My daughter and I have a very close relationship right now. She talks to me about how hard school is for her. She is having to find her way in a very hard environment. You see, she goes to a public school which is predominately protestant christian. And she sees many of her peers behave in a way that is not Christian. And she doesn't understand why that is.
I don't understand why that is. This weekend she told me a friend or peer of hers, told her that her parents told her that Catholics were evil. E-V-I-L. And the girl also told my daughter, that is was nothing against her per se, that it was her church and part of her religion. I wish my daughter would have asked the girl what she thought aside from what her parents said.
My daughter was so confused and hurt by this. She didn't understand that a Christian church would be this way.
I had no idea this was coming. I had no way to explain it other than prejudice. I told her that it was too sad that they thought that. I explained to her that the parents are ignorant of the truth. That they must not have ever asked a Catholic about their beliefs. I told her that if she ever has a question about another faith that she should talk to someone of that faith and not just anyone. She should go to a pastor or someone who has studied it and really understands the answers to the questions she has. In this, I hope that I taught her not to be caught in ignorant regurgitation. I hope to have taught her truly seek truth and not just repeat what someone else has told her.
I was proud of her for responding that she wasn't evil and that she forgave the parents for their trespass. She understood that they didn't know what they were doing by teaching their daughter prejudice. My daughter is 11 and she gets this. People are sheep, no matter which religion they follow.
How do I manage this? How do I protect my daughter from people who are so willing to hate without knowing? I am so disappointed and just hopeless. I try so hard to teach my children to love others and respect and celebrate differences. I can not fathom teaching my kids to hate anything (except for maybe cabbage or liver).
So, in my heart there is a heaviness.