Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Contempt Charged As Father Violates TRO On Daughter's Religious Training

Yesterday's Chicago Sun-Times reports on an ugly in-court battle in Chicago over a 3-year old's religious upbringing while her parents are going through a divorce. Joseph and Rebecca Reyes married in 2004. He was Catholic and she was Jewish. When their daughter was born several years later, Joseph converted to Judaism-- under pressure from his wife's family according to him. The couple disagrees over whether Joseph agreed to raise their daughter in the Jewish faith. After the couple separated in 2008, Joseph returned to his original Catholic faith. After not seeing his daughter for 7 months, Joseph went to court. The court allowed Joseph to take his daughter every other weekend and Thursdays for dinner. However in December, after Joseph sent Rebecca a picture of their daughter being baptized at a local Catholic church, Rebecca obtained a temporary restraining order from the court ordering Joseph not to expose their daughter to any religion other than Judaism.

Defying the order, last month Joseph took their daughter to Holy Name Cathedral, accompanied by a television news crew. Yesterday Joseph was arraigned on contempt charges. He could face up to 6 months in jail and a $500 fine. ABC News conducted a long interview with Joseph Reyes yesterday. (Full transcript).