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The Right To Evangelize At School?

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I noticed a new advertisement today, from the Alliance Defending Freedom for Faith and Justice, and I clicked on it to see what it's about.  It's about letting people know their rights regarding faith and public school.  I read the FAQ and according to this group students have the right to pray, read scripture, and EVANGELIZE.

Evangelize is what I want to talk about.  I fully understand that kids are permitted to pray in school, wear religious gear, read holy books, etc.  It's the evangelizing that I question, because it calls into question where one person's right to religious freedom clash with another person's right to religious freedom.  Would you want your non-Christian child to be evangelized by another child at a public school?  I think that crosses the line.

What do you all think?

by on Dec. 4, 2012 at 6:04 AM
Replies (331-340):
macbudsmom
by Silver Member on Dec. 5, 2012 at 5:03 PM

Even though I can never see myself turning away from my God, I believe that its always good to study, question, and explore.  I think too often people try to put our God in a little box and say this is who He is and what He has done and why He has done it.  To me, our God is too big and awesome to squish into that little box.

I am actually studying Kabbalah or Jewish mysticism now.  Not to replace my Catholic faith, but as a way to enhance it.  It definitely has some different concepts that some of my Christian friends find offensive and suggest that I am going down a dangerous path.  I disagree.  God is so much more than just one religion or faith.  Why can't we learn from other belief systems as well.  = )

Quoting punky3175:

Thank you. He is still trying g to find his path and I've told him to stop engaging in religious discussions until he's done his own research and figured out what he truly believes and can actually back it up. Which may not be fair because faith doesn't have a whole lot of reason, huh? :-) but he takes after his father and doesn't always think before he speaks whether he actual knows what he's talking about or not.

Quoting macbudsmom:

Thanks.  I hope things improve for your son.  = )


Quoting punky3175:

I keep telling him to not let the individuals destroy his opinion of the whole. Christianity has a lot of wonderful things to teach and the Christians I know personally are some truly wonderful people who are strong in their faith. I love seeing that.



Quoting macbudsmom:

I am sorry your son has to deal with that.  He shouldn't have to at school or anywhere else.  It gives true Christians a bad rap. 



Quoting punky3175:

It all depends on how they go about it. As you've said you and your children would end the conversation if the person you were talking to said they were not interested. I don't have a problem with that and i in fact, greatly respect and appreciate it.





For the record, I would never tell my kids to tell another kid that. In fact, a few weeks ago I told my son to stop talking about religion at school because he was wanting to do what I said below. He was sick of the kids at school constantly bothering him about Christianity. It's not his path but they don't seem to want to back off from it.






Quoting macbudsmom:

The example of calling someone's beliefs ridiculous or stolen is rude and disrespectful.

My kids simply talking about their faith is harming no one. 




Quoting punky3175:

Roma - you're a big ole scaredy cat. And I'm a big ole meanie because we aren't Christian and can separate religion from our lives. And I agree - having conversations with some people is impossible because they refuse to see anything but their own biased view. But if your child started telling their child(ren) that religion is ridiculous or mine started talking about how Chrisitianity 'stole' a bunch of Pagan traditions and Christ's birth story is just rehashing many old Pagan birth stories, they'd be all up in arms. Really does blow my mind but reconfirms I'm on the right path for me.







Quoting romalove:


Quoting macbudsmom:

Usually when people shut down a conversation its because they have nothing to come back with.  Gotcha.





Quoting romalove:


Quoting Claire-Huxtable:

No














Quoting romalove:


Quoting macbudsmom:

How exactly do you suggest we stop it?  Do we also stop the kids from talking about there favorite tv shows or video games we disagree with?  Where and how do you stop it?

You see no difference between talking about pop culture and trying to convert others to your religion?






Another end to the conversation.  You don't see the difference between converting kids and taste level.  We won't be able to come to any common ground.


No, I continued when you said something answerable.  See above.  When the discussion is converting kids at school is akin to pop culture choices, we are not even on the same planet for discussion.





RhiannonMare
by on Dec. 5, 2012 at 5:05 PM

When I was in college there was a bridge that we'd cross to get from one side of the campus to the other. There were always two guys there, one walking in one way and the other walking in the other way, raising up their Bibles and preaching away. Most students would ignore them, but some would watch them. One time one of the preachers turned to one of the female students and called her a whore for the way she was dressed (this was in the south in the late spring when it's in the high 80s. She was wearing shorts, a t-shirt and sandals), saying that she was only at school to seduce men away from their students, that she was a scarlet woman, blah, blah, blah. One of the male students came to her defense, told the preacher to back off. He did, but it could've gotten very ugly very quickly. And BTW, these two preachers were also students at the college.

