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Divini Illius Magistri – The Three Societies – Part 3

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Pope Pius XI has introduced us to the three societies to which man belongs – the family – the Church – and civil society. We have been exploring the nature and authority of the Catholic Church and Pope Pius XI quoted Pope Pius X in support of the authority of the Catholic Church. He goes on to quote an Italian layman to show that these teachings are not beyond the understanding of the laity.

Alessandro Manzoni was an Italian author and philosopher who lived from 1785 to 1873. He married Henriette Blondel, a Calvinist, in 1808. In 1810 Henriette was received into the Catholic Church and this led to her husband thinking more deeply on religious matters and he wrote a book on Catholic Morality – Osservazioni sulla Morale Cattolica – which is what Pope Pius XI quotes from.

Portrait of Alessandro Manzoni
By Francesco Hayez (1791 – 1882)

Many who oppose the Catholic Church’s claims in the spheres of morality and truth, promote false statements as to what the Catholic Church actually teaches. As Archbishop Fulton Sheen remarked in 1938:

It is ironic that those who often accuse the Catholic Church of claiming to have a monopoly on the truth, are usually promoting themselves or their own organisation as having a monopoly on the truth. Here’s Archbishop Fulton Sheen again, speaking of Communism.

Statue of Karl Marx – The Founder of Communism

In Fatima, Our Lady foretold that Russia would spread her errors if her requests were not heeded. Her requests were not heeded and Russia has indeed spread her communist errors throughout the world. Most so-called western democracies are now ruled by shameless politicians who take their orders from totalitarian masters. These seek to destroy man’s freedom. They do this whilst proclaiming that they seek to protect freedom. A sure sign that they are following the father of lies. This is why Pope Pius XI’s encyclical ‘Divini Illius Magistri’ is so important. It teaches us a proper understanding of the nature and authority of the three societies and of how they relate to one another.

Anything that has a bearing on man’s ultimate end – either to help or to hinder his attainment of that end – falls under the scope of the Catholic Church. The Church promotes that which serves man’s last end and opposes, vehemently if necessary, that which hinders the salvation of souls.

Without Christ, man is lost. Christ founded the Catholic Church for the salvation of souls. It is His preferred means of salvation and He desires that all nations are guided by the wisdom of the Catholic Church which is none other than the wisdom of God Almighty.

Today, one of the greatest failures in caring for children happens in the area of education, Catholic parents are being failed by those whose responsibility it is to ensure that the Catholic schools are in fact Catholic. This is not simply a criticism, it is a point of fact. In Ireland, as well as in most western democracies, the Catholic schools have been infiltrated by ‘change agents’ from non-governmental organisations. These are promoting false ideologies to children in Catholic schools which are totally opposed to Catholic Church teaching. These ideologies represent a danger to the eternal salvation of the children who are exposed to them. Far too many Catholics are unaware of the reality of what is going on and they simply allow their children to be indoctrinated with poisonous ideologies. These will rob their children of their long term happiness and, in the worst case scenario, will lead to their eternal damnation.

The Irish Bishops’ Conference recommends that this video be shown to children in Catholic primary schools!

In the Irish context, we now have a situation where the bishops’ conference represents a manifest danger to children because of what they are promoting into the Catholic schools. Teachers in primary schools are encouraged by the bishops to show a sexually explicit cartoon video to children in sixth class. For those outside of Ireland, these children will be in the 11 – 13 year age bracket. The video was produced by Ireland’s largest abortion provider, the HSE, which is directly responsible for the deaths of more than 30,000 innocent human beings in their mother’s wombs. The Irish bishops recommend the HSE as a good resource for information on human sexuality despite the HSE’s promoting an ideology which is opposed to Catholic Church teaching. Letters to the Irish bishops are either ignored or met with vague responses. Not one bishop has publicly objected to the programmes which will corrupt the innocence of Catholic children.

The Irish bishops have also recommended a Relationships and Sexuality Education programme for junior cycle. These children will generally be between the ages of 13 and 16. Under this programme the children are to be taught about the different methods of contraception and will be given erroneous teaching with regard to Natural Family Planning. The programme fails to uphold the beautiful teachings of the Catholic Church on human sexuality. They are ignoring what Pope Pius XI said in an earlier part of ‘Divini Illius Magistri’.

When sincere Catholics seek to address this most serious problem which puts the salvation of children in danger, the common response is that we should not ‘bash’ the bishops. This simplistic attitude fails to address the root of one of the most serious problems that Catholic children are faced with. The simple fact is that the Catholic schools are no longer Catholic. Children are taught matters contrary to the Catholic faith in these schools. Pope Pius XI was alarmed by the dangers such a situation represents for children, but today, his message is ignored and the levels of apostasy from the Catholic faith amongst the young are staggering. But don’t mention the bishops, whose responsibility it is to ensure that the Catholic schools uphold the teachings of the Catholic faith.

What would Pope Leo XIII or Pope Pius XI make of the situation facing Catholic parents today? The Church has constantly urged Catholic parents not to send their children to schools which endanger their Catholic faith. Catholic parents have been urged not to send their children to non-Catholic schools. They have been urged to make sure to send their children to Catholic schools. But what are Catholic parents to do when the Catholic schools are no longer Catholic? When their bishops fail to protect the Catholic identity of the Catholic school? When their bishops are promoting immoral sex education programmes into the so-called Catholic schools?

Many Catholic parents will choose to home school their children in order to protect them from the false ideologies that are being promoted in the Catholic schools. Home schooling can be a very rewarding experience, however, it is not the ideal. The ideal for Catholic parents is to be able to send their children to a Catholic school where their bishop oversees everything that is taught in the school and ensures that nothing contrary to the faith is presented to the children. Such a bishop will take urgent measures to protect the children under his spiritual care.

A great modern example of this is Archbishop Alexander Sample of the Archdiocese of Portland in Oregon. In February of 2023, Archbishop Sample issued a letter to the Catholic schools of his diocese instructing them that the pronouns to be used in referring to children in the Catholic schools must concur with the biological sex of the children.

Archbishop Sample received some heavy criticism for this approach. He then decided to close the diocesan Department for Catholic Schools. In October 2023 Archbishops Sample appointed Elias Moo as the director of the newly formed; Office for the Mission of Catholic Education.

Notification from Archdiocese of Portland, Oregon Appointing Elias Moo as director of Catholic Education.

Elias sent out an open letter of introduction which can be read at this link – Elias Moo Letter – I was overjoyed to note that Elias quotes from Pope Pius XI’s encyclical Divini Illius Magistri in his letter. Archbishop Sample is simply carrying out his duty to ensure that the Catholic schools in his archdiocese uphold Catholic Church teaching. Please God more bishops will follow his example. The problem of children and young people falling away from the Catholic faith will not be resolved until our bishops do their duty regarding Catholic schools in their dioceses. Parents must realise this!

To be cont’d…

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