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Am curretnly reading on the areas mentioned in hope of applying the knowledge in my parish work being: Suicide Prevention/Intervention. I have found many youths are confused with the meanings of cult(s) religion(s) spiritual and supernatural.
The approach to be used in termed Christo-Therapy.
Would very much appreciate feeback and thoughts for my work.+Peace+
-- jean bouchardRC (firstname.lastname@example.org), August 15, 1999
Dear Jean, Kids are confused because parents and teachers don't get their stories straight when teaching kids. When the need for answers is not gotten at home or school, kids look to others for answers. Kids need to feel that they "belong" and if they don't feel that way at school or home they look for other things to "belong" to, and this gives them the sense of security. Cults draw kids in by promises made of a new and better life or by luring them into thinking that they can help destroy the "old realm" which is perceived to have hurt them so much in their lives. In case you haven't noticed, there is not a lot at a Catholic church service that keeps the interest of little kids. As they get older, things like Satanism, which are exciting, grabs their interest. They are trying to fit in where ever they can, and if we, as Catholics, don't make room for them somewhere, they will take their interest elsewhere. The religious education in Catholic schools leaves a lot to be desired. I have had 7 kids all go through the system and not a one of them knows much about the bible or the 10 commandments or the stations of the cross or anything. Somehow the word spiritual has gotten a bad rap. Anything spiritual is not cool. The spiritual life of a child begins when they are born and continues all through life. If it is not explained, first by parents, and then by teachers, it gets lost in the shuffle. There is room in the Catholic faith for the real supernatural too. Not the call-in psychics, but for the people who really do have the gift of the 6th sense. Just because I don't have it or understand it much, doesn't make it go away. Children need a sense of identity, where they can see themselves being a part of a greater whole. When they acheive this, things like cults and satanism are no longer a drawing card for them. Sometimes this is not easy to do. My youngest daughter was taught is a religion class that when she grew up she could be single, married, part of a religious order or gay. This does not conform to what she is taught at home so there was a big to-do over it and until the class finished this section of study, my daughter sat in the library. I noticed in another article of yours that you mentioned "slashing" (self- mutilation). This is growing trend here in Calgary and about 7 out of 10 high school girls have participated in this in one form or another. Sometimes it is caused by low self esteem or depression. Sometimes they pick it up from friends and want to be like them, so they try it too. My oldest daughter told me it felt good to "let the bad out." When I asked her why she felt this way, she said going to school was "hell" and she was just being like everybody else and since they all did it, shy couldn't she? I changed her school and next term she had her brother cover all the gouge and knife marks with tatoos. There again, not my idea, but all the kids have tatoos. Children and teens need to be in touch with all parts of their makeup-physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. They're not born with this capability and they need to be taught how to acheive this. They also need straight answers to their questions about the aforementioned areas. A lot of adults get flustered when put on the spot about issues and resort to things that their parents taught them. Those answers didn't work for us, so why would we think they would work for our kids. Give your kids the answers from you heart and don't get flustered if you stumble over the words. The more things are talked about, the easier the words come. Ellen
-- Ellen K. Hornby (email@example.com), August 24, 1999.
Ellen - A refreshing new person in yurself o the site. I thank you for the input as it would appear you are the only one other then David showing compassion for this situation.+Peace+
-- jean bouchardRC, (firstname.lastname@example.org), August 24, 1999.