Rev. Frank is a Pastafarian friend of mine. He is married to a wonderful woman who also happens to be Catholic. They have a 9 year old daughter together. Presently Mom is in charge of the child's religious indoctrination and, unsurprisingly, the child is being indoctrinated with all the usual Catholic dogma (religion class, first holy communion, someday "confirmation", etc.).
I have expressed my concern (to Rev. Frank, but not to Momma), about how long this should be allowed to continue before his daughter is presented with the fact that there are other religions to consider (possibly including the choice of "no religion"). On the one hand, his daughter seems very bright and prone to independent thought - so there may be no harm in things continuing as they are for some time. On the other hand, being indoctrinated into something from birth is a pretty powerful thing, and I worry about permanent damage to her ability to have a reasoned perspective on the topic.
My upbringing varied from non-religious to very-religious during various periods. My father was not particularly religious until he married a lady who was very Baptist and then suddenly we were going to a Baptist church every Sunday. My grandparents were VERY religious, in a "Church of God" sort of way (believing in the speaking in tongues and all that business) and I spent most summers with them so had plenty of exposure to that. It is somewhat embarrassing to admit, but it wasn't until taking "World History" in high school that I was even aware that there were religions that had a different god. I was only aware of Baptist vs. Lutheran vs. Church of God vs. whatever - all of which "use" the same god. The moment I was exposed to Buddhism, Hinduism, etc. the question that instantaneously appeared in my brain was "what is the likelihood that I just happen to have been born into a family that believes in the 'one true god?'". Obviously the likelihood is quite small. And in the span of a single class my belief in any god (Christian or otherwise) evaporated.
The point of that story was that I spent my whole life up until high school believing in God, even getting "saved" in the process, and I was not forever lost because of it. But I wasn't raised devout Catholic from the moment I had cognitive ability either.
Hence my concern. Obviously it is not necessary for Rev. Frank to offer Pastafarianism as an alternative to his daughter (although it might be one way to broach the topic of alternatives) - but the notion that there are alternatives (including "no religion") should be presented at some point.
My question to you all is: "when"? Have any of you dealt with this? If so, at what age? What was the result?
Clearly this is going to probably provoke a very strong "reaction" from Momma - but that's another matter altogether. The important thing to me (although I suppose it's truly none of my business) is that she be exposed to the notion of considering alternatives before she's had so much Kool Aid that there's no undoing what I perceive as "the damage".
I can see the fnords.