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Penal Laws 2012


galteeman

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Nov 6, 2010
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2,380
I was reading about Edmund Burke a while back and how his dad may have been a Roman Catholic pretending to be a Protestant in order to avoid the penal laws. His mother was a Catholic and it seems likely although it can’t be verified with certainty that his father was also a Catholic who officially converted to Protestant in order to qualify as a lawyer. So it is possible that Edmund Burke himself may have been pretending to be a Protestant seeing as his people were RC.
Anyway it struck me that back then the penal laws relating to education could have been easily overcome by the Catholics who could have received unofficial educations at home or in so called hedge schools or alternatively they could have received Protestant educations by pretending to be Protestants as may well have been the case for Edmund Burke. So I guess they would have got on with life in this way grinning and bearing things.

The point is that while I considered these ins and outs it struck me that I also had to pretend my children were of a certain creed in order to educate them. In our case we pretend they are Catholics in order to get by in our local school and it seems to me that it’s like the penal laws still exist. If we are not willing to pretend that our kids are Catholics then there are no other schools in the area that we live in within reasonable distance so they would have to get some sort of schooling outside the system. Sort of like the hedge schools of yore.

I can live with this carry on as I know that we live in an imperfect world and it seems I am powerless to do anything about it anyway although it rankles a little sometimes.
For example a few weeks back my daughter was told to construct a shrine in our house to a Catholic saint as part of the holy communion preparation and this annoyed me as I had already explained to her that saints were only superstition and that she should not pray to them etc.
I know some of you are asking why she is making her first communion but believe me there is no way it can be avoided as everyone else in her class is doing it and it takes up a large part of the school day. We reckoned it would be cruel to single her out for making some sort of statement so as with all the rest we have to grin and bear it and carry on pretending.

Is it right to have a situation which mirrors the days of the penal laws with enforced religious conformity on children in a republic in the year 2012? Can anything be done about this modern day penal law situation or should we simply grin and bear it like the Catholics of old?
 


ManOfReason

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May 24, 2007
Messages
4,328
Ireland has school choice. If you don't like the Catholic school contact 'Educate Together' and they will give you information on how to setup an alternative type of school.
 

galteeman

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Nov 6, 2010
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2,380
1. Who is going to investigate whether anyone is really going to construct the vigil, the school? Have photo's to be taken?
Nobody is taking photos.

2. Why is your child receiving communion if you have such problems
I already explained this in the op, everyone is doing it in her class and she is under tremendous peer pressure. Also it would be impossible for her to avoid the preparations as it takes up a lot of the school day.

3. Since when was your life in danger for not conforming to a certain school of thought. Penal laws? This is the kind of hysterical tripe you would expect from the Irish Times or Sindo Life magazine
Well I can assure you that I'm not hysterical:p just pointing out there are parallels in that people have to pretend to be Catholics just like some people had to pretend to be Protestants in those days and I think that people have no choice but to be dishonest in practice.

4. If someone is actively seeking to participate in a Catholic cermony, ie Communion, and studies are required , it is hardly oppressive to be expected to do homework ie build a shrine , either way pretend that it was done and get over it.Not like you have never lied before .
I don't like lying and my daughter would not actively seek to participate in something if she wasn't pressured or brainwashed. She is 8 years old.

5. While you are perfectly within your right to express your views on your child and expect her to conform to them, it seems a bit harsh that she "should not" do x,y,z in order to suit you. Don't bother sending her to communion. You are rather up your own ass if you think people will notice that your daughter did not do her communion or even care.
She will notice as she is under massive pressure.

6. You have a complete free choice, but you are , needlessly to cowardly to stand by your firm beliefs. Either way, it in no way mirrors the penal law days.
I wish I had a choice but there are no other schools available within reasonable distance and I can't afford to hire private teachers or teach them myself.
Cowardly? hardly just an ordinary person who keeps their head down and gets on with an imperfect situation created by bigots.
 

galteeman

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Joined
Nov 6, 2010
Messages
2,380
Ireland has school choice. If you don't like the Catholic school contact 'Educate Together' and they will give you information on how to setup an alternative type of school.
I have to set up my own school? No bother I'll do that right away.
 

