The Catholic Man Crisis and Why It Matters

Matthew Christoff

With its roots in Vatican II, the New Evangelization is a recognition that a crisis exists in the Church because large numbers of baptized Catholics have not been evangelized. But perhaps the most critical driver or the crisis has been largely ignored: the Catholic “man crisis.” Without coming to grips with why large numbers of Catholic men continue to leave the faith, and why many of those who remain lack passion, the New Evangelization will flounder; for men are essential to the health of parishes and the passing along of the faith to children.

Simply put: there will be no New Evangelization without a New Emangelization, in which generations of Catholic men are evangelized and lit on fire for Jesus Christ and His Catholic Church. The New Emangelization will be challenging, but it starts with confronting the Catholic man crisis.

The Crisis of Casual Catholic Men

Reviewing statistics of American Catholic men’s attitudes reveals a troubling lack of passion about the faith: there is an epidemic of Casual Catholic men. (Note: the sources for these statistics can be found at NewEmangelization.com.) Eight out of ten men believe that “how one lives is more important than being a Catholic.” Four in ten men believe that Catholicism does not have a “greater share of truths than other religions.” Only about one man in four believes that being a Catholic is “is among the most important things in life.” Clearly, large numbers of Catholic men lack passion for the faith.

But is the problem that men are simply not religious? The argument that men are just “less religious” does not hold up. The Orthodox Church attracts men and women in about equal numbers; only about one-third of weekly Catholic Mass attendees are men. Comparing Catholic men to Evangelical Christian men also reveals the lack of passion of Catholic men: significantly more Evangelical men think religion is very important in their lives, are certain about a personal God and pray on a regular basis.

Even more troubling is that Catholic men’s passion for the faith is decreasing. Comparing data over time, Catholic men’s certainty about remaining Catholic has dropped: twenty-five years ago, about 50% of Catholic men said they’d never leave the Church; today, only about 40% say they’d never leave. This means a startling 60% of Catholic men would consider leaving the Church.

Many men have already left the Church. Some 11 to 15 million Catholic men who were baptized Catholic have left the Church. Others, while still “Catholic”, have stopped practicing the faith: a third of Catholic men are not a member of a parish. Given the weakening levels of commitment to the faith, the man-exodus from the Catholic Church is likely to continue for some time.

The Crisis in Catholic Men’s Catechesis

At the very center of the “man crisis” is the fact that many Catholic men don’t believe in some of the central teachings of the Church. Many don’t believe in the importance of the Sacraments: only about 50% of Catholic men believe that the Sacraments are essential to their relationship with God. Worse, only about three in ten Catholic men believe that weekly Mass attendance or the Sacrament of Confession are “very important”.

Catholic men also lack belief in the importance of Catholic devotions and practices. Only 30% of Catholic men believe it is very important to have a devotion to Mary and even less (23%) believe in the importance having a devotion to the Saints. Catholic men also lack a commitment to prayer: Only 37% of Catholic men strongly agree that, “daily prayer is important.”

Given these dismal statistics on men’s understanding of the importance of the sacraments and devotion in Catholic life, it’s no surprise that less than half of Catholic men are confident that they “can explain their faith to others.”

The Crisis of Catholic Men’s Practice of the Faith

With such a lack of belief in the importance of the sacraments and devotions, it is no surprise that Catholic men do not practice the faith. Sadly, only 26% of Catholic men consider themselves to be “practicing Catholics.”

The large majority of Catholic men do not attend Mass. Only about one-third of Catholic men say they attend Mass on a weekly basis and men represent only about one-third of weekly Mass attendees. Four in ten Catholic men attend Mass “a few times per year” or “seldom or never.” The low levels of Mass attendance can be partially explained by men’s lack of understanding of the divine miracle occurring in the Mass: 50% of men agree that “Mass is boring” and 55% agree that they “don’t get anything out of the Mass.”

Men also are not going to Confession. An astounding three out of four Catholics never go to Confession, or go less than once per year. While breakout data is not available for men’s participation, it is likely that the lack of participation in Confession is even worse among men, for men are much less likely than women to believe that Confession is important

The large majority of Catholic men do not have a prayer practice. Less than one in three Catholic men pray on a daily basis. Almost half of Catholic men do not engage in a routine of prayer; praying only “occasionally or sometimes”, or “seldom or never.”

