The principle of human dignity also has implications for education. Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Baltimore nurture and sustain the God-given gifts of every person, especially students, to be used in service to the Mission of Jesus. An emphasis on the inalienable dignity of the human person – above all on his or her spiritual dimension – is especially necessary today. In a speech addressed to American Catholic educators in New Orleans, Pope John Paul II presented them with. Below is our mission and vision for the Catholic school system of the Diocese of Fort Worth. Cardinal Zenon Grocholewski Prefect, Congregation for Catholic Education. In measured terms, the Congregation's document Lay Catholics in Schools: Witnesses to Faith describes the student-teaching relationship: A personal relationship is always a dialogue rather than a monologue, and the teacher must be convinced that the enrichment in the relationship is mutual. In particular, pastors should set in place "specific programs of formation" that will enable the laity to take on responsibilities for teaching in Catholic schools. Although Vatican documents on education do not cover lesson planning, the order of teaching various subjects, or the relative merit of different pedagogical methods, the Holy See does provide guidelines meant to inspire the content of the curriculum. Catholic education is "intentionally directed to the growth of the whole person." Booth has worked on a number of projects developing insurance and finance education in Central and Eastern Europe. Authentic Catholic educators recognize Christ and his understanding of the human person as the measure of a school's catholicity. 1 - The Current Situation of America's Catholic Schoolsch. They promote solidarity, mutual enhancement, and joint responsibility in the educational plan, and, above all, they give an explicit Christian testimony. Booth is Deputy Editor of Economic Affairs. "Regis Catholic Schools helps nurture each child's hopes and dreams and teaches them how to care for others and grow in … A final indicator of a school's authentic catholicity is the vital witness of its teachers and administrators. This community dimension is, perhaps, one result of the new awareness of the Church's nature as developed by the Council. the pressing challenge of clearly identifying the aims of Catholic education, and applying proper methods in Catholic elementary and secondary education. ", Intrinsically related to the search for wisdom is another idea frequently repeated in Vatican teaching: the confidence that the human mind, however limited its powers, can come to a knowledge of truth. But, while the Church institutionally must have the right to establish schools, the freedom to educate children ultimately belongs to parents:  "Parents who have the primary and inalienable right and duty to educate their children must enjoy true liberty in their choice of schools" (GE, no. It is not a question of convenience, but a partnership based on faith. This communal dimension is rooted both in the social nature of the human person and in the reality of the Church as "the home and the school of communion." With them lies the primary responsibility for creating a Christian school climate, as individuals and as a community. He is Chief Development Officer at the International Theological Institute, a private Catholic university near Vienna. Shortly after his election, Pope Benedict XVI spoke about the kind of witness required of all teachers of the faith, including those in Catholic schools: The central figure in the work of educating . Nor is it for "clients" and "consumers" in a competitive marketplace that values academic achievement. While Catholic schools conform to government-mandated curricula, they implement their programs with an overall religious orientation. Expanding opportunities to choose schools, however, have often been accompanied by more extensive regulation of schools. The Mission of our Private Catholic School Mission Statement: Our Lady of Victory Catholic School, a school of the Archdiocese of Baltimore, provides a safe, nurturing environment that serves children in … A third mark of catholicity is the emphasis on the school as a community – a community of persons and, even more to the point, "a genuine community of faith." What is really being proposed by secularist movements is that the pupil should replace whatever god he believes in with the secular god. Therefore they should express physically and visibly the external signs of Catholic culture through images, symbols, icons, and other objects of traditional devotion. John 8:28]. In order for Christians to be able to effectively promote the true, the good and the beautiful, there is the vital need for coherence in word and deed. The Most Reverend J. Michael Miller, CSB, was born in Ottawa, Canada, on July 9, 1946. In its document The Catholic School, the Sacred Congregation for Catholic Education states: The Catholic school is committed thus to the development of the whole man, since in Christ, the perfect man, all human values find their fulfillment and unity. They too could engage in quality assurance – that is, assurance of their Catholic identity. In an ad limina address to a group of American bishops, Pope John Paul II pinpointed the importance of having a correct grasp of truth if the Catholic Church's educational efforts are to bear fruit: The greatest challenge to Catholic education in the United States today, and the greatest contribution that authentically Catholic education can make to American culture, is to restore to that culture the conviction that human beings can grasp the truth of things, and, in grasping that truth, can