Shpake

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Oct 17, 2012
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5,350
I can see how important a festivity like that can be for the little ones. I can remember back (so long ago and far away) getting my photo taken in my first suit, going around from door to door on the road collecting my first communion money [still have it. Ha!] There was this shaggin bastard [proddie] who wouldn't give me any on principle... course I couldn't understand at the age of seven. Oh nostalgia just ain't what it used to be.
Years and years later decades later I was surprised that in the old German democratic republic they made their own communist festivities for an atheistic state. One was called Jugedweih and I think it's something like confirmation or coming of age or something ... more for 14 and 15 year olds, where they put on their Sunday best and celebrate. What surprised me more is that it has survived the fall of the wall and people after 1990 still thought it necessary or desirable ... Maybe it's something like beauty competitions or all ireland championships... if that's what the people want, if that's what they need... why not.
 

stopdoingstuff

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Feb 26, 2011
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22,892
I went to a Catholic school and there were Protestants, Muslims, and even a few atheists there. In fact, as I remember it, I was an outspoken atheist at the time and never had to attend anything remotely religious once my views were made known. I was treated with nothing but care and respect. It is not as if these places are monasteries or anything.
 

Sync

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28,776
Oh FFS stop being so pathetic. If your daughter doesn't want to make her communion because she doesn't believe in that stuff, show some balls and back her up. If she DOES want to do it, for whatever reason, back her decision and stop being such a schmuck.
 
D

Deleted member 17573

Oh FFS stop being so pathetic. If your daughter doesn't want to make her communion because she doesn't believe in that stuff, show some balls and back her up. If she DOES want to do it, for whatever reason, back her decision and stop being such a schmuck.
The child should not be placed in a position of having to choose to be the odd one out - which is the reality in many small schools in rural Ireland. This really is so obvious it should not need constant repetition but religious indoctrination is not an educational activity and should have no part in the curriculum of any State school in a modern Western country.
 

Sync

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The child should not be placed in a position of having to choose to be the odd one out - which is the reality in many small schools in rural Ireland. This really is so obvious it should not need constant repetition but religious indoctrination is not an educational activity and should have no part in the curriculum of any State school in a modern Western country.
I agree. But this child isn't going to change that. So either back her decision to have communion or back her decision not to. Or just flee to the internet to bitch about it all.
 

realist

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May 3, 2006
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Did you go to a Catholic school in Ireland? If so why do you think your daughter will not make up her own mind about religion just as you did?

I don't like lying and my daughter would not actively seek to participate in something if she wasn't pressured or brainwashed. She is 8 years old.
I assume that you are celebrating Christmas at home and your daughter is awaiting her gifts from Santa? In a year or two she will no longer believe in him so why are you so fearful that in due course she will also not believe in Catholicisim? I think you are really worrying yourself about nothing.

The penal laws you should be worried about in this country at the moment are the renewed attempt to tax the Irish for living in their own homes and the attempts by our new rulers to enforce the government to allow banks to throw people out of their homes if they cannot afford their mortgage. The way this country is going your daughter will possibly have no choice but to emigrate just like her forefathers had to do under the previous penal laws.
 
D

Deleted member 17573

I agree. But this child isn't going to change that. So either back her decision to have communion or back her decision not to. Or just flee to the internet to bitch about it all.
The Internet is a medium where it is possible, in a small way, to raise consciesness of an issue of discrimination that is still very much part of the hidden Ireland. There is far too much tolerance of the view that sure we're fine as we are and nobody's forced to do anything, even if the schools are catholic. That is not acceptable.
In the case of the individual, it is not as easy as you suggest - no problem in Dublin but out in the sticks it's still a strange old world - and backing your child in a decision - a decision she should not have to make in the first place - is no protection against her being viewed as some sort of oddball.
 

Ex celt

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In Eire the C of I schools have huge waiting lists of RCs willing to recant so that their children may be properly educated....but you knew that anyway.
 

Glenshane4

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The Internet is a medium where it is possible, in a small way, to raise consciesness of an issue of discrimination that is still very much part of the hidden Ireland. There is far too much tolerance of the view that sure we're fine as we are and nobody's forced to do anything, even if the schools are catholic. That is not acceptable.
In the case of the individual, it is not as easy as you suggest - no problem in Dublin but out in the sticks it's still a strange old world - and backing your child in a decision - a decision she should not have to make in the first place - is no protection against her being viewed as some sort of oddball.
If you do not like what goes on in a Catholic school, do not send your child to one. You have a right to keep your dear child well away from Catholics but you have no right to interfere with Catholics sending their children to a school controlled by their church. Nor have you any right to interfere with a Catholic school continuing to be a Catholic school. If there is no non-Catholic school in your locality, join with people like yourself to estabish such a school. Or re-locate to a place where there is a non-Catholic school. In parts of England, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales, Canada, the USA, Australia and New Zealand, Catholics have often re-located in order to be within reasonable distance of a Catholic school. You could follow their example.
 

Glenshane4

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Sep 5, 2012
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The child should not be placed in a position of having to choose to be the odd one out - which is the reality in many small schools in rural Ireland. This really is so obvious it should not need constant repetition but religious indoctrination is not an educational activity and should have no part in the curriculum of any State school in a modern Western country.
Catholic schools are not State schools. A State school is a school owned by the State or by an emanation of the State such as a County Council. Catholic schools were established to promote Catholicism. Anyone who does not want his child educated in such an environment should not send his child to a Catholic school.
 

realist

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May 3, 2006
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Catholic schools are acknowledged as the among the highest achieving and all over the world people try to get their children into them. Take France as an example:
“Laïcité has become the state’s religion, and the republican school is its temple,” said Imam Soheib Bencheikh, a former grand mufti in Marseille and founder of its Higher Institute of Islamic Studies. Imam Bencheikh’s oldest daughter attends Catholic school.

“It’s ironic,” he said, “but today the Catholic Church is more tolerant of — and knowledgeable about — Islam than the French state.” .....

Fifteen of the top 20 high schools in France are Catholic schools, according to a recent ranking in the magazine L’Express. Catholic schools remain popular among Muslims even in cities where Muslim schools have sprung up: Paris, Lyon and Lille.....

Also, as M’hamed Ed-Dyouri, headmaster of a new Muslim school just outside Paris, said, “We have to prove ourselves first.” For now, he plans to enroll his son in Catholic school.
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/30/world/europe/30schools.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

Ireland, of course, knows better and wants to remove the Catholic church from running public schools. Of course those who can afford it will still send their children to be educated in the private Catholic schools such as Rockwell and Blackrock, alma mater of our own Ruari Quinn.
 
D

Deleted member 17573

If you do not like what goes on in a Catholic school, do not send your child to one. You have a right to keep your dear child well away from Catholics but you have no right to interfere with Catholics sending their children to a school controlled by their church. Nor have you any right to interfere with a Catholic school continuing to be a Catholic school. If there is no non-Catholic school in your locality, join with people like yourself to estabish such a school. Or re-locate to a place where there is a non-Catholic school. In parts of England, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales, Canada, the USA, Australia and New Zealand, Catholics have often re-located in order to be within reasonable distance of a Catholic school. You could follow their example.
What you refer to are schools that are funded by the State - apart from that, thanks for making my case for me.
 

Glenshane4

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Sep 5, 2012
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What you refer to are schools that are funded by the State - apart from that, thanks for making my case for me.
Schools are not funded by the State. The State funds nothing. Schools are part-funded by the taxpayers many of whom are Catholics. In addition to paying tax (at the same rates as non-Catholics) Catholics also contribute to their parishes to help finance the parochial school. Why should non-Catholics be allowed to freeload on a Catholic parish?
 

Windowshopper

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Oct 14, 2011
Messages
9,005
I was reading about Edmund Burke a while back and how his dad may have been a Roman Catholic pretending to be a Protestant in order to avoid the penal laws. His mother was a Catholic and it seems likely although it can’t be verified with certainty that his father was also a Catholic who officially converted to Protestant in order to qualify as a lawyer. So it is possible that Edmund Burke himself may have been pretending to be a Protestant seeing as his people were RC.
Anyway it struck me that back then the penal laws relating to education could have been easily overcome by the Catholics who could have received unofficial educations at home or in so called hedge schools or alternatively they could have received Protestant educations by pretending to be Protestants as may well have been the case for Edmund Burke. So I guess they would have got on with life in this way grinning and bearing things.

The point is that while I considered these ins and outs it struck me that I also had to pretend my children were of a certain creed in order to educate them. In our case we pretend they are Catholics in order to get by in our local school and it seems to me that it’s like the penal laws still exist. If we are not willing to pretend that our kids are Catholics then there are no other schools in the area that we live in within reasonable distance so they would have to get some sort of schooling outside the system. Sort of like the hedge schools of yore.

I can live with this carry on as I know that we live in an imperfect world and it seems I am powerless to do anything about it anyway although it rankles a little sometimes.
For example a few weeks back my daughter was told to construct a shrine in our house to a Catholic saint as part of the holy communion preparation and this annoyed me as I had already explained to her that saints were only superstition and that she should not pray to them etc.
I know some of you are asking why she is making her first communion but believe me there is no way it can be avoided as everyone else in her class is doing it and it takes up a large part of the school day. We reckoned it would be cruel to single her out for making some sort of statement so as with all the rest we have to grin and bear it and carry on pretending.

Is it right to have a situation which mirrors the days of the penal laws with enforced religious conformity on children in a republic in the year 2012? Can anything be done about this modern day penal law situation or should we simply grin and bear it like the Catholics of old?
I can sympathize with your First Communion dilemma but might doing it for the sake of fitting in be a bad lesson to pass on. Also from a some-what religious angle whenever I find myself in a Catholic Church I don't take Communion because I feel it would be disrespectful to those around me to take Communion because firstly I don't believe in the Real Presence (or any other part of Catholic doctrine).
 

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