Why the Catholic Man Crisis Matters

The Catholic man crisis is an existential struggle for the souls of Catholic men. If the Church teachings are true, many Catholic men are at grave risk for their souls, for they are renouncing their faith, ignoring the their faith and many have fallen into grave sin, for example by watching pornography (some 60% of men view pornography on a monthly basis) while not turning to the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Large numbers of Men’s souls are at risk.

But the crisis in faith of the fathers is passed along to their children. Catholic parents are doing a poor job of passing on the faith, especially fathers. Given so many men are casual in their faith, it is not surprising that less than 50% of men strongly agree that it is important for their children to be Catholic. This lack of commitment by fathers to the faith is passed along to the their kids: an astounding eight out of ten 18-29 year olds would consider leaving the Catholic Church. And according new research by Dr. Christian Smith of Notre Dame, most of those young people are not returning to the faith.

This is particularly true for young men. The lack of men in the pews sends a signal that it is not manly to be Catholic. A Notre Dame study concludes that the paltry level of men’s involvement in teaching the faith in parishes, leads young men to turn away from the faith. Certainly, with less and less men being raised in the faith, there can only be a reduction in religious male vocations.

The lack of men involvement also weakens the local parish. Less than 2 in 10 men participate in any parish activity outside of Mass. Studies show that congregations with greater involvement of men are more likely to be growing. Catholic parishes cannot thrive and grow without men.

The New Evangelization is recognition that there is a crisis of faith in the Church. But until the Church acknowledges the man crisis, its key drivers and begins to take action to address it, there is little hope in stemming the losses of the faithful. To be clear, there can be no New Evangelization, without a New Emangelization, creating generations of Catholic men who are on fire for Jesus Christ and His Holy Catholic Church.

Facebook
Google+
Twitter
LinkedIn
Pinterest

53 thoughts on “The Catholic Man Crisis and Why It Matters”

  1. Pingback: The Catholic Man Crisis and Why It Matters | Good Shepherd

  2. Pingback: In These Dark Days, the Church Needs Her Men to be Men | Council 5476 - Monsignor Francis J. Byrne

  3. Pingback: A post Satan did not want published? But Here it is anyway: In These Dark Days, the Church Needs Her Men to be Men « Archdiocese of Washington

  4. Pingback: “We need men in these dark days” | dclatinmass

  5. The emasculation of maleness in Western societies is the problem. A man, husband and father, has no status in the Church. It is an unnatural condition for the man as a head of family. The women’s vote has removed men from their paternalistic role in society and as a result we are in a decline of decades. Without the women’s vote we would not have no-fault divorce, burgeoning welfare programs, abortion, ‘free’ contraceptives and abortifacients from Obamacare, two terms of the serial sexual abuser Clinton and two terms of the greatest enemy of the Catholic Church, the nihilist Obama. The destruction of the family started with negating the authority of the Dad in the family and it is merely reflected in the Church.

  6. Laurence Charles Ringo

    No…the ONLY solution, ALWAYS, is the Indwelling, infilling, anointing Power and Presence of the Holy Spirit. Nothing else will suffice to empower Almighty God’s people, men and women, to live lives that glorify Our Saviour. We already have enough”religion”; frankly we need to rid ourselves of millennia of religious detritus and as the great Apostle Paul stated…”apprehend and be apprehended by Christ Jesus”… (Philippians 3:12).It’s a relationship, not a religion, people.

    1. True religion inherently contains the indwelling of the Holy Spirit you speak of above. Religion isn’t the problem; false religions firstly, and lukewarmness secondly, are to blame. Oh, how He would that we were either cold or hot!

  7. This is all so true and leads to bigger problems: lack of good, Catholic marriages. There are more single women than ever before in the Catholic church and we have no one to marry. There are plenty of us who are trying to lead good, devout lives but we can’t even find men to date.

    1. You know, Liberty, I think part of the problem is that there is a huge gap in marriagible men
      due to abortion. How many men (who could be turned to lead good, devout lives) have been
      aborted by the crap shoot that developed by random killing in the womb ?