know their duties to God, to themselves and their neighbors. The Holy See shares the solicitude of the American bishops about employing teachers with a clear understanding of and commitment to Catholic education. On 19 November, Cardinal Zenon Grocholewski presented the new instruction on "Consecrated Persons and their Mission in Schools", focusing on the indispensable mission of Catholic schools … If Catholic educators, parents, and others who dedicate themselves to this apostolate fail to keep in mind a high supernatural vision, all their talk about Catholic schools will be no more than "a gong booming or a cymbal clashing" (1 Cor. The educational philosophy that guides Catholic schools also seeks to ensure that they are places where "faith, culture, and life are brought into harmony." Catholicism is a "comprehensive way of life" that should animate every aspect of its activities and its curriculum. . © 1996-2019 Catholic Education Resource Center | Privacy Policy | Disclaimer | Sitemap, CERC is an entirely reader-supported web site and non-profit charity. Familiarity will make a personal relationship easier, but a certain distance is also needed. Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone summed up … 2) and to prevent a family from educating children in the faith would be to do just that. Both bishops and educators, whether singly or in associations, should avail themselves of open, sincere, and regular dialogue in their joint efforts on behalf of Catholic schools. Catholic educational institutions should have three goals in order to be able to fulfil their primary mission to allow students to "encounter the living God who in Jesus Christ reveals his transforming love and truth" (Pope Benedict XVI). . Catholic Education in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee October 2011 “Catholic Schools and Mission Month” Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee have historically been committed to educating students about global issues and, specifically, to furthering the mission … Rather, "the Catholic school sets out to be a school for the human person and of human persons.". He became Archbishop of Vancouver on January 2, 2009. Catholic schools participate in the evangelizing mission of the Church, integrating religious education … Christ is not an afterthought or an add-on to Catholic educational philosophy; he is the center and fulcrum of the entire enterprise, the light enlightening every boy and girl who comes into a Catholic school (cf. Given that freedom in education is an extension of freedom of conscience and freedom of religion more generally, it is important to note that the Catholic Church is not calling for privileges for Catholic parents and children. In order to bring these rights to fruition, the Church must have the space to pursue her mission by establishing schools to serve the faithful. Also, rapport with the students ought to be a prudent combination of familiarity and distance; and this must be adapted to the need of each individual student. People should not be forced to act contrary to their religious convictions (Dignitatis humanae, no. Mass should be celebrated regularly, with the students and teachers participating appropriately. Such collaboration is not only an ideal but also a time-honored ecclesial practice in the United States. . Direct and personal contact between teachers and students is a hallmark of the Catholic school. It is reprinted here with permission of the Acton Institute. Because of the gospel's guiding role in a Catholic school, one might be tempted to think that the school's distinctiveness lies only in the quality of its religious instruction, catechesis, and pastoral activities. If you’ve appreciated, Lay Catholics in Schools: Witnesses to Faith, Religious Dimension of Education in a Catholic School, The Catholic School on the Threshold of the Third Millennium, The Current Situation of America's Catholic Schools, The Shepherd and the Rock: Origins, Development, and Mission of the Papacy. This does imply that, if there is insufficient support from a family's own means or from charity or the Church to provide all children with a basic education, then government funds could be used for this purpose. It is the Catholic faith that provides young people with the essential principles for critique and evaluation. The bishop must see to it that the education in his schools is based on the principles of Catholic doctrine. How should Catholic social teaching approach the question of public policy in education? As well as fostering a Catholic worldview across the curriculum, even in so-called secular subjects, "if students in Catholic schools are to gain a genuine experience of the Church, the example of teachers and others responsible for their formation is crucial: the witness of adults in the school community is a vital part of the school's identity.". You want your child to have the best education possible—without sacrificing the Catholic … The contemporary world urgently needs the service of educational institutions that uphold and teach that truth is "that fundamental value without which freedom, justice, and human dignity are extinguished" [Veritatis Splendor, 4]. MISSION OF CATHOLIC SCHOOLS FOR EVANGELIZATION TODAY. "During childhood and adolescence a student needs to experience personal relations with outstanding educators, and what is taught has greater influence on the student's formation when placed in a context of personal involvement, genuine reciprocity, coherence of attitudes, lifestyle, and day-to-day behavior." More than a master who teaches, a Catholic educator is a person who gives testimony by his or her life. For young Catholics, such instruction