FRI-SAT-SUN
February 18-20, 2000
volume 11, no. 35
To print out entire text
of This weekend's issue, go to
SECTION ONE
SECTION TWO
SECTION THREE

NEWS & VIEWS     Acknowledgments
Articles provided through Catholic World News and Church News at Noticias Eclesiales and International Dossiers, Daily Dispatches and Features at ZENIT International News Agency. CWN, NE and ZENIT are not affiliated with the Daily CATHOLIC but provide this service via e-mail to the Daily CATHOLIC Monday through Friday.

PROPOSAL TO ALLOW FAITH-BASED LITERACY PROGRAMS

    WASHINGTON, DC (CWNews.com) - A new bill approved by a US House committee on Wednesday would allow religious groups to participate in federal literacy programs without forcing them to hide or disguise their faith background.

    The House Education and the Workforce Committee approved a bill funding the $500 million Even Start program, which offers tutoring to preschoolers and literacy and job training for parents. Supporters say the changes in program regulations will allow, for example, Catholic groups to run programs without having to remove crucifixes from the walls.

    "Trying to totally separate the faith of a society from any form of influence is ridiculous," said Rep. Mark Souder, R-Indiana, who sponsored the changes approved by the committee.

    But critics maintain that the changes violate the separation of church and state. "The courts have never allowed churches to get tax dollars to run educational programs," said Barry Lynn, executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State. "It is particularly appalling that a congressional committee thinks it is OK to fund programs that practice religious discrimination in hiring."

    So-called "charitable choice" programs that allow religious groups to participate in federally funded social programs have been the cornerstones of the presidential campaigns of Republican Texas Gov. George W. Bush and Democrat Vice President Al Gore. They won their first victories in 1996 as part of federal welfare reform which allowed religious groups to provide services to the poor.

          

February 18-20, 2000
volume 11, no. 35
NEWS & VIEWS

To print out text of Today's issue, go to:
SECTION ONE | SECTION TWO | SECTION THREE

The DAILY CATHOLIC Search for anything
from the last three
years in past issues of
the DailyCATHOLIC: