Protestants Working in Catholic Schools


#1

Honestly, I don’t know how you could be a committed Protestant and work in a Catholic school.
Around these parts, all staff have to agree to uphold the “Catholic nature and ethos of the school.” For Catholics, of course, this is no problem.
The Catholic Church holds Protestants to be in error for their heretical beliefs. It follows, then, that those Protestant staff are in agreement with the Church’s condemnation of their beliefs.
After all, if they agree to uphold all things Catholic, they must implicitly uphold the status of the Church as the one true church.
But, on the other hand, I know the Protestants that we have are as complacent in their faith as most of the Catholics on staff. Plus, they’re really nice people, and good teachers. I do notice, however, that they are never called upon to teach Religious Education.


#2

We have a Jewish science teacher in our small k-8 parish school…he makes another teacher take the kids to Stations of the Cross on fridays of Lent because he just can’t take it…or so he says. Can you imagine that he is teaching 8th graders the faith?


#3

I’m sorry, but…
As long as it’s science he teaches, and not Religious Education, what’s the problem? Natrium will still “explode” if dumped in water, regardless of whether or not it’s an RC or not that does it?


#4

We have several non-Catholic teachers at our school, including the Principal. Is it ideal? Certainly not, but at the salaries we can afford, we’re happy to have them. All of them are committed educators and committed to the school. They have all agreed to support the Catholic-based curriculum regardless of their personal beliefs. In practice it works very well. All religious education is done by Catholics and the few non-Catholic teachers (some who have been there a while) are supportive of Catholic teaching and doctrine. They accompany the children to Mass and participate in those aspects of the liturgy open to non-Catholics.

On a brighter note, I heard the Principal was going to start RCIA this fall. :thumbsup:


#5

Most Catholic high schools require their religious educators to be practicing Catholics who abide by the teachings of the magisterium. The diocese in which I taught also had an oath of fidelity, although I don’t remember taking it (I wasn’t teaching religion).

A parishioner at my present (Orthodox) church used to teach religion at a Catholic school when he was Roman Catholic. When he became Orthodox, he no longer was able to teach religion, but simply switched to another local Catholic school and taught history.

It makes sense that Protestants should not be teaching religion at a Catholic high school, but I don’t see any problem with Protestants teaching other subjects, so long as what they teach does not conflict with the beliefs and values of Roman Catholicism. This was the contractual policy of the Catholic high school when I taught there.


#6

The absolute BEST math teacher my kids have had in Catholic high school is a fiesty little Jewish woman. She also brings a unique Jewish perspective to our JUDEO-Christian heritage! During the Jewish Holy Days, she educates the kids on what these days mean to people of the Jewish faith. She is a real treasure!


#7

Easy. Catholic is “universal.” We welcome all peoples, just as God does. I’d hate to think there’s a Catholic school that only hires, teaches, and employs Catholics…that would be cultish, not Catholic.


#8

More than half of the teachers in our Catholic school here in Japan are Buddhist. Some are Protestant. All of them are dedicated teachers and support the Christian vision of the school. We’ve never had a problem.


#9

Yes, diggerdomer, universality…as long as they have the basics, they’ll be fine.

Therefore, we should allow Protestants and Jews to have a more active role in our church services. It would make people sit up and take notice, for once.

They all believe in God, after all: who cares about such fine points as the divinity of Christ, transubstantiation, etc. It’s all relative now.

Editing in: if we would not allow it in our churches, why do we allow it in our schools?


#10

Best history I ever had in my Catholic school was an Episcopalian. He was far better at teaching everything about history than anyone else in the school, including the Reformation and the history of the Catholic Church.

Oh, and this happenned long before Vatican II: Knute Rockne was a chemistry professor at Notre Dame in the 1910’s, years before he converted. I know many people don’t like Notre Dame anymore, but its hard to say that 1920’s Notre Dame was not an Orthodox place.

Teaching religion should be restricted to Catholics, for obvious reasons, but is there some special method of teaching chemistry that only Catholics have access to? There’s no reason why a Protestant of high moral character cannot teach in Catholic school, provided they don’t try to evangelize for their own faith (and the Protestant teachers I had never even thought of doing that; they all had the utmost respect for Catholicism).