    2. “There are more single women than ever before in the Catholic church and
      we have no one to marry. There are plenty of us who are trying to lead
      good, devout lives but we can’t even find men to date.”

      The first time that I meet one of you in the flesh, will be the first time I’ve ever met one of you in the flesh. It’s acceptable for women (and their mothers and gradmothers) to write such things, but it’s apparently taboo for men to say the exact opposite. I don’t know how many good devout Catholic single men there are. Maybe “plenty”, maybe not. But I’m one. And have been one my entire life, with _everything_ that is implied by saying that. And I have simply never met… or been introduced to… or even been made aware of… a single Catholic woman, of any level of devoutness. It seems incredible but it’s true.

    1. Not if the men are young and single. The KofC at my parish are old married men who only serve other old people. They would have no clue how to serve and help a young man.

    2. I have three young unmarried men in my young council- and two more divorced. Six members total are under 50.

      The rest of the 35 are married or widowed, but as you say, they’re all over 50.

  8. I can see why you are so upset just by reading your bio. Perhaps you should abdicate the NE task since you don’t seem to have a clue that our church is ready for the next phase of its mission and to
    do that it needs to have every other faith involved. A theological coalition.

  9. Excellent essay. But I suspect the feeder streams will never be faced and abuse of authority is the main one e.g. 5 past decades of pastors and Bishops placing sexually dangerous priests near our children never fearing that fathers would confront them because the system forbids it ( in a M.A. case, a move made after a psychologist warned against it….so let’s bury the blame the psyche world excuse). Another authority abuse area….the submission of mind and will clause not in Lumen Gentium 25 where it has caveats but in the new Profession of Faith for theology profs and “leaders” where it has no caveats. The result is a brand new death penalty position with bad logic in Evangelium Vitae and no paid Catholic or priest will say it out loud…that something’s wrong when non death penalty Catholic countries lead in murder rates over East Asia which is largely unbaptised …by huge multiples in some cases. Lastly God references wifely obedience six times in the New Testament and the topic is absent in Vatican II when it addresses family and the topic is absent in the catechism. Clergy in both cases wrote of their authority but wrote nothing about a husband’s authority….clericalism in rare form. Yet God referenced it six times after Christ ascended. Oddity in plain sight.

    1. The reason that wifely obedience is absent in Vatican II and the catechism of the RCC is because it is misogynist. “Husband’s authority” may have been an OT carryover into the Pauline world, but remember that Paul was a Jew and never divorced himself from that culture. Times evolve, slavery, eating pork and shellfish, selling your daughter, etc. were all remnants of early Judiasm…..read the NT in it’s context of Jewish evolution to Christianity…it was not a split second change…it evolved. Men and women are EQUAL partners in any relationship. Misogyny has no place in human experience any longer….

    2. Too bad that doesn’t address the biblical problem I presented just now. As a lady said years ago in a combox….if the man is not in charge, the woman is.

    3. My response directly addresses the biblical problem which is only a problem in the context of primitive Jewish culture….additionally, given the state of affairs in the world and in religions, I would prefer a woman in charge in most cases’

    4. Your response circumvented the datum that God willed wifely obedience to be in the New Testament six times ( and only that which He willed is there) which NT sought to nullify only some laws of the OT…ie ritual and symbolic and juridical laws like the personal sin death penalties and eg the dietary which Paul held void in execution not in symbolism ( crawling creatures will always symbolize the man who holds too tightly to this earth… Aquinas ). So Paul (and Peter) who railed against continuing “the law”…explicitly affirms husband leadership which the Old Testament only implied but didn’t express.

      And…lol…Pius XI must have had primitive Jewish culture in his DNA. Here he is in 1930 in sect.74 of Casti Connubii:

      ” 74. The same false teachers who try to dim the luster of conjugal faith and purity do not scruple to do away with the honorable and trusting obedience which the woman owes to the man. Many of them even go further and assert that such a subjection of one party to the other is unworthy of human dignity…”

      Reminds me of the sudden about face on capital punishment…affirmed by Pius XII in 1952. St. John Paul II was so with it…he would undermine both and he knows that now but between his death and his beatification, he had hours to pay for it in Purgatory….along with his failure to protect sex abuse victims after 1985 when he appointed a priest to survey the problem in the US but did little about it.

