Friday, June 10, 2011

Harry Potter and being "so Catholic"

The "Pillar" household adopted a new kitten this week.  How exciting and I think the most fun is always what to name it.  When the last kitten arrived, I was not consulted, but my dream of one day having an orange cat was their reasoning for bring him home only 3 days after my knight's long-time tabby had to be put down at age 18 of renal failure.  After my initial shock in not letting good old Stanley get cold in the backyard, they told me they wanted me to name it.  "Lolek" was my answer.  There was silence in the room until one of the girls remembered whose name that was.  Blessed John Paul II's baby name his mother called him.  This time the family agreed on Hermione after the character in Harry Potter.  As a tortoise-shell calico with about 3/4 of her face beige and a mystical look to her, it seemed to fit her.

Anyway off to the vet and then to run errands with her in tow.  We ran into a friend who got the pleasure of meeting little Hermione and within a moment or two he made an observation. "It interesting the whole magic, witchcraft and wizardry thing and you being....well".  "So Catholic?" I picked up on that one rather quickly.  "Yeah." He said.

Well, my feeling about the whole Harry Potter and the wizardry is very basic, you can enjoy the story without getting carried away with the logistics.  I know that there has been lots of debate about the Harry Potter books, the magic, spells, the darkness, and witchcraft and wizardry, but as my eldest daughter put it, "It's just reading about something that would be sort of cool if it really existed, that's all."  All five of us read the series and watched the movies.  We all agree that as the books progressed so did the darkness, but all in all, we saw the plot reiterate good vs. evil; love and friendship, devotion, and truth as being the main point, not the potions and spells.

Now I have taught my children that idolatry is evil and that even wearing someone's face on their shirt is somewhat confusing to me. We don't get dragged into the whole commerical thing of costumes, posters, toys, and games, fhe books and the movies are quite enough, really.

So, to bottom line my thoughts on this issue, I don't want my children to believe in magic, or think that witchcraft and horoscopes are to be consulted and they don't.  We talked about all these books, that was the original reason I read the books to begin with and then I just enjoyed reading them.  I know that at first the Church didn't like the book...then JPII ok'd the books and we put them back in the Catholic School our middle daughter attended back in 2000.  Over the past few years, I know that Pope Benedict XVI isn't fond of them, but I don't think he wants them banned.  Correct me if I am wrong!  Being "so Catholic" has it's responsibilities and I'm not the best one to be the example, that I am very aware of.  So, to er is human, but I am very aware of how my children think about this issue and many more.


Crystal said...

Congrats on the kitty!! I agree wholeheartedly with what you said about the Harry Potter Series. I find it funny that people are in an uproar about this but not about the Disney Movies and fairy tales like Brothers Grimm and Hans Christian Anderson. Disney World even has a "Magic Kingdom".

Just my two cents

Denise said...

I also allowed my children to read the Harry Potter series. Of the four, only two finished the series. The other two just lost interest. I really don't think they are any different than the "Bewitched" we watched as kids. I don't think they are as bad as "Dark Shadows" which we raced home from school to see every day. Every parent is the best judge of what his/her child is mentally and spiritually prepared to read. If a parent decides Harry Potter is not in his/her child's best interest, then I support that decision for his/her child. I read the musings of a priest on the subject. He said if reading Harry Potter leads your children to the occult, you have a much bigger problem than Harry Potter.

Linda said...

I so agree with your comments! We too, are a Catholic family, and we also have enjoyed the HP books and movies. However, I refuse to allow 'Twilight', based on the reviews, and THAT has caused other people to ask me heaps of questions - why one, but not the other? I must write a post about that, actually. HP is a great story, and no, the spells aren't 'real'! As we're studying Latin as part of our curriculum, we've also used the books to learn a few extra Latin words as well. Great post, thankyou!

Adrienne said...

And we shall see a pic of the new kitteh when???

RAnn said...

I reviewed a book on the Christian symbols and themes in HP:

You can read the first chapter here: