Removing a child from the catholic church

Issues relating to promoting a secular state education and raising children in a non-religious home
robreynolds2
Posts: 56
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 11:03 am
Location: Dresden, Germany

Removing a child from the catholic church

Post by robreynolds2 » Sat May 29, 2010 5:56 pm

I have left the Catholic Church last year by means of defection (although I am an atheist since I was 12 years old). My wife and I have decided that we no longer want our daughter to be a Catholic (or any other religion for that matter). I spoke with the bishop of the area about removing our daughter but he said that this was not possible under canon law.

I then took some time to think about this and realised that perhaps he does not have the right to do this as my wife and I alone have the right to determine our child's religion as described in Articles 41 & 42 of the Irish constitution. We believe that the constitution says that if we decide our daughter is no longer a Catholic, then there is no reason why anyone can compel us to keep her in the church. Our desire to remove her should be enough since we take all decisions for her until she is old enough.

As the baptismal register does not reflect our wishes the Catholic Church are incorrectly counting our daughter as a Catholic.
I informed the bishop of this and he got advice from his solicitor and his canon lawyer and he reported that while his solicitor agreed with my position, his canon law advisor did not.

Here is what I was quoted by the bishops email "I have to tell you that there is no way that I can comply with your wishes in the matter of making a change in the entry of your daughter's Baptism. My Canon Law adviser was quite definite about what the law of the Church has to say. He was very clear in saying that civil law has nothing to do with the case."

It would seem that once again the Church feel that they are above the State.

I am currently trying to consider all my options now as I find it intolerable that my daughter cannot leave the church until she is 16 years old. It appears to me to be illegal to prevent someone from leaving an organisation and to keep them there against their will as this is the type of behavior one would expect from a cult.

As I say I am currently taking time to weigh up all my options but I would like to get some feedback from individuals who support my position and would be grateful for any advice that could be given on the matter.
Morality is herd instinct in the individual - Friedrich Nietzsche

http://www.cabinbee.com
Bik
Atheist Ireland Member
Atheist Ireland Member
Posts: 637
Joined: Fri Sep 04, 2009 1:02 pm
Location: Baile Átha Cliath

Re: Removing a child from the catholic church

Post by Bik » Sat May 29, 2010 6:41 pm

Looks like a very interesting test case, I'd say you'd definitely win in a civil court but how the court would go about imposing it's judgement on the church would be a different matter. The costs would be immense and I'm sure prohibitive (unless you happen to be Michael Smurfit) as the church would drag this out as long as they could.
Please keep us informed as to what you do.
"Prayer has no place in the public schools, just like facts have no place in organized religion." Superintendent Chalmers
Dev
Atheist Ireland Member
Atheist Ireland Member
Posts: 914
Joined: Sat Jul 11, 2009 9:10 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Removing a child from the catholic church

Post by Dev » Sat May 29, 2010 6:53 pm

Hello Rob,

Welcome to the forums. This is indeed very interesting as Bik noted. I'd be eager to see how this plays out. We do have a forum member, Marks - who sometimes offers good advice on these issues as he seems to have some familiarity with Irish law and secular rights.

I do have a question though. If both you and your wife are against the church and have subsequently defected why did you choose to bring your child in? Perhaps your opinions are a recent development. I'm just curious.

If you could keep us appraised it would be appreciated. I was shocked to learn the church can actually say no to such a request.
lostexpectation
Posts: 1993
Joined: Wed Feb 07, 2007 11:28 pm

Re: Removing a child from the catholic church

Post by lostexpectation » Sat May 29, 2010 9:14 pm

what age is your daughter

what type of school is she in?

you tried by their now try by the rules http://www.dataprotection.ie/ViewDoc.as ... tID=16&m=r

http://www.dataprotection.ie/viewdoc.as ... /03cs8.htm
test
User avatar
mkaobrih
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 1602
Joined: Wed Sep 05, 2007 10:48 pm

Re: Removing a child from the catholic church

Post by mkaobrih » Sun May 30, 2010 7:07 am

She has left the church if you don’t bring her to mass or do any of the sacraments – That bishop has no power over you – he is not a parent – tell him to mind his own business - fill the form and send it off if it makes you feel better. She had no power to choose to join the church as an infant - all of that power was in your hands as it is now.
The church complains of persecution when it's not allowed to persecute.
robreynolds2
Posts: 56
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 11:03 am
Location: Dresden, Germany

Re: Removing a child from the catholic church

Post by robreynolds2 » Sun May 30, 2010 2:02 pm

Hi to all and thanks for your inputs so far. I will try to cover some of the questions raised.

My wife she was an agnostic when our daughter was born (not any more) and she wanted to have our daughter baptized so she could make her own decisions later in life. My wife did not believe in the Christan doctrine at the time but she had not yet dispensed with the possibility of god. Since I was still technically in the church I did not see the harm.

As the real truth became apparent about the church i.e. that it is not an organisation with a few flawed individual but rather an evil, immoral and corrupt organisation we have both realised that we have made a terrible, terrible mistake. I find it impossible to believe that some people that the church is a positive force in a society and at the same time fascism is not.

