Don’t Believe the New Study About Irish College Students’ Attitudes About Religion… Yet

In Ireland, where atheism is already on the rise as are godless funerals, a new study — being touted on multiple websites and by Richard Dawkins — seems to show that the percentage of young Irish atheists is pretty high, too:

A student survey has uncovered some very interesting statistics regarding Irish students and their changing attitudes towards religion.

Shockingly, while less than 60% of respondents considered themselves Catholic; the second group to top the scale were Atheists at 20%.

That’s not the only shocker: Only a third of Irish Catholic students said they believe communion wafers are the physical body of Christ. Which I thought was one of the items on the Catholic Checklist.

And there’s this:

According to the survey, students regard ‘looking good’ (5th) as being more important than ‘religious beliefs’ (6th), with friends and family topping the list of importance.

Lots of interesting stuff.

But I’m not accepting any of it yet. Neither should you.

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Should Low-Income Public Schools Accept Help from Non-Evangelizing Evangelicals?

Short answer: Yes.

Longer answer: Yes, but only with strong oversight.

Samuel G. Freedman at the New York Times has an article in today’s paper about how a group of evangelical Christians are helping revitalize Roosevelt High School, a public school serving a lot of low-income families. They paint walls, repair bleachers, offer tutoring, help coach the football team, etc.

Normally, that’s not a good match… but it seems to have worked out fairly well for this school and many others in the area:

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Should a Science Museum Hire You if Your College Taught Young Earth Creationism?

Alison Green runs a website called Ask a Manager. It’s pretty self-explanatory — she gets a lot of questions from all sorts of employers and employees and she answers them as best she can.

She recently responded to this dilemma from someone looking for a job:

I’m a job-hunting recent grad, and I’m applying for jobs all over the place. One of the more interesting openings I’ve seen is at a science museum working as an educator. I’m a communications major, not a scientist, but I think I’d do well at the job and I’m hoping I’ll get an interview.

The problem comes from my educational background. I’m a graduate of a decently-sized Christian university that puts heavy emphasis on a literal 6-day creation week. These are the sorts of folks who believe that the earth is no more than 8,000 years old, that fossils are the result of a catastrophic world-wide flood, and that evolution only happened on a small scale — like wolves and dogs, but no further than that. The fact that all their professors agree to teach this is a big selling point for the school, and it’s advertised quite prominently. Anyone who googles my university will realize this within about three minutes. My high school and elementary school (the application asked for those as well) are much the same.

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Finding Answers in Science at an Anti-Creationism Rally

This is a guest post by Emily Dietle. A native Texan, Emily heads the blog emilyhasbooks writing on issues of atheism, Humanism, state secularism, egalitarianism, and free-expression. She is an aspiring speaker, avid reader, and strives to spread awareness of these issues, online and in person.

This past weekend in Houston, Answers in Genesis founder Ken Ham was the keynote speaker at the Texas Home School Coalition’s convention, pandering the hogwash of dinosaurs and humans living at the same time. After many refused attempts to set up a dialogue, an atheist Meetup group organized a rebuttal to Ham’s promotion of Creationism. Coordinating their efforts, three local freethought groups, spearheaded by Vic Wang, co-organized an educational event called “Answers in Science: What On Earth Do We Know?” Their efforts came under fire when Houston-area Creationist David Shormann attempted to silence the evidence-based Answers in Science from being held in the Houston Museum of Natural Science (HMNS) on the grounds that its messages promoting evolution were intolerant to religious teachings and an attack on Christianity. Shormann petitioned HMNS to ban the freethought groups from using meeting rooms there. Fortunately, he failed.

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Principal of Christian School Fired for… Acting. (Literally, Acting.)

I’ve heard of people getting fired from Christian schools for being gay or lesbian… but Harold Scott, an educator for 22 years and the superintendent of Parkview Christian Schools in Nebraska since 2011, was just let go for a very different reason:

Harold Scott says he was fired as superintendent of Parkview Christian Schools because he performed in a community theater production of “The Producers.”

In an email response to questions Wednesday, he said he was told the reason for his termination is that Calvary’s pastor, Dr. Carl Godwin, felt his participation would have a negative reflection on Calvary Community Church and Parkview Christian School.

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