Who is a Jew? One sect says you are a Jew if your mother is a Jew. You can have egg, bacon and sausages everyday for breakfast, eat bacon butties for lunch, roast pork Sunday lunchtime, never set foot in a Synagogue, but you are still a Jew if your mother was a Jew. Another sect says you are a Jew if you regularly attend the Synagogue, carry out your obligations.
Who is a Christian? Does being batptised as a baby, Holy Water sprinkled on your head, make you a Christian, even though you may never set foot in a Church again and follow the life of Riley? Or are you a Christian if you attend the Church every Sunday, lead a good Christian life, but may never have been baptised?
Does it matter, does anyone care other than those why like to argue how many angels may dance on the head of a pin?
Unfortunately it does matter to those who may wish to attend a faith-based, taxpayer-funded school.
It matters to one little girl who wanted to attend a Jewish school. She thought she was a Jew, but the school said no. Her mother is a Jew, she converted in Israel, therefore her daughter is a Jew. Or so they thought. The little girl has been brought up believing herself to be a Jew. They are recognised as Jews in Israel. But the Religious Thought Police who the school turned to decided otherwise. The case has gone to the Appeal Court and today is before the Supreme Court.
The school has decided she is not a Jew. Their judgment is handed down by God who told them who is and who is not a Jew.
Jesus, a well-known leader, welcomed all to his side, no one was turned away. But then he too had a little local difficulty with the Religious Thought Police.
If the school is determining who they let in based upon who their Mother is, then they are discriminating on race, which puts them in direct conflict with the Race Relations Act.
Another Jewish school has a different selection criteria. Theirs is a points-based selection process. You earn brownie points by attending the local Synagogue. Even Hindus can attend and get their brownie points. A bit like shopping with your loyalty card, the more you shop, the more points you accrue.
One Jewish school has a Roman Catholic Headmistress!
Are Roman Catholic schools any different? No, you will be questioned on your faith, your church attendance record will be noted.
Tough then on the single Mum with too many kids to cope with who has no time to go to church. Though the very fact of being a single Mum will itself cause problems.
In The Witch of Portobello by Paulo Coelho, Athena struggling to bring up her child, hit problems when the Church found out she was now divorced from her estranged husband and would no longer allow her to participate in the service.
Tough on the football coach who is helping the local youth teams at weekends.
Ah well, I better get back to resolving how many angels can dance on the head of a pin.