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Does freedom of religion stop at a Catholic school door?

I am reading about this mom who wouldn't uncover in a Catholic school. I know it wasn't in America but so many people were talking about religious intolerance. If it is a religious based school/building do they really have to allow others to practice their religious beliefs? I am not just talking about a head scarf, I mean in terms of everything. Like saying there will be religion classes teaching only what Catholics believe, preaching against abortion and so on...

Is it really fair to make a religious school accept other religions?


Asked by Anonymous at 9:24 PM on Jul. 1, 2009 in Religion & Beliefs

This question is closed.
Answers (9)
  • Hmmm ... I went to 14 different Catholic high schools, from Kindergarten through High School (my dad was in the Air Force)

    I NEVER witnessed religious intolerance. Many of my classmates were quite openly NOT Catholic; they were just there for a better education. So they did not join us in attending daily Mass, etc. As kids we didn't proselytize each other, so I never had someone trying to convince me of the value of their religion any more than I ever did that to someone else.

    My experience of the Catholic community is that it's pretty comfortable with itself, not needing to prove anything or force others to approve of it.

    In Protestant churches, I experienced (through sermons and Sunday Bible courses I attended with friends as an adult) an odd anxiety about proving they're "right", or guarding against un-sanctioned interpretations. I found this puzzling in 4 different groups.

    Catholic is accepting - of others AND itself.

    Answer by waldorfmom at 4:52 AM on Jul. 2, 2009

  • I believe that in a Private School they can teach whatever their views are.... as part of the history lesson they may learn of Islam and so on and so forth but the teach and practice the religion they scribe to.... so a Catholic school will have the Catechisem (sp?) taught... a Jewish school teaches from the Torah... the Muslim schools teach from the Koran??? I went to Catholic grade school and we had religion every day and Mass everyday too but they still taught about Jews Muslims Budist everything ...but we practice Catholisism... we had some Jewish kids in my school too... 2 of them took religion and the other 2 were picked up early and exempt from the class

    Answer by MELRN at 9:31 PM on Jul. 1, 2009

  • If it recieves any funding from the government then they need to allow other religions.

    If it is a private school funded by parents, then any teacher who decides to work there should know what they are getting into and yes, they have every right to refuse employment to someone who wants to practice their religion in school if it conflicts with the schools religion.

    (I'm tired so I don't know if that made sense or not)

    Answer by Petie at 9:32 PM on Jul. 1, 2009

  • I agree with Petie.

    There's a difference between private and public schools.

    I've got a problem with entire nations making rules about religious garb, but private schools can enforce whatever dress code they want.

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:42 PM on Jul. 1, 2009

  • if you want to practice your religion and your not catholic then dont go to a catholic school.

    Answer by Ginanne at 9:53 PM on Jul. 1, 2009

  • I believe in the right to Freedom of Association for private organizations. So long as they as not receiving tax dollars, they have the right to conduct business, as it pertains to their religion, as they see fit. People who disagree also have the right to not patronize them and choose different services.

    Do I think it is a good idea for the religious school to force their beliefs on others and demand conformity? Not really. But I guess that's their decision to make. I went to a Christian school that was overly represented in one certain denomination at one point. It was a denomination very different than my own. I was made to feel like a bad person because I wouldn't conform to what everyone else was doing and believing. To this day I have stereotypes in my mind of that denomination that I just can't shake. Forcing and manipulating people are NOT good methods at winning them over and having them see it your way.

    Answer by NovemberLove at 10:05 PM on Jul. 1, 2009

  • (cont.) that being said, my school was not an official "this denomination" school. It was SUPPOSED to be non-denominational with EVERY denomination welcome to learn neutrally within its walls. It's just not the way it happened lol.

    Answer by NovemberLove at 10:07 PM on Jul. 1, 2009

  • From my understanding, the incident you're referring to where the mother asked to remove her head scarf was asked to do it as a matter of identification and security and not so much about religious intolerance. There was even an article in the NY Times last year about how respectful Catholics schools in France try to be for Muslim students.  Catholic Bishops in England talked about opening prayer rooms in Catholic schools for Muslims.  (continued)


    Answer by eringobrough at 10:41 PM on Jul. 1, 2009

  • A religious school should be able to practice their religion and I don't think they should be required to make accommodations that would be contrary to their faith. But most Catholic schools I think are respectful of students who are not Catholic. I know non-Catholics attend my kid's Catholics schools and they are allowed to do other things if they do not want to participate in the religious activites.

    Answer by eringobrough at 10:43 PM on Jul. 1, 2009