embraces both teaching the truths of the faith and fostering its practice. It is a concept which includes a defense of human rights, but also attributes to the human person the dignity of a child of God. Providing support and advocacy in federal public policy on behalf of Catholic educational institutions from pre-school through high school levels Embodying the concerns and priorities of the bishops of … The Church sees education as a process that, in light of man's transcendent destiny, forms the whole child and seeks to fix his or her eyes on heaven. In an ad limina address to a group of American bishops in June 2004, Pope John Paul II summed up this point: "The Church's presence in elementary and secondary education must . As the Code of Canon Law states, "Pastors of souls have the duty of making all possible arrangements so that all the faithful may avail themselves of a Catholic education. Schools prepare students to relate the Catholic faith to their particular culture and to live that faith in practice. A school's physical environment is also an integral element that embodies the genuine community values of the Catholic tradition. He also serves as Professor of Insurance and Risk Management at Cass Business School, City University and has been a Fellow of Blackfriars Hall, University of Oxford. Such an impoverished vision of education is not Catholic. . . He also studied philosophy at Franciscan University of Steubenville, USA. What is human and visible can bear the divine. First, the bishop must integrate schools into his diocese's pastoral program; and, second, he must oversee the teaching within them. The Catholic Church, in the authentic promotion of her teaching, does not wish to defend such arrangements as privileges. "For this reason neither his life nor the development of his thought, nor his good, nor those who are part of his personal and social activities can be subject to unjust restrictions in the exercise of their rights and freedom" (CSD, no. Mission. be the object of your special attention as shepherds of the People of God." Its duty to cultivate human values in their own legitimate right in accordance with its particular mission to serve all men has its origin in the figure of Christ. This is how the Church evangelizes. Thus, the state exists to safeguard all human beings in the exercise of their rights and freedoms and to ensure that they can live in dignity. $6,000 was the most raised in a single year and it ceased when the Catholic Bureau succeeded in acquiring government contracts for the Catholic schools. Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Washington, rooted in Gospel values and the teaching mission of the Catholic Church, are learning communities of faith and service dedicated to educational equity and excellence for all students. His books include The Shepherd and the Rock: Origins, Development, and Mission of the Papacy the Encyclicals of John Paul II, and The Holy See's Teaching on Catholic Schools. Should not Catholic schools, precisely insofar as they claim to be specified by their catholicity, do something along the same lines? As we have seen, the Catholic school would betray its purpose if it failed to found itself on the person of Christ and his teaching: "It derives all the energy necessary for its educational work from him.". Catholic schools will strive to be centers of educational excellence. Discovery and awareness of truth leads man to the discovery of Truth itself. Children will pick up far more by the example of their educators than by masterful pedagogical techniques, especially in the practice of Christian virtues. Christ is the Teacher in Catholic schools. The five elements that necessarily belong to a school's Catholic identity are the principles proposed by the Holy See that justify the Church's heavy investment in schooling. The Holy See's Teaching on Catholic Schools, ch. In the measure in which subjects are taught by someone who knowingly and without restraint seeks the truth, they are to that extent Christian. In the Council texts, the community dimension is primarily a theological concept rather than a sociological category. On June 29, 1975, Pope Paul VI ordained him a priest, and on November 23, 2003 Pope John Paul II appointed him titular Archbishop of Vertara, Secretary of the Congregation for Catholic Education and Vice President of the Pontifical Work of Priestly Vocations. Catholic schools do far more than convey information to passive students. Without this spiritual path, all external structures of cooperation serve very little purpose; they would be mere mechanisms without a soul. His edited and co-authored books include Christian Perspectives on the Financial Crash, Catholic Social Teaching and the Market Economy, The Road to Economic Freedom (a compilation of the work of a number of Nobel Prize Winners in Economics) and Investment Mathematics. At the same time, however, there has been a greater recognition in many countries that, for both practical reasons and reasons of principle, parents should have greater autonomy when choosing schools. is specifically the form of witness. Besides, the right of parents are violated, if their children are forced to attend lessons or instructions which are not in agreement with their religious beliefs, or if a single system of education, from which all religious formation is excluded, is imposed upon all (Dignitatis humanae, no. and Philip Booth. They are to help one another in carrying out the task to which they are mutually committed. In the light of her mission of salvation, the Church considers that the Catholic school provides a privileged environment for the complete formation of her members, and that it also