Bothered by response in AAA forum


#1

The question “Should parents send their children to a party in a gay household” was recently asked in the AAA forum. The answer given by Fr. Serpa is given completely here

forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=37910

and the meat of it is here:

But as for sending your children into their household for a birthday party or some such event, one has to think of one’s own children first. Also, this isn’t just a gay thing. Would you want to send your child into the household of two heterosexual people who are shacking up? Either what Jesus teaches through His Church matters or it doesn’t. It can’t half-way matter. It can’t be half-way the truth. HE HAS TO COME FIRST !

I would suggest that you be friendly with such people, but not friends—and let your children see what charity REALLY is!

Now I certainly have great respect for Fr. Serpa and the others who answer questions in the AAA forum. But it doesn’t seem like the question was about approving or disapproving of their lifestyle, but rather of how much you should allow your children to interact with their children. (Of course I didn’t ask the question so I admit I could be mistaken about the intent.) The assumption seems to be that the two sets of children are already friends with one another.

I can understand not wanting your children to spend time in that household. But no alternatives were given. What about talking with the two men, telling them that you’d like your kids to play with their kids but that you’d feel more comfortable if the playdates were at your house?

I do not understand how it can be an act of charity to tell your kids that they shouldn’t be friends with this other set of kids because of something their parents are doing. If anything I should think we’d want to encourage that friendship so the kids have more exposure to a regular family environment.


#2

I must have missed something but I see nothing objectionable about Fr.'s response. Parents should definitely make decisions about whose households their children enter. If the parents of the child’s friend live an incompatible lifestyle why would you want your children exposed to this? It would be the same if it were a single mother who had boyfriends sleeping over or a ‘shack up’ honey who lived there. It would be the same if the parents drank, used drugs, or engaged in unsafe behavior. I remember my mother forbidding me to play at a child’s house because they lived on a busy street and the mother was very casual about the kids playing on or near the street. She simply didn’t trust that mother to supervise us appropriately. Was that decision 'uncharitable?" I don’t think so.

IOW when it comes to your child’s wellbeing, the focus should be on the child, not on whether you would offend Joe and Steve by saying you really don’t want Billy to spend the night. Invite the child to your place or let the kids play in a neutral setting such as at school. But there is no reason to confuse your kids because two homosexuals want to be just like a married couple.

Lisa N


#3

BTW I didn’t interpret it that the CHILDREN shouldn’t be friends but that they shouldn’t attend the party or go to that home. I think his reference would be that the PARENTS are not obligated to be friends, just friendly and polite. It didn’t sound to me as if Fr was forbidding contact between the kids but rather wanting the contact to be away from the parents.

Lisa N


#4

Father Serpa is dead on here. Examine your motives.

ybiC,
Trevor


#5

No I understand that, I tried to make it clear that I understand why a Catholic would not want their kids in such an environment. What disturbed me was that the answer did not differentiate between the kids’ parents, and the kids themselves, aside from a statement at the beginning of my quote that it’s a shame they got caught in the middle.

As I suggested, why not talk with the two men, tell them the concerns, and see if they are willing to work out some kind of compromise where the kids have a party in some neutral setting? The end goal ought to be to find a way to allow the writer’s kids and two men’s kids to pursue their already-existing friendship. But the last comment of Fr. Serpa’s seems to be suggesting that we ought to tell our kids to be “friendly but not friends” with their kids, i.e. stop a growing friendship between children because of a disapproval between the parents.

edit: my motives are that the two sets of kids can be friends with one another, and that the gay people’s children have at least some exposure to good Christian homes and friends


#6

I just wish he had put more emphasis on the kids and less on the parents when it’s the kids who really matter… But if you all thought that he answered the question in the right spirit then I guess I just misinterpreted his response. My apologies, and God bless.


#7

Father Serpa is dead on here. Examine your motives.

ybiC,
Trevor :thumbsup:


#8

Fr. Serpa is correct. Why would we think our children should not be raised in such a way that we may prohibit them from having certain friends?


#9

I guess it depends on why you’re excluding certain friends. I know of good homes which have had bad kids. I also know of bad homes which have had good kids. In the latter case, the most godly option seems to be to invite the good kids into your home as often as possible to give them a safe, secure place to be.


#10

[quote=Jeremy]No I understand that, I tried to make it clear that I understand why a Catholic would not want their kids in such an environment. What disturbed me was that the answer did not differentiate between the kids’ parents, and the kids themselves, aside from a statement at the beginning of my quote that it’s a shame they got caught in the middle.
[/quote]

Hmmm, maybe I read too much or not enough but I didn’t hear Fr saying the KIDS should be banned from contact with each other but the heterosexual married parents should not let the kids play, attend parties, or other events at the homosexuals’ home. Further I wouldn’t see them attending an event supervised or sponsored by the two men either. Now I think a friendship between children procured by homosexuals and children born to a married couple might have its awkward moments “Gee why don’t you have a mommy???” it didn’t souund like Fr. wanted the kids kept apart at all costs.

[quote=Jeremy]As I suggested, why not talk with the two men, tell them the concerns, and see if they are willing to work out some kind of compromise where the kids have a party in some neutral setting?
[/quote]

Honestly that sounds nosy and intrusive. The two homosexual men are hosting a party. They make the decision who to invite and the invitees make a decision whether to attend or not. I don’t see that asking them not to have the party in their home but have it in some place where the two men would be presenting themselves as the “two daddies” is much of a difference. The point is that the kids not be confused by why Jimmy has no mommy and two “daddies” and that this is NOT equivalent to the two married parents.

[quote=Jeremy]The end goal ought to be to find a way to allow the writer’s kids and two men’s kids to pursue their already-existing friendship. But the last comment of Fr. Serpa’s seems to be suggesting that we ought to tell our kids to be “friendly but not friends” with their kids, i.e. stop a growing friendship between children because of a disapproval between the parents.

edit: my motives are that the two sets of kids can be friends with one another, and that the gay people’s children have at least some exposure to good Christian homes and friends
[/quote]

Again did Fr say anything about NOT allowing contact between the kids? I didn’t read that anywhere and didn’t feel he inferred this either. I would ask him directly what he meant. It would be conceivable he would accept the children procured by the homosexuals would be invited into the writer’s home or play somewhere neutral without the homosexuals as supervisors.

I think the point is that if the question comes up that the parents explain that the “two daddies” is NOT a normal or proper parent team.

Lisa N


#11

Lisa, if what you say is what was intended then I’m complete agreement with him/you :slight_smile:


#12

[quote=Jeremy]Lisa, if what you say is what was intended then I’m complete agreement with him/you :slight_smile:
[/quote]

I do think that was the message and intent of Fr’s statement. It’s understandable how it could be interpreted differently. Life is sure more complicated these days isn’t it? I remember when my sister’s best friend’s parents divorced and it was a serious question whether she could still go over to her friend’s home anymore. Nowdays no one blinks an eye over a divorced or single parent. It does make me think that we are on the edge of a cliff with respect to these ‘alternative lifestyles’ and it’s going to make parents’ jobs a lot more difficult.

Lisa N


#13

there is a huge difference in allowing your child to be friends with the child, and letting your child visit the home of a child, whose parents are gay, living together without marriage, smoking pot, training pit bulls, selling Amway, or any other activity you object to on grounds of morality, danger, or legality. Letting your child go into an environment, away from your supervision, where you have reason to believe he will observe objectionable activity is irresponsible at best and dangerous at worst. Letting your child join the same baseball team as the other child, inviting that child to your pizza party at ChuckECheez, calling him on the phone are much different.

In all those cases, you tell your child, "I am glad Mikey is your friend, he seems like a nice boy and he is always welcome here, as long as it is okay with his folks. However, you are not allowed to play there. His parents have every right to do what they want in their own house, but some of the things they think are okay, are not okay for our family, and I don’t want you to go over there. Period. "
As a parent emeritus and grandparent-consultant, I would not allow sleepovers at all in someone’s house. I think the whole idea is bad in general for a lot of reasons, especially in a situation like many families today, where they don’ really know the parents of their kids’ friends. Sleepover is for scout camp (and I would make sure I am one of the parents going along to supervise.)


#14

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