Wednesday, 27 February 2008

Misunderstandings....with an apology to Joanna Bogle.

I really feel like I should apologise to Auntie Joanna for being intentionally sarcastic but inadvertently in the process , appearing to be saying some things both needlessly cruel and implying she was living in some sort of 'Narnia-by-the-wold' - that was not my intent at all: My main point was that we will never get anywhere with the youth until we start with their parents' generation. I have known hundreds of eleven year olds over the years ; wide eyed, innocent, well-mannered, thoughtful [if boisterous , reckless, self-consciously vain and troublemaking in a naiively adorable way] and I have witnessed the crushing of their souls and spirits within a year of senior[secondary] school - it wasn't mere hormones that turns these angels into demons - but a socio-cultural mechanism that parents in the home couldn't fight against and so their children sank into the mire - to mix metaphors like dead salmon they went with the flow - and why ? because the majority of their parents'/relatives' lives were contaminated with this social malaise - and being even more trapped than their kids - they could not help them as they were becoming more enmeshed in mundanity, cynicism and cruel beyond imagining thoughtlessness and narcissism.....If we wish to alter society for the good we cannot do it in the old jesuitical way of forming the child while young and hoping he or she has the strength and integrity to perservere - those days are gone !! The adults wield far too much power these days - for they are not the masters of this power any more; they are just as enslaved to it as they intend the youth to become - like heroin junkies seeking out more victims - the power corrupts and seeks to corrupt - and that power is via the exigents of the media, the economy, the academic agenda, the tyranny of pragmatic relativism and secularism that crushes meaning ; destroys the ability to perceive there's any hope.

Anyway : This is the beautiful , considerate passage Joanna Bogle wrote in her blog a few days ago :

"Young people want - need - to know they are loved and lovable, necessary, valued, and capable of great things. They need to know that life can be full of huge challenges and tasks, and adventures in doing them, and they need the structures that come with all that. How horrible that in modern Britain all this is being denied to so many.
Today in the High Street, a team of Christian singers were braving the cold and the weary who-cares-anyway of shoppers, and singing cheerily about the love of Christ. Their joy was suddenly contagious, and I felt warmed by it. It also made God seem real: he came here, lived among us all, joined in. Cares hugely about every single individual one of us. Easy to forget that "


My Response ?
Well I was trying to say one thing but somehow along the way I think it could be misconstrued that I was instigating a personal attack against Mrs Bogle [one blog reader thought so and subsequently launched a vituperative assault on her; grounding their arguments with things I had said {albeit out of context} ] I'm embarassed beyond imagining and feel exceedingly burdened with guilt - so this is my penance - show you how much of a bastard I am and can be....
Well ? Anyway this is what I said and I hope the more excusing amongst you may try and see that I wasn't going for the Bogle-jugular ; but attempting to put a point across regarding the source of the problem. Whatever you think; please don't hate me - I may have been slightly 'sarky'; but I didn't mean to be offensive...

Sorry Joanna but I'd truly love to know what you would suggest for young adults to do ?
I work as a shelf-stacker ; and virtually all my fellow employees under the age of thirty [with one notable exception] spend every ounce of free time [i.e. where they don't have to care for young kids if they have them] in pubs and clubs - because frankly there is nothing else to do - we're talking of millions of people here whose only recreation is alcohol - because that is the way society has decreed it - and please don't tell me that capitalist/conservative policies [of both the Tories and New Labour]which have decimated the arts and entertainments industries since the war hasn't conspired with this ?
What exactly do you propose ? a paper chase , charades , or a bike journey to Budleigh Salterton with brass rubbings and lashings of ginger beer ? a nice lecture on Pugin or teaching them how to crochet ? cream teas with the archdeacon ?

These poor disenfranchised people have been let loose to the wolves...and what did we do to help ?
They are...to go all Newmaniac for once..
'dispossessed , aside thrust chucked down by the sheer might of a despot's will...'

...and what do we do to help ?
I have three kids and it is very ,very hard to keep them safe and informed of their catholic inheritance and responsibilities amidst this secularist tyranny...

I'm sure you meet many admirable young 'gels' and upstanding young catholic schoolkids belonging to youth groups as you venture forth round the country ; and I'd bet my last shiny sixpence that you pray hard and care unremittigly for the drunken drug induced louts or foul-mouthed half-dressed teenage harridans f-ing and blinding on the street corner, knocking seven bells out of each other when they aren't recklessly copulating with all and sundry....but sometimes treating the rash does no good when the disease is allowed to thrive...

...and I agree wholeheartedly ; they most sincerely need to know they are loved and lovable ; but so too do their parents from whom most of this dissolution of sanity, propriety and hope originates...
we need to make an all-out assault on the root of the problem...adult life and their entire disenfranchisement by today's society....

The devil wins when we confuse our priorities...and if [we] delude ourselves into thinking this problem is sourced in the youth we will continue to make the same errors ; merely supporting and sustaining the few already saved while the lost sheep remain in the wilderness.

14 comments:

WhiteStoneNameSeeker said...

Actually I don't read Mrs Bogle's blog any more-well rarely. I find her 'nice England cream teas' hard to handle when I struggle with 6kids in a city setting.
Parents seem to be utterly disempowered. My 16yr old came home from college today shocked to tell me his friend has an 8yr old brother who is addicted to Grand Theft Auto-which mummy lets him play!!

