Vol 4 No. 2- Dedicated to St. Joseph By & For Santa Clara Valley Catholics - Mar / Apr, 1997

Publisher - Marc Crotty

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 Stop! Homeschooling zone ahead

Back-to-basics: God and ABC’s

Book Review

‘Pearl of York’ coming in May

Act of abortion should mean guilt

Abortion equals Sin


Bright Views

Dim Views






Stop! Homeschooling zone ahead

A family that prays together learns together

The Henry Cord family starts the day with a 20-minute walk to St. Julie’s Church in South San Jose. The two older boys, Alex, 11, and Chandler, 9, serve at Mass. Then their mother, Elizabeth, and Michael, 8, Amanda, 6 and Landon, 2, walk back home to about four hours of "classes" in their family room which is set up like a school with traditional desks and wall-to-wall books.

They follow this routine 12 months of the year, with time out for holidays and family excursions. Dad is usually not far away. Henry Cord splits his time between home-office and downtown as a redevelopment consultant.

 Elizabeth, a former budget analyst, has been homeschooling the children since Alex was in first grade and Chandler in kindergarten at St. Christopher's Catholic School. There were a series of bad events with a teacher, and the result caused her to re-evaluate the entire "school myth."

 She came across the solution to her school problem quite by accident. In a library book she thought covered a different subject, she found homeschooling. It planted the seed in her mind. The seed bore fruit, and she took the two boys out of school and brought them home. They have been homebodies ever since. They live in the blessed chaos of a middle-class, Catholic home with neighborhood kids and babies running in and out, but they are all loved and nurtured here – bodies and souls.

 The children are just as enthusiastic as the parents. "It doesn't take eight hours out of my day," Chandler explained when asked about homeschooling. "And I don't have to meet any bullies."

 Mom likes it because she has control over what her children are being taught, especially morally and spiritually. Although it is time-consuming, she thinks the trade-offs are in her favor. "It is less work than going to all those school meetings and driving around. It is easier and more natural just to be at home with your own kids." The family produces its own monthly seven-page newsletter called Regina Pacis (Queen of Peace) for other homeschooling families. They meet with some of these families on First Fridays at Our Lady of Peace Church to attend Mass and swap tips, problems, politics, curriculum ideas and recipes.

 There are as many ways to homeschool as there are homeschool families, but Cord believes in what she calls "delight-filled learning." The children can spend as much time as they want on projects they enjoy.

Alex worked a whole month on a report, for example, and ignored all other subjects while his interest was consumed by that topic.

 Cord develops a curriculum for each child, based on the needs and strengths of each one. They work at their own pace, and she monitors their work and gives them new material as they learn. California teaching guidelines serve as the basis for the topics they cover, and they use the "Faith and Life" series for religion. "School hours" are from 11 to 3, five days a week.

 The Cords belong to Homeschool Legal Defense Association, HSLDA, Box 159, Paeonian Springs, Virginia, which is an association for homeschoolers that offers legal advice and even legal help if the family "runs into trouble." The state of California requires that school-age children be schooled; homeschooling parents can be asked to show that they qualify.

 The Cords themselves have not run into opposition from anyone. The only queries they get are from neighbors who look enviously over the back fence and ask how it's done.

 The disadvantages of homeschooling are so minimal, Cord couldn't really think of any. But Chandler thought of one: "I don't meet as many friends."

 The Cords believe that everything is better in homeschooling: The religious education is orthodox and spiritual. Academically, each child gets one-on-one attention and a curriculum designed just for him. The time needed for studies is about one-third the time required for school attendance and homework. The rest of the day can be reading time, fun time, sports time, family time.

 But what about socialization?

 "We don't worry about their social development," Cord said. "Which setting provides socialization: being locked up in a classroom with artificial regulations or being at home with the family?"

