“Alright, your Excellency,” I can hear parents saying, “so the ‘universities’ are a wasteland. But on that reckoning of yours you must admit that just about everywhere else is a wasteland as well. Then what are we to do with our children? God’s law forbids us to use unlawful means to prevent their arriving. They arrive. And then?”
The swift answer is that in a world worse than ever, souls that want to get to Heaven will have to be more heroic than ever, but their reward will be correspondingly greater than ever.
Pius XII said that the world was worse in his day than in the time of Sodom and Gomorrah, and he died in 1958! What would he say today? Facing the same problem, the Popes who followed him “moved the goal-posts” at Vatican II in order not to have to go on condemning, condemning, condemning. But that was the easy way out. To switch off the alarms is not the same thing as to extinguish the fire. Church and world are blazing merrily, and the first thing parents must do is to face the problem: extreme danger for their children’s eternal salvation.
If once they grasp that danger, their Catholic Faith will tell them that they cannot take the Conciliar low road, nor any other low road, they must take the heroic high road. “We will not get to Heaven on feather-beds,” said St Thomas More. Our Lord said, “He who would be my disciple, let him take up his cross, and follow me” (Mt.XVI, 24), and “He that shall persevere to the end, he shall be saved” (Mt. XXIV, 13). Parents must make up their minds that if to save their children’s souls they need to be heroes, then heroes they will be. At that point, as the proverb says, “Where there’s a will, there’s a way,” so once parental love has the will, it will find a way, inside and outside the home.
For outside the home, see next week’s “Eleison Comments” for alternatives to the ‘university’ For inside the home, any priest worth his salt will tell them to start by firmly establishing the family Rosary in the home, and to continue by throwing out that television set which is a tabernacle of the world, the flesh and the Devil. From the youngest age, let children’s hearts and minds be filled in the home with live interchange and lively discussion of everything under the sun. This is because by the time children are of an age to go to ‘university,’ the die is usually cast, for good or ill, so that if a boy has grown up in a real live home, lifted towards Heaven by prayer, the worst of ‘universities’ may not do him too much harm, whereas if he has been raised as a televidiot, the best university may not help him too much towards Heaven.
Notice that EC 158 did not tell parents never to pay for a boy of theirs to go to ‘university’. It said to think hard before doing so. If parents think hard while their boy is still young, their Faith should tell them how life at home needs to be changed, without too much delay. As St. Paul says (I Cor. II, 9), quoting Isaiah (LXIV, 4), Heaven is infinitely well worth every effort, infinitely surpassing even the wildest human imagination.