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Author Topic: So, I've been outed at work, sort of  (Read 774 times)

Wanderer894

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So, I've been outed at work, sort of
« on: October 01, 2013, 11:26:08 pm »
The third-grade teacher asked my mom if I'd be willing to cover for her at the alumni mass this Sunday, as she probably won't be able to come. Now, I keep my beliefs hush-hush; I thought it was even more important to do this since we got a new priest who is making quite a few changes around the place. I thought maybe Mom would have just said, "Well, ask her yourself."

Nope. She pretty much said, "Well, E doesn't really believe anymore." Which prompted a response of, "Huh? But I see her in church with the kids and blah blah blah."  Mom said, "I can't force her to go."

*sigh* I really hope this doesn't bring up any awkward stuff, but I'm not very optimistic. As liberal as most of the people at work are, it's still a Catholic school. If no one there does or says anything, the priest might if he gets wind of this. If not him, the higher-ups in the diocese might get involved for all I know. *muttered curse words*

I guess ... well, what should I do? I'm not thinking too clearly, since it's late and I'm still kind of shaken up.
I love a good metallurgical take on the phrase "What the F---?"

mlr52

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Re: So, I've been outed at work, sort of
« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2013, 11:54:44 pm »
Quote from: Wanderer894;123844


I guess ... well, what should I do? I'm not thinking too clearly, since it's late and I'm still kind of shaken up.

 
Get some sleep.
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Dark Midnight

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Re: So, I've been outed at work, sort of
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2013, 01:25:26 am »
Quote from: mlr52;123852
Get some sleep.

 
I agree. Things always seem a million times worse when you are tired.
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Asch

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Re: So, I've been outed at work, sort of
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2013, 02:02:25 am »
Quote from: mlr52;123852
Get some sleep.

 
This but also did you sign anything regarding your faith when you were hired? I know employment with explicitly religious organizations isn't as protected as secular orgs but still it may be worth something if you never signed such documentation.

Wanderer894

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Re: So, I've been outed at work, sort of
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2013, 05:51:43 am »
Quote from: Asch;123861
This but also did you sign anything regarding your faith when you were hired? I know employment with explicitly religious organizations isn't as protected as secular orgs but still it may be worth something if you never signed such documentation.

 
Now that I've gotten sleep, I remember that there was a part on the application where you had to check a box indicating what denomination you are. There were maybe 3 or 4 choices. Note that I've only had to apply once - my contract has just been renewed each school year that passes.

The sticking point is that despite Mom's words, there is still a baptismal record with my name on it, and I haven't renounced my baptism. I didn't anticipate working this long at the school; I got the job as a way to get into the workforce after I got back from my volunteer stint abroad. I've always planned to leave at some point, once I'd gotten a new job lined up. I'm good at what I do, but I've never held onto the illusion that someone won't say something if it came to light that I no longer believed as a Catholic. I guess it's just the way it happened, and then the timing of it. Ugh.
I love a good metallurgical take on the phrase "What the F---?"

Jenett

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Re: So, I've been outed at work, sort of
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2013, 07:59:05 am »
Quote from: Wanderer894;123877
Now that I've gotten sleep, I remember that there was a part on the application where you had to check a box indicating what denomination you are. There were maybe 3 or 4 choices. Note that I've only had to apply once - my contract has just been renewed each school year that passes.


There's a difference between that and it being part of a formal employment agreement.

(When I worked briefly for my grad school, which is a Catholic college, I had to sign an agreement that basically said that I understood that the Catholic foundation of the school was important to them, and that while at work or otherwise representing the school, I would not do things that undermined their mission as a Catholic institution.

There was a bunch of accompanying material that made it clear that they meant "Don't teach that something's part of Catholicism if it isn't/don't misrepresent Catholicism while on the job" rather than, say, volunteering I did on my off time. F'ex, it would have been a problem to say "Oh, yes, the Catholic Church officially approves of birth control", but it would not have been a problem for me to say "I think birth control is a good idea" or to volunteer for Planned Parenthood.)

Anyway, it sounds like what you might want to do is have something you can say if it comes up, that you've thought through and practised until you're comfortable with it.

Maybe something like "Oh, I was raised Catholic, and of course I still value the great things that [school] does, but I'm not sure about some things. A lot of people go through looking at their childhood religion as they get older, right? I'm glad to help with the alumni weekend, but maybe I could help with something other than Mass?"

The point basically being to reinforce that you still value the school and support the school, but prefer doing it in a way that's more comfortable for you. Adding a sentence like "I take religion seriously, and what it means to be part of the church community, so I'd rather avoid taking a role in Mass while I feel like I do." might also help, depending on the setting.

The thing is that people may ask you more (because of the crossing of the settings - religious and work) and you may well want to think through (and maybe talk to people who know both your religious leanings and the school) about your long-term plans, because it sounds like that setting does generally assume you to be Catholic if you're working there.
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Wanderer894

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Re: So, I've been outed at work, sort of
« Reply #6 on: October 03, 2013, 06:51:44 pm »
Quote from: Jenett;123886
..............
The point basically being to reinforce that you still value the school and support the school, but prefer doing it in a way that's more comfortable for you. Adding a sentence like "I take religion seriously, and what it means to be part of the church community, so I'd rather avoid taking a role in Mass while I feel like I do." might also help, depending on the setting.

The thing is that people may ask you more (because of the crossing of the settings - religious and work) and you may well want to think through (and maybe talk to people who know both your religious leanings and the school) about your long-term plans, because it sounds like that setting does generally assume you to be Catholic if you're working there.


No one has said anything so far. The teacher still seems happy that I start working with her class next week. Maybe I worried over nothing . . . or not. Hard to tell with some people.

Thanks for the advice. :)
I love a good metallurgical take on the phrase "What the F---?"

ALiteraryLady

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Re: So, I've been outed at work, sort of
« Reply #7 on: October 03, 2013, 10:32:05 pm »
Quote from: Wanderer894;124130
No one has said anything so far. The teacher still seems happy that I start working with her class next week. Maybe I worried over nothing . . . or not. Hard to tell with some people.

Thanks for the advice. :)

 
If they aren't sweating it, I wouldn't. I had a co-worker (who I now don't work with and has since left the company) who outed me to a customer. The customer didn't care and actually had a few solid questions to ask me, which I felt confident answering (we were slow in the store). The co-worker was pissed that I handled it so well and the customer didn't seem to mind me taking the time to answer their question, so I chalked it up as win-win situation.

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