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article imageWoman Spends 20 years Trying to Leave the Catholic Church

By Chanah Rubenstein     Aug 22, 2010 in World
For many, joining a religion, whatever the religion may be, is not an easy task. There’s the deep introspective process and commitment needed, but many religions also have their own set of requirements. For many, leaving a religion is just as arduous.
As the National Post has recently reported, it’s been a grueling process for Karolina Sygula.
Ms. Sygula was born in Krakow, Poland 34 years ago, and baptized in a Roman Catholic Church. She later received her first communion at the age of 6 in Woodstock, Ontario. At the age of 13 she was required to fill out a questionnaire for her confirmation. In the questionnaire, she wrote “I’m an atheist and my parents are making me do this.” The confirmation went ahead.
“But the fact that I don’t believe in God clearly is in contravention to the official policy of the Church and I can’t work within the Church to change that,” said Ms. Sygula
Several months ago, she wrote to the Archdiocese of Toronto asking to be removed from the Catholic Church. To which she was told she would have to write to the church that baptized her (in Poland). She heard nothing back. She wrote to the Archdiocese in Krakow, but still heard nothing. When she tried writing to the parish in Woodstock, Ontario where she had her first communion, she found that the church no longer existed.
She then wrote to the church in Mississauga that held her confirmation. They replied,
“No one will erase you from official parish records, as what has been done cannot be undone. If you wish to renounce your faith and no longer be called a Christian, then in the records where your baptism is recorded, they must make a note about the renunciation of faith. But no one is going to erase anything anywhere.”
To renounce her faith, if she were able to have the church in Poland make the note of renouncement, isn’t the same as not being a Catholic. Even if she were excommunicated, though she wouldn’t be able to take communion, she would still be Catholic.
A spokeswoman for the Archdiocese in Toronto, Kristen Carey explained, “It is like the relationship between a mother and her daughter. No matter how estranged the relationship, the mother will always welcome back her daughter. You can’t break that bond.”
More about Catholic Church, Poland, Archdiocese, Canada
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