What would be the best solution?


#1

I routinely see htings about catholic teachers getting fired if they get pregnant out of wedlock.

but somehow, something doesn’t sit right with me about this. I understna dnot wanting to give scandal to school children but if the woman is truly repentant and is intending to take responsibility for the child, is depriving her of her job really something that should be done?

in general, what would be the best solution in these cases, in a Christian community, how do be merciful and also not make it seem like the sin is no big deal?

I know in previous Christian societies, the child was usually given up for adoption to a or something like that. and there was a lot of stigma. I’ve tried ot find more information about medieval or renaissance times but there isn’t much. though at different points of history, views were different about illegitimate children.

I know I’ve asked this before but I didn’t get many responses.

should there be consequences by society? or is raising a child on your own hard enough?

I’m in no way advocating it, but we are all sinners, and some people give in to temptations that others don’t but for some reason, some are treated worse than others. fornication is the sin itself, not the pregnancy itself, but if a person doesn’t get pregnant, the sin is less public and not everyone will find out.

or what if it was rape, others will assume the same thing but the idea of a rape victim being fired from their job is just horrid to me

thoughts please?


#2

I don’t think that there should be social consequences. I don’t think it is our place to judge. The matter is between the woman and God. I think society should concentrate on offering support to the woman. This does not prevent parents educating their children that premarital sex is sinful.


#3

I don’t think they should teach. Much like a pregnant nun would probably not be teaching a class. (that is who used to teach in the Catholic schools.)

Perhaps the young single mom could move in with her parents or (gasp) decide the man good enough to enter her body was good enough to marry…

Or perhaps she could be a janitor at night at the school…


#4

The problem 99% of time isn’t really that they got pregnant. It’s that the school realizes that the teacher doesn’t believe in what the Church teaches.

If the teacher went to confession, was sorry for the fornication, etc… They MIGHT be able to stay (or return after a sabbatical).

But typically, these teachers are NOT repentant and do not believe they have sinned. They are sorry they got pregnant, but not sorry they fornicated.

That’s the problem… The pregnancy usually makes public their rejection of Catholic teaching of X and Y.

I pray this helps.

God Bless


#5

All Catholic school teachers are required to sign a morality clause, at least around here to prevent these sorts of things. It should not be a surprise to anyone that certain standards are to be maintained.
If someone gets pregnant while in their employ, it’s a pretty recent development.
Catholic school is not simply private school. It is supposed to uphold Gospel values. And while the leadership may feel great compassion for the young woman and indeed for the unborn child, she did sign that she would uphold the teachings of the Church and model them for the children and families.


#6

I think it’s a situation. Yeah. A real situation. The question also is what’s best for the child? Should the child be looking forwards to a single mother household with all the limited opportunities that provides? I don’t know. I don’t think I’ve got a deep answer on this. I mean I have deep wishes. But not deep answers.

Peace.

-Trident


#7

Well stated.


#8

Personally I don’t think it is the business of anyone other that the lady involved,
If she needs assistance of any kind at all, I would hope the school community would embrace her as one of there own,
He who has not sinned may cast the first stone,


#9

I think this situation should be handled on a case by case basis. It really depends on whether or not the woman is repentant. A situation where the teacher had a one-night fling after drinking too much is different than one where the teacher has been living with a man she isn’t married to for eight years. However, if a school is going to take a one-size fits all approach, I think they ought to be just as quick to fire a male teacher who is found to be fornicating.


#10

well yeah, if they’re not sorry and doesn’t think it’s a big deal, there are bigger issues

but everyone will find out eventually. and people can be pretty cruel evenif a person does go to confession


#11

no, of course it makes sense.

but we are all still weak and prone to sin.

how should a community handle this in general? obviously, best case scenario is that it shouldn’t happen. but we live in a broken world, so sometimes it does still happen.

and what if it was rape, in which case, the woman would not have done anything immoral, but that would be hard to explain unless everyone is supposed to be let in on the fact that she was raped

is a person really supposed to be shamed for the rest of their lives even if they have repented? which is what usualy happens if the woman keeps the child. aabandonment of a child is considered a sin too, last I checked

basically, everyone will find out about this sin that was committed. it’s hard to hide, the child is kind of the evidence

does it make a difference if she wasn’t a teacher at a school?