provides a highly important … Catholic schools take up the daunting task of freeing boys and girls from the insidious consequences of what Pope Benedict XVI has called the "dictatorship of relativism" – a dictatorship that cripples all genuine education. This approach to justice is … 3 in The Holy See's Teaching on Catholic Schools (Atlanta: Sophia Institute Press, 2006): 17-63. He is the one who ennobles man, gives meaning to human life, and is the model which the Catholic school offers to its pupils. Theirs is a supernatural calling and not simply the exercise of a profession. . For example, if teachers and administrators demonstrate the individualistic and competitive ethic that now marks so much public education, they will fail to inspire students with the values of solidarity and community, even if they praise those values verbally. The endeavor to interweave reason and faith, which has become the heart of individual subjects, makes for unity, articulation, and coordination, bringing forth within what is learned in a school a Christian vision of the world, of life, of culture, and of history. "Parents who have the primary and inalienable right and duty to educate their children must enjoy true liberty in their choice of schools.". As John Paul II wrote in his 1979 Message to the National Catholic Educational Association, "Catholic education is above all a question of communicating Christ, of helping to form Christ in the lives of others." A spirituality of communion should be the guiding principle of Catholic education. Central to the Catholic school is its mission of holiness, of saint-making. To be integral or complete, Catholic schooling must be constantly inspired and guided by the gospel. All these signs embody the community ethos of Catholicism. John 1:9). In Lay Catholics in Schools: Witnesses to Faith, the Vatican proposes a response: In today's pluralistic world, the Catholic educator must consciously inspire his or her activity with the Christian concept of the person, in communion with the Magisterium of the Church. The same can be said about a failure to give clear witness to the Church's teaching on the sanctity of marriage and the inviolability of human life. The Holy See describes the school as a community in four areas: the teamwork among all those involved; the cooperation between educators and bishops; the interaction of students with teachers; and the school's physical environment. The specific purpose of a Catholic education is the formation of boys and girls who will be good citizens of this world, loving God and neighbor and enriching society with the leaven of the gospel, and who will also be citizens of the world to come, thus fulfilling their destiny to become saints. The Mission of Catholic Schools & the Role of Teachers A Catholic school has the mission to be a communion of persons that seeks to give a sacred gift. Emphasis on the supernatural destiny of students brings with it a profound appreciation of the need to perfect children in all their dimensions as images of God (cf. Unwavering commitment to truth is at home in an authentically Catholic school. Any form of Catholic education will ultimately fail when the student is confronted with the word being spoken not conforming to the life being lived. Firstly, because education cannot be separated from the formation of the human person and the development of his vocation — whether secular or religious — restricting basic freedom in education is a restriction on freedom of conscience, the rights of parents and the freedom of religion more generally. 26). . ‘It’ll be a challenging year’: How Catholic schools are staying on mission amid the pandemic Brian Fraga July 31, 2020 Susana Solorza, a Spanish teacher at Holy Name of Jesus Catholic School in Henderson, Ky., reads along with a student during a school … Trust is fostered by listening to one another, by respecting the different gifts of each, and by recognizing one another's specific responsibilities. Catholic schools are an integral part of the Church and are Christ-centred communities based on gospel values. ", With regard to Catholic schools, episcopal responsibility is twofold. 3 - Five Essential Marks of Catholic Schools, An Anthology of Catholic Teaching on Education. "The Purpose of Catholic Education and the Role of the State." Catholic educational institutions should have three goals in order to be able to fulfil their primary mission to allow students to "encounter the living God who in Jesus Christ reveals his transforming love and … They foster the proper friendship between them, since "an authentic formative process can only be initiated through a personal relationship.". Michael Guerra, former president of the National Catholic Educational Association put the challenge succinctly: "The first and most important task for Catholic schools is to maintain and continually strengthen their Catholic identity.". Educators and ecclesial authorities should cooperate closely in fostering a school's catholicity. Christ is the foundation of the whole educational enterprise in a Catholic school. However, we are warned that this should not be seen merely as a right to a secular education (Gravissimum Educationis [GE], no. "The more completely an educator can give concrete witness to the model of the ideal person [Christ] that is being presented to the students, the more this ideal will be believed and imitated.". 