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Mrs. Barber – Chair of Governor’s
Bonus Pastor Catholic College
8th March 2011
Dear Mrs. Barber,
I would like to thank you for the opportunity to put my point of view. It was unfortunate that we were given an incorrect time for the start of the meeting. Given more time I believe I could have put our case in a more structured and ordered way.
On a second point, I was unhappy with the abrupt and almost hostile approach Mrs Holden, took right from the beginning; it was very intimidating and was not conducive to a positive and understanding outcome. This made the meeting all the more difficult in ascertaining why our children are now being constantly taught and exposed to erroneous material which can have a profound impact on their faith and moral outlook.
I have written this letter as a summary of the points I wanted to make, and get some clarity from the schools point of view had we had the time, and had Mrs Holden been a little more cordial.
1. POINT 1 WAS REMOVED AS IT WAS AND IS NOT RELEVANT TO THIS COMPLAINT.
2. The continual over emphasis in class of the issue of homosexuality. Examples of emphatic statements on the genesis of homosexuality i.e. “it is a genetic”, furthermore the impression that the majority of priests have such inclinations and the erroneous answers give to children on Our Lord’s sexuality. These are but a few of the recent references. It seems as though it is a pet topic for some in the school.as part of the nativity. In conclusion I fail to see the educational benefit of the programme to students, and in my opinion does not contribute to their education or understanding of their faith or the Catholic view on the Priesthood and just reinforces the derogatory and negative way the media treats the sacred; since there was no disapproval or judgement by the teacher on the subject matter.
3. The point I wanted to make about “The Vicar of Dibley” was, it is part of the general malaise which touches much of what has already been covered in (2), but it also touches on a favoured topic of Mrs. Watson, concerning why the Catholic Church should permit women priest. However, what I found most concerning in the programme was the mockery references made against Our Lord and his Holy Mother as part of the nativity. In conclusion I fail to see the educational benefit of the programme to students, and in my opinion does not contribute to their education or understanding of their faith or the Catholic view on the Priesthood and just reinforces the derogatory and negative way the media treats the sacred; since there was no disapproval or judgement by the teacher on the subject matter.
4. The film “Keeping Mum” was a very offensive programme with the taking of Our Lord’s name in vain (violation of the 2nd commandment) as well as foul language, the main theme of the film being adultery and fornication. I would not allow my children to watch this at home and it concerns me why a school with such a good reputation would show such a programmes at part of a child’s Religious Education year on year. As I understand it there was no moral guide even given to the children. I feel badly let down by the school and now feel in the uncomfortable position of not knowing whether I can trust the school to maintain the moral formation of my children. I believe many other parents would feel the same if they were aware of the material their children are being exposed too.
5. A Short Stay in Switzerland was delivered without any comment on its ethics even though euthanasia is against the law in the UK. The programme seems to be propaganda for those supporting euthanasia. It shows the intense suffering of an individual and her attempts to end her life in the most horrific way and ends with her children taking her to a death clinic in Switzerland where her children with an official of the clinic participate in poisoning her. Then finally we switch back to a positive scene with grand children. This is a realistic film / documentary and the only conclusion our children could get from this (since they were given no guidance) is that it is a government approved euthanasia programme which is morally good and desirable.
6. Finally, elements of the religious education given by Mrs. Watson to children tend to contradict what we believe as Catholics. An example of this is when ?????’s class was told that the Bible permits divorce and was quoted a Gospel from Matthew on fornication and the permission of divorce. When ?????’s indicated that another Gospel and the Church did not permit divorce Mrs. Watson response was that “the Bible contradicts itself”. This could have been a great teaching moment where she could have explained to the class that fornication is sex outside of marriage which differs from adultery which relates to married people. And if one was betrothed to another and fornicates then the betrayed could put the betrayer aside or break the engagement as St Joseph had considered doing.
On a second point Mrs Watson gave the class the impression that some of those who try to defend the lives of the unborn child, also blow up abortion clinics and shoot doctors who carry out abortions. As far as I know, in the 50 years abortion has been legal in the UK this has never occurred. Now she may have been talking about other countries but one would have had to indicate that far more people who defend the lives of unborn children have been killed and hurt by those who defend the killing of the unborn child.
In conclusion, I could understand the odd remark or the odd private opinion on these subjects, since as parents we can put our children straight on the subject, but these do not seem like odd remarks. It seems there is a clear agenda to promote behaviours and views which are contrary to the teaching of the Catholic Church and undermines our children’s Faith and it is for this reason I have brought this complaint. I hope that this further helps you understand my concerns and feelings on the matter and assists your investigations.
Parent at Bonus Pastor