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'Quick Help' Page: Catholics Who Have Children Baptized Or Educated Outside The Church

 

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Arrow Question / Issue:

"Should Catholics have children baptized or educated outside the Church?"

 

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No. As the 1983 Code of Canon Law states...

"Can. 1366 Parents, or those who take the place of parents, who hand over their children to be baptized or educated in a non-Catholic religion are to be punished with a censure or other just penalty."

Also, purely secular education is NOT acceptable...

"Truly barren is a secular education. It is always in labor, but never gives birth." (St. Gregory of Nyssa)

"To exclude the Church, founded by God Himself, from public life, from making laws, from the education of youth, from domestic society, is a grave and pernicious error." (Pope Leo XIII)

"When religion is banished from the school, from education and from public life, when the representatives of Christianity and its sacred rites are held up to ridicule, are we not really fostering the materialism which is the fertile soil of Communism?" (Pope Pius XI, "Divini Redemptoris")

"In educating the young it is not sufficient that religious instruction be given to them at fixed times; it is necessary also that every other subject that is taught to them be permeated with Christian piety. If this is wanting, little good can be expected from any kind of learning." (Pope Leo XIII)

Error CONDEMNED by Pope Pius IX in the Syllabus of Errors: "Catholics may approve of the system of educating youth unconnected with Catholic faith and the power of the Church, and which regards the knowledge of merely natural things, and only, or at least primarily, the ends of earthly social life." (Bl. Pope Pius IX, This proposition was condemned in the Syllabus of Errors, Dec. 8, 1864 A.D.) 

"The wisdom of our forefathers, and the very foundations of the State, are ruined by the destructive error of those who would have children brought up without religious education. You see, therefore Venerable Brethren, with what earnest forethought parents must beware of entrusting their children to schools in which they cannot receive religious teaching." (Pope Leo XIII, "Spectata Fides", 1885 A.D.)

"Obviously the need of this Christian instruction is accentuated by the decline of our times and morals. It is even more demanded by the existence of those public schools, lacking all religion, where everything holy is ridiculed and scorned. There both teachers' lips and students' ears are inclined to godlessness. We are referring to those schools which are unjustly called neutral or lay. In reality, they are nothing more than the stronghold of the powers of darkness." (Pope St. Pius X, "Editae Saepe", 1910 A.D.)

"From this it follows that the so-called 'neutral' or 'lay' school, from which religion is excluded, is contrary to the fundamental principles of education. Such a school moreover cannot exist in practice; it is bound to become irreligious. There is no need to repeat what Our Predecessors have declared on this point, especially Pius IX and Leo XIII, at times when laicism was beginning in a special manner to infest the public school. We renew and confirm their declarations, as well as the Sacred Canons in which the frequenting of non-Catholic schools, whether neutral or mixed, those namely which are open to Catholics and non-Catholics alike, is forbidden for Catholic children, and can be at most tolerated, on the approval of the Ordinary alone, under determined circumstances of place and time, and with special precautions. Neither can Catholics admit that other type of mixed school, (least of all the so-called 'école unique,' obligatory on all), in which the students are provided with separate religious instruction, but receive other lessons in common with non-Catholic pupils from non-Catholic teachers." (Pope Pius XI, "Divini Illius Magistri", 1929 A.D.)


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