The Church is to start moving the preparation of children for Holy Communion and Confirmation out of the classroom, putting more pressure on families to prepare their children for the sacrament.
The country’s largest archdiocese is developing plans to strip back pre-sacramental preparations in schools amid growing sentiments that many families and children have little interest in the celebration.
The new policy in the Archdiocese of Dublin, which has been in development for four years, follows a survey of 1,800 people including parents, priests and school principals.
I think Dublin is quite right to take sacramental preparation out of the schools and put more responsibility on the parents.
In fact, I think all denominational religion should be taken out of schools. Schools should teach religion as comparative study.
The places for denominational religion are the church, the Sunday school and the family home.
Many teachers, even in Catholic schools, do not practice their faith.
Many parents who want their kids baptised, given Holy Communion and confirmed do not practice their religion or even believe.
Baptism, Communion and Confirmation have now become social occasions, parties, and excuses for eating and drinking to excess.
Parents spend hundreds and thousands of pounds on clothes and these occasions.
Some families even hire limos for the occasions and occasionally helicopters.
Are Sacraments not for believers?
Should they not be more spiritual and less materialistic occasions?
Should the children of the non believing and non practising be baptised?
We have a lot of thinking to do about the Sacraments and how we prepare for them, celebrate them and who receives them.