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Catholic Education Service defends marriage petition in schools

By on Thursday, 26 April 2012

The Catholic Education Service of England and Wales has defended its decision to circulate the archbishops’ letter on marriage to almost 400 schools.

The CESEW responded after one pupil complained that pupils were being encouraged to sign the Coalition for Marriage’s petition against Government plans to legalise same-sex marriage.

In a statement they said: “The letter is a positive affirmation of marriage, as is the Coalition for Marriage’s online petition. As the letter says, Catholics believe that ‘marriage is a high and noble vocation’.

“We reject the suggestion that Catholic schools have acted illegally. The Equality Act 2010 applies to all schools and we are fully supportive of the Act. It is central to Catholic teaching that all individuals should be treated with respect and dignity.”

The Church was defending itself against accusations that it had used “political indoctrination” by promoting the letter, penned by Archbishops Vincent Nichols of Westminster and Peter Smith of Southwark, which defended traditional marriages. Secularist groups said the schools and the CES may have been breaking equality laws.

But the CES said: “Catholic state schools have always been permitted by law to teach matters relating to sex and relationships education, including the importance of marriage, in accordance with the teaching of the Catholic Church. The Catholic Church’s view on the importance of marriage is a religious view, not a political one.

“The online petition itself makes it clear that people under the age of 16 cannot sign it. We will issue new guidance for our schools to ensure that they are aware of this.

Over 470,000 people have now signed the Coalition for Marriage petition.

  • Benedict Carter

    As I said before, I am a Catholic who holds the Catholic Faith.

    You appear to be something else. Certainly not a Catholic.

  • Fr Thomas Poovathinkal

    O  SO MANY (OLD?) PEOPLE ARGUING AND PLAYING WITH SHARP WORDS LIKE UNRULY

    TEENAGERS! WHAT ARE  SOME OF U AIMING AT?

    ARE U BORED  OF LIFE? IS IT THE WAY TO MAKE LIFE INTERESTING OR THE MEANS TO DISCOVER THE TRUTH OF GOD? DO ARGUMENTS GET TO THE TRUTH OF ANYTHING UNLESS ONE IS HIMSELF TRUTHFUL IN LIFE?

    CALL TO REPENTANCE AND FORGIVENESS BY JESUS ( I HOPE YOU ALL LOVE JESUS)  IF LISTENED TO AND OBEYED WILL BRING PEACE OF MIND AND SOUL.

    MEDITATE ON GOD’S WORD. IT OFFERS EVERYONE THE CHANCE TO  ENTER THE KINGDOM OF GOD.

    START WITH: GENESIS, EXODUS, PROPHETS, LETTER TO THE ROMANS, GOSPEL OF JOHN,  AND END WITH THE ACTS OF THE APOSTLES.

    PURIFICATION OF ONE’S HEART BY REPENTANCE AND FORGIVENESS IS THE FIRST STEP BEFORE OPENING THE SCRIPTURES, FOLLOWED BY  REPEATED INVITATION TO THE SPIRIT OF JESUS TO COME INTO ONE’S HEART.

    PRAY AT THE END OF YOUR MEDITATION (WHICH IS REGULARLY TO BE PRACTISED) FOR THE GRACE OF APOSTLESHIP…… THAT YOU  AND I  MAY BECOME  TRUE APOSTLES LIKE ST. PAUL WHO WAS NOT OF THE ORIGINAL 12 AND YET IS CONSIDERED THE GREATEST APOSTLE OF CHRIST THE LORD!

    BE CAREFUL TO KEEP AWAY FROM THE CROWD AND THE RELENTLESS NOISE FROM THE HEAD. THEY ARE EASY ROUTES OF THE DEVIL TO GET ACCESS TO OUR SOULS.

    ALL THE BEST. GOD BE WITH YOU ALL. PRAY FOR ME.

  • JabbaPapa

    Yes well, you’re obviously a slut for propaganda…

    The Nazi Party of Germany enacted a Plan to eradicate religion.

    It involved lots of guns, persucutions, and gas chambers.

    It is absolutely horrendous that a part of Hitler’s legacy is that his evil propaganda continues to be believed by such as yourself.

  • JabbaPapa

    Dear Rachhel, please don’t be infuriated by Ben either — he is a good man :-)

    Just please realise that there is a homosexualist political lobby providing various forms of biased views.

    This lobby is not of the Christ.

  • JabbaPapa

    Probably none that your prejudice and indoctrination would accept, no.

    I am disarmed by the propagation of poststructural ignorance instead of classical learning.

    The simple fact that you’re asking for “evidence” to prove a philosophical statement is indicative of your clear ineptitude.

    You do not have even the vaguest understanding of sociology, religion, nor hermeneutics.

  • Acleron

    Inconvenient facts but nevertheless facts. Try reading his Nuremberg speeches. It has references to god and christianity sprinkled through them. But for someone who has a belief with absolutely zero evidence to support it, saying that someone else is a victim of propaganda is one of your best efforts yet. Keep going and even you may get a slight glimmering of the quicksand you are standing on.

  • JabbaPapa

    We all of us need protection from evil and sin, obviously…

    Protection from gay couples though ? Seriously ???

    Have gay couples harmed you in any way whatsoever ?

    Gay propaganda is not the same thing as gay couples.

  • JabbaPapa

    Whether you like it or not, discrimination includes excluding a group from an activity or a right for no other reason than you are prejudiced against them : that’s a fairly good bite-sized description of the ongoing homosexualist campaign to destroy religion.

  • JabbaPapa

    Probably more defensive than hateful, dear Rachel…

  • JabbaPapa

    Father Thomas, sadly we are in a time of great confusion, where souls are at risk of being lost through simple honest inaction.

    Bless you !!

    Your warning concerning the devils of the head is spot on.

    Saint Iago help you on your path, Saint Mary bless you in your heart, Saint Paul help you in your doubt, Saint Peter help you in your Faith.

    God bless you father — the Lord is in your thoughts.

  • JabbaPapa

    Cripes what a bigot you are …

  • Acleron

    So no evidence for your statement, which is certainly not a philosophical statement.

    And I am quite aware of your post modernistic rabbiting. Sokal showed it for the silliness it is.

  • Acleron

    Oh get something right for a change. It is us atheists who want to get rid of the superstitions you indulge in and a lot of your comments only show how necessary that is.

    Lots of homosexuals are quite religious, your fear of them is born of ignorance and quite ridiculous.

  • JabbaPapa

    Homosexuality is one among many sins — but you seem to be assuming that the Catholic notion of sin is identical to the radical Protestant notion … I would guess that you have received bad catechism. Yeah — bad catechism is pretty rubbish.

    Just for starters :

    Sin >< Evil

    Two very different things, despite their common ground.

  • JabbaPapa

    If you were actually aware you’d make some sort of statement of rational disagreement — rather than this farcical pomposity.

    Anyway — carry on with your boringly predictable radical denial of this statement I’ve just typed….

    You are uneducated.

  • Rachel P

    Who Mr Carter put you in charge?

  • Acleron

    So we are back to schoolboy name calling. lol

  • Acleron

    Let’s get this straight. You say this:-
    ‘this is about the desire of the homosexualist lobby to redefine all 
    couples according to the structures and definitions of a homosexual one.’That is a straight statement purporting to be fact which you are asked to justify with evidence.

    Your reply is that it is a philosophical statement, which of course it isn’t.
    You then try to say that I am using postmodernistic babbling when I am asking for a fact and then to great amusement justify that with a piece of complete rubbish about the meaning of meaning. You really ought to get someone to explain what these words mean before you type them.

    And you call me uneducated? 

    Just to clarify your obviously confused mind, have you any evidence to justify your claim that the homosexual lobby seeks to redefine all couples according to homosexual definitions? 

  • JabbaPapa

    Rachel, dear Ben has his particular rhetoric.

    “you are not Catholic” means that he disagrees with you.

    I would suggest that it’s worth your while to do your best to get through this armour — it’s not there as a protection against Catholicism, but against its opposite.

  • JabbaPapa

    You really are an obsessive little negativist, aren’t you.

  • Solentsunrise

    How about a new voice from the North to broaden the vision. I was really struck by http://www.platform10.org/2012/04/greg-clark-mp-from-middlesbrough-to-minister-for-giving-power-to-the-people/

  • JabbaPapa

    My fear of homosexuals ??? You ludicrous little man…

    Otherwise thank you for confirming my accusation that you homosexualists wish to destroy religion.

    You will fail to do so.

  • Rachel P

    You’re words, manner and dislike of anyone who disagrees with you, is so much in conflict with the Catholic Church I have been a part of for my whole life.
    I pray we never meet and that you will one day take into your heart Jesus final commandment.  ‘Love one another as I have loved you’ and learn to see the World with less judgemental eyes.

  • Rachel P

    You are the worst kind of Catholic…the kind that uses scripture to attack rather than to uplift.

  • Rachel P

    Do stop calling me dear.  I would normally find it endearing, but in this discussion, it feels tremendously patronising.

  • JabbaPapa

    I take this admonition for myself too.

    May the Christ be with you.

  • JabbaPapa

    No, actually he isn’t :-)

  • JabbaPapa

    Forgive me — the intention is certainly more towards the endearing than the patronising.

    I hope you don’t blame me for my attempts towards a mitigation ??

  • JabbaPapa

    Evidence ? Don’t you read the newspapers ?

  • Rachel P

    With respect your choice of language and the nature of your argument smacks of repressed homosexuality. 

