Author Topic: 4,000 [Coptic] families threaten to leave Toronto Catholic schools  (Read 1418 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Jetavan

  • Argumentum ad australopithecum
  • Taxiarches
  • **********
  • Posts: 6,825
  • Tenzin and Desmond
    • The Mystical Theology
Anyone have any other info on this?

TORONTO, Ontario, July 29, 2011 ( – The Coptic Orthodox Churches in Toronto are threatening to withdraw 4,000 families from the Toronto Catholic District School Board if it does not amend its controversial equity policy to protect Catholic teaching in the schools.  According to one expert in Ontario education, if the threat were carried out, the board could lose upwards of $40,000,000 in annual public funding, and over 150 teachers.

If the board implements its policy, wrote Fr. Jeremiah Attaalla on June 22nd, “we will not hesitate to withdraw our children at once from attending any Catholic school within Toronto or [the Greater Toronto Area].”

The equity policy, passed earlier this year as part of the Ontario government’s sweeping equity and inclusive education strategy, has sparked an unprecedented mobilization of parents who fear that it will give homosexual activists a foothold in order to further subvert already weak Catholic sexual teaching in the schools...."
« Last Edit: August 03, 2011, 09:07:37 AM by Jetavan »
If you will, you can become all flame.
Extra caritatem nulla salus.
In order to become whole, take the "I" out of "holiness".
Ἄνω σχῶμεν τὰς καρδίας
"Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is." -- Mohandas Gandhi
Y dduw bo'r diolch.

Offline Orest

  • guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,473
Re: 4,000 [Coptic] families threaten to leave Toronto Catholic schools
« Reply #1 on: August 09, 2011, 02:23:15 PM »
You can read the priest's letter here:

I would take the letter more seriously if it were sent by the parish councils of each of the churches mentioned.  Does one priest have the authority to speak for all Coptic parents in Toronto?

Also the Copts are trying to start their own school system like the Armenian Orthodox.  Is the letter and the article in the Toronto Star part of the movement to increase student enrolment in the Coptic School System?

By the way, for historical reasons, the catholic School Board in Ontario is funded by the provincial government and tax payers can choose to have their school taxes paid to the Catholic School Board rather than the Public School Board.  On the other hand other religious schools such as the Jewish Schools and various protestant Schools are considered private and are not funded out of the school tax.

Offline Orest

  • guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,473
Re: 4,000 [Coptic] families threaten to leave Toronto Catholic schools
« Reply #2 on: August 10, 2011, 10:33:18 AM »
By the way this is one pearl of wisdom from the Coptic priest:
“...Orthodox Christians differ from Roman Catholics in their belief that the Pope is a human being, not a divine figure...”

Theere is a followup article in the Toronto Star with quotes from the president of the Canadian Egyptian Congress, who is also a Coptic orthodox Christian and attends one of the 4 local Coptic Churches in Toronto.

The president of the Canadian Egyptian Congress is urging parents to reject a call by a Coptic Orthodox priest to pull some 4,000 children out of the Catholic school system if it adopts a policy more accepting of homosexuality and religious difference…
Bishay, also a prominent member of the St. George and St. Rueiss congregation, said Father Jeremiah Attaalla had spoken out of turn when he suggested that the board’s proposed equity policy would result in Coptic Orthodox students being pulled from class in September. The Egyptian Congress president sent out an email to hundreds of families Sunday, urging them to maintain their children’s enrolment in the Catholic system.

read the whole article here:

This article in I believe an American newspaper highlights the mistakes in the original article about the theological differences between the Copts and Catholics:

Some Coptic Orthodox laity have taken issue with Father Attaala’s comments. Reporting on the controversy, the most popular newspaper in Canada glossed over the theological differences between Catholics and Coptic Orthodox (who do not accept the Christological formulations of the Council of Chalcedon), ignored major differences in liturgy; and a˜ppeared to make the ridiculous claim the Catholics believe that the Pope is not a human being, but a “divine figure.” The Toronto Star reported that

though most in the Coptic Orthodox community send their children to Catholic school, they are not Catholic themselves. The differences are slight--they use the same liturgies, though Orthodox Christians differ from Roman Catholics in their belief that the Pope is a human being, not a divine figure--which has meant Coptic Orthodox children most often are sent to Catholic school.

And in this article the Copts are called "Coptic catholics.":