On Sunday I noticed several new blog notifications, which caused me to check my stats, something I rarely do anymore. I just don't have the time or energy to police who is coming to this here blog these days. However, I wandered over to that stat counter anyway because of all the new notifications and low and behold, someone had unearthed and re-posted the article
Yesterday, at the two-day a week Classical academy my children attend, I saw two of my mom-friends and both said they had read the article over the weekend. Both women also admitted they have experienced the same type of thing--judgment from like-minded women about their parenting practices--and that my words resonated with them.
The fact the article was wildly shared
two years after I wrote it, suggests many people have experienced unsolicited advice and/or judgments from others.
This means good Catholics are still hurting other good Catholics. (And maybe it hurts even more than if we are criticized from the secular world because secular society doesn't embrace our values and beliefs like other Catholics do?)
This means we Catholics mete out and receive unsolicited advice, commentary, and judgment from other people in our inner circles.
This means there's a problem with how we are treating each other, friends.
I think we must
need to work on being charitable within the walls of our own community before we go evangelizing the world, no?
If we can't be kind to our own--to the people in our circles who uphold our same values and worship right next to us in the pews on Sunday--how are we going to spread the good news to others?
Here's a confession:
I want to get all self-righteous. I want to get on my soap box and criticize the bad behaviors of other callous Catholics. I want to be judgmental of the tendency some Catholics have to make non-moral issues, moral ones. I want to scoff at those who quite literally make mountains out of molehills.
But that isn't going to be effective.
What will be effective is offering encouraging words to the parents working alongside me in the trenches.
What will be effective is making a personal resolution to hold my tongue about my own parenting practices, unless I've been specifically addressed to offer my approach.
What will be effective is making a renewed effort to love my family and be confident in the decisions we've made given our familial situation.
What will be effective is refusing to superimpose my standards (or lack thereof) on other families.
What will be effective is speaking positively and affirming the good things I see other parents doing.
What will be effective is praying to forgive those who hurt me and having patience with those who are inconsiderate or insensitive.
The only person I have any power to change is myself.
So here's what I'm going to do:
Instead of calling out everyone's bad behavior, I resolve--here and now--to continue to work on my own.
Pray for me, won't you?
You can count on my prayers for you.