  • Rachel P

    This whole situation is causing me to question not my faith in God, which is as strong as it has ever been, but my involvement with Catholicism.  
    I have been brought up in the Catholic Church: serving on the altar, reading for the Bishop on Easter Sunday’s, teaching young people through Cafod, fundraising for the poor, the sick, the lonely and yet my belief system, instilled into me since childhood is being thrown at me as an example of why I am not Catholic??
    I was taught that to be a good Catholic, we must love one another.  I was taught that God hates ‘holier than thou’ Catholics, that he who is without sin should cast the first stone.  
    Yet on this thread there are scores of Catholics who call homosexuality a sickness, believing it must be purged from society, lest it infect us all.  Saying that their little ones ‘would have been better off had they not been born’.  
    These people sound so unlike any Catholic I have EVER known.  
    Perhaps there is a way for me to keep my faith and continue to raise my daughter as a Catholic, without being associated with such unkindness.

  • Acleron

    Twenty eight words and four verifiable facts wrong in it. That’s good, even for you.

  • Acleron

    So your statement moves from being factual to philosophical to factual and still cannot be supported by any evidence. 

    It’s pretty clear that your fear of and prejudice towards homosexuals overwhelms what small ability you have to actually analyse information concerning them. You also exhibit a behaviour that I have seen before in some theists, that of making up facts and then expressing indignation when asked to justify them.

  • JByrne24

    Yes, I’m sure there’s even worse.

    In fact I’ve met several.

  • JByrne24

    You could have been taken over by a diabolical agency methinks.
    Certainly you and jabba seem to be doing your utmost to make the Catholic Faith a laughing stock.

  • Benedict Carter

    Stop whining, you phony. You reject Catholic moral teaching and write all surprised, as if you never knew it. It’s a charity to point this out. Church teaching, not mine. 

    Here is what the Church says about homosexual sex:

    #2357 Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that “homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.” They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.

  • Benedict Carter

    You reject the Church’s teaching. Pointing this out makes you froth at the mouth? You are a total phony. These comment pages are full of them.

  • Benedict Carter

    It means she isn’t a Catholic. 

    To be a Catholic, you accept all the Church’s teaching on faith & morals. If you don’t, you are something else, but you ain’t a Catholic. 

  • JByrne24

    Mr BC perhaps Rachel P is an alien (“something else”). They have been trying to take over the Church for years you know.
    It’s a jolly good job we have people like you around.

  • JByrne24

    Well the SS was modelled on the Jesuits – even down to their uniform.
    For most of the 20th Century the Catholic Church was the Religious wing of European Fascism – from Portugal to Poland at various times.

  • JabbaPapa

    What “information” ???

    You’ve provided nothing but bigoted propaganda.

  • JabbaPapa

    Bloody JB the troll…

    You’ve met several — under your bridge ?

  • JabbaPapa

    You are delusional.

    Furthermore, your fact-freee postings should normally advise you to avoid too closely examining the negative opinions of others concerning those postings.

  • JabbaPapa

    You really are a mythomaniac, aren’t you …

  • JabbaPapa

    twit

  • Acleron

    Yes, there is plenty of evidence that the Nazis and the cc had a special relationship but there still those who would like to rewrite history…

    I  think that the cc wasn’t fascist in nature but veered towards governments of that type because of the anti-church sentiment of left wing governments and the cc’s usual tendency to gravitate towards power. Fascist governments didn’t dissuade them because they realised that religion flourishes better in poorer less educated areas and those were the same parts of the population that were attracted to the left.

  • Acleron

    I was quite willing to back up my statements, but you have provided all the evidence anyone would need to see that the accusations of prejudice are totally justified. Active prejudice is discrimination by any dictionary definition. And teaching prejudice in schools is nothing but indoctrination. Your only defence now would be to say that you are a small minority in the church and that people such as Rachel P are much more christian in outlook and in the majority.

  • Acleron

    And yet another accusation which is baseless.

    As you can’t discriminate fact from fiction, I’ll give you a clue. My post, which you claim is fact free, contains two facts and one surmise. 

    But the bluster does not disguise that you cannot justify your statement. Let me repeat it less you forget.

    ‘this is about the desire of the homosexualist lobby to redefine all couples according to the structures and definitions of a homosexual one.’ 

    And you have no evidence for this accusation and you see nothing wrong in disseminating it. Now this is a good example of the propaganda you talk about.

  • Acleron

    Ah, that laser like wit and keen intelligence on display again.

  • Johnormesher_1

    Acleron, you are a credit to rational human beings. Debating bigots like those above, is a monotonous task due to the inability of your opponents to form a logical response. If religious people continue to show the bigoted attitude of jabba, then those who wish to see the end of it will have a wish granted sooner than expected. If religious people show the attitude that Rachel P does, then maybe religeon has a future in some manner.