Religious education consultants criticize efforts to remove religion course from schools


Regional superintendents of Religious Education in Costa Rica are denouncing suggestions to remove Catholic education courses from public schools following a ruling by Costa Rica’s Constitutional court.  The recent decision stripped the Church's right to choose which religion teachers are hired in Costa Rican schools.

Last month, Costa Rica's Constitutional Court reversed a 1972 law stating that all religious teachers must be approved by the Bishops’ Conference of Costa Rica.

“We sense an ideological interest to eliminate the subject of Religious Education” on the part of some feminist, secular and pseudo-Christian groups who see the Catholic Church as an entity opposed to their agenda, the consultants said in a statement.

They called on educational officials to respect the legal norms allowing the Department of Religious Education to continue selecting religion teachers for the interim, because “having an academic title is not enough for teaching this material. One needs “ecclesial recognition of a charism,” they noted.

The regional superintendents urged the bishops to consider every legal means at their disposal to ensure that the Catholic faith will still be taught in public schools, and called on priests and those in lay ministry to do the same.

They then defended the rights of Costa Rican parents – the majority of whom are Catholic – and asked them to demand that their children “receive religious formation in public schools, taught by Catholic teachers, in accordance with article 75 of our Constitution.”

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