Challenge Grant: Our Boosters will match donations up to $45,000. We have $36,649 to go. Please donate!
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Theologian sees irrational approach among some Catholic religious-education teachers

Catholic World News - July 20, 2012

Writing for The Catholic Thing, Francis Beckwith coins a new term, “egopapism,” to describe the attitude displayed by Arlington diocese religious-education instructors who refused to take an oath of fidelity.

When they argue that Christians should be guided by their own consciences, without admitting the need for expert guidance and authoritative judgment, those teachers embrace “an anti-intellectual and fundamentally irrational position.” Unfortunately, Beckwith reflects, that unserious approach to religious instruction is all too common in the Church. Beckwith—who became one of America’s leading Evangelical Protestant theologians before returning to the Catholic faith—relates:

As I noted in my 2009 memoir, Return to Rome, the lack of theological seriousness that flowed from this agenda is what pushed me and many others into the arms of Evangelical Protestantism.

Additional sources for this story
Some links will take you to other sites, in a new window.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Our Fall Campaign
Progress toward our year-end goal ($124,738 to go):
$150,000.00 $25,262.05
83% 17%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 2 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: Randal Mandock - Jul. 20, 2012 4:13 PM ET USA

    "Egopapism?" How about "_anti_papism!" For years I have been referring to my catechists as "papist" because of the allegiance we swear to all papal directives. The "anti-intellectual and fundamentally irrational" catechesis that I was expected to deliver in the 1990s is one of the aberrations that pushed me and others into our FSSP parish. Among other problems, my most serious one now is monitoring instruction to make certain that it remains free of certain SSPX anti-Vatican II influences.

  • Posted by: Defender - Jul. 20, 2012 3:23 PM ET USA

    Five catechists out of 5000 who didn't sign and caused this stink? Really? Show 'em the door and move on. My experience, however, suggests that quite a few more should have signed the document and this doesn't include those in the administration of the diocese (or any diocese, for that matter)- this includes those who don't know the Faith at all and are contend with having students color drawings and other mindless exercises for Religion class.

Fall 2014 Campaign
Subscribe for free
Shop Amazon
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Could respect for the papacy mean resisting the Pope? 2 hours ago
The Church Moves On, Slowly October 24
Is Cardinal Kasper losing his grip? October 24
The Pope is not the problem October 23
Do not confuse sacramental discipline and Catholic doctrine. October 23

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Key synod report calls for 'gradualism' in Church response to irregular family situations CWN - October 13
As synod concludes, bishops issue message, approve document; Pope weighs in CWN - October 20
Cardinal Parolin: UN must protect innocents from Islamic State CWN - September 30
Synod of Bishops opens with Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica CWN - October 6