 When the children get older and require advanced subjects like chemistry and physics, Cord said she will depend on the children's acquired ability to teach themselves and on aids like videotapes, tutors and hotlines. She already uses many primary sources other than texts or history books. For example, she taught her children about the California gold rush using a book written by a miner's wife who lived with her husband at the camp. And she believes her way of teaching is superior to anything the children could get in school.

 When it's time for them to go to college, Cord is upbeat. She said universities and colleges are happy to get homeschoolers now. College administrators know they are bright, capable, self-motivated and self-disciplined.

 Cord stays on top of the political issues involving homeschooling. The national education plan called Goals 2000 appears to be around the corner, and this cradle-to-grave public education proposal could hurt. In some states, Goals 2000 is tied to employment, which means employers are forbidden to offer jobs to applicants who do not have a certificate from an accredited high school. Truancy rules can be problematic, too; it can mean harassment from police officers if a youth is seen walking on the street or playing basketball in front of his house. So Cord recommends that every homeschooler stay informed -- and join a legal defense group.

 "We do worry about legal entanglements, but it doesn't drive our decision or threaten it," she said.

The decision to homeschool is one that some families have a hard time making. But Cord says: "Try it for awhile. "Once you taste homeschooling, you will never look back."

Back-to-basics: God and ABC’s

Does Catholic homeschooling make sense academically?

Yes, says Mary Kay Clark, director of Seton Home Study School and author of the handbook, "Catholic Home Schooling." Here are some of the reasons:

1. Less time wasted in travel, homeroom, settling down, going from room to room, detention, recesses, "projects" and other fol-de-rol. Time spent previously doing "homework" can now be spent doing schoolwork.

2. Individualized attention.

3. Silliness, dirty jokes, swear words, funky peer nonsense can all be eliminated.

4. Health improves without school germs.

5. Mental health improves without teasing, pleasing, bullying, worrying, time pressures.

6. No offensive sex-education and secular humanism.

7. God is the High Point of learning.

But what about Socialization – (with a capital ‘S’)?

Dr. Damian Fedoryke, former president of Christendom College puts it best:

"I really didn’t consider it proper for my child to spend a year of her life learning how to be an 11-year-old, then another year of her life learning how to be a 12-year-old, another year learning how to be a 13-year-old. She has a mother at home. I’d rather she learn to be like her mother . . ."

Book Review

‘NewChurch’ is a turnoff

You don’t have to take our word that the "NewChurch" is turning people off.

 In a book hot off the Conciliar Press (P.O. box 76, Ben Lomond, CA 95005), Our Hearts’ True Home, edited by Virginia Nieuwsma of San Jose, tells the conversion stories of 14 women. Conversion stories away from the Roman Catholic Church and into the Orthodox Catholic Church.

 For example:

Frederica Mathews-Green writes that worship as described in Sacred Scripture was always "clothed in gold, silver, precious stones, embroidery, robes of gorgeous fabric, bells and candles . . . Unfortunately, the revised Roman Catholic Mass has too often lost its beauty; instead, it has the earnest, vacant feeling of ’70’s smiley-face pop culture."

 Susan Englehardt was a Roman Catholic college student during Vatican II. Very few people realized at the time how far Vatican II would undermine what piety the Roman Church had retained down the centuries.

 "The English translation for the new Mass was banal . . . There was little sense of piety, then in 1970, the Tridentine (Latin) Mass was effectively prohibited . . . Sermons on Sundays began to focus more on political and social issues than on spiritual matters . . . Many people were interested in ordaining Christian priestesses and blessing homosexual unions . . . Some also worked to undermine the divinely established significance of sexuality."

 Mary Heather-Lowe writes of the Episcopal Church: "A pastel-yellow ‘modern’ hymnal was the only publication in the pew rack. A goofy guitar chorus led us through several weak songs while the female minister vaguely wandered around the sanctuary . . . Further reading reinforced my impression that the Episcopal Church was as relativistic as my college campus. ‘You’re gay? Use drugs? Believe in goddess worship? Are a radical feminist? Come on in! We’re so sophisticated that we welcome everyone."

