Dramatic Rise in the Suicide Rate among Young People in the Last Decade

via NBC News:

Suicides and homicides are on the rise among children, teens and young adults in America, according to a new report that highlights what experts say is a disturbing trend among the young.

The report, published Thursday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, found that from 2007 to 2017, the rate of Americans ages 10 to 24 who died by suicide rose by 56 percent, from 6.8 deaths per 100,000 persons to 10.6. That rate had held steady during the seven years prior, from 2000 to 2007….

Particularly striking was the increase in the rate of suicide among 10- to 14-year-olds. Kids in this age group “have the lowest rates, but they’ve almost tripled between 2007 and 2017,” Curtin said. “At the same time, homicide rates declined” in that age group. Rates of suicide rose from 0.9 deaths per 100,000 persons in 2007 to 2.5 deaths per 100,000 in 2017….

What’s more, studies have shown that the amount of screen time “is associated with increased rates of anxiety, depression and suicidal ideation,” Galynker said….

Not all teens are harmed by negative feedback on social media, Oppenheimer said: “It’s the vulnerable ones who are very sensitive to social evaluation.”….

The increasing rates of suicide and homicide — referred to as violent deaths — among young Americans “represents a silent epidemic that’s been going on for more than 10 years in the U.S. and which has been gaining force,” said Dr. Albert Wu, an internist and professor of health policy and management at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

via the CDC:

The suicide rate for persons aged 15–19 was stable from 2000 to 2007, and then increased 76% from 2007 (6.7) to 2017….The pace of increase was greater from 2014 to 2017 (10% annually, on average) than from 2007 to 2014 (3% annually).

If you or someone you know is in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255, text HOME to 741741 or visit SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources for additional resources.



Why It Matters That Millennials Are Increasingly Walking Away From Religion and Not Returning

Christine Emba writes:

Analyzing 2017 data from the American Time Use Survey, economist Michelle Freeman of the Bureau of Labor Statistics found that while millennials are more highly educated and spend more time working than their older counterparts, they have stepped back dramatically from religious activities.

At the Pew Research Center, studies tracking America’s religious landscape found that although religious beliefs and practice have been declining at a rapid pace for people of all ages, the drop-off has been most pronounced among people ages 23 to 38. In 2019, roughly two-thirds attend worship services “a few times a year” or less, and 4 in 10 say they seldom or never go…

Most of us tend to believe in a life cycle effect: Yes, people may drift away from their church or temple or congregation when they’re young, but they tend to come back when they have kids and things settle down.

Except that’s not what’s happening, either. Millennials are leaving religion — especially Christianity — and they’re not going back….

Yes, actually. Religious and other civic organizations will atrophy — and not just from lack of funds. Faith and practice can’t persevere through our generation without attendance, and neither can the hope they tend to bring. And while that may not seem like a problem now, it will soon. We still want relationships and transcendence, to be part of something bigger than ourselves. Our drive for those things isn’t likely to wane, despite how ambivalent we might feel about ancient liturgies or interminable coffee hours or even pastors whose politics have taken a sharp turn MAGA-wards…..

Actively participating in a congregation means embedding oneself in a community. This involves you in the lives of others and the other way around — their joys and sadnesses, connections and expectations. By leaving religion, we’re shrugging off the ties that bind, not just loosening them temporarily.

6 Rules for Surviving Catholic Twitter Without Losing Your Soul

Mike Jordan Laskey writes:

My first rule is to curate the feed carefully. There are really fantastic, informative Catholic Twitter accounts out there. They are nourishment for my faith. I find them and follow them. I do not follow others. The main downside of careful curation is that it’s easy to turn my feed into an echo chamber, featuring only those I agree with on most topics. I try to let an account’s tone and generosity of spirit lead my curation more than its view on women’s ordination or guitar Masses, for example.

My second rule is to use the “mute” button liberally….

Third, in the words of Deadspin columnist Albert Burneko, it’s OK to log off. I need to get out of there once in a while….

Fourth, borrowing from my friend Michael Bayer and others, I don’t engage those with anonymous accounts. Any semblance of actual conversation on Catholic Twitter requires two real, accountable people.

Fifth, don’t hit “tweet” on posts I wouldn’t dare say in real life. Easy one. And a sixth and related one, always pray more and try to be more like Jesus in my online (and offline) interactions.

Quote of the Day

Pope Francis: “The flame of Jesus’ love makes this joy burst forth and is sufficient to set the whole world ablaze. How could you not be capable of changing this society and accomplishing all you decide to do! Do not be afraid of the future! Dare to dream big!”

Pope Francis: Jesus Came to Light a Fire on the Earth

Embed from Getty Images
via the Vatican:

A fire does not burn by itself; it has to be fed or else it dies; it turns into ashes. If everything continues as it was, if we spend our days content that “this is the way things have always been done”, then the gift vanishes, smothered by the ashes of fear and concern for defending the status quo. Yet “in no way can the Church restrict her pastoral work to the ‘ordinary maintenance’ of those who already know the Gospel of Christ. Missionary outreach is a clear sign of the maturity of an ecclesial community” (BENEDICT XVI, Apostolic Exhortation Verbum Domini, 95). For the Church is always on the move, always going out and never withdrawn into itself. Jesus did not come to bring a gentle evening breeze, but to light a fire on the earth….

The fire of God is warmth that attracts and gathers into unity. It is fed by sharing, not by profits. The fire that destroys, on the other hand, blazes up when people want to promote only their own ideas, form their own group, wipe out differences in the attempt to make everyone and everything uniform.

What is Human Dignity?

This video, produced by the Duquesne University Center for Catholic Faith and Culture as part of the Catholicism and the Common Good project, offers an excellent overview of the concept of human dignity. Check it out: