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If a recent study is correct, a girl who has attended private religious schools is more likely to get an abortion than a girl who has attended public schools.

Despite Adamczyk’s finding that rates of reported abortions were higher for young women educated at private religious schools, the type of religious school was not a factor: Catholic schools had similar rates as other religious schools.”Religious school attendance is not necessarily indicative of conservative religious beliefs because students attend these schools for a variety of reasons,” Adamczyk said. “These schools tend to generate high levels of commitment and strong social ties among their students and families, so abortion rates could be higher due to the potential for increased feelings of shame related to an extramarital birth.”

Sadly, American Christianity has done a bang up job in making men and women feel more shame than mercy. Their learning institutions from 4K to grad school has also done a swell job of demanding a strong witness for their schools (i.e., Don’t get caught drinking or knocked up while unmarried, after all, what would Jesus do?). Conservative schools and well-meaning parents have encouraged Christian kids to put off marriage and never to settle for less than perfection. They have given religous girls a bubble in which to live that knows little of grace and forgiveness and plenty about not dressing trashy. A bubble that, in the end,  is as useless as a faulty condom.  The message is clear. Bad behavior must be kept on the down low, and upstanding, church-going parents must never be dissappointed. Worst of all, in this uptight, graceless system Jesus is reduced that cool dude hanging on the cross who we must never fail, rather than the Incarnate friend of sinners who understands and forgives messy lives. Maybe it’s time for Amercian Christianity to come to Jesus. After all, he is the one who famously had little patience with shame-bound religiosity. “Woe unto you, Scribes, Pharisees, hypocrites! You have omitted the weightier matters of the law––justice, mercy and faith.”



  1. Actually, it’s modern men and women who have done a bang-up job of bringing shame on themselves. Believing what the world serves up as feel good party time until-oops-we’re pregnant. That’s not, and never has been, the message of Catholic schools…The message of the Catholic Church has always been about Jesus.

    So go on buying what television and the media in general shows you are the ideals. Go ahead and live like Britney or Miley, or Donald or some sports star who’s always in the news because they’re never satisfied with who or what they have. The reality is that nothing on earth is as satisfying as eternal life with God. And we will be much happier on earth living the way Jesus taught in the Sermon on the Mount.

    • Congratulations!
      You have successfully done what the Pharisees of Jesus’ day did. Attacked those nasty sinners and ignored their own nasty thing. Good luck with that.


  2. The Pharasees demanded the following of the letter of the law when they didn’t have the spirit of the law in their hearts. There is nothing wrong with pointing out the sin. Granted it should be done gently and with charity.

    • My premise is a culture obsessed with pointing out others’ sin and ignoring their own has no use for a Redeemer. And ironically, such a religious culture will incite private sins masquerading as holiness (i.e. good girls having abortions to protect their reputations). Jesus came to seek sinners and prodigals. Much of the American church seems to think that he came to congratulate the good decent folks.

        • David
        • Posted June 2, 2009 at 5:17 pm
        • Permalink

        Thanks for clarifying. In that case, we really do agree. Jesus said to the Pharisees about the woman caught in adultery “Let he who is without guilt cast the first stone.” You’re right about the American protestant church, and it’s child, the post-60’s Catholic Church, but many Catholics are coming back to the fact that we are all sinners, and that God loves everyone equally. It’s the sins he hates. My point was that it’s the lure of greed and lust in the world today that fosters the attitude of most Americans, and that we need to focus not on this world, but the next. I’ve given up consumption, smoking, almost all drinking. I found it easy to quit smoking by asking Jesus to help. Didn’t need gum or drugs to do it. Materialism is most of the problem. Television and the media pushi it. God bless.

  3. Artie, Sorry that I have missed this discussion (the David is not me) but I will make a note to throw some zingers out there to really get you worked up.

  4. Is that the justice, mercy and faith where justice wears a blindfold? Or is that the justice of a “wise Jewish god with the richness of his experiences would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a heavenly god who hasn’t lived that life.”

    • David,
      I think you are on a whole other topic. Move on, dot org.

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