue to take it for granted to the point where many have come to believe that it’s Mom’s job to deal with all matters pertaining to faith. We confused liberty, which is a painful and amazing ascent, with the liberties of unconstrained where we rush down without any hope.1
We need to begin teaching our young men virtues over values. Having good values is a fine thing, but the battle of morality is not so much about knowing what is right as it is doing what is right. The difference between wanting to do the good and actually doing it is tremendous.2
Fr. Jerome will be talking about this subject at this years conference; “WANTED: Men of Virtue Warring Against a Culture of ‘Values’” . Fr Raymond d’Souza will help us recognize where we stand today with his talk; “Living Time So That We Know When It Is Such As This”. Fr. Cristino will challenge our young men at the conference with his talk “What Were the ’90’s’?: Speaking Truth to a New Generation”.
You can start by assessing where God is calling you to serve in your home and your parish. I want to challenge you to consider getting screened to fulfill the requirements of the Diocese to work with the youth. I know its a pain to do but rarely is it easy to accomplish great things. It is going to take courage to step out and be seen. We will have an example this year of courage and strength as Fr Jonathan will share his conversion from the Anglican faith with his talk; “Entering the Barque of Peter for such a time as this” Men come and be challenged and nourished at this years conference to be the man God is calling you to be! Have the courage to invite someone that needs to hear the message!
To register go to https://godsquad.ca/
Financial assistance is available!
God Squad President
- Saint Joseph Shadow of the Father – Andrew Doze, Alba House 1992 page 105.
- Boys to Men – Tim Gray and Curtis Martin, Emmaus Road publishing 2001, page 11