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Ian Skemp

Joined: Jul. 6, 2014

Bio:

Graduate of the University of MN (BA Art History) and University of Dallas (MA American Studies). Ian is in his fourth year of teaching US History at Providence Academy. He lives in St. Paul, MN with his wife and son.


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Pitfalls of Asserting Gender Roles

Aug. 28 at 12:52pm | Comments: 5 | Most recent comment: Sep. 3 at 11:44am

In Devra's recent post on "Becoming who you are..." She described the fallacious notion that gender is a mere social construct that inhibits self discovery.  I, too, reject the notion that gender is nothing more than artificial social norms that restrict us from being who we truly are. After all, God created us Man and Woman, two different types of human. Thus, there is a natural distinction between "masculine" and "feminine." Yet, I find myself annoyed whenever the...


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Re: If it doesn't feel like love, it isn't

Sep. 25 at 12:19pm | see this comment in context

Once I got to the UMN, I stopped talking candidly about sin. Mind you, I was still a practicing Catholic who believed in sin; I just didn’t bring it up that often around my classmates. At one point, I started to wonder if I was not living up to my faith. Shouldn’t I be an open witness? Was I hiding my beliefs? Wouldn’t a good Christian take every opportunity to drop a “truth bomb” on the world? I saw some people carrying a cross down frat row one night, calling the revelers out on their sin. I figured I wasn’t strong enough in my faith to be such a bold witness.

I often wonder how many people leave the faith because they follow the following logic.

1)      Those people proselytizing on the street/Twitter/Facebook are real Christians because they have the conviction to preach the truth.

2)      I don’t have the conviction/courage to do that.

3)      I must not really believe this.

Re: If it doesn't feel like love, it isn't

Sep. 25 at 12:19pm | see this comment in context

Interesting bit on proselytizing. 

I have a gut feeling many Christians feel guilty for not proselytizing.  I’ve no proof of this aside from my own conflict, but if I’ve felt it, I’m sure others have, too.

After spending my entire K-12 education in small Christian schools, I began my college education at the University of Minnesota. Big ol’ state school. Before then, I spoke candidly in class discussions about matters of faith and morality. I had some major disagreements with some of my classmates in high school, but we all came from Christian families. Thus, suggesting that things like premarital sex were sinful wasn’t proselytizing, just discussing and debating amongst my peers- the people I would eat lunch with.

Re: Pitfalls of Asserting Gender Roles

Sep. 3 at 11:44am | see this comment in context

Hey, no one likes a busybody. I like the idea of invitation. We shouldn't guilt people into coming to the feast; we just need them to know they are welcome and that the food is good.

Re: Pitfalls of Asserting Gender Roles

Sep. 3 at 11:25am | see this comment in context

Katie van Schaijik, Sep. 3 at 10:28am

"I think this is a major concern of the Pope's. Stop moralizing. Stop judging. Stop trying to manage the way other people live. Just invite them to Jesus and the Church. Let Him heal them."

Re: Pitfalls of Asserting Gender Roles

Sep. 2 at 12:50pm | see this comment in context

It becomes an even bigger problem when people are driven away from the faith because they assume that good Catholics conform to traditional gender roles. Thus, the woman who decides to have a career, remain single without religious vocation, or marries but keeps her maiden name, feels at odds with Catholicism with no reason to be. 

Additionally, I'm glad you mentioned tendencies. I've heard from women who have been through a disordered purity talk at some point in their lives. While the purity talk for men directly confronts our urges, the talk for women oftentimes consists of "You need to dress modestly so as not to make life hard for your brothers." This would be fine, I suppose, if the talk continued on to address a woman's urges, but it stops there. The assumption seems to be that, since men generally struggle more with lust, that lust is a man's problem and women don't need to worry about it. The generalization is not unfounded, as the sex industry is primarily catered to men for a reason. The problem is treating a generalization like a universal, and an even bigger problem is, as you said, treating a tendency as a moral imperative.

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