In this article, Patricia Pearson implied that the young people produced by Canada’s secular educations system are ignorant of religion, and therefore are offensive because of that ignorance. She brought up an example of a fifteen year old girl she seemed to think served as an example of ignorance, who said that she didn’t believe in a god, and asked for proof. These accounts are from different teens, all having attended public schools, and they explain what their beliefs are, and at least summarise why they believe in what they do. I think that these speak for themselves in proving that public school does not prevent religious thought and decisions from being made.
I’d also like to thank everyone who contributed to this so much. <3 I will be adding more of my submissions when they get sent to me, but I felt like I'd been sitting on this post for a bit too long. So watch for more entries being added to this post as people finish summarizing their thoughts for me during this quite busy time of year.
“My name is Julie Thorne and I am 18 years old. I do not believe in God. Just like the other adolescent girl who said that she does not believe in god because there is no proof, I stand by it for the same reason.
I grew up in a christian house hold. My parents and I attended church every Sunday morning and was involved in church events. I don't believe in god because I don't believe in everything that people tell me too. I use to believe in god. I would go to church every Sunday; I would pray before every meal, I would read the bible before bed. I would thank god for every blessing in my life. But god never really did anything.
God didn't provide the food for me to eat, my parents did. God didn't make me feel better when I was sick, medicine and rest did. I was thanking this so called "god" for things that he wasn't even doing.
I have been to healing ceremonies. I have prayed. I have asked god for help. In the end, it was either my parents, myself, or some man made substance that helped me through my hard times.
And even with all that being said, I do not want to believe in a god. I do not want to believe in a god that says homosexuality is a sin. I do not want to believe in a god that believes saying his name in vain is breaking one of the ten commandments but raping someone isn't.
If there is a god, I want nothing to do with him.”
“I am an 18 year old female and have attended Public Schooling my entire life. My beliefs in religion are varied. I go to church on holidays and I pray when I need to. I believe in God in some ways, but however I have many questions regarding him as I have trouble justifying why certain things happen on earth. Just because I have went to a public school versus a Christian or Catholic school, does not mean that we are ignorant to a sense of religion, it is still in our households, and within ourselves even if we don't practice it in our school systems.” (Holly Drury)
“Written by: Justine Stevens, for Kendra Pape-Green
Despite popular belief, some teens actually DO give thought to their religious beliefs and where they stand on them. I myself have racked my mind for over two years trying to figure out what I believe. I'm not sure what I believe quite yet, but I DO know what I don't believe, and that is what I'm writing about in this paragraph.
I was raised Roman Catholic, and for years as a little girl, I believed in God, the Devil, Heaven, and Hell. My mom always told me that God would provide for us, and that he loved us, which is why he gave his only begotten son for our sins. Cirumstances that I grew up in (which shall not be mentioned for it is not the place for such things) forced me to mature a lot faster than other children, and I quickly grew to realize that most religions, especially Christianity and Catholicism, are used to gain power and control over people. For thousands of years, the Church tried to take over the world and force their views on people. The Crusade is a perfect example of how far the Church was willing to go to gain power over people. As a young girl, I was told about the 10 commandments, and according to the Bible, if you commit any of them, you go to Hell.
Here are some examples: (they are not in order)
Commandment 1: Do not commit adultery.
Commandment 2: Do not murder.
Now, here are some things I took from the Bible:
Jesus said in Matthew 5 that to look at someone with lust is to have committed adultery with them. Jesus said in Matthew 5 that whoever is angry with his brother without cause is guilty of murder.
Isn't that a little extreme? EVERYONE, I mean EVERYONE, even the BEST, most LOYAL Christian, gets angry at someone. Should they go to Hell just for a natural human emotion that God gave us when he created us at birth? Should someone go to Hell just for looking at someone and finding them attractive? Like I said above, even the most loyal Christian does that.
By the Bible's standards, we all deserve Hell.
I know I am a good person, and so are many of my friends, and all of them have been angry, all of them have liked someone, or found them attractive, all of them have taken things as a child, it's normal to take things at a young age. You don't know any better. Should we be condemned for something we cannot help? I think not.
This is just ONE of my many reasons for not going into Christianity. Thank you for listening. :)” (17 years old)
“I believe in what others may see as a compilation of beliefs from various religious origins, and that humanity is here to learn, grow and nurture both the planet and each other. Regardless of religion, we are all in this together. Furthermore, I am of the opinion that every person finds the path they are meant to travel, no matter which category it places them in religiously. At the core of my belief system is the idea that every person here on the planet has something important to learn in this lifetime, and they will learn it in whichever way suits them. I believe these concepts are a step towards finding a balance where all can find happiness and peace. Equality, acceptance, love and peace are key. Attending church on Christmas Eve is wonderful, and it is also important to me to meditate on the energy centers of the body. Sometimes cleansing a space with sage feels necessary, and other times a prayer feels right. We are loving, we are free, we are learning, we are one.” (Lena, 18)