Quoting romalove:


Quoting Claire-Huxtable:

You just want to control certain kinds of speech you aren't comfortable with.

Public school is place where ideas are exchanged.   And not just by the teacher.   There is nothing wrong and never will be anything wrong with students spreading the word of their faith or lack of.

Quoting romalove:


Quoting Claire-Huxtable:

has anyone on here said these kids couldn't tell someone off?

Not that I have read, but I could be wrong.

I have seen numerous people state they should not be allowed to evangelize at school though.

Quoting romalove:


Quoting TranquilMind:

A child absolutely has the right to evangelize.  Few do.  A person's right to free speech does not stop at the school door.  Likewise, other children have the right to not listen, if they choose not to do so. 

Teachers cannot evangelize, or anyone in authority. 

If I had a kid that might be evangelized in a public school they would be instructed to tell off the kid trying to convert them, not just not listen.

My kid has free speech too.


Right.

They shouldn't be allowed to evangelize at a public school because it isn't appropriate.

It also leads to dissent.

I'm annoyed at the very idea that people think it's OK to use public school as a way to spread religion instead of a place to learn actual factual stuff.

In another thread we're having long discussions about how crappy the school system is.  Focus should be on fixing that and not making "more" kids religious.


I think evangelizing crosses a line.

However, if that's what is done, then I think it's perfectly fine for those doing the evangelizing to be met with a hostile response (verbal, of course).



punky3175
by Punky on Dec. 5, 2012 at 5:07 PM
That's actually how I feel as well. :-) I think exploring and learning about other viewpoints can strengthen your faith regardless of which God(desses) you honor/worship.

Quoting macbudsmom:

Even though I can never see myself turning away from my God, I believe that its always good to study, question, and explore.  I think too often people try to put our God in a little box and say this is who He is and what He has done and why He has done it.  To me, our God is to big and awesome to squish into that little box.

I am actually studying Kabbalah or Jewish mysticism now.  Not to replace my Catholic faith, but as a way to enhance it.  It definitely has some different concepts that some of my Christian friends find offensive and suggest that I am going down a dangerous path.  I disagree.  God is so much more than just one religion or faith.  Why can't we learn from other belief systems as well.  = )


Quoting punky3175:

Thank you. He is still trying g to find his path and I've told him to stop engaging in religious discussions until he's done his own research and figured out what he truly believes and can actually back it up. Which may not be fair because faith doesn't have a whole lot of reason, huh? :-) but he takes after his father and doesn't always think before he speaks whether he actual knows what he's talking about or not.



Quoting macbudsmom:

Thanks.  I hope things improve for your son.  = )



Quoting punky3175:

I keep telling him to not let the individuals destroy his opinion of the whole. Christianity has a lot of wonderful things to teach and the Christians I know personally are some truly wonderful people who are strong in their faith. I love seeing that.





Quoting macbudsmom:

I am sorry your son has to deal with that.  He shouldn't have to at school or anywhere else.  It gives true Christians a bad rap. 




Quoting punky3175:

It all depends on how they go about it. As you've said you and your children would end the conversation if the person you were talking to said they were not interested. I don't have a problem with that and i in fact, greatly respect and appreciate it.







For the record, I would never tell my kids to tell another kid that. In fact, a few weeks ago I told my son to stop talking about religion at school because he was wanting to do what I said below. He was sick of the kids at school constantly bothering him about Christianity. It's not his path but they don't seem to want to back off from it.








Quoting macbudsmom:

The example of calling someone's beliefs ridiculous or stolen is rude and disrespectful.

My kids simply talking about their faith is harming no one. 





Quoting punky3175:

Roma - you're a big ole scaredy cat. And I'm a big ole meanie because we aren't Christian and can separate religion from our lives. And I agree - having conversations with some people is impossible because they refuse to see anything but their own biased view. But if your child started telling their child(ren) that religion is ridiculous or mine started talking about how Chrisitianity 'stole' a bunch of Pagan traditions and Christ's birth story is just rehashing many old Pagan birth stories, they'd be all up in arms. Really does blow my mind but reconfirms I'm on the right path for me.









Quoting romalove:


Quoting macbudsmom:

Usually when people shut down a conversation its because they have nothing to come back with.  Gotcha.






