Three 20-something women trying to figure out what it means to be lay, Catholic, and modern all at once.

December 2, 2008

The Young and the Restless

Teaching at an all-girls' preparatory school. A place of angst, competition, loneliness, restlessness. 

And hope.

Everyday I ponder what it means to be a modern, Catholic woman, mostly from the viewpoint of an adolescent. I see what my students consider to be important: physical attractiveness (which often means a boyishly flat and thin figure), the pursuit of degrees from prestigious institutions, and some sense of control over their lives. For many, being a successful young woman includes holding their broken families together, exhibiting strength to come to school and equal fortitude  to face things at home or in the world beyond the gates of the campus. Everyday I feel for these young women, who teach me on a daily basis what it means to be a woman in the world (according to what they are told), and they wonder whether or not this picture that they have can hold it's own against the Christian understanding of feminity. So far I have learned that they are skeptical of the presentation of topics like sexual ethics, intimacy, and modesty, for no other reason than that they have been told that these are unattractive ways of living and have been convinced that their natural desires are for all things are the exact opposite of these.

 I no longer count  my successes by how many girls realize that abortion harms the mother as much as the child, or how many girls resign to try open themselves up to try virginity again.  As Agatha has reminded me,  if one girl can say that the Church's teachings on any of these things are appealing, attractive, and possible ways of living the happy life, then God's will has been done.  

Needless to say, some days seem more successful than others.  

The girls know they are seeking something.  And that, though they cannot recognize it, indicates that they are women on their way to God.    I pray that in their seeking they may soon find what they are truly looking for.  Or rather, whom they are looking for.  
Related Posts with Thumbnails