‘Religion in schools helps teach right from wrong’

Tommy Mullan.
Tommy Mullan.

A Derry community worker has hit out at calls for religious education to be removed from the normal school syllabus.

Tommy Mullan from the Galliagh Residents’ Association said that religious education was vital to instil morality in young people and to help teach them right from wrong.

Mr. Mullan was speaking after Foyle People Before Profit MLA Eamonn McCann endorsed the Campaign to End Compulsory Religious Worship in Northern Ireland’s Schools.

Mr Mullan said: “I see young people at Mass. They will not be up the town creating any disturbance and there will be no anti-social behaviour from them.

“I would say there’s not enough religion.
When I went to school you knew what was right from wrong, you went to Mass and you were brought up as Christians. That is what is lacking nowadays.

“Whether its Catholic, Church of Ireland, Presbyterian, they’re entitled to teach religion in their schools.

“Do we want to live in a State like Russia?”

Mr. Mullan said that Mr McCann himself got his education in a Catholic grammar school in Derry.

He also said in centuries past, people had tried to stop Irish people practising their faith and there were people who died as martyrs.

Mr. McCann had criticised the practise of compulsory collective worship in schools, and how pupils - even over 16s - have no right to withdraw without parental permission.