Quoting romalove:


Quoting Claire-Huxtable:

No

















Quoting romalove:


Quoting macbudsmom:

How exactly do you suggest we stop it?  Do we also stop the kids from talking about there favorite tv shows or video games we disagree with?  Where and how do you stop it?

You see no difference between talking about pop culture and trying to convert others to your religion?







Another end to the conversation.  You don't see the difference between converting kids and taste level.  We won't be able to come to any common ground.


No, I continued when you said something answerable.  See above.  When the discussion is converting kids at school is akin to pop culture choices, we are not even on the same planet for discussion.





Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
romalove
by Roma on Dec. 5, 2012 at 5:08 PM


Quoting RhiannonMare:

When I was in college there was a bridge that we'd cross to get from one side of the campus to the other. There were always two guys there, one walking in one way and the other walking in the other way, raising up their Bibles and preaching away. Most students would ignore them, but some would watch them. One time one of the preachers turned to one of the female students and called her a whore for the way she was dressed (this was in the south in the late spring when it's in the high 80s. She was wearing shorts, a t-shirt and sandals), saying that she was only at school to seduce men away from their students, that she was a scarlet woman, blah, blah, blah. One of the male students came to her defense, told the preacher to back off. He did, but it could've gotten very ugly very quickly. And BTW, these two preachers were also students at the college.

Quoting romalove:


Quoting Claire-Huxtable:

You just want to control certain kinds of speech you aren't comfortable with.

Public school is place where ideas are exchanged.   And not just by the teacher.   There is nothing wrong and never will be anything wrong with students spreading the word of their faith or lack of.

Quoting romalove:


Quoting Claire-Huxtable:

has anyone on here said these kids couldn't tell someone off?

Not that I have read, but I could be wrong.

I have seen numerous people state they should not be allowed to evangelize at school though.

Quoting romalove:


Quoting TranquilMind:

A child absolutely has the right to evangelize.  Few do.  A person's right to free speech does not stop at the school door.  Likewise, other children have the right to not listen, if they choose not to do so. 

Teachers cannot evangelize, or anyone in authority. 

If I had a kid that might be evangelized in a public school they would be instructed to tell off the kid trying to convert them, not just not listen.

My kid has free speech too.


Right.

They shouldn't be allowed to evangelize at a public school because it isn't appropriate.

It also leads to dissent.

I'm annoyed at the very idea that people think it's OK to use public school as a way to spread religion instead of a place to learn actual factual stuff.

In another thread we're having long discussions about how crappy the school system is.  Focus should be on fixing that and not making "more" kids religious.


I think evangelizing crosses a line.

However, if that's what is done, then I think it's perfectly fine for those doing the evangelizing to be met with a hostile response (verbal, of course).



Well, that's another shining example of how witnessing for the Lord brings more to the flock.

What can I say.  There has to be a better way.

macbudsmom
by Silver Member on Dec. 5, 2012 at 5:12 PM

I love that you added (desses).  My Kabbalah friends have really pushed or encouraged me to see that God has a feminine side too.  I believe they call her the Shekinah.  They also bring in astrology as an important tool to knowing God and finding your path.

Quoting punky3175:

That's actually how I feel as well. :-) I think exploring and learning about other viewpoints can strengthen your faith regardless of which God(desses) you honor/worship.

Quoting macbudsmom:

Even though I can never see myself turning away from my God, I believe that its always good to study, question, and explore.  I think too often people try to put our God in a little box and say this is who He is and what He has done and why He has done it.  To me, our God is to big and awesome to squish into that little box.

I am actually studying Kabbalah or Jewish mysticism now.  Not to replace my Catholic faith, but as a way to enhance it.  It definitely has some different concepts that some of my Christian friends find offensive and suggest that I am going down a dangerous path.  I disagree.  God is so much more than just one religion or faith.  Why can't we learn from other belief systems as well.  = )


Quoting punky3175:

Thank you. He is still trying g to find his path and I've told him to stop engaging in religious discussions until he's done his own research and figured out what he truly believes and can actually back it up. Which may not be fair because faith doesn't have a whole lot of reason, huh? :-) but he takes after his father and doesn't always think before he speaks whether he actual knows what he's talking about or not.



Quoting macbudsmom:

Thanks.  I hope things improve for your son.  = )



Quoting punky3175:

I keep telling him to not let the individuals destroy his opinion of the whole. Christianity has a lot of wonderful things to teach and the Christians I know personally are some truly wonderful people who are strong in their faith. I love seeing that.





Quoting macbudsmom:

I am sorry your son has to deal with that.  He shouldn't have to at school or anywhere else.  It gives true Christians a bad rap. 




