Friday 9 December 2016

Religious education shouldn't stifle children's intelligence

Published 14/10/2015 | 02:30

Religious teaching: Pope Francis
Religious teaching: Pope Francis

Recent discussion about the place of religious education, particularly in primary schools (Irish Independent, September 29), highlights the confusion that underlies the notion that you can pass on faith from one generation to the next.

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Faith is not a collection of beliefs handed on from our parents. The faith of our fathers and mothers is not that of their sons and daughters. Faith is deeply personal, coming as an awakening or realisation that there is more to life than meets the eye or the mind of mankind.

Too often, the natural curiosity of children, their deep-rooted sense of awe and wonder, is suffocated by ill-conceived forms of religious education.

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