Sir,—Having just completed five years' teaching in a co educational school, I am mystified by "Catholic Teacher's" pessimism about these institutions.
As a man, I neither experi enced nor observed the lightest problem in working under a woman; nor have I any doubt that the educational relationship between a man and girl pupils can be entirely satisfactory. Indeed, the remark that "co-education is good for everybody—except the girls" is directly contrary to my experience.
My own feeling, in which "Catholic Teacher" might agree with me, is that anyone childish and primitive enough to object to working under a woman, should not be in a position to influence children anyway; and that a school in which such attitudes predominate is sure to be a bad school.
But, this being understood, I
have no doubt that the argument, "They are mixed in life, why not in education?" is basically sound.
The increasing shortage of
women teachers is due to their increasing tendency to get married. so that even all-girls' (schools are more and more staffed by men. This is certainly a pity; but provided schools are expected to do a professional job, not to replace the home; and provided we produce male teachers with a reasonably mature attitude to women, no great harm need result.
Julian David Buckfastleigh, Devon.
Sir,—I would be most grate ful if, through your paper, I might obtain the views of your readers about Catholic primary schools.
Of the few Catholic primary schools that I know, all. without exception, have had a nun as headmistress. It may well be that my small sample has given me very much the wrong impression and I willingly stand to be corrected.
Be that as it may, I am led to believe from what I have seen myself and from what I have gathered from Catholic school teacher friends, that too many of the nuns appointed to headships are unsuited to the position.
If the general policy adopted is such that it tends to lead to this situation then it is manifestly unjust and is not in the best interests of our Catholic children.
Does it not mean that our Catholic lay teachers, however able, have, relative to their non Catholic counterparts, little chance of obtaining a headship? Does it not encourage the better teachers to move out of such schools to where they are likely to increase this chance?
Quite apart from the question of justness and whether the policy gives our children the beat secular education available, is it a sensible policy from the religious standpoint? A nun, whatever may be said to the contrary, is out of touch with the world which exists outside her Convent walls. If she were not, there would be little point in her becoming a religious. Hence I believe that much of the religious education which she imparts to her pupils will not stand them in good stead when they move out of school into the real world.
Generally speaking, how much more ably would a good Catholic Iay headmaster or headmistress discharge this most vital responsibility? What I have said is intended to question the wisdom of the general (if indeed it is so) practice of appointing nuns to headships at the possible expense of good lay teachers. There will of course be exceptions to prove the rule. My own children are presently attending a Catholic primary school with a nun as headmistress. She is excellent and, I think, exceptional.
Catholic Parent Leeds 6. schools or to head teachers.
We cannot give what we have not got, and it is absurd to misemploy men on tasks outwith their competence on the mere plea that they are Catholics.
It is absurd—even disgraceful—to expose children to sheer educational third-rateness and yet this does occur, and sometimes with devastating results.
As non-Catholic schools become more openly secular it behoves us to put our schools in order. If laymen are no longer to be silent let them speak out on this issue, and let the ecclesiastical authorities listen and act.
W. P. McKechnle Selkirk.
Sir, — Professor Fogarty's article putting the case for family allowances was very welcome.
But I wonder whether the battle for just family allowances can be waged more successfully if greater emphasis is placed on the help that they give to the mother of the family. While the word "family" is not a wholly welcome one in England at present, the word "mother" is one much more likely to win sympathy.
Perhaps as "mothers allowances" they would stand a better chance of receiving consideration from the public, and all political parties, than as "family allowances".
John Geary Romford, Essex.
ships that people of like image feel towards one another preclude this ideal either.
C. R. Fuller Buckhurst Hill, Essex.
Sir,—Norma Seavers, in her letter to the CATHOLIC HERALD (July 22) asks why racial integration will not work harmoniously in Britain.
Possibly the greatest obstacle of all, is the human factor. No people on earth want integration, and the coloured people will soon detect, even in the manner of the whites who say they accept him, a condescend
Sir,—Those who watched The Defenders on August 1 on TV will have heard the story of a young agnostic who tried to register as a conscientious objector. Whoever wrote the story knew his pacifist onions as we say—and a great deal more beside.
Those who have represented young men at their Tribunals (and 1 have so acted for three C.O.$) will know that it is much easier for the conventional Christian to be accepted, particularly if he belongs to one or two recognised sects such as Quakers, Jehovah Witnesses and the like, than it is for what we wrongly call the Outsider.
It is painful indeed to watch the inquisitors turn and twist the knife in the hearts and minds of youths far too young to have formulated their religious beliefs and too honest to shield behind such religious bodies that are recognised; though some even at that stage are far ahead of their judges.
Such inquisitions can be a genuine if clumsy attempt to test the sincerity of a youth. In this case the boy was found guilty though we were left with the suggestion that his defenders meant to appeal.