#12

so what, all single mothers shouldgive up their children?

she’s repented and is trying to do the responsible thing now

abortion is a sin, so is abandonment without a good reason.

fornication is a sin too but it happens sometimes. does a person really need to be treated badly for the rest of their lives? and the child rejected and shunned? what happened to forgiveness?


#13

I agree, the problem is, you can never really prove someone is fornicating.

so the woman is repentant and still gets fired, what’s stopping her from feeling pressured to have an abortion these days?


#14

This is kind of sad…I understand and accept that Catholic schools should have morality clauses. I can totally see the need for that.

However, if she repents, why can’t she teach?
I find the suggestion to be a night janitor a bit condenscending especially if she was let go from that same school. If she’s pregnant, working a physically draining job, lifting heavy objects and being around harsh chemicals, how healthy is that for her baby?

As someone who is staunchly and outspokenly pro-life, I know there is one accusation that is regularly thrown at us who believe in the sanctity of life. I know I’m not the only one who has heard this argument because it is thrown at us so often. We pro-lifers are accused of only caring that she gives birth and not caring of what happens after the child actually arrives. Of course, I reject that. However, it seems to me that if a woman sees her sin and repents of it, it would benefit no one to have her lose her job, especially if she is expecting a baby.


#15

How should she repent in front of the children?


#16

Look. I have no idea. I mean it’s a fair question though right? I mean adopt out the child and he/she gets a better shot at things. It’s possible. Not because people might want to look down on the child of a single mother. But because a single mother obviously has one hand tied behind her back. She either works and farms the child out to others to care for during the day. Or she relies on charity while she takes care of the child herself. Neither option is particularly ideal. Because in neither case does the child get much of a leg up in life. In both cases the child either starves for attention. Or just plain starves. I don’t know. You want me to say it’s a great idea to keep the child? Ok. It’s a great idea. Keep the child.

No why don’t either of us think I mean it?

Unless this mother has a good solid relative nearby. A relative willing to sacrifice a great heap of lifetime to help cover for the mistake of someone else. Unless she’s got that the single mother’s in for an uphill life.

Peace angel. If you’re in a bind I really do understand. I’m the king of binds. You have no idea. But ignoring truths only gets you so far. It got me in a dark tunnel of despair that lasted almost 10 years. Hope your future’s a great deal brighter.

-Trident


#17

Repentance is not between her and the children. Repentance is between her soul and God. If she confessed her sin, that sin is erased. However, she is obviously still with child. To that I say, if the children need to know the details of her act, it would also be beneficial that they learn the story about the woman caught in the act of adultery in John 7. Jesus said,“Let him who is without sin, cast the first stone.” The children need to know that when the woman was finally alone with Our Savior, he asked her, “Woman, where are your accusers? Has no one condemned you?” She said, “No one, Lord.” He answered her, Neither do I condemn you. Go, and sin no more."

That and the story of the adulteress who cried tears of repentance and washed Jesus’ feet with her tears and hair would be excellent lessons for any children in a Catholic school. Not only would it provide a lesson in modeling Christ’s mercy, but it would also help demonstrate the worth of the child in her womb as a person to be welcomed instead of an object of shame.


#18

I’m with Evania on this… I don’t think it’s necessary or charitable to fire someone simply for having a child out of wedlock. Is it a sin? Yes. But that is between her and God. We’re still talking about an expectant mother and a child that needs help and support. When her options are reduced to give up the child and hope for less societal shame or keep the child and be forced out of her job, we aren’t doing our duty as Catholics to love others as Jesus does. We were commanded to love God first and foremost and our neighbors as ourselves. Not to shame and fire someone who had a child out of wedlock and decided to then do what we constantly say is the right decision and keep her child.