Simply not attending the church is not enough. Currently in Poland the Catholic Church is trying to force the government into giving them back land in compensation for the land and property that the Communists took from them. They are trying to justify their claim to prime zoned land and are using the fact that they need a lot of land to support a large congregation.

I have another concern about the method of defection that they insist on. The defection is simply to comply with canon law but it totally separate from civil law. What guarantee to we have that the next pope does not decided to "adjust" canon law and declare all of our defections a misunderstanding. If this were to happen we would all be catholics again.....maybe even without our knowledge.

I have been giving a lot of thought to going down the "Data Protection" route but before I decided on what I can do and cant do I would like to wait to consider all angles.

Thank you all for your feedback so far, I really appreciate it!
Morality is herd instinct in the individual - Friedrich Nietzsche

http://www.cabinbee.com
robreynolds2
Posts: 56
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 11:03 am
Location: Dresden, Germany

Re: Removing a child from the catholic church

Post by robreynolds2 » Sun May 30, 2010 2:02 pm

Hi to all and thanks for your inputs so far. I will try to cover some of the questions raised.

My wife she was an agnostic when our daughter was born (not any more) and she wanted to have our daughter baptized so she could make her own decisions later in life. My wife did not believe in the Christan doctrine at the time but she had not yet dispensed with the possibility of god. Since I was still technically in the church I did not see the harm.

As the real truth became apparent about the church i.e. that it is not an organisation with a few flawed individual but rather an evil, immoral and corrupt organisation we have both realised that we have made a terrible, terrible mistake. I find it impossible to believe that some people that the church is a positive force in a society and at the same time fascism is not.

Simply not attending the church is not enough. Currently in Poland the Catholic Church is trying to force the government into giving them back land in compensation for the land and property that the Communists took from them. They are trying to justify their claim to prime zoned land and are using the fact that they need a lot of land to support a large congregation.

I have another concern about the method of defection that they insist on. The defection is simply to comply with canon law but it totally separate from civil law. What guarantee to we have that the next pope does not decided to "adjust" canon law and declare all of our defections a misunderstanding. If this were to happen we would all be catholics again.....maybe even without our knowledge.

I have been giving a lot of thought to going down the "Data Protection" route but before I decided on what I can do and cant do I would like to wait to consider all angles.

Thank you all for your feedback so far, I really appreciate it!
Morality is herd instinct in the individual - Friedrich Nietzsche

http://www.cabinbee.com
User avatar
mkaobrih
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 1602
Joined: Wed Sep 05, 2007 10:48 pm

Re: Removing a child from the catholic church

Post by mkaobrih » Sun May 30, 2010 8:48 pm

Yikes - you live in Poland – I can imagine how more religious Ireland would become if we had an Irish pope.
The church complains of persecution when it's not allowed to persecute.
Dev
Atheist Ireland Member
Atheist Ireland Member
Posts: 914
Joined: Sat Jul 11, 2009 9:10 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Removing a child from the catholic church

Post by Dev » Sun May 30, 2010 9:19 pm

mkaobrih wrote:Yikes - you live in Poland – I can imagine how more religious Ireland would become if we had an Irish pope.
I think he lives in Ireland, he has an Irish name and cited the Irish constitution in his original post. I think the reference to Poland was to impart some evidence of why he distrusts the Catholic Church.
robreynolds2
Posts: 56
Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 11:03 am
Location: Dresden, Germany

Re: Removing a child from the catholic church

Post by robreynolds2 » Sun May 30, 2010 10:58 pm

No I am actually Irish, living in Dresden in Germany and my wife is Polish. The church in Poland is probably more corrupt and have more influence than in any other country in Europe. I did get married in the church there as my wife wanted to do the whole church thing. In Poland when you are getting married you have to go to confession twice before the big day. Unlike in Ireland they insist that your confessions are certified by the priest to prove that you actually went. This of course posed a problem for me as I realised the whole religion thing was a con when I was 12 (during my confirmation actually!!).

To get around this issued I offered the priest a large bribe which he accepted - Problem solved.

This also earned me a lot of brownie points as he had nothing but good things to say about me after which was a nice extra for my money!

Now perhaps you may think I am being a bit hypocritical with the whole baptism and marriage thing considering I stopped believing in this stuff since I was 12 but let me explain. I think people should be allowed to believe whatever they want even if it is complete nonsense and I don't get into the business of correcting other people points of view. At this time I did consider that the catholic church was fairly benign and going through these ceremonies although meaningless to me do mean something to someone I care about (namely my wife). I do think that I did do the right thing at the time with the information I had at the time and I have no regrets.

Since then the true horror of the church has surfaced. The horror comes in two branches, firstly the individuals who committed these acts and the bishops who covered them up and secondly those who are still silent. I am talking about all those "ordinary" priests who knew what was happening (and lets face it there must have been a hell of a lot) and did nothing.

It is for these reasons that I find it hard to differentiate between the church and the Nazis. Both committed unspeakable atrocities in the name of the common good. Both tried to hide and cover up. Both operated concentration camps except the church did not go on a mass execution spree. On the other hand while we know the full extent of what the Nazis did, we will never know how long the church was torturing children "in their care".
Morality is herd instinct in the individual - Friedrich Nietzsche

http://www.cabinbee.com
Post Reply