Religious Education

30 June 2006

Since the provisions in the Declaration on the elimination of all forms of intolerance and discrimination based on religion or belief of 1981, the Special Rapporteur on the question of Freedom of Religion and Belief has been monitoring the situation in the field of freedom of religion and belief and has been alerting the international community. In the past, his daily activities have been mainly focused on the manifestations of intolerance and discrimination around the world. Nowadays, he proposes to the Commission on Human Rights and the General Assembly as an issue of the greatest importance to elaborate a prevention strategy in this field.

In that spirit, a consultative international conference on school education in relation with freedom of religion or belief was organised on November 2001 in Madrid. This article explains how the Conference designed an international educational strategy focused on the right to freedom of religion and belief among pupils of the age corresponding to primary or elementary and secondary educational levels.


Key words: Religious freedom, tolerance and non-discrimination, religious education, education

30 June 2006

The subject treated is the development of the regulation of the teaching of religion since the approval of the Constitution (1978). At present, schools must offer religious instruction, although it is not compulsory for pupils to attend. Those who do not attend must take part in alternative activities, which are not assessed. This leads to an unsatisfactory situation. After a discussion of different proposals presently considered in an effort to arrive at a new regulation, requirements are examined for a new formula to be accepted as satisfactory both by the religious and the laicist sectors.


Key words: Teaching of religion, school religious instruction, religious education, ethic and civic education, alternative subjects, alternative activities, catechisms, sciences of religion

30 June 2006

The thoughtful and personal knowledge of religion is only acquired through the experience of the free and lucid obligation to the transcendent and infinite Being. Children and young men and women need an essential education so that they can live and grow up with an open vision of life, thus learning different ways of meeting new people and therefore discovering which are the values, virtues and ideals of life. This personal maturity provides children and young people with an aptitude to find out that the religious commitment, far from alienating them, encourage them to get the best of themselves and to achieve the maximum growth of their condition of being persons.


Key words: Religious Education. Anthropological Bases. Vital attitudes: Human ideals and the meaning of life. Virtue and human life.