    5. Read it again…it’s the papal preacher, Cantalamessa, ( his name means….how can I mess up this song) and I already said John Paul agreed with you…..he took Ephesians both in “Dignity of Women” and in TOB and used Ephesians against the five other passages…citing Ephesians where it says ” be subject to one another” and he made that the entire message while never showing the reader what the other passages actually said AND WHICH EPHESIANS ALSO SAID which was that the husband are to be obeyed. He did the same sleight of hand in EV on the death penalty by citing Gen.9:5-6 three times but never showing the reader the death penalty part. He made David Blaine’s street magic look inferior.
      In EV he never mentioned Rom.13:4… the classic death penalty mandate for Aquinas. He made it vanish but like I say…right after death, he paid a price in purgatory…”he will be saved but so as through fire”.

    6. The Old Testament says that those who don’t honor the sabbath should be killed. Half the pop. of the USA would be dead, if this law was in force.

    7. I see you’ve studied Aquinas on the cessation of the old law along with verses on same in Galatians and Hebrews…just kidding. Man prior to Christ had no sanctifying grace which was brought by Christ…therefore man prior to Christ and having no sanctifying grace needed great threats from God in order to avoid sin hence God gave c.34 death penalties to the Jews not for crimes but for personal sin. Those death penalties cease with Christ bringing grace. The death penalty for murder was separate and given in Gen.9:5-6 to both Jews and Gentiles and it is repeated for both in Romans 13:4 in the NEW covenant. Keep those two categories entirely distinct from each other.

    8. St. Francis shines Christ

      I don’t know what you mean by “times evolve” (too vague to mean anything scholarly or scientific). But one eternal teaching the Holy Catholic Church (aka the Holy Bride of Christ) still holds as true is that Christ Jesus is the head of His Church just as a Married man is the head of his wife. In Christ, Men and Women are equal in Dignity, but a Hierarchy (ooh, such a horrible sounding word for modern secularists) still exists in the spiritual order, which does not in any way detract from both sexes’ equal dignity. God ordains both an equality in dignity but also a hierarchy of order. This is in continuity with the Apostolic teachings from St. Paul the Apostle. Catholicism (in its beautiful genius) is a both/and religion. Read St. Augustine, St. Paul, St. Thomas Aquinas, & the Eastern Fathers, please, Mr. Dzialo. Challenge yourself in studying Catholicism more vigorously.

    9. So here, St Francis, is precisely what I mean. Any biblical text read without a context is simply a pretext for it saying what you want it to say. Paul was a Jew and he wrote based upon his upbringing as a Jewish misogynist of his time. Men were superior, and wives, children, slaves and concubines were under a man’s authority. This is a cultural context, like wearing a mantilla by women, like women being silent and on and on. Not eating pork, not eating shellfish, levitrate marriage and other quirks of culture in Leviticus were all contextual.

      Times evolve as does human consciousness and the role of women has evolved…as equal to men in all respects and there is no hierarchy among the sexes.

      “By evoking the word machismo, Francis is not only taking a critical stance against social hierarchy; he is also reminding us of his Latin American roots. He is rejecting this patriarchal, essentialist understanding of women that limits their full humanity and the full humanity of men as well, reducing them to gender stereotypes. Francis does not take a dismissive stance toward the chorus of grass-roots, pastoral and academic women who have for decades begged the church to be more open to the notion of women’s authority in the church. Rejecting machismo is a rejection of patriarchy and its limited construction of women’s voice and authority. Francis calls us into a deeper conversation about the authority of women grounded in a theology of women. This will lead, he seems to imply, to finding an authoritative role for women.” NCR, 9/26/13

      I have read the MEN you referred to…How about Dr Price: ” the situation is strikingly different when we turn to Gnostic Christian documents which were not included in the New Testament, various gospels and related writings of the first few centuries C.E. Suddenly we find Mary Magdalene as a, or even the, prime revealer of the gnosis of Jesus, his closest disciple, and the greatest of the apostles! I will endeavor to show what these two starkly contrasting bodies of evidence have to do with one another and, if possible, with the historical Mary Magdalene.” Now the gnostic gospels were left out of the Scripture because when Athanasius in 367 CE put the 66 books together he excluded the gnostic works. Perhaps you should read the discovered books in the Nag Hamadii library, particularly the fragments of “The Gospel of Mary.” Men and women are equal in all respects; marriage needs no head. The early Church fathers were wrong in many cases, Aquinas said that the fetus was ensouled (given a soul) 40 (males) or 80 (female) days after conception. Do you believe that? And what would be the consequences of that belief?

      Do let me say once again: A biblical text (or writings of early Church fathers)without a context is a pretext to make it mean what you want it to mean….study the roots of the Hebrew Traditions and OT prescriptions….without a context the OT stories of genocide and filicide would be governing modes for life today.

    10. St. Francis shines Christ

      Phil, again, “times evolve” is a vague phrase that means nothing. Secondly, if the holy St. Paul the Apostle were a mysogenist, why would he even teach that “There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one (or equal) in Christ Jesus” (Galatians)? Phil, that sounds like a lover of women (in the Agape sense, not Eros) to me, not something a mysogenist would say. But as an apostle of the true Faith, St. Paul also knew & taught that the equality of dignity between the sexes before the eyes of God (that Christ brings) did not mean equality of roles & identity. There is also a spiritual hierarchy that God ordains (which is why St. Paul urges Christian wives to submit to their husbands just as the Church submits to Christ the Head). In Christ, ALL humans (man, women, Jew, Greek, ugly, rich, slave, president, Mexican, etc.) are born again (at the Sacrament of Baptism) Equal in Dignity before the eyes of God, but a spiritual hierarchy to which all members of the Body of Christ must humbly submit & obey still exists. Both things mysteriously complement each other. In St. Francis of Assisi, who viewed the equal dignity of God’s creation (even in Sister Moon & Brother Bird) while also humbly submitting to the spiritual hierarchy & order (he revered the pope), we see one of the best examples of what it looks like to me a member of the Body of Christ. Before God’s eyes, we are all equally loved by Him & we’re all given equal infinite worth by our Creator, but we must still humbly submit to His spiritual hierarchy & order that He ordained within His Church (many radical “feminists” are strongly opposed to this & flaunt their heresies around like flags), all the great Saints of Catholicism have understood this.

    11. Ephesians is not a letter written to Western marriages! It is a letter written to Christians who were living in a culture where marriage was a type of slavery. Young teens were wedded to middle-aged men in order to bear them a legal heir. It is difficult for us to imagine the level of degradation and hopelessness these young wives must have experienced . . . perhaps more than the slaves since freedom would never be a possibility. Paul was not intending to set up gender hierarchy in marriage in these passages any more than he was endorsing slavery by encouraging slaves to submit to their masters. He was simply referring to the slavery and male headship that was already a part of their secular culture. If you really want to understand the truths in this passage, it is crucial to take into account the extreme cultural situation that Paul was addressing. Women were on a level with children, perhaps lower. They had no rights and no voice. Look at middle eastern cultures and women today to get an idea of what Paul was dealing with.

      Secondly, the no Jew or gentile……refers to the Kingdom of God; to heaven…it’s a cosmological pronouncement.
      BTW, you addressed none of the issues I raised in my last response; you simply rely on biblical text read put of context,,,,who has spoken about a spiritual hierarchy since post Vatican II? Pope? Apostolic Exhortation? Synod? Who?

    12. So here, St Francis, is precisely what I mean. Any biblical text read without a context is simply a pretext for it saying what you want it to say. Paul was a Jew and he wrote based upon his upbringing as a Jewish misogynist of his time. Men were superior, and wives, children, slaves and concubines were under their authority. This is a cultural context, like wearing a mantilla by women, like women being silent and on and on. Not eating pork, not eating shellfish, levitrate marriage and other quirks of culture in Leviticus were all contextual.

      Times evolve and the role of women has evolved…as equal to men in all respects and there is no hierarchy among the sexes.

      “By evoking the word machismo, Francis is not only taking a critical stance against social hierarchy; he is also reminding us of his Latin American roots. He is rejecting this patriarchal, essentialist understanding of women that limits their full humanity and the full humanity of men as well, reducing them to gender stereotypes. Francis does not take a dismissive stance toward the chorus of grass-roots, pastoral and academic women who have for decades begged the church to be more open to the notion of women’s authority in the church. Rejecting machismo is a rejection of patriarchy and its limited construction of women’s voice and authority. Francis calls us into a deeper conversation about the authority of women grounded in a theology of women. This will lead, he seems to imply, to finding an authoritative role for women.

    13. Elijah fan,

      Dr. Gregory Dilsaver has written what I think is an excellent book on the crisis of men and calls for them to return to the self-sacrificing role as priest/prophet and king. In it, Dr. Dilsaver argues that it is a false manhood that is dominant and abusive, but a true Catholic manhood that combines a reverence for women and balances self-sacrifice and the willingness to lead is what’s needed.

      http://www.amazon.com/The-Three-Marks-Manhood-Prophet/dp/0895559048

      Your friend in Christ

      Matthew

    14. Red Herring smell. I no where suggest abuse. Dominance takes place often in two directions as when the wife says…” Husband of mine….take out the recyling before you forget even though its freezing out”. She’s being dominant in that moment and the man is being subject to her per Ephesians ” be subject to one another.” Those Christians writers who don’t believe that wifely obedience is primary over be subject to one another and is apposite especially at the macro level when there is conflicting views…they are not yet integrating all relevant NT passages.

  10. The tough hard questions are never discussed at Mass in homilies, and those questions pertain to fornication, marriage and why contraception is sinful. Men see this, and either think it’s cowardly, two-faced or really not worth the time.

    1. When listening to homilists and apologists talk about “fornication, marriage and… contraception” one might conclude that the Church considers men incorrigibly evil and females their helpless victims. For example, when your bishop, priest, or deacon talks about the tragedy of failed marriages are all his examples “the man cheated on her”, “the man beat her”, or “the man is a porn addict”? Let’s wake up, brethren. Females initiate divorces from 2/3rds of the time to over 90% say researchers.

      This war on men must stop.

    2. “This war on men must stop!” Well, let me tell ya something. I am a member and advocate of a very large world of disability advocates and caregivers. I have communications with thousands of people who have severely disabled kids, and I mean severely disabled. In 95% of the cases where a family has a very disabled child..IT IS THE MAN WHO RUNS AWAY because he expects life in the face of unrequited caregiving to a son or daughter not what he expected nor wants. I am a man with a severely disabled son who I with my wife have care 24/7 for 16 years and I am ashamed of my gender who invariably runs away and can’t step up to the plate. If women initiate most divorces, I can tell you the reason is because the man cheats, gambles, drinks, hangs with his buddies all the time, abuses the woman, rapes, verbally abuses….who initiates divorce is a meaningless concept. Who rums away from the responsibility of marriage and child care is the real issue and it ain’t woman. “War on men?” Total crap!

    3. Am sorry to hear of your experience with men abdicating their responsibilities…especially in the face of such a great need. Anecdotally, I know of a number of devout Catholic men who have not shied away from their responsibilities in the face of severe and devastating disabilities…and these men are both true heroes and shining examples of living out the Catholic faith. It is a miracle of what the Holy Spirit can do in men.

      You don’t mention the impact of men’s pornography addiction in divorce which the Witherspoon Institute says is one of the major drivers of divorce.

      In terms the “war on men”, I’m not sure I’d use that term, but authentic manhood is under assault in the secular society…and within the Church. From my 40+ interviews with top Catholic men’s evangelists, there is a constant theme of men being ignored and marginalized in the Church. http://www.newemangelization.com/interviews-3/

      What’s needed is a concerted call to evangelize and catechize Catholic men so that they can more fully understand and live out the call of Christ in the Church.

      Catholic men need to be reawakened to the Call of Christ…it will be a blessing to men, to women and children…and in particular, the poor women and children who you’ve seen abandoned. I’ll pray for them.

      Thanks for your comments.

    4. Men should attend the EF of the mass. You will hear sermons on those issues. We have many men and young men at out Latin mass. Pope Francis doesn’t seem to care for the traditionalist. He says it is a fad.