#11

Easy there. We do not allow women to hold leadership positions in our church, so by your logic we should not allow them to hold leadership positions in our schools?

In a perfect world, principals would have to be turning away faithful Catholics who want to teach in our schools. In the real world, re-read all the good things that were posted above. Maybe we are evangelizing our protestant brothers and sisters without knowing it.

P.S. - at our local Catholic schools, we are blessed to have either Priests or religious teaching the catholic education courses.


#12

You’re either being sarcastic or simply extremist in reading way more into or out of what I wrote. Either way makes it very hard to have dialogue. I completely disagree with the claims you made above and don’t know where you get them.

Because schools are not churches


#13

I don’t know where you live, diggerdomer, but around here the local Catholic School is an equal partner with the Church in teaching and delivering “Catholicism”.
For example:
School masses are held in our gymnasium. The 950 in the congregation is far more than any local priest has had in church for 50 or more years in this town. This happens about 5 times a year, here at the Catholic school.
There is also a Christmas Mass held in the same gymnasium, which attracts about 500 people, mostly students and their families. The two local Catholic churches cannot deal with those numbers. The school community is inextricably involved in those masses: singing, playing, serving, organising.
For most of our professed-Catholic students, 85% of whom are once-a-year or never-a-year Catholics, the school curriculum is the only dose of Catholicism they will ever get in their lives. The school is, effectively, the church. When they leave at age 16, 17 or 18, they will most likely never attend church again (except for funerals, weddings and christenings).
That’s the importance of schools, compared with churches. That’s why it’s important to keep it Catholic.


#14

How sad, I’m so sorry to hear that. It sounds then like the concern should be your parishes, not your schools.


#15

What about a homosexual? Strontium still burns red, although more flamboyantly, regardless of whether or not they’re Catholic or homosexual.


#16

What do you mean “Catholic or homosexual”? The two are not mutually exclusive. And what does either have to do with teaching science?


#17

I think RC is referring back to this post by LutheranDK:
"I’m sorry, but… As long as it’s science he teaches, and not Religious Education, what’s the problem? Natrium will still “explode” if dumped in water, regardless of whether or not it’s an RC or not that does it?
And trying to make the point that it does matter who teaches the science course, because, suppose that person is a homosexual? Do we really want a homosexual teaching science in a Catholic School? Do you want a homosexual teaching your son the periodic table?

If my interpretation is correct and that is what RC means, I think the argument falls apart because there is no sin to being a homosexual, just as there is no sin to being Goth, Jew, etc. We have to look at the qualifications of the individual, how and what they teach and how they conduct themselves.

If memory serves me correctly, there was a thread a while back about a Catholic school that fired an unwed mother because her actions (fornication) were incompatable with the standards of the school. In the same way someone who is homosexual should not teach at a Catholic school because of his/her *actions that violate school standards *and not who they are.

Do I personally care if a homosexual teaches my kids science? As long as they are qualified, no. As long as they maintain the same standards and follow the same rules as heterosexual teachers, no. If their actions are suspect, then we have an issue the same as I would have with any teacher.


#18

Or a homophile who’s RC :wink:
But yes. As long as he/she don’t use class time advocating homophilia, “gay rights”, etc then I can’t see a problem.


#19

A true Catholic education doesn’t consist of a private school with a religion class tucked in there somewhere. No, the Catholic school is permeated with Catholic principles & thought throughout the curriculum regardless of class. This poses an obstacle in elementary and middle schools, in the child’s formative years, when you have someone who is non-Catholic fill a position which, by it’s nature, requires them to be Catholic.


#20

Several years ago I was in Southern California visiting family. When we were waiting to go to breakfast I met some teachers from the Midwest. A couple of them mentioned that they taught in Catholic schools even though they made less money than if they taught in public schools because they could NOT tolerate the lack of discipline in public schools. To be honest, I never even thought of asking whether or not they were Catholic. I certainly think it would be all right for a non-Catholic to be teaching in a Catholic school as long as they aren’t teaching Religion.


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