UCC and Religion

UCC is something of a paradox in that we are a “nondenominational” school, which also has a school hymn and a school chapel.  A good number of our first few principals were Anglican ministers, and most Old Boys over the age of 30 still refer to assemblies as “prayers.”  It’s worth noting that Laidlaw Hall, our place for Upper School gatherings, has pews rather than chairs.

UCC should be a place where a boy can grow in spirit, as well as in mind and body. Part of that involves our students’ grappling with the “God question.”  While the school shouldn’t proselytize in any way, we also shouldn’t back off or discourage students from asking themselves the Big Questions.  If they leave UCC as more faithful Muslims, Jews, or Christians – or more thoughtful agnostics, then that is all to the good.


2 thoughts on “UCC and Religion

  1. No offense, but why the recourse to economic arguments? – ‘a critical precondition to harvesting the social and economic benefits…?’ It’s almost sickening. Besides which, I don’t think Dr. Power’s comment is that UCC should celebrate ‘Christmas’ instead of ‘the holiday season,’ but a more personal reflection on the school’s interaction with students’ beliefs.

    I think the omission of atheism is conspicuous – I don’t know if it is intentional. It is certainly an interesting question. I do think that if anything is proselytized in academic institutions today (unconsciously, most often between students), it is this. A sort of juvenile, arrogant liberal positivism pervades; all religions as dogma, and equal in their worthlessness – and perhaps the ultimate insult: as a useful social construct. It’s a hard line to walk, certainly – how can one make an argument for faith in genera without arguing for ‘a faith?’ Is this an argument that can or should be made? I tend to regard myself as a troubled agnostic; I have tremendous respect for sincere religious sentiment: faith is hard.

    Regardless, conscious omission or no, I’m with Dr. Power on this.

  2. UCC has demonstrated the courage to celebrate original Christian traditions while at the same time respecting and learning about other religions. The fear of offending other religions should not be used as an excuse to alter the context of the Christian seasonal celebration of the birth of Christ.

    The UCC secular dress code can avoid the French extreme of banning all religious symbolism expressed in styles of dress or accessories. In the same context I sincerely hope that religious affiliation will never be allowed to influence student admission as it has in some private schools in Ontario. Racially focussed admission is also unacceptable . If we encourage these trends to segregation, Canada will throw away one of it’s most important competitive advantages–racial and religious tolerance as a critical pre-condition to harvesting the social and economic benefits of a diverse population and work force.

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