Quoting punky3175:

It all depends on how they go about it. As you've said you and your children would end the conversation if the person you were talking to said they were not interested. I don't have a problem with that and i in fact, greatly respect and appreciate it.







For the record, I would never tell my kids to tell another kid that. In fact, a few weeks ago I told my son to stop talking about religion at school because he was wanting to do what I said below. He was sick of the kids at school constantly bothering him about Christianity. It's not his path but they don't seem to want to back off from it.








Quoting macbudsmom:

The example of calling someone's beliefs ridiculous or stolen is rude and disrespectful.

My kids simply talking about their faith is harming no one. 





Quoting punky3175:

Roma - you're a big ole scaredy cat. And I'm a big ole meanie because we aren't Christian and can separate religion from our lives. And I agree - having conversations with some people is impossible because they refuse to see anything but their own biased view. But if your child started telling their child(ren) that religion is ridiculous or mine started talking about how Chrisitianity 'stole' a bunch of Pagan traditions and Christ's birth story is just rehashing many old Pagan birth stories, they'd be all up in arms. Really does blow my mind but reconfirms I'm on the right path for me.









Quoting romalove:


Quoting macbudsmom:

Usually when people shut down a conversation its because they have nothing to come back with.  Gotcha.






Quoting romalove:


Quoting Claire-Huxtable:

No

















Quoting romalove:


Quoting macbudsmom:

How exactly do you suggest we stop it?  Do we also stop the kids from talking about there favorite tv shows or video games we disagree with?  Where and how do you stop it?

You see no difference between talking about pop culture and trying to convert others to your religion?







Another end to the conversation.  You don't see the difference between converting kids and taste level.  We won't be able to come to any common ground.


No, I continued when you said something answerable.  See above.  When the discussion is converting kids at school is akin to pop culture choices, we are not even on the same planet for discussion.






RhiannonMare
by on Dec. 5, 2012 at 5:13 PM
1 mom liked this

Playing a video game is a form of entertainment. Religion is the way you conduct your life. It's a belief system, a set of values, morals, etc. Games are something you do for awhile, set aside and live your life and then come back to later.

Then again, some kids grow up into adults, living in their mom's basements, playing games and getting Cheeto dust all over their keyboards.

Quoting macbudsmom:

Quoting romalove:


Quoting macbudsmom:

Kids are subjected to all sorts of things at school that I may find inappropriate -- hair styles, clothing choices, games, questionable morals, etc...  So I have 2 choices:  Home school them or teach them right from wrong in our home and how to cope with these outside influences.


We all have those choices.

It is very difficult to make people who think they are doing the world a favor by sharing their faith understand how inappropriate it is to actively evangelize in a public school setting.

And how unlike the other examples you give are.

Why is religion different?

Lets say Joe loves Call of Duty and talks about it at school and maybe even has a call of duty folder etc...  Joey on the otherhand loves God and talks about the Bible and maybe even brings one to school...  Why do you see those things as "unlike/"


Sekirei
by Nari Trickster on Dec. 5, 2012 at 5:14 PM
1 mom liked this

I wonder... 

does my child have the right to go to school without someone attempting to convert him? If he does.. where does the next child's rights begin?'

Or, why does the child that is evangelizing have more important rights than my son? 

(And in all honesty, I find any form of Evangelizing to be harassment.. or bullying, depending on the approach)

punky3175
by Punky on Dec. 5, 2012 at 5:14 PM
1 mom liked this
I love how closely so many of the religions resemble each other. I added Goddess because, as a Pagan, we worship (and work on balancing) the masculine and feminine so the Divine therefore has masculine and feminine aspects.

Sorry Roma - don't mean to hijack your thread.


Quoting macbudsmom:

I love that you added (desses).  My Kabbalah friends have really pushed or encouraged me to see that God has a feminine side too.  I believe they call her the Shekinah.  They also bring in astrology as an important tool to knowing God and finding your path.


Quoting punky3175:

That's actually how I feel as well. :-) I think exploring and learning about other viewpoints can strengthen your faith regardless of which God(desses) you honor/worship.



Quoting macbudsmom:

Even though I can never see myself turning away from my God, I believe that its always good to study, question, and explore.  I think too often people try to put our God in a little box and say this is who He is and what He has done and why He has done it.  To me, our God is to big and awesome to squish into that little box.

