Christian Schools

Let’s Finish Off Christian Schools: Andrews’ War on Christianity

27 September 2021

5.6 MINS

Christian Schools have been under ideological and legislative attack for years in Australia, but new proposed laws in Victoria have gone to a whole new level.

A Thought Experiment

Let me offer a little thought experiment here: If you had the power to destroy something you really disliked, say the Labor party in Victoria, how might you go about it?

Sure, you could ban it altogether, but the PR on that might be a bit much, and it might appear to be rather heavy-handed.

You would want to find a way to do it that makes it look like you are doing something good, something positive, and something fully acceptable.

So you would throw around jargon such as “discrimination,” “equal rights,” “inclusion” and “tolerance.” Those terms always go down so very well.

So then you simply can say that in order to achieve all these things, you will pass a law which states that the Labor Party has no right whatsoever to fire anyone from their organisation.

Indeed, it MUST hire anyone as well. So the Labor party would now be FORCED to hire those with diametrically opposed values, policies and beliefs.

They would have to hire those from the Liberal Party or from One Nation. And if such staff were already working in the Labor Party, they could NOT be fired. To kick out those with quite opposing views would be seen as discrimination and bigotry.

Well, that should do the trick. That should quickly bring about the complete end of the Labor Party. Of course, this is all just the stuff of imagination. It will never happen.

But something nearly identical IS about to happen in the Peoples’ Republik of Victoria – the most hardcore secular left state in Australia, and in much of the world.

Andrews Versus Christian Schools

Andrews the Arch-Christophobe is introducing legislation that will make it illegal for Christian schools to fire or not hire those with beliefs, values and lifestyles completely at odds with basic biblical teachings.

Biblical Christianity has always taught about the vital importance of heterosexual marriage and family, sexual purity, and the sins of things like adultery, fornication, and homosexuality.

But all that will soon be swept away with this diabolical new bit of legislation that is being pushed by Labor. One media report on this begins as follows:

Religious schools in Victoria will be prohibited from sacking or refusing to employ teachers because of their sexuality or gender identity under sweeping social reforms proposed by the Andrews government. Attorney-General Jaclyn Symes said legislation would be introduced later this year to close an “unfair, hurtful” gap in anti-discrimination laws that allow faith-based organisations to discriminate on the basis of sexuality, gender and marital status.

“People shouldn’t have to hide who they are to keep their job,” Ms Symes said. Lobby group Christian Schools Australia said it would oppose the legislation, with public policy director Mark Spencer saying it was “alarming”. “Once again it seems that people of faith in Victoria are being told what they can and can’t believe, that religious schools can only hold and act on beliefs that the government determines are acceptable,” he said. Some religious organisations strongly opposed the Victorian government’s legislation earlier this year to criminalise gay conversion practices.

“Is the next step for the announced changes to ‘anti-vilification’ laws to limit what can be taught in religious schools or preached in a church, mosque or temple?” Mr Spencer asked. But LGBTQ+ advocacy group Equality Australia chief executive Anna Brown said Victoria’s current laws were “out of step with 21st century community expectations”.

“Unless a person’s religion is actually relevant to their role or their needs, faith-based organisations should treat all their employees and the people who rely on their services fairly and without discrimination”, Ms Brown said. “Everyone deserves to live, work and study with dignity and respect, no matter who they are or whom they love.”

Christian Schools Fight Back

Last month Spencer, along with Vanessa Cheng, the executive officer of the Australian Association of Christian Schools, wrote a piece arguing that “Religious belief deserves protection”. They said in part:

We know there are different views about a range of matters within the Christian faith. But we do not believe that an individual teacher should expect to impose their changed beliefs about an important theological matter onto a Christian school that has been entirely consistent about their beliefs from the start.

In saying this, we acknowledge there is much pain and broken relationships when making these tough decisions. Our schools want to care for and support people with humility and love. It is our deep hope that people can find a community where they feel supported in their commonly held beliefs. The school holds to the orthodox Biblical belief that sexual activity outside marriage between a man and woman is not acceptable conduct for a Christian teacher.

They concluded:

Education is far more than merely the transmission of curriculum content. Research has shown that the community and relationships built around shared beliefs is a vital part of the educational process. It truly does “take a village to raise a child” and all staff in Christian schools have a vital role to play in that process – and need to share a common set of beliefs.

The Australian Association of Christian Schools and Christian Schools Australia, the peak bodies for Christian schools, look forward to the Morrison government following through on its election commitment to introduce a religious discrimination bill that will affirm that it is lawful for Christian schools to continue providing authentic faith-based education by employing staff who support and model the beliefs of the school.

We also look forward to the opposition’s support for such a Bill, reflecting their National Platform which recognises the need to protect religious freedom.

Talk of Discrimination is Just Plain Ludicrous!

I have also argued before that there are no jobs or roles in a Christian school that just any person can fill. From the principal to the janitor, a Christian school rightly expects everyone to hold to the same beliefs and values. As I wrote in one piece:

Talk of discrimination is just plain ludicrous anyway. Everyone discriminates all the time, and for good reasons. To have a decidedly Christian janitor, math’s teacher, receptionist and administrator would all be part of the rationale and basis for a Christian school.

The government might as well argue that rabid Carlton, Richmond and St. Kilda supporters be allowed to hold positions in the Geelong Football Club. Sorry, the Club wants people who support everything about Geelong to be on board, from lowly positions to higher up ones.

A Christian school (or charity, or business, or whatever) wants among other things, a complete unity of purpose, vision, aim and ethos. Having a homosexual physical education teacher, or a Muslim history teacher, or a Wiccan chemistry teacher would instantly render impossible that sort of unity.

A Christian school would of course also expect the highest moral standards of those who work for it. To say it must be forced to hire an adulterous gardener, or an alcoholic secretary, or a dope-smoking janitor (because what they are doing is only ‘peripheral’ to the purpose of the school) would in effect be suicide for that institution. The school could not function at all under such circumstances.

The Christian faith, in other words, permeates every aspect of life, and a Christian business or charity or educational institution expects to see Christian beliefs and values held to by everyone employed there, whether a principal or a floor sweeper.

Conclusion

All that is entirely sensible. And to prove it, let’s return to my scenario about the Labor Party.

Does anyone seriously believe that they would happily agree to being forced to hire people — or not fire people — whose political views are entirely opposed to what Labor believes? Of course not.

Would anyone dream of applying the foolish line of Brown to the Labor Party:

“Everyone deserves to live, work and study with dignity and respect, no matter who they are or whom they love”?

Um no.

Love smove.

Labor Party officials would argue that they must only be allowed to have those who share fully in their political views to work there.

Otherwise, it would be the end of the Labor Party. They know it would be. And it is the same here.

To demand that Christian schools allow anyone with any belief system and moral code into their organisation would spell the end of Christian schools.

And that of course is EXACTLY what Andrews and his misotheist buddies fully want to bring about.

Oh, and by the way, good luck to the secular left militants who are running Victoria in getting this to go down well in Islamic schools!

___

Originally published on CultureWatch. Image from WallPaperSafari.com.

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