Parents Upset That UMC Preschool Will Teach Christian Principles

The Concord-St. Andrew’s Cooperative Nursery School in Bethesda, Md., had been operating as a non-religious institution for some 60 years and appealed largely to those without faith or those of another faith. But then, in a letter sent to parents in October, Rev. Susan Brown, who pastors the Concord-St. Andrew’s Church, said that “all classes will incorporate age-appropriate Christian lessons in their daily activities” beginning with the next school year.

According to a handout provided to parents, the reasoning was that “The CSA Nursery School is not a secular organization; it operates under the [United Methodist] church’s exempt status with all of the privileges of that status. As such, it must include religious education as part of its primary mission.”

This planned change has not been well-received by parents. Catholic Kate Mueller, who has a 3-year-old daughter in the school, said, “It feels like a crusade where they’re trying to bring God to the godless nursery school. It took so much time and energy and devotion to build what is there now, and now it’s being stomped on.”

Isn’t it ironic that a church founded on Christian principles would get this much flack for teaching those principles?

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