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Fwd: Re: [OrthodoxInfo] Our Open-Minnded Society

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  • Fr. Panagiotes Carras
    Subject: Re: [OrthodoxInfo] Our Open-Minnded Society To: OrthodoxInfo@yahoogroups.com Evlogite Father, We are not part of an open-minded society. Two weeks
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 5, 2006
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      Subject: Re: [OrthodoxInfo] Our Open-Minnded Society
      To: OrthodoxInfo@yahoogroups.com

      Evlogite Father,

      We are not part of an open-minded society.  Two weeks ago, I received a letter from the school saying that they would have a fundraiser for which they would be applying henna/mehndi to hands (to only those who wished),  to celebrate the festivals of Eid-ul-Fitr and Diwali.  My daughter  had written,"mommy I want to get this," on top of the notice.

      When the notice came home last year, I disregarded it but not this time.  She was crying until I explained to her that many people of these faiths hate those who believe in Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.  I explained that she can listen to the announcement at school as they talk about what is being celebrated, and wish her friends a happy holiday if she wishes, but that would be it.

      As the weekend went by I kept reading the first sentence in the letter which was, "As you are aware inclusiveness and pluralism are very important to our school and multiculturalism and diversity are celebrated on an ongoing basis." Well, my child was being EXCLUDED and that statement was false.
      I went to the school and let the principal know that I was there not to confront,  but to bring to their attention that something was being overlooked.  That was the exclusion of some of their students.  I told her that when the Lord's Prayer was taken out of school as was the "Christmas concert", "Christmas holiday" and Easter", it was done to be fair to non-Christians.  I explained that we took those holidays out and are now bringing in other religious holidays, and that this is not fair.

      The principal's  response was that the application of henna is a cultural, not religious practice.  I let her know that I was aware of this,  but that the school letter clearly stated that this time,  it was to celebrate these festivals. The principal  told me that I was the only parent that expressed any concern regarding this matter.  My response was that I believed her because it took a lot of courage to go and discuss this matter.  Then she told me that we don't live in the "Beaver Cleaver Society" that she and I grew up in.  So, I let her know that I didn't grow up in such a society,  because although I have white skin, coming from immigrant parents, who had to sweat to make a buck,  and living in a small town was very difficult.  I told her I was made fun of and was discriminated against because of my religious beliefs.   I re-assured her that I don't want kids who are of a visible minority to be subjected to this abuse.  However,  I also told her that I never thought that my kids would be excluded and made to feel bad because of their religious beliefs.

      If we are such an "open-minded" society, as I thought at one time we were, we would be acknowledging all holidays in the schools.

      I found the e-mail you sent yesterday very discouraging.  It was the semon by Metropolitan Moses on the Gospel for The Fourth Sunday of Saint Luke.  Reading this, I felt as though there was no hope for me or for many who live in today's world.  It is impossible for me to live my life as I should according to God's Law, in this materialistic and sinful world.  Pray for us.

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