Many Catholic faithful who attend “Life Teen” and are even involved with the ministry may be asking “well what exactly is wrong with it if we are leading teens closer to Christ? Isn’t this what Pope John Paul II called for when he mentioned the New Evangelization?”
Even though I agree that Life Teen does have great intentions as in keeping Catholic Teens surrounded around the Catholic faith, there are actually many problems we see in the ministry in itself.
The History of Lifeteen
As Wikipedia states:
Life Teen was established in 1985 at St. Timothy’s Parish in Mesa, Arizona to “lead teens closer to Christ.” Founder and then-priest Dale Fushek believed that a new approach was needed to evangelize the Catholic youth in the area. The goal was to revolutionize youth ministry and bring the message of Jesus Christ to teenagers in a way they could understand. Fushek was later excommunicated and laicized following an abuse scandal and opening of a non-denominational Protestant oriented worship center in the Phoenix area.
We can see that this movement in itself has only put itself in schismatic actions, and is even founded by a priest who can no longer function in the Catholic Church. The fact that this same priest founded a non denominational church while still running this ministry explains why they have a very solid Protestant attitude when it comes to worship as well as songs they use in their schismatic Masses that contradict the GIRM. A good example of liturgical abuse is gathering around the altar, clapping during the liturgy, adding songs that were not approved by the Church, as well as “Youth bands” where the youth initiate songs into the very watered down liturgy by adding guitars and other instruments that are not necessary for Catholic worship.
For those who believe Vatican II called for this inside the Church, I would love to quote Sacrosanctum Concilium Chapter 1 for the general norm of the liturgy which states:
” Therefore no other person, even if he be a priest, may add, remove, or change anything in the liturgy on his own authority.”
To add such actions to the liturgy that contradict the Catholic faith is not only disobedient to the church, but is also schismatic.