I am actually studying Kabbalah or Jewish mysticism now.  Not to replace my Catholic faith, but as a way to enhance it.  It definitely has some different concepts that some of my Christian friends find offensive and suggest that I am going down a dangerous path.  I disagree.  God is so much more than just one religion or faith.  Why can't we learn from other belief systems as well.  = )



Quoting punky3175:

Thank you. He is still trying g to find his path and I've told him to stop engaging in religious discussions until he's done his own research and figured out what he truly believes and can actually back it up. Which may not be fair because faith doesn't have a whole lot of reason, huh? :-) but he takes after his father and doesn't always think before he speaks whether he actual knows what he's talking about or not.





Quoting macbudsmom:

Thanks.  I hope things improve for your son.  = )




Quoting punky3175:

I keep telling him to not let the individuals destroy his opinion of the whole. Christianity has a lot of wonderful things to teach and the Christians I know personally are some truly wonderful people who are strong in their faith. I love seeing that.







Quoting macbudsmom:

I am sorry your son has to deal with that.  He shouldn't have to at school or anywhere else.  It gives true Christians a bad rap. 





Quoting punky3175:

It all depends on how they go about it. As you've said you and your children would end the conversation if the person you were talking to said they were not interested. I don't have a problem with that and i in fact, greatly respect and appreciate it.









For the record, I would never tell my kids to tell another kid that. In fact, a few weeks ago I told my son to stop talking about religion at school because he was wanting to do what I said below. He was sick of the kids at school constantly bothering him about Christianity. It's not his path but they don't seem to want to back off from it.










Quoting macbudsmom:

The example of calling someone's beliefs ridiculous or stolen is rude and disrespectful.

My kids simply talking about their faith is harming no one. 






Quoting punky3175:

Roma - you're a big ole scaredy cat. And I'm a big ole meanie because we aren't Christian and can separate religion from our lives. And I agree - having conversations with some people is impossible because they refuse to see anything but their own biased view. But if your child started telling their child(ren) that religion is ridiculous or mine started talking about how Chrisitianity 'stole' a bunch of Pagan traditions and Christ's birth story is just rehashing many old Pagan birth stories, they'd be all up in arms. Really does blow my mind but reconfirms I'm on the right path for me.











Quoting romalove:


Quoting macbudsmom:

Usually when people shut down a conversation its because they have nothing to come back with.  Gotcha.







Quoting romalove:


Quoting Claire-Huxtable:

No




















Quoting romalove:


Quoting macbudsmom:

How exactly do you suggest we stop it?  Do we also stop the kids from talking about there favorite tv shows or video games we disagree with?  Where and how do you stop it?

You see no difference between talking about pop culture and trying to convert others to your religion?








Another end to the conversation.  You don't see the difference between converting kids and taste level.  We won't be able to come to any common ground.


No, I continued when you said something answerable.  See above.  When the discussion is converting kids at school is akin to pop culture choices, we are not even on the same planet for discussion.






Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
macbudsmom
by Silver Member on Dec. 5, 2012 at 5:16 PM

lol I hate Cheeto dust.  My kids get mad because I won't buy cheetos for that very reason.  All over fingers, clothing, keyboards... = )

Quoting RhiannonMare:

Playing a video game is a form of entertainment. Religion is the way you conduct your life. It's a belief system, a set of values, morals, etc. Games are something you do for awhile, set aside and live your life and then come back to later.

Then again, some kids grow up into adults, living in their mom's basements, playing games and getting Cheeto dust all over their keyboards.

Quoting macbudsmom:

Quoting romalove:


Quoting macbudsmom:

Kids are subjected to all sorts of things at school that I may find inappropriate -- hair styles, clothing choices, games, questionable morals, etc...  So I have 2 choices:  Home school them or teach them right from wrong in our home and how to cope with these outside influences.


We all have those choices.

It is very difficult to make people who think they are doing the world a favor by sharing their faith understand how inappropriate it is to actively evangelize in a public school setting.

And how unlike the other examples you give are.

Why is religion different?

Lets say Joe loves Call of Duty and talks about it at school and maybe even has a call of duty folder etc...  Joey on the otherhand loves God and talks about the Bible and maybe even brings one to school...  Why do you see those things as "unlike/"



romalove
by Roma on Dec. 5, 2012 at 5:16 PM


Quoting Sekirei:

I wonder... 

does my child have the right to go to school without someone attempting to convert him? If he does.. where does the next child's rights begin?'

Or, why does the child that is evangelizing have more important rights than my son? 

(And in all honesty, I find any form of Evangelizing to be harassment.. or bullying, depending on the approach)

I agree with you.

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