Lilian said...

By chance I was surfing some of the Catholic blogs and came across your comment on Joanna Bogle's site. I also read the vituperative response that inspired your apology. I am in two minds about this. It was nasty but had a grain of truth. I don't read Joanna often because I get fed up with her self-referential, stuck up posts. I don't doubt her sincerity and conviction but it is embarrassing to have her as a champion of the faith, especially when she is being nasty on the radio. It gives a bad impression. I also find her obsession with family values and the young strange. She has no children herself and is over fifty yet she writes as if she is an authority on both. It seems a bit spooky to me. You and Whitestonenameseeker have families and know the reality of life and I would rather read both of you than her. The way you stick to your faith in great difficulties is an inspiration.

Anonymous said...

I find Joanna and her ilk utterly bizarre - I've never encountered this breed of middle-class, Daily Mail-reading, home-educating, female-altar-server-and "Eucharistic Monster"-hating creatures in my 40+ years as a cradle Catholic. The vast majority of the thousands of Catholics I've known over the years have been of working-class Irish origin and my experience has been more Father Ted than strident, sensible-shoe-wearing "Aunts" who like to shriek at people on the "wireless". I'm especially disturbed that people with similar views seem to dominate the Catholic blogosphere and therefore give the impression that this is what "ordinary" Catholics are like. Refusing to engage with the modern world yet continually criticising everything in it? Blinkered, self-satisfied and self-defeating. I've just read Mr Joanna's blog for the first time - whew! Typical obsessional fervency of a convert.

On The Side Of The Angels - carry on being yourself!

Fenella.

Magda said...

Surprisingly Joanna Bogle is not a convert, but her Australian husband is. From what I understand she aspires to belong to the small world of recusant cocktail Catholics but they laugh at her and ridicule her snobbery. They wont let her in. At parties people run to avoid her. In the end it's pathetic because she has no time or interest in ordinary Catholics but a great deal of interest in herself and her career. Unfortunately her stridency does more harm then good and the Church is compromised by her championship. But she has to earn a living and this is probably the only way she can. When she was young she struck a pose, then the wind changed and she became stuck like it. The rest is history.

Anonymous said...

Yes, Magda, by "Mr Joanna" I meant her husband, the convert! I would suggest that Mrs Bogle, instead of hanging around the posh Catholic schools, make a tour of inner-city comprehensives, but I fear that the children would instantly convert to Islam when confronted with her particular brand of Evangelism.

Fenella.

Anonymous said...

Oh, and the opinions of a selection of parents who've happened to hear Mrs Bogle's broadcasts make interesting reading: http://www.mumsnet.com/Talk/1600/432759

Fenella.

Magda said...

Fenella

I didn't realize Joanna Bogle's husband also had a blog. He's a convert Jew. What's it called? He's even worse than her and can be positively offensive. But I don't think they have a happy marriage and more or less lead separate lives. I used to feel sorry for them because they have no children but I cannot help being relieved that no child has them for their parents. They would provide a breeding ground for atheism. I'm surprised there aren't figures of them in the Chamber of Horrors.

Anonymous said...

"Uncle" Jamie's blog is, apparently, here: http://romanchristendom.blogspot.com/

Fenella.

On the side of the angels said...

I'm sorry but I feel I have to defend Mrs Bogle against this type of thing - I may be in a favoured position in having been in recent private correspondence regarding this - and I do not wish to disclose confidences but please understand that that the lady is having an exceedingly rough time at present with things she does not wish any of us to be aware of as they are of a personal nature;

I do not desire this blog to be a realm of gossip and scandalmongering ;and I ask you in all sincerity to remove these posts before I do it for you.

On the side of the angels said...

p.s. Fenella, I deeply regret that you informed me that romancenturion was actually Jamie Bogle - unbeknownst to me regarding his identity, I posted certain comments on his blog [he never mentions his name] and he has decided to launch an all-out assault on me. For more details see above. Had you not told me I may never have returned to his blog and never discovered what he said about me....
I suppose in a way I should be grateful, but in other ways I really wish you hadn't.

Magda said...

Your are a good lad, Paul, but, as I've said above, don't get entangled with Jamie Bogle. He's dangerous. His wife is, as you say, fundamentally good-hearted, if misguided in her zeal. Both are slightly mad. It's hard to do business with such people. Be careful.

Anonymous said...

Feel free to delete my posts, Paul, I don't think I can delete my own "anonymous" posts.

Curiously, it was Jamie Bogle's blog that led me to yours as I found his remarks about you disturbing. Odd that he was desperate to reveal your identity whilst being secretive about his own.

As for Joanna, we all have our crosses to bear. I will pray for all of us.

I just wish that the Catholic Church had a reasoned and calm spokesperson upon whom the media could call...

As Magda says, be careful!

Fenella.

Anonymous said...

Magda and Fenella - nice friends you have, Paul! What a poisonous pair of vipers! They contribute nothing to the debate but vile bitchiness and then claim to warn you off other people like Joanna Bogle who, unlike them, is actually courageously defending the Faith. And they seem to think their bitchiness is compatible with Catholicism. Good grief!

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