The RI Independent reports this very revealing article in which young students and their parents are horrified by orthodoxy. And then comes the apology and hand wringing.
The Rev. Francis “Rocky” Hoffman, a priest of Opus Dei, an orthodox division of the Roman Catholic Church, and executive director and radio host of Relevant Radio, a Catholic radio network that broadcasts on 33 stations in 13 states and online, had spoken to a school-wide assembly at The Prout School, where Anna is a junior. The speech was being taped to be broadcast on Relevant Radio at a later date.
“She was most upset about the divisive and offensive language regarding divorce, homosexuality and even adoption,” Kathleen Schlenz said. “None of the parents or faculty knew it was being taped to be aired. They were essentially held hostage and told to clap after this man’s responses to questions, even when they didn’t agree with them.”
Father Hoffman was on retreat and unavailable for comment before the Independent went to press Wednesday.
On April 10, parents received a letter of apology from Principal David Carradini since Friday. In the new letter, Carradini announced he would not resign.
“People in our community are calling for my resignation, seeing in this event the culmination of frustration with my leadership,” Carradini wrote in the April 10 letter. ”I have taken this call very seriously, deliberating with myself for days and seeking counsel from others. I sincerely believe that my resignation as Principal is not in the best interests of The Prout School. I have this discussed this option with diocesan officials and they, too, believe that I should continue in my position as the leader of our School.”
“Many have questioned why I did not stop Fr. Hoffman when I sensed things were going badly,” Carradini wrote. “I have offered three explanations to various audiences; the truth is I do not know why I did not stop him:. Though I sensed, and shared, the distress of your daughters and sons, and of the faculty, I did not see its depth, as I was in the front of the auditorium. I desperately hoped that things might right-end themselves, and in that hope I did not stop him. Parents who are crisis management professionals have instructed me after the fact in what I ought to have done. I am grateful for their guidance.”
Students discussed staging protests and pickets in response to the speech. On Monday, fliers that read “Homosexuals are bullied because of apathy. Divorced people are bullied because of apathy. Adoptive children are bullied because of apathy. Are you apathetic?” appeared around the school.
Several Prout students and alumni tweeted about the matter.
“Prout is now an unvibrant uncatholic community,” one said.
“All the good things built up by The Prout School today just came crashing down around us with that assembly,” read another.
It’ a horror to me that young people IN CATHOLIC SCHOOL are surprised, stunned, and horrified, when they hear actual Catholic teaching.
My suggestion is to have a required course called Catechism 101 in which students are required to read the Catechism.