Commentary on a “Chastity Talk”
Presented by Jason Evert and his fiancée, the now Crystalina Evert
By Alice A. Grayson
May 17, 2009
At the time of this filming, Jason and his fiancée tell the students that they are traveling around the country together speaking about chastity to high school students They do not refer to a chaperone accompaniment. One is left to wonder about the accommodations.
Jason and Crystalina speak to public schools and parochial schools. One would presume the public school talk would not include a discussion of the need for grace and the sacraments. Maybe they are prevented from even mentioning God. I am reminded of St. Augustine ’s quote on chastity: I thought that continence was a matter of our own strength and I knew that I had not the strength. In my foolishness I did not know the word of your scriptures. No one can be continent except as a gift from You. If the Everts think they can teach and form teens in chastity without a mention of grace, they are thwarted from the outset.
In both public and private schools, The Everts sell “chastity” paraphernalia- including buttons and tee-shirts boasting about chastity. Putting aside the indelicacy of wearing chastity outfits, the concept itself is flawed with the Palagian heresy. Everts have also formed several teen “chastity” clubs through their web site, www.P ureLoveClub.com . The clubs too neglect reverence.
One cannot help but like these two young people and realize that their intentions are good. They are sincere and manifest a love of chastity. Their methodology, however, is flawed in that they think they need to present sex as cool and contemporary. They therefore dip to a level which actually results in impurity. This is complicated by their lack of understanding of the nature of love, and its relationship to marriage and the marital embrace. It appears that their view is that all life can be explained by a “Theology of the Body”, as differentiated male and female. The programs lack reserve and reverence when speaking of the intimate sphere of human sexuality.
The presentation has many pitfalls. First of all the Jason’s presentation is laced and held together with humor- done in such a way that he actually trivializes the subject which should be approached with “ trembling reverence.” In fact his opening involves bringing a young man on stage and putting a blonde wig on him. Jason Evert asks, “How far can I go?”- as he hangs him over an edge. He speaks very fast and constantly engages the imagination.
He also acts out, and impersonates what he considers to be the minds of teens, complete with crass street language expressions, such as “hooked up”, ‘emptying the girl”, and “oral sex.” At one point he refers to God as the “stinking auth or of love.”
Jason’s stories engage the teens in imagination of scenes which are not chaste. His instruction on STD’S are invasive and graphic, and he talks about contraception.. He comments that one terrible consequence of pre-marital sex is “pregnancy.” A parent desires to teach that God’s gift of sexuality relates to marriage and children- not disease, problems, and death. Children are God’s gift. Contraceptive health issues may be true, but it is the intrinsic evil of the contraceptive mentality which a good parent imparts day by day. Parents see their children precisely as God’s gift and teach children to value marriage as a sacrament.
Crystalina’s talk, on the other hand, is not at all flippant. She has lost her virginity during high school and shares her experience with the students. Her story is exceedingly intimate and it should not be told to a teen audience. It must also be very difficult for Jason, her then fiancé to repeatedly hear of her sexual peccadilloes. Her story conjures the sexual imagination.
After Crystalina’s segment, Jason returns with a Barby Doll to tackle STDs. His descriptions are graphic, and of course, the whole topic associates sex with problems and disease, rather than marriage and children. He actually talks about oral sex and ages of sexual peak-male and female.
The Everts do not discuss the role that their own parents had in their lives, except one pas sing comment of Crystalina’s about a direction to attend a chastity talk at a retreat. Overall talk undervalues the sacred role of parents and a good Catholic home.
Indeed, unless parents have asked for assistance from the school, the whole program is a violation of the law of the law of subsidiarity. Their discussion of intimate subjects also violates TMHS.
If one views this presentation from the perspective of the students, the pure children have been exposed to a distorted picture of sexuality which betrays its intimate sacred nature. Clearly the presentation has caused some of the youth to lose innocence.
Regarding the sexually active, street wise students, some of them may be moved by God’s grace to re-think their behavior along the lines of objective Christian morality. However, God would need to arrange and provide, and give grace to those students to accept a healing process which would include all the things Healthy Families: Safe Children advocate. That is, the kids would then need “a secure attached relationship” with a parent or parent substitute, some corrective “authoritive parenting,” “rehabilative conscience formation,” and a renewed faith in God. All this is required background for a solid one to one instruction on the intimacy of sexuality and meaning of the sacrament of marriage.
I think it is the belief of all the authors of Healthy Families: Safe Children, that if God provides children with th e latter, there is no need for the Evert type of street talk sex presentation. That is why the focus of formation in chastity should be directed to parents, or to people close to the child who could be helped to become a parental substitute, a mentor. In one sense, our young people develop within themselves a love of chastity as they grow in their love of God and in their love and respect for their parents. It is God’s expectations and their parents’ expectations which become internalized in their hearts, and which make young people choose the good.
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