  11. You present data, but then make guesses about why men ( and also add women) are leaving or not involved in the RCC, No conjecture look at reasons:

    http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2012/03/30/7-reasons-catholics-leave-church-in-trenton-1-is-sex-abuse-crisis/

    http://www.votf-li.org/Reese-The%20hidden%20exodus%205-11.pdf

    Then again, the Australian Bishops authorized a study of why Catholic no longer attend mass.

    http://www.pro.catholic.org.au/pdf/DCReport.pdf

    Nothing about “manning up” will solve these problems as they stem from a culture of clericalism.

    1. Phil – the purpose of the article was not to speculate why men are leaving or not passionate about the Church, but to say that there is a crisis and it matters. There are a number of reasons, and some data on some of the drivers. I do thank you for sources…and I’ll look into therm.

      If interested, here are some other views from men who are active in men’s evangelization as to some of the reasons there is a Catholic “man-crisis”. http://www.newemangelization.com/interviews-3/

      Many thanks.

  12. “Inside every cynical person, there is a disappointed idealist.”

    I think that’s what is happening with Catholic men. Most young Catholic had big great hopes for life. They often want to marry young, have big families and live life out faithfully to God.

    But then, my Arch-diocese gets to them. It reminds them any moment they can about the priesthood crisis. They guilt as many young men as they can into discerning the priesthood. They delay college by some time and some join seminary school. Those who delay college often learn that their fellow catholic women were impatient in finding love and married whatever guy was there, often a atheist or agnostic man. They often find their fellow single catholics get dunk and have sex on Saturday, then go to church and take communion Sunday.

    Many of those who enter the seminary are kicked out for being “to traditional”. Now these men are older than their peers and unmarried and it leaves them ostracized in their communities. No one recognizes the sacrifices they made in trying to find God’s will for them.

    1. St. Francis shines Christ

      I think fault also lays in emphasizing getting married & having children too. We must FIRST & FOREMOST emphasize’s doing God’s will & rejecting sin (sin, a dirty word which is hardly mentioned in any specific ways in homilies). We must find balance: promote both priesthood discernment AND Catholic marriage. And start preaching Christ Crucified & the NECESSITY to be free of Sin (like cohabitation, pre-marital sex, porn) among the Youth. Parents (& even parish priests) care so much more about a young man’s future career, college & wordly success than in the young man’s life in Christ. They care more about warning him of not having a high enough GPA, SATS, & scholarships than about him knowing the dangers of sins (from the youth’s casual sex culture). We put too much damn focus & worries on our young people’s worldly success (college & career), which is not bad in itself, but completely fail at worrying or focusing about a young person’s living out of the Gospel. Catholic Parents care more about their son’s success than about him remaining sin-free & in Christ.
      St. Francis of Assisi, who hated sin & joyfully lived out the Gospel after a youthful conversion and sacrificed everything-including careers, money & sex- for your LOVE of Christ, PRAY for us & today’s young men (& their worldly Catholic parents)

    2. Laurence Charles Ringo

      The Scriptures knows nothing of living”sin-free”; that’s NOT a Biblical concept (Read 1st John 1:8-10. (Romans chapter 6 lays out what is required to walk free of sin’s power, but that’s not the same as being sinless; what are you confessing at Confession?) So…be a little more careful, O.K.?

    3. St. Francis shines Christ

      Yes, you go to Confession to become sin-free by the power of Christ’s Blood. To live free of sin is one of the things God intended for us by sending us His Son, our Saviour. The Holy Sacrament of Reconciliation/Confession is one of the most powerful graces we can receive to accomplish this. Where did I ever speak against it? If one commits sins, one goes to confession.

    4. “I think fault also lays in emphasizing getting married & having children too.”

      I don’t know about your experience, but in mine, getting married is almost never emphasized. The priesthood has always been the primary focus and marriage is like a happy little after thought.

    5. St. Francis shines Christ

      Well, in my city’s parish, it’s the other way around. Priesthood discernment is NEVER talked about (in fact, my quite large parish has not produced a single candidate for priesthood in DECADES, literally) while marriage is talked about rare but more frequently. Sadly, marriage is not even talked about as a Holy Sacrament, with all its unique Catholic aspects. Lots of work to do.

  13. Pingback: Interview with Vaticanista Vet on Pope Francis - BigPulpit.com

Leave a Comment