December 15, 2003

Two Cents' Worth

Rod Dreher, of Amy Welborn commenting fame, recently said that he was a practitioner of NFP but was upset by the lack of support from both hierarchy and fellow parishioners when he tells them how burdensome it is. Either he encounters looks of disbelief (from those not taking Humane Vitae seriously), or looks of disbelief (from practitioners who think it the most wonderful/easy thing in the world).

Maybe I'm too much of an individualist, but I really don't look to the Vatican or anyone to make it easier for me since I think it's possible only by grace, much as priestly celibacy is possible only thru grace. I don't expect my bishop or my fellow parishioners to somehow force more grace into me, much as I might like that to happen. Alternatively, it might just mean that I'm community-challenged.

Update: Reader Jeanne has some interesting comments:
Rod Dreher had an article in the Our Sunday Visitor some time ago saying how hard it is. I think it depends on the person. I think you're right. It can only be done by grace. And I know that all my contemporaries didn't bother. There was very little support. A person can have a siege mentality and maybe a triumphalistic approach when there's no support. Nowadays, you have to go it alone in many ways. One problem with Rod is that he has no community around to support him in any way. His wife has found community as women find it easy to relate to others. Men by their nature tend to be loners in charge of their territory and let no other man come into that territory.... But Rod goes on about all kinds of things that are painful because he can't find people who think like he does. He's also suspicious of others anyway.

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