Friday, January 30, 2009


First, a huge thanks to those of you who commented on {l}'s glasses. She knew I was putting the picture of her on the blog and kept asking "Did anyone comment on my glasses?", so THANKS to those who did. 

Today's post is a WWYD (what would you do)? A few weeks ago I was at the YMCA for the girls gymnastics and met a lady who was both new to homeschooling and new to the Catholic Church. I spoke to her for about 5 minutes when the lady next to us (not Catholic) said "I homeschool too" and basically took over the conversation. They stayed where they were so I did overhear some things regarding the new Catholic:
*they haven't found a church (her husband isn't Catholic) but they "are very spiritual and don't feel you have to go to church to have spirituality"
*she said "I've forgotten some of the stuff like ::rubs fingers together:: those bead things"
Clearly her RCIA was lacking. Since this wasn't our usual gymnastics time, I didn't see her again for a few weeks. We now have a different class time, the same class time as her son, and I have run into her a few times but hadn't had an actual conversation with her until yesterday. We were talking about homeschooling (she is waiting for her stuff from a program that isn't Catholic) but she did mention wanting to possibly find an authentic Catholic curriculum. I told her about Seton and some of the other things out there. Then she told me that they are looking to schedule in vitro towards the end of the year. Ack. What would you have done? I just looked at her. Obviously she is ignorant of the Church's stance on fertility treatments but I don't actually know her (I don't even know her name) so I didn't know what (if anything) I should say. See, I am not as mean and blunt as many of you think I am. If I know you or am directly asked a question then sure, I'll speak up. But, if I don't really know you or am not asked a question then I tend to hold my tongue. 
I'm sure I will see her again and I think I'll give her my number (and ask her name) but what would you have done right then?  

10 people are laughing with me:

Keri said...

Taking it slow is good. Starting a dialogue is good.

What the heck is the stance for fertility treatments?

Juli said...

Yep, I was going to say take it slow as well. Too much can overwhelm a person and push them away instead of drawing them closer. I would maybe tell her about the Church's stance on fertility treatments before she gets it done, though. She may do this and then regret it later. Especially something like invitro where they scrape the extra embryos into the garbage.
Does the church have a stance on Fertility drugs? I really don't know. I'm not using them, because so far I have been blessed with pretty good fertility.
Oh and sorry I didn't comment on your daughters glasses. Now I feel guilty. Poor thing. My daughter likes to hear comments when I write about her, too.

Mimi said...

I agree with the slowly but surely approach.

I wonder about that too - I think that fertility treatments have become the norm, and I have serious moral issues with them.

Sarah (JOT) said...

To my understanding, a woman can use pills to stimulate ovulation, you can have (progesterone) shots etc., but the baby has to be made the good, old fashioned way. :-) Maybe direct her to humanea vitea? Spelling in Latin is not my "thing", but yeah, EASE into this . . .she seems receptive. OF course, be very clear about what the Church teaches and what your opinion is. Good luck!

Sarah D said...

I, too, think that a slow approach is good. And now that you know what issues might come up in future conversations, you can be prepared with what you might say ... Find out the exact position of the Church and maybe even ask a priest (or someone) how to gently explain it ... Pray to the Holy Spirit; He will give you the words and the grace! God bless you!

Oh, and thanks for the tip on knitting. I appreciate it! Your work is just lovely!

Paula in MN said...

Slowly, slowly, slowly!

Michelle said...

Hi Regina,

You've received very good advice. Take it slow and pray the Holy Spirit gives you the words...and an opportunity to have a discussion with her. You're right that the Church opposes IVF. That's a GIANT subject to begin a conversation with though. She may not be ready to hear it, but you can plant seeds.

Here are some links: IVF and the Catholic Couple

Babies deseve better:

From what you've shared, she is a lost sheep when it comes to knowing what the Church teaches Luke 15:3-7

elm said...

I would be much like the other ladies... Slow goes it says me. However, I am not always very gifted in the explaining of things in a way that makes me sound reliable. But, I have ordered the cds from and there is one on Marraige and the Eucharist that explains a bit about why the church says NOPE to contraceptives of any kind. I think that when you get to understanding THAT, perhaps it helps people understand why no in vitro. There are many cds to choose from and perhaps a gift to her would be a collection of these cds... at the worst she'd be offended - at best it would hep her and possibly open up some dialogue opportunities. You could give them to her under the pretense of hearing her saying she was new to the Catholic Church and that you thought she might like to listen to some good cds that explain the faith really well. I love to defer to much more well-learned folks than myself!!

I am sure that this comment is a mumble of a mess. Sorry! I'll spend more time thinking my responses through... another day.

Aubrey said...

I think that someone else answered Keri's question but I will type it in anyway. The Church teaches that conception itself must be natural (no artificial insemination, no IVF). Couples are permitted to seek treatments which enhance their fertility but do not remove the marital act from the equation.

Easy does it...I've asked our Monsignor about a similar situation. He said that it is not my place to counsel her unless she asks a direct question. He said that it is my job to be a good example and also to pray for her.

If that doesn't make sense (it's late here) you could e-mail me and I'll clarify. :)

Nikki said...

I stumbled across you in my blog wanderings. I am going to start praying for you right now.

I do agree that it is important not to be pushy or agressive, but I also think it is not a coincidence that you were put in a position to meet this woman. The Holy Spirit is already at work. I wouldn't be so worried about what to say, but rather pray to have the courage and wisdom to say something when the moment approaches.

I also think that (while not being pushy), there is a bigger chance you will regret saying nothing more than saying too much. Even a few lines like, "I know you are new to the church. I think you might be surprised to learn the church teaches about IVF. Here are some websites I thought might interest you. My phone number is there too, in case you had more questions. I'm no expert, but I might be able to help you find some answers or just talk things through."

I am not an eloquent speaker, especially when put on the spot. I do think that God uses that to speak through us. I also think that sometimes we need a stranger to mention these things. I have a family member who was involved with IVF and those conversations can be too difficult for people who have years of past baggage. Sometimes the voice of reason has to come from outside.

Pray, Pray, Pray...