Furthermore, the suggestion that she needs to repent in front of the children, which I presume means her students, strikes me as somewhat absurd. First of all, why would a group of children need to be privy to any of that information? It can be used as a teachable moment, sure, but in all honesty, children do not react to the world in a way that adults would. An adult sees an unmarried single woman with a child and seems to jump to the conclusion of “sexually irresponsible harlot.” A child seeing their teacher with a baby would only think “Oh Ms. Mays has a new baby! It’s so cute!” No child comes to the conclusion that because their teacher has a baby that it’s then morally acceptable for them to have a child outside of marriage. Children simply don’t think on these kinds of terms. Adults don’t even think on these terms.


#19

Wait. So you think that IF she is repentant then she should keep her job but her repentance is only between her and God? So what is an employer charged with the spiritual care of children to do!?

The Church provides for this. Public sin indeed requires public repentance. This is why a pro abort. politician would/could be denied communion. And sin that could cause scandal ESPECIALLY to kids should be dealt with very carefully.

In some Catholic schools sex ed is taught in the fifth grade. Should this woman be teaching that? Biology? The reproductive systems?

It is quite the conundrum to be in for sure. Because you are right, it could be a lesson in pro life issues or forgiveness and repentance. But more llkely it will be a lesson that you DONT want these kids to know. Everybody coming in to the classroom and asking if it is a boy or girl, acting all excited and happy. Because that is what you or I would do.

Here are some things that we tend to overlook when the emotions get in the way. In all the situations you mentioned Jesus was dealing with a very VERY public issue and it was being dealt with by adults. And the woman was PUBLICLY repentant. And neither woman was pregnant. The fact is that an unwed single mom has some bigger issues than teaching the 7 sacraments and algebra to kids who are not her own. And a school has a duty to provide those children with Catholic education. If her sin was any other of the 10 commandments and there was a way to know them. Like she stole 200000 grand from the school’s tuition accounts, or she murdered someone, or the father of the child was the principal, or (gasp) a Father! Or perhaps if the father was a 14 year old boy? Or even a student?
You see, the school has a duty to the student body as a whole, not to the teacher who has messed up. The school should help the woman by offering other employment if she needs it. But she should not chair the hypocrisy department with a bulging belly and no father for a child. This is also the reason that a lesbian teacher at a Catholic school should not keep her job if she and her partner decide to have a child. Pope Francis ( known as the Pope of Mercy) has described homosexual adoption as Child abuse on the basis that every child deserves a mother and father. I would think that this is not different. The teacher is indeed partaking in a form of child abuse. And we should not overlook this just because she is not abusing the child so much that she aborts it.


#20

Of course it makes a difference. She’s not setting herself as a teacher of morality and faith.
We had two married teachers that were clearly involved in an affair.
We don’t know if they were actually sleeping together, but they did pass notes constantly, met in dark rooms and stood 2 inches from each other, kissed, goofed off when they should have been teaching. The principal called them both in, and reminded them that they signed morality clauses and he couldn’t have them on board. He said he would not fire them, nor would he say anything negative about them to perspective employers. (for any public school job…violate the morality clause and you never work for a Diocesan school again).
He wished them well, but gave them the opportunity to resign. They were mortified. They actually thought they were being discreet. When parents had children coming home asking questions, the principal had to act.
Then ended up both divorcing their spouses, had a child out of wedlock, married later, and then he dropped dead at 37 years old. She went back to her maiden name. Lives alone, as far as I know. they had about 8 months of “bliss” and then it all blew up. The staff all went to the funeral. It was very sad.
But they made their choice. They knew what they were doing was wrong. Absolutely.
When you teach the faith, you have to have certain standards. That’s not being judgmental or mean. It’s just the way it is. Negatively impact the spiritual growth of the children by clearly not living your faith, and you’re out. Whether layperson or priest or sister. We who work for the church have to be uber careful. We represent the faith. Like it or not. When a church employee crosses the line, the church has no option.
They had their child baptized. There were not ostracized, But they could not, in good conscience, teach religion.


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