In World War I it would have meant certain prison and in less free countries death. At this moment men are languishing in prisons for no greater crime than that they have answered the dictates of Conscience, as groups like Amnesty well know.
But I never expected in this TV "courtroom drama" series to hear Paul Tillich quoted so freely. If it makes anyone begin to think and read such books as Paul Tillich and men like Pierre Teilhard de Chardin wrote, and others are writing now, then that play will have served a purpose far beyond the comprehension or maybe intention of its talented cast.
This is an exciting period in history and those of us who are old are fascinated by what you tell us about Brian Wicker's new book, Culture and Theology. The ground is cracking everywhere which makes many of our sometimes bitter struggles seem very worth while.
Winifred Cummings Dawlish Devon
Sir,—Many Catholics will have been puzzled by the apparent condoning by the Church of the barbarous cruelties inflicted on great numbers of unfortunate bulls and horses in the bull-ring. as shown on BBC-TV, Friday July 29, in The Matador; not to speak of the immorality of the men themselves who continually risk their lives for the sake of wealth and worldy fame. sit Pee'ertg Sir,—lt is only today that I received by surface mail the CATHOLIC HERALD of May 27. I was very distressed to read of Archbishop Roberts' statement that "the safe period just is not safe".
It has been amply demonstrated that the temperature method of periodic abstinence is one of the most reliable methods available.
I cannot but feel that such statements might well undo a great deal of the good that has been brought about by the devoted work of the doctors of the Catholic Marriage Advisory Council.
C. H. Peeler Nairobi, Kenya.
ing but strained manner which shows to the coloured chap beyond all doubt that the white man is accepting him out of allegiance to an ideology rather than from the heart.
There is only one way to achieve true racial equality and that is by a process of gradual separation leading t o all peoples ruling themselves— indeed, by following the separate paths that God decreed for us in His diverse creation of mankind.
(Dr.) D. R. M. Brown
St. Leonards, Sussex.
Only last March L'Osservatore Romano wrote : ". . . all sports based on needless cruelty to animals should be prohibited. A classical example is that of bull-fighting . . ." Pope St. Pius V issued in 1567 the famous Bull de salute gregis dominici whereby he forbade "this kind of spectacle" under pain of excommunication and denied Christian burial to men who were killed in the bull-ring.
More recently, Cardinal Gasparri, then Secretary of State of the Vatican, wrote in 1920: "The Church continues to condemn these shameful and bloody spectacles."
How many of your readers know that Pope Pius XII refused to receive in 1957 mataJdors and representatives of the bull-ring industry from Spain, or to accept their inttended gift of a jewelled cape ,and one million pesetas?
(Mrs.) C. M. M. Sucher
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Sir,—I recently read in your newspaper that as a result of the general economic crisis and credit squeeze that now exists, church building has been hit.
I personally receive this news with joy for I am completely against the whole idea of "churches" as separate buildings for a number of reasons.
Liturgically, they create an artificial barrier between religion and everyday life.
The Mass, for example, is nearly always more meaningful when said in normal everyday surroundings, in normal everyday communities.
Economically, if we did not have the fantastic burden of building a n d maintaining churches, we could use the money much more usefully, and without harming the parish liturgical life. Socially, a multi-purpose building instead of a singlepurpose building would help towards creating a better community spirit.
B u t even considering churches as desirable, are they not still expensive luxuries for us Christians? If we really consider the world a community, a brotherhood, and if we are really to be concerned for this community, will not Christ on the day of our judgment find it a little hard to understand how we can spend millions of pounds on churches, for example, Liverpool Cathedral, when so many of our brothers in Christ are starving and underfed?
H. Beresford-Webb Sidcup, Kent. Sir, — "Catholic Parent's" plea for the appointment of suitable heads to our schools will find an echo in many hearts—and of course inadequacy is not confined to girls'
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Sir,—With regard to Norma Seavers' letter on the race problem, my point is that for the last 15 years we have been subjected to a stream of propaganda from the television and newspapers singing the praises of integration—yet still 90 per cent of the British people do not want mixed marriages.
As for Jamaica being a society where all races live harmoniously together as social equals: is this really so? Norma Seavers comes from the ruling race in Jamaica—but what do the "dominated" races think of the situation?
The members of the ruling race in any society always say that all races in their society exist together "harmoniously".
The Arab government of the Southern Sudan said that the Negroes in their country were quite happy—then is was found out that a race war was going on between the Arabs and Negroes.
Jomo Kenyatta says that his is a non-racial State—yet the 200,000 Asiatics are forever complaining about their illtreatment.
As for the concept of the "human family", I believe implicitly that all races were created by God and are His children, but just as I do not believe that the special relationships between man and wife or parents and children preclude this ideal, nor do I believe that the special relation Mo-aas tv etiikoft fru. Tv'