My feed

to access all these features


Denying consent for religious visits

257 replies

BlueUggs · 09/10/2018 11:23

My son goes to a fantastic private school, which is catholic but we aren't catholic....
Since he entered year 7, I feel they have really started to push Catholicism onto my child. I have just refused consent for him to attend the local catholic church on a visit next week because I feel they are trying to convert him and he knows enough for year 3 from what they tell him at school.
We knew the school was catholic when we sent him there but didn't realise quite how much they were going to push it.....

OP posts:
Bowerbird5 · 09/10/2018 13:59

If he was in a state school he would also learn about Baptism and visit a church it is part of the curriculum/

ainsisoisje · 09/10/2018 14:00

I went to catholic school and the kids like myself who were raised Catholic took it all with a healthy dose of sceptism. The kids who weren’t catholic openly rolled their eyes. It does strike me as a bit odd how people are against faith school until they are the best option in the area as ours was. I can’t imagine sending my kids to a Jewish or Islamic school and then moaning about a faith component. That’s just bonkers and also quite exploitative on your part.

OlderThanAverageforMN · 09/10/2018 14:00

I'm surprised you didn't have to give consent, or go to church yourself to get in to this school

It's a private school, so no, not IME. It's more about bums on seats.
DD's Catholic Primary only had about 1/4 Catholic children, rest were CofE or nothing, like mine, not baptised or church goers.

LibraryLurker · 09/10/2018 14:00

OP just one question, how many of your child's classmates are non-Catholic? Are any other parents making the same decision as you re the church visit? Have you asked your son if he would like to go. I'm just worried that you may be making it "forbidden fruit" and he may end up resenting your action, especially if other non-Catholic children are going to the visit.

BlueUggs · 09/10/2018 14:03

@LibraryLurker - only max 50% of the children in his class are catholic.....
I haven't asked other parents in the school if they are sending their children. It can be a bit cliquey so I'm careful what I talk to other parents about. I have a group of lovely friends who are parents at the school - 2 of them are catholic and 2 aren't...
I can see from the thread that I am probably BU so I will have a chat with his teacher to see exactly what the visit entails and probably reassess.

OP posts:
Knitwit101 · 09/10/2018 14:06

If he is not going to be taking FHC then withdraw him from all classes relating to that. They must make alternative provision for other kids who are not taking it. He can't be the only one.

I know you say he takes things very literally, but I think we don't give our kids very much credit in these situations. We start wailing about brainwashing and all. But many of us will have had a lot of religion in our upbringing and we have managed to make our own choices.
My parents were, and still are, active church members, my brother was in boys brigade, I was in the junior church choir. As an adult I have chosen to keep attending church, my brother has chosen the exact opposite. Your son will grow up to make his own choices.
I'm not Catholic, I do find the Catholic idea of small children having sinned a bit odd. But as for the rest of it, he will either want to follow a faith as an adult or he will not. He's not going to be scarred for life by it, he's really not. He will make his own choices based on what feels right for him.

PaulDacrreRimsGeese · 09/10/2018 14:09

Agree it would be a good idea to speak to his teacher if you want reassurance and information. I'd have advised doing that before you started him there tbh, as a non RC parent in an RC school, but better late than never.

It is, however, a really standard thing for kids about this age to do in an RC school. If they're making their communion this year, they're probably also making their first confession soon. Those are sacraments, like baptism, and baptism is the first sacrament so that's what tends to kick off the topic. Baptism basically frames the whole topic (they may also be doing a renewal of baptismal promises this year, some schools do it the same year as communion). You will look like an eejit if you frame it as thinking they're trying to convert him.

anonymousbird · 09/10/2018 14:13

One visit, next week, part of a wider RS education perhaps?

Babdoc · 09/10/2018 14:13

I’m amused that you seem to think any Christian religion is just an optional activity for an hour on Sundays - it is an entire creed that affects how we live every aspect of our lives. A religious school will reflect that in every part of its teaching.
Having said that, what are you worrying about? Your son will be taught to love others as himself, to try to be kind and good, and to be sorry when he does wrong.
Which of those things do you regard as damaging, or would prefer your son not to be taught?! Being a good Christian is an excellent moral basis for life.

CheeseTheDay · 09/10/2018 14:19

My children all attend a private C of E school (one that has both a junior and senior school). We are a secular/humanist Jewish family.

Whilst not compulsory, attendance at certain chapel services (such as the end of term service, or the carol service) is 'strongly encouraged', and my children have always chosen to attend. It hasn't had any influence on my children at all. My eldest child, DS1 (15) has been attending these services for years, and he attends because he finds it interesting (and educational, to some extent), but never sings along to the hymns or carols. He says it's nice to see others express their faith, and he especially loves the spirit of the Christmas carol service, but that 'religion isn't for him'. Job done!

bumblingbovine49 · 09/10/2018 14:21

Yes!! He takes everything literally - like telling his friends he would be a cannibal to "eat the body of Christ"'s difficult to make him understand that it is a symbol....

But it isn't a symbol, not for RCs.

Yup. Transubstantiation. One of the most fundamental differences between High Anglicanism and Catholicism (though there are others)

RC believe that the bread/wine actually does become the body and blood of Christ . It is not symbolic, they believe it actually happens and receiving or eating it, is a direct grace from God. When you take the Holy Communion , you are actually communing/joining with God (hence the words Holy Communion).

It isn't canalbalism, because God is not human within the bread and wine so you are not eating a person's flesh and blood, you are eating God's flesh and blood which is a sort of resurrected and transfigured “super body”. Also canabalism involves eating dead flesh, the Eucharist is life, so you are eating life not death.

Holy Communion is an incredibly sacred act to Catholics. This is why FHC is so important to them and why they spend so much time preparing children for it. It has nothing to do with converting your child, although Catholics do believe that the only sure way to God is through the Catholic faith.

(I am not practising any more BTW Grin).

Poodles1980 · 09/10/2018 14:24

It’s a bit insulting to actual Catholics to take the piss and send your child to a school when you don’t respect their religion and think your gullible child will fall for their lies or whatever you think the are going to do to him. I think you are in the wrong school. You should have done more research and realized that Catholic schools tend to have religion as a huge part of the school day and it is integrated into the whole ethos of the school

Fatted · 09/10/2018 14:26

Did you not realise during the admissions process that the school would be focusing on their faith? How did you get in if you are not of the faith? Surely you have to be a member of the church?

Toddlerteaplease · 09/10/2018 14:26

YABU. At 7 they will be starting to prepare the children for first Holy Communion and first Reconciliation. That is why it is being pushed. The school will probably take a very dim view If you try and withdraw him.

Wherearemycarkeys · 09/10/2018 14:27

YABVU and you should not have sent your son to a Catholic school. They are not "pushing" religion on your son- they are a Catholic school which is behaving like a Catholic school. I'm surprised they accepted him into the school - Catholic schools in my area don't accept non Catholics - rightly so, in my opinion.

BlueUggs · 09/10/2018 14:31

@Babdoc - you know nothing about me or my upbringing so saying what you have said is ridiculous. I don't for one second think it is about an hour on a Sunday!! My childhood was spent in a charismatic Christian home - trust me, I'm fully aware it's not just about Sunday!
Maybe that's why I'm concerned about his being brainwashed.....

OP posts:
Wherearemycarkeys · 09/10/2018 14:31

Also you are shoving your opinion down his throat just as much, by banning him from the trip. You're also being unfair on your son by making him feel left out and excluded from his peers. School trips are exciting at his age, regardless of where they're to! It's very cruel to not allow him to go when all his friends will be

BlueUggs · 09/10/2018 14:32

@Fatted - it's a PRIVATE RC school - they'd very quickly close if they only accepted catholic children!!

OP posts:
Lweji · 09/10/2018 14:35

My childhood was spent in a charismatic Christian home - trust me, I'm fully aware it's not just about Sunday! Maybe that's why I'm concerned about his being brainwashed.....

For all the faults of the Catholic Church, it's not quite the same... At least not the mainstream version in most parishes. Grin

Knitwit101 · 09/10/2018 14:48

Maybe that's why I'm concerned about his being brainwashed

He will not be brainwashed. He will grow into a rational adult who makes up his own mind. My 4 yr old thinks dogs can talk and sort out emergencies because that's what happens in Paw Patrol. My 10 yr old still this a fairy comes and takes his teeth from under his pillow. They will all grow up to be perfectly sane and able to reach their own decisions.

ohshitonit · 09/10/2018 14:52

Completely unreasonable, you're basically trying to take advantage of the benefits of the school. He shouldn't be there if not a Catholic.

PillowOfSociety · 09/10/2018 15:02

"Coupled with the dire warnings about accidentally taking communion"

EEEK! I have accidentally taken communion (am baptised, not as a catholic, but am atheist) ...what can happen? Shock

mathanxiety · 09/10/2018 15:08

Only someone who knew nothing whatsoever about Catholicism would compare it to Charismatic Christianity.

All Christian denominations are not the same.

You need to go to the school and talk to the HT and do the due diligence you should have done several years ago

PillowOfSociety · 09/10/2018 15:09

Completely unreasonable, you're basically trying to take advantage of the benefits of the school

Haha - I imagine the school are basically trying to take advantage of the fees that the OP is paying!

And if the state were paying...well, why shouldn't a taxpayer take advantage?

user1495390685 · 09/10/2018 15:21

OP, a lot of people seem to be going nuts on this thread, especially those threatening to go to confession for offending you! Lordy! What a load of BS. YANBU to question this privately and be on your guard. He's your boy and your responsibility and only you know what's best for him. I'd grab a copy of the curriculum and see whether you can swot up (if you need to) to answer any questions, and not exclude him in the meantime.

Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.