"I suppose I came close to becoming Catholic, but a friend who was also searching had heard it said that the post-Vatican II Catholic Church was not salvific . . ."

 Brooklyn-raised Magdalena Gerry was searching for the living Christ. "Contemporary Catholicism seemed to be a stew of ‘mystical renewal,’ with workshops and guided retreats filled with those searching for a more satisfying prayer life; pseudo-Marxists proclaiming liberation theology as the antidote to years of oppression in Latin America; and progressives and feminists who stubbornly fought for the ‘rights’ of women in the ‘patriarchal’ church. None of that was very appealing . . ."

One of the women in Our Hearts’ True Home quotes G. K. Chesterton: "One’s mind should not be so open that the brain falls out."

'Pearl of York' coming in May

The Pearl of York, written by Cathal Gallagher and directed by Rick Frank, will be presented at the Sunnyvale Community Theater, 550 Remington Drive, Sunnyvale, CA, on May 22, 23, 24, 29, 30 and 31 at 8 p.m.. Ticket price is $10.

During the religious upheavals of the 16th century, Margaret Clitherow, daughter of the Lord Mayor of York, was arrested and killed for harboring a Roman Catholic priest in her home. The Pearl of York is about her martyrdom.

For more information, call 408-257-1149.

Act of abortion should mean guilt

"Abortion does not trigger lasting emotional trauma in young women who are psychologically healthy before they become pregnant."

This is a quote from a New York Times article that was reprinted across the United States in February. It was based on an eight-year study of 5,300 women, and the researchers concluded that women who had high self-esteem before procuring an abortion were not likely to experience lasting problems, regardless of race or religion, "although highly religious Catholic women were slightly more likely to exhibit post-abortion psychological distress than other women. (a fact) explained by lower pre-existing self-esteem."


 The researchers, Dr. Nancy Felipe Russo, a psychologist at Arizona State University in Tempe, and Dr. Amy Dabul Marin, a psychologist at Phoenix College, added the interesting observation that overall, Catholic women generally had lower self-esteem than other women, whether or not they had abortions – so it wasn’t surprising that the post-abortion trauma of such women would be high.

 Is this Catholic-bashing or what?

 Several challenges to the study were offered, but the only priest quoted, Fr. John Vondras, former associate director of Family-Life/Respect Life Activities for the Diocese of New York, said he couldn’t understand the low self-esteem in Catholic women because the emphasis in the church today "is to build up self-esteem."

 To which we reply: "Oh, is that what that is?"

The critics mainly questioned the veracity of the study and the survey. For example, one critic said that mental maturity is not gauged by asking the patient; maturity is gauged by testing and observing the patient.

Abortion equals Sin

Of course, all these people: the "researchers," their critics and Fr. Vondras, are wide of the mark. The bull’s eye is this; Abortion is a sin. It makes not one farthing of difference whether the woman is mature or immature, full of self-esteem or low on self-esteem. If she kills her baby, she has violated the Fifth Commandment. Thank goodness Catholic women appear to shed some tears over this. They have the g-word: GUILT.

Transpose this killing into another situation, and the message comes through loud and clear. Suppose Gulag soldiers were tested after spending portions of their careers torturing and murdering prisoners. The ones with strong self-esteem test out OK: no serious guilt trips. The ones with "low self-esteem" test poorly. They dream about it, have night sweats, exhibit addictive behavior, etc. Which soldiers would be called "normal?" The men who exhibited remorse. The ones without remorse would be called sub-normal or beasts.

Suppose we were talking instead about killing elderly parents when they become infirm and inconvenient. It would be called "easy death" or "informed choice" or "Humane, Inc." Surely the most potent argument against the practice would be: It is wrong to kill human beings. On the pragmatic level, you would have to deal with the dead bodies, insurance problems and remorse. But the pragmatic reasons are not the Catholic reason. The Catholic reason is: Thou shalt not kill.

