Tuesday, 28 May 2013

More on Muslim prayer rooms and a letter to the Archbishop

I posted, a few days ago, on the apparent surge in Catholic Schools dedicating some of their hard won resources to providing Prayer Rooms for Muslim students.

That goes against all the mission statements that any Catholic School has ever produced...you know, the ones that state:-

The XXXX School is a Catholic secondary school for boys of all abilities and all backgrounds. It exists to serve the educational needs of the Catholic community of  XXXX and neighbouring areas. As such, it will at all times seek, via opportunities for worship and prayer, and via the teaching of its religious studies programme, to deepen and enrich the Catholic faith of all its pupils. Further we seek to provide for these same pupils, access to real academic, sporting, musical and artistic excellence.
We believe as well that all aspects of the life of the school should be lived in a spirit of justice and charity and that Christian selflessness should be part of all our dealings with one another.
OK, no mention of other faiths there. 
No mention of taking funds from the Catholic coffers to provide a room facing Mecca for its male Muslim students. No mention of the dangers of apparently equating Islam with Catholicism.
So now is the time for action against such silliness. 
I have composed a letter to Archbishop Peter Smith (copy to HG Archbishop Mennini) and I am collecting signatories so that I may present the letter (hard copy) with as many names appended as possible.
I hope that you will agree to join in and send me your name, either in the comment box or, privately by emailing me at r.collinsassoc@btinternet.com
Your names will not be made public and only appear as signatories on the letter itself.....please help me on this one, we cannot allow this sort of abuse to continue.
Here is the letter:
"Your Grace

We have been made aware of a number of Catholic Schools in your Archdiocese, where, in conflict with Catholic teaching and in direct contradiction of their mission statements, resources have been allocated to providing prayer rooms for Muslim students.

This is not an issue with Muslim pupils attending Catholic Schools, always provided that there is a shortfall in places. Such attendance is an opportunity for the Faith to be spread by example and by observation on the part of the pupils.

It is concerned directly with the fact that this facility should not be provided on Catholic premises, especially, a school setting where young people could, quite understandably, interpret the provision as a signal that there is little or no difference between Catholicism and Islam.

We hope that you will act to put an end to this practice and inform Headteachers, Lay Chaplains and Deacons who may be involved in pastoral work in the Catholic School sector, to that effect.

We assure you of our prayers for you and your priests at all times."

So now, please send me your name if you agree with the content of the letter. It matters not whether you are from Southwark or, indeed from Britain, all signatures made with good intent are valid.

This needs nipping in the bud before it becomes the norm.



  1. Please add my name Richard.
    Sandy Morris.

  2. Please add my name Richard


    Michael Carroll

  3. Richard, please add my name to the list.


  4. I'd happily add my signature to this:

    Elizabeth Fitzmaurice

  5. Here's two documents we orthodox Catholic's refer to, you can try them too.



    Just one question, do you know any school that have an actual "Muslim Prayer Room" as opposed to a place where Muslims can pray in their specific way without possibly encountering unkind comments from those less mature students who might attempt to ridicule them?

    I don't.

  6. More power to your elbow please add my name.

    David Brown.

  7. Three questions which represent the core of the Catholic faith should settle it.
    Do Muslims believe in the Trinity? No.
    Do Muslims believe in the Divinity of Christ? No.
    Do Muslims believe Christ died and rose again from the dead? No.
    Forget the warm, fuzzy feeling that we're really all the same. Devout Muslims do not believe this. Nor should we.
    But if it's about equality and respect why not provide prayer spaces for Hindus, Buddhists, Mormons, or a thinking space for humanists?
    If there's evidence of bullying, then it's up to staff to stamp it out. The same staff who will be leading the recitation of The Angelus in every classroom at noon every day, as happens in all good Catholic schools.

  8. Replies
    1. Stupid boy. Of course I have signed. Do tell: Do all the schools with which you are associated recite The Angelus daily?

  9. It all smacks of desperate Bishops and "Dim but Nice" head teachers trying to beat their demographic time bomb created by the utter failure these last two generations to oppose contraception and abortion. You have my name... for what it is worth. Too late! Time to be honest and just ashamedly creep away from this argument lest anybody get offended and call us EDL! Let's just politely now close all those schools our grandparents fought tooth and claw to set up in the face of extreme bigotry and persecution. Culture Cafod-libs won't care as a Catholic educashun is so...embarrassing, yah! Tony and Cherie say its OK! Will the last faithful and traditional Catholic please blow out the candles on their way out.

  10. A bit "ranty"... The point is please add my name. Nicandro Porcelli

  11. Remove "lay" from "lay chaplains" and you can add my name, too.

  12. Thank you Deacon Flavin, Your Reverence, I've added your name to my list. :)

  13. I guess this how we do it ? Please add our names.
    Michael, Gabriel, Daniel, Deborah Doelger (all) Doelger
    forgive me but always have to say, that is g as j.

  14. If one is sending ones children to a Catholic school, then there is a clear acceptance of the fact that this will be a school in the Catholic tradition. Nobody can have it any other way. You can't choose to attend a Catholic school because it has high academic and perhaps moral standards and then at the same time say. you want it to be a school in the x faith. We are not doing a service to these individuals by pandering to their wishes in this way. Instead, we ar a poorwitness to our millennia-old faith and traditions, that have been hard fought for by so any over the centuries.

    1. Authentic Catholic schools have high moral and academic standards precisely because they ARE Catholic schools. I've seen over and over again and in accordance with reason how Catholic schools that become hijacked by enemies of the Faith and its ethos, gradually implode at every level and in every aspect. A school cannot maintain a high standard of education if it does not have ain internally consistent, objectively rational philosophy of education such as that of Catholic education. We are in dereliction of our grave duty to our children if we leave them in once-Catholic, now heretical schools - we must either bring those schools back to the true Faith through the parish or diocese or remove our children from them and arrange education at home where necessary.

  15. Oh please do add my name to the list, it will give your letter even more gravitas that it will have already among the true Christians. You will email us all an attachment won't you please?

    Is Dilly signing?

  16. TF - thank you your most reverent illustriousness but, in the interests of fair play, I shall not be adding your name to the rapidly growing list of signatories.

  17. Annie, thank you please email your surname to r.collinsassoc@btinternet.com
    Thank you. Richard

  18. Annie, got it, slow on the uptake! Sorry.

  19. My late father was the headmaster of a Catholic primary school. A Muslim doctor who had recently moved into the area asked if he could enrol his two daughters as he didn't want them subjected to the type of sex education which even then (30 years ago) was becoming prevalent in non-Catholic primaries. My father agreed and said that of course they wouldn't be expected to attend prayers, Mass or religious education. However, the doctor insisted that they did so, since they were taught their religion at home and it would do them no harm to learn about Christianity in general and Catholicism in particular.

    Sign me up.

  20. Mr Nolan, did you get the impression our lads do not join in the prayers in class, at Mass, in the chapel for assembly?

    And when they do pray at these times, am guessing their intercessions are the same as when they pray in the privacy of the vestry.

    Incidentally, you are all aware, that's vestry, not muslim prayer room, there is not a muslim prayer room.

    Sign away

    1. Mr Flavin, if I had a clue what you are on about, I might be tempted to essay a reply. Sadly, I have read nothing you have posted, either here or elsewhere, which makes any sense at all.