NORMALIZATION THAT WAS NOT... RELIGIOUS EDUCATION IN BIALYSTOK AREA IN 1956-61 (Normalizacja, której nie bylo... Katechizacja na Bialostocczyznie w latach 1956-1961)
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After the Second Word War the Church in Poland had to perform its pastoral duties in a new political situation. The communist authorities limited the role of the Church and religion in the life of socialist society. Despite the 1950 agreement between the government and the Church that was to guarantee the freedom of religious observances, the situation of the Church worsened. Religious instruction was eliminated from schools. After 1956 the situation changed. The Church gained more freedom and religious education was introduced again. The Church was to solve the problem of providing religious instruction in all schools. However, communist authorities were not idle and made efforts to expel religion from education programmes again. In newly established schools run by the Society of Children's Friends religious instruction was forbidden. Members of religious orders were not allowed to teach. At the beginning of the school year 1960/61 religion was ultimately eliminated from school programmes. The Church had to organize religious instruction in parishes and religious education rooms.
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