Our mission is to Educate, Motivate and Activate the Catholic faithful of the Oakland, California diocese. Called to be supportive instruments of social communication as defined in Canon law 823, Para 1, we will review articles on social and moral trends reported in the official diocesan publication, "The Catholic Voice." Our goal is to provide local Catholics with a fuller perspective on issues affecting their temporal and spiritual lives, empowering them to act in defense of their faith.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Carondelet high students tackle consumerism as issue of faith.

The Catholic Voice, propaganda organ for the Diocese of Oakland, reported in it’s April 17, 2006, edition on a recent debate regarding consumerism that took place amongst students at Carondelet High School in Concord, California.

It was presented as a part of an annual Forum initiatived at the school four years ago named after Mother St. John Fontbonne,
who ”re-organized the Sisters of St. Joseph after the FrenchRevolution.”

The debate was tailored, according to the Voice article: “so as
to nudge the 400-plus students to examine consumerism in light of Catholicism during a lively two hour session on the Concord Campus.”

Parents take note: that’s two hours, presumably, in which they were not learning Math, English or Science.

These young people actually are being indoctrinated to embrace Egalitarianism. James Twitchell Professor at the University of Florida has termed this camoflouged anti-consumerist advocacy as “Marxism-Lite.” This training leads to “Central planning or an eventual totalitarian society.”

This Fontbonne Forum was begun through the auspices of the Carondelet Campus Ministry program under the direction of Andrew Hodges. Rather than imparting solid Catholic teaching to students the entire agenda of this campus program reads like a leaf out of the progressive wing of the Democrat Party.

The Campus Ministry Program at Carondelet is under the direction of Andrew Hodges.
Its title of Ministry is misleading. It does not minister to the students faith needs nor show the students how to lead a Catholic life. On the contrary it is a training program for social activism masquerading as a ministry.

While Mr. Hodges led a group of 40 students in the January West Coast Walk For Life he also escorted students to a pro illegal immigration lobby day in Sacramento and organized a trip to Georgia for a few students to participate in the annual protest at the government School of the Americas, Other activities included Amnesty International events, working at St. Anthony’s Dining Room in San Francisco among the homosexuals and prostitutes and sleeping with the homeless in Salinas while bemoaning the conditions of the “poor” abused farm workers ala Cesar Chavez.

Mr. Hodges is not instilling a biblical love of supporting one’s neighbors. He is training the next generation of socialists.

Other Carondelet teachers involved in this Fontbonne Forum include Maureen Wanket, formerly a teacher at Loretto High School in Sacramento. She describes herself as an author and teacher and positions herself as a social dissident inspired, as a defiant teenager, by the book “Catcher In the Rye.” She apparently sees her calling as an author and teacher directed towards creating this same disaffection toward social norms in today’s youth.

The Voice article highlights the amateur work of a Carondelet student who filmed the Forum participants’ speeches along with the Georgia vigil activities and then wove them into a short documentary. The documentary on consumerism featured an interview with Brian Joyce, Pastor of Christ the King church in Pleasant Hill. An interesting choice since it is reported that his favorite department store is Nordstrom’s.

One of the most egregious elements in this Forum was the display of a desecrated American flag, as reported in the Voice article:

When students and faculty entered the auditorium, they came face to face with a large American flag decorated with corporate logos instead of stars. They received handouts of provocative quotes and questions for conversation starters.

Any teacher or youth leader desiring to build up a sense of moral ethics and honor would not do so by tearing down our American flag. Parents should seriously question the ethics behind this program. It appears that the Principal of Carondelet has hired teachers more interested in indoctrinating the students into a campaign of denigrating America than in learning to think for themselves through educating the intellect.

Not once in this whole article was there any reference to Catholic teaching or morals. A quote from three of the students summing up the Forum’s message tells it all. The students said: “Consumerism doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Individuals have choices and can opt for making choice that are both socially and environmentally good.” This is a dead giveaway that this is nothing more than strident politics.


Blogger Diane Lily said...

Good article. Thank you for this information.

11:54 AM

Blogger Melvin Benjamin said...


11:57 AM

Blogger maureen said...

Hello there! You got your facts wrong, I'm afraid. My name is Maureen O'Leary Wanket and you mention my name in connection with the consumerism Fontbonne Forum at Carondelet High School. The truth is that I am currently a teacher at Loretto High School at Sacramento. I haven't taught at Carondelet since 2005, and I had nothing to do with the consumerism Fontbonne. I was one of the founders of the original Fontbonne Forum three years ago, though. I gave a talk about the importance of avoiding war in 2003. You might be interested in knowing that during that forum we gave equal time to opposing viewpoints who thought going to war against Iraq was a fine idea. I did not attend the latest Fontbonne Forum regarding consumerism, so I don't have any authority to speak on it. I do know the organizers of that activity personally, however, and I can assure you that they are not now, nor have ever been Communist. They (and I) do tend to rally in defense of the poor, and on behalf of peace, however, but what can you expect from a group of observant and educated Catholics? Also, thanks for reading my article in Teacher magazine. I like to make an effort to reach disaffected youth as well as those who are already as enthusiastic as I am about reading. As a devout Catholic and educator, I look to the Gospel of Christ for guidance on helping everyone, not just those who are already saved.

Thanks for calling me into the discussion. I'm adding you to my prayer list.

In Christ, Maureen O'Leary Wanket


5:17 PM


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