The abortion study was done to reassure women that it’s OK to do what they feel like doing – even if it means killing their own babies. The pill goes down easier by calling the dead babies "fetuses" and calling the murder "choice". But who are we trying to kid here? God is not stupid.


‘We are not going to take it anymore!’

Editor: May I commend you and your staff on the excellent issue of View from the Pew. I found particularly helpful your piece titled "Credentials, Please." I passed it onto some beleaguered Catholics in Pennsylvania. Like many Catholics, they have been taking patiently all the garbage that has been handed down since Vatican II. I simply told them: "Your answer should be to go your bishop and local pastor, ‘We are not going to take it any more!’"

One can argue all he wants about the abuses. Theological arguments usually fall on the deaf ears of liberals, but there is one argument that makes all sit up and take notice. This is: NO DOGMA; NO DOLLAR! When the collection plate gets a bit light, they take notice, believe me. Better for a church to go materially bankrupt than for it to become spiritually bankrupt. It is my view that Catholics who support bishops and pastors who do not feed them spiritually are material cooperators in sacrilege.

I thank you for your kind and true words about a great priest and pastor, Father Robert Essig, Pastor Emeritus of St. Frances Cabrini Parish. I recall him saying at one time that he did not spend very much time on the altar facing the people because eventually the church "would wake up and go back to what we had before." With the development of a strong laity, his wish will become a prophecy.

"The truth shall make you free!"




We’re still ‘practicing’

Editor: Why is it that so many Catholics have not accepted Humanae Vitae? In the View, you present all such Catholics as re-enacting or re-participating in Original Sin, no small issue. These folks, the great majority of American Roman Catholics at least, are the same people who attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days, support their church financially and with time and prayer, raise their children to love the Lord and obey the commandments . . . In other words, perhaps this is the ONLY issue in which you might say that they are not "good" or "practicing" Catholics.

I would suggest to you that these people, many of whom you pray with weekly at church, are neither malicious nor ignorant in their decision to disregard the teaching of the church on this issue.

I see a great good in practicing Natural Family Planning. I see it as a form of prayer, actually. It is a spiritual act, and a good thing. Going to Mass on Sundays is required of us. Going to Mass daily is a good practice, but not required. I think that practicing NFP as opposed to a non-abortifaciant contraception (within marriage, of course) parallels daily Mass to weekly. One is better, but the other I do not believe is sinful.

 I think I’m a pretty average Catholic in my position here.




Disagreeing with the Pope

Editor: The contraception issue has been the most significant cause of lay Catholics leaving the church and reducing their contributions. The arguments that they are unable to live up to the high standards of the church is lacking in substance. The layman has every right to stand up for what he believes with right conscience, even if he disagrees with the Pope.

 The unreasonableness of the contraceptive rule causes everyone to question it and discredits the papacy. When the Pope speaks about abortion which is an intrinsic evil, few hear him. They simply dismiss his position by showing how foolish the contraception argument is.

You can look at it another way, the way of ‘qualifications." There is a grace of station. That is, the Holy Spirit grants special graces to the faithful to enable them to carry out their station in life. This includes the matter of having children. He speaks to the parents, and helps them in making the decisions that are uniquely theirs to make.

J Bright Views J

Traditional rite petitions

The coalition in support of Ecclesia Dei and Una Voce is distributing petitions asking Bishop Pierre Dumaine to "widely and generously" authorize a Traditional Latin Rite Mass for every Sunday and Holy day of Obligation.

The Traditional Latin Mass – sometimes called the Tridentine Mass – dates back to Pope St. Gregory the Great (590-604 A.D), and its most essential prayer, the canon, goes back to Pope Gelasius (492-496 A.D.). In obedience to the Second Vatican Council and church Tradition, many cardinals, bishops and priests, including the saintly Padre Pio, continued to say and foster the Traditional Roman Rite and liturgy long after the introduction of the Novus Ordo Mass in 1970.

