Friday, September 15

Thank God I Don't Face This!

Secret police arrested a woman in Germany, a mother of twelve, for homeschooling. Apparently, it's illegal and has been since Hitler - yes, you read that right, Hitler - banned it. How can you brainwash children if they aren't coming to public schools?

The father has fled with their children to Austria, where at least one other homeschooling German family had to flee to be allowed to instruct their children.

One commenter at the page had this to say:

I have no problem with home schooling for the most part. I feel parents should have a right to choose the methods they feel are best to educate their children.


It appears that Homeschooling is illegal in Germany. I don't thick this is right, but until circumstances change, how exactly are the Pletts doing what is best for their children?
There comes a point where parental idealism becomes a selfish endeavour in and of itself. In fact every grownup can relate stories of parental zeal; some happily and more not so.

This particular story has no traction.


There is such a thing as an unjust law. For example, when Northern, free states, made it illegal to help runaway slaves, many people broke that law because it was unjust. In the South, some taught their slaves to read and write despite the illegality of the act.

The Catechism states:

1903 - Authority is exercised legitimately only when it seeks the common good of the group concerned and if it employs morally licit means to attain it. If rulers were to enact unjust laws or take measures contrary to the moral order, such arrangements would not be binding in conscience. In such a case, "authority breaks down completely and results in shameful abuse."23
[emphasis mine]

And, later, it emphasizes this point:

2242 - The citizen is obliged in conscience not to follow the directives of civil authorities when they are contrary to the demands of the moral order, to the fundamental rights of persons or the teachings of the Gospel. Refusing obedience [emphasis in original] to civil authorities, when their demands are contrary to those of an upright conscience, finds its justification in the distinction between serving God and serving the political community. "Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's."48 "We must obey God rather than men":49

When citizens are under the oppression of a public authority which oversteps its competence, they should still not refuse to give or to do what is objectively demanded of them by the common good; but it is legitimate for them to defend their own rights and those of their fellow citizens against the abuse of this authority within the limits of the natural law and the Law of the Gospel.50

You can read about the family here. Please pray for them, and pray that Germany lifts this unfair law that does not permit parents to be the primary educators of their own children. After all, the Church teaches us that we are just that. (See Pope Pius XI's Divini Illius Magistri and Pope John Paul II's Familiaris Consortio.) Does it matter that this family is Baptist? Not at all, for as Catholics we know that God's laws and guidelines for our lives does not depend upon our membership in His Catholic Church.

Hat tip to Esther for pointing this out. (She found it via Custos Fidei.)


Barb, sfo said...

I have a cyber-pal who is in Germany right now with her US-military husband and their children. They home school the kids; have been for years in the US before he was stationed in Germany this year.
Do you think that US military families are also in danger under this law?

Nancy the Romancechick said...

I response to barb above, I would like to say that I was in the Army stationed in Germany years ago, and a military post is considered American soil. I wouldn't think that a homeschooling family there would face any danger as homeschooling is legal in the US.

Who are your heros?


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