5). Thus, every educator and witness finds an unequaled model in Jesus Christ, the Father's great witness, who said nothing about himself but spoke as the Father had taught him [cf. Such a "Catholic" accreditation process would involve an internal review of the five benchmark indicators – as well as others that could be developed. A fourth distinctive characteristic of Catholic schools is that the "spirit of Catholicism" should permeate the entire curriculum. This freedom belongs to parents because of our God-given nature and the gift of free will that is given to us: Government, in consequence, must acknowledge the right of parents to make a genuinely free choice of schools and of other means of education, and the use of this freedom of choice is not to be made a reason for imposing unjust burdens on parents, whether directly or indirectly. A Catholic school is a parochial school or education ministry of the Catholic Church.As of 2011, the Catholic Church operates the world's largest non-governmental school system. Despite the difficulties sometimes involved, those responsible for hiring teachers must see to it that these criteria are met. Principals, pastors, school-board members, parents, and bishops share in the serious duty of hiring teachers who meet the standards of doctrine and integrity of life essential to a flourishing Catholic school. It is especially important that this "school-home" be immediately recognizable as Catholic: From the first moment that a student sets foot in a Catholic school, he or she ought to have the impression of entering a new environment, one illumined by the light of faith, and having its own unique characteristics. The Most Reverend J. Michael Miller, CSB, "Five Essential Marks of Catholic Schools." The very fact of the Incarnation tells us that the created world is the means God chose to communicate his life to us. It is Catholic because it undertakes to educate the whole child, addressing the requirements of his or her natural and supernatural perfection. Catholic schools should let the educational endeavor be guided by a constant promotion of the virtues, especially the cardinal virtues of prudence, justice, fortitude and temperance. When Christ is the center of all we do, then we are enabled to redirect our focus of life towards an understanding of the world in which we live that is geared towards the promotion of human dignity and the common good. © 1996-2019 Catholic Education Resource Center | Privacy Policy | Disclaimer | Sitemap, CERC is an entirely reader-supported web site and non-profit charity. Like the marks of the Church proclaimed in the Creed – one, holy, catholic, and apostolic – so, too, does the Holy See identify the principal features of a school as Catholic: a Catholic school should be inspired by a supernatural vision, founded on Christian anthropology, animated by communion and community, imbued with a Catholic worldview throughout its curriculum, and sustained by gospel witness. Education is not a commodity, even if Catholic schools equip their graduates with enviable skills. Teachers, administrators, bishops, parents, and school-board members would all take part in the review. Catholic schools, then, safeguard the priority of the person, both student and teacher. Quite simply, accreditors ask: How do you know that you are achieving what you say you are? It is important that the bishop be involved in Catholic schools not only by exercising veto power – whether over texts, curricula, or teachers – but also by taking an active role in fostering the specifically Catholic ethos of schools under his jurisdiction. They should learn to be critical and evaluative. 8). . Nevertheless, this conviction, in its very simplicity, can sometimes be overlooked. The sacraments of the Eucharist and Reconciliation in particular should mark the rhythm of a Catholic school's life. A learning atmosphere that encourages the befriending of students is far removed from the caricature of the remote disciplinarian cherished by the media. Imbued with a Catholic Worldview throughout its Curriculum. T. S. Eliot puts it just right: "Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge? With Catholic Schools Week upon us (Jan. 28-Feb. 3), families are invited to recommit to Catholic education and register their children for the upcoming school year. In addition, he was the founding president of the Phoenix Institute Europe Foundation, an educational institution that aims to form young men and women in the classical and Judeo-Christian tradition. Excerpted from Catholic Education in the West:  Roots, Reality and Revival (2013) by Christiaan Alting von Geusau and Philip Booth, the latest volume in Acton's Christian Social Thought Series. All instruction, therefore, must be authentically Catholic in content and methodology across the entire program of studies. The Catholic philosophy of education has always paid special attention to the quality of interpersonal relations in the school community, especially those between teachers and students. We Believe In Catholic Schools The Mission of the Office of the Superintendent of Schools, guided by the Holy Spirit, is to care for the education and faith formation of our Catholic School Communities … When addressing Catholic-school principals in the National Directory for Catechesis (2005), the American bishops give unequivocal direction: "Recruit teachers who are practicing Catholics, who can understand and accept the teachings of the Catholic Church and the moral demands of the gospel, and who can contribute to the achievement of the school's Catholic identity and apostolic goals." It is Catholic because it provides an education in the intellectual and moral virtues. MISSION STATEMENT Immaculate Conception Catholic School exists to provide a Christ-centered academic environment designed to promote the total development of the child by serving the mission … In an age of information overload, Catholic schools must be especially attentive in their instruction