The Vatican Congregation for Divine Worship issued directives in 1984 making the Traditional Mass more available to Catholics requesting it. And in 1988, Pope John Paul II decreed that "respect must everywhere be shown for the feelings of ALL those who are attached to the Latin Liturgical tradition, by a wide and generous application of the directives already issued . . . for the use of the Roman Missal according to the typical edition of 1962." He asked for the support of bishops in this matter.

A Traditional Roman Rite Mass is currently offered on the first Saturday of each month at 7:00pm at "Our Lady of Peace Catholic Church" in the San Jose Diocese in Santa Clara. The petition requests a more convenient hour and weekly services to satisfy Mass-attendance obligations.


For a copy of the petition, contact View from the Pew.

L Dim Views L

Clinton and the Catholic vote


Why Clinton got the Catholic Vote (adapted from an article by J. C. Wilke, M.D., in Connector, Life Issues Institute, January, 1997.)


Roman Catholic and Evangelicals share essentially the same moral beliefs on life, marriage and family. Yet 48% of Catholics voted for Bill Clinton, only 42% for Dole in the last election. A fat 60% of evangelical Christians voted for Dole and only 35% for Clinton.

 Why the difference?

 It’s not Catholic leadership. The bishops have stood firm against abortion, for example. And Pope John Paul II has made abortion THE defining moral issue of our time. Yet Catholics were able to vote for Clinton, who favors partial-birth abortion.

 The problem lies with "middle management." Go to any evangelical Protestant church and you will hear sermons against abortion, homosexuality, adultery, fornication, etc. Go to most Catholic churches and you will be lucky to hear any. Before the election, church bulletins carried voting information about all kinds of subjects: immigration, capital punishment, the tax status of churches, etc. – but most Catholic bulletins downplayed abortion, and some omitted the topic altogether.

This "middle management" behavior sends one message to the Catholic in the pew: Compromise is OK. Evangelicals were told there is no compromise when murder is involved.

"In the Catholic fold, the top leadership has been right on target, while middle management has been very divided . . . The result has been a watering down of a broad spectrum of traditional moral values and, with this, the acceptance of some candidates who have totally disqualified themselves from holding public office."


Dear friend of View From The Pew: January 1997

Please consider supporting our apostolate with a paid subscription. To make the View more affordable we lowered the cost of subscribing in 1996 to just $10 per year.

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Part of your contribution is used to provide a free subscription to any religious that requests one.

Also, we send the View to many priests who otherwise would not know about certain issues that appear on our pages. The two issues on the “Renew” program elicited a large response from priests and laity. Many were not aware of the inherent evils of this program.

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Your contribution also pays for the cost of maintaining this web site.

Thank you for your consideration.


 Diocese of San Jose (Dioecesis Sancti Josephi in California)
Established January 27, 1981
Most Reverend Pierre DuMaine, D.D., Ph.D.
First Bishop of San Jose; ordained June 5, 1957; appointed Auxiliary Bishop of San Francisco and Titular Bishop of Sarda April 28, 1978; Episcopal Ordination June 29, 1978; appointed Bishop of San Jose January 27, 1981. Office: Diocese of San Jose, 900 Lafayette St. Suite 301 Santa Clara, CA 95050-4966

The National Conference of Catholic Bishops
3211 Fourth St., NE
Washington D.C. 20017


Vol 4 No. 1- Jan / Feb 1997

Vol 3 No. 6 - Nov / Dec 1996

Vol 3 No. 5 - Sept / Oct 1996

Vol 3 No. 4 - July/August 1996

Vol. 3 No. 3- May/June 1996

Vol. 3 No. 2 - March/April 1996


| Una Voce Rochester New York | 1962 Missal Romanum | New Advent Web Site |

| The Holy See | Guide to Early Church Documents | EWTN | Catechism of St. Pius X |

| DOMUS (Diocese of Monterey Under Siege) |

| Catholic Tradition, Action & Counter-Revolution Web Page | The Neumann Press |

| CREDO | Lex Orandi, Lex Credendi |


Speech given by Archbishop John Quinn at Oxford - June, 1996


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