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Tuesday, October 13, 2009

San Francisco Loses 4 Catholic High Schools

Should you find them, please return them to The Faith.

From California Catholic Daily: Dozens of Brightly Wrapped Condoms

Four Catholic High Schools in the Archdiocese of San Francisco are scheduled to host a performance of the condom-endorsing sex-education play Secrets. The play was written by openly lesbian playwright Patricia Loughrey. Secrets will be performed on October 14, 2009 at Sacred Heart Cathedral Preparatory High School in San Francisco; on November 5, 2009 at Sacred Heart High School in Atherton; on January 19, 2010 at Mercy High School in Burlingame, and on February 9, 2010 at St. Ignatius College Preparatory High School in San Francisco.

The play depicts a teenager who is HIV positive. Some content in Secrets was considered, by the Fremont, California Unified School District, to be sufficiently graphic to require that a permission slip be signed by parents before their child would be allowed to see it. The Fremont Unified School District also posts an online flyer (in English and Chinese) for parents, informing them of the performance, and inviting them to watch a video of Secrets before giving their permission. The flyer also describes two of the scenes: “A character dumps dozens of brightly wrapped condoms on the floor with a discussion about which type of condoms are the best to use and how to use them effectively.” Another scene is a “Discussion about contraceptives and a visual display of them.” The production of Secrets in the San Francisco Archdiocese is sponsored by the Educational Theater Programs division of the Kaiser Permanente HMO.

Secrets author Patricia Loughrey is currently the coordinator of the play reading series Queer Theatre – Taking Center Stage at San Diego’s Diversionary Theatre, which bills itself as “the nations third-oldest LGBT theater.” Ms. Loughrey is author of The Daddy Machine, a play about children with two lesbian mothers, and most recently, Dear Harvey, a celebration of the life of the openly homosexual San Francisco politician Harvey Milk.

In all the world, since the advent of theatre and acting, there are zero plays celebrating chastity? There are no productions advocating Catholic virtues, appropriate for Catholic schools? Why not just bring The Vagina Monologues to the schools, too?

Listen, I know these are high school students, and that most are not naive about sex, and AIDS, and homosexuality. And maybe, just maybe, the schools will use the occasion of this play to present and defend Church teaching. I'm not going to hold my breath - we are, after all, talking about San Fransisco here. Not exactly a bastion of traditional Catholic teaching, as Nancy Pelosi bears witness to that fact. But why give the Culture of Death an opportunity to state its case in the first place? Wouldn't it be better to put the Culture of Life upon the stage, and give that top billing? That way, The Better Way To Live is highlighted and celebrated, instead of A Terrible Way To Die.

What this comes down to is the failure of these schools to hold faithfully to the proper sense of Catholic identity. In the end, that helps no one, and serves to weaken believers rather than strengthen them.

Archbishop Sheen, Servant of God, was right: If you want your child to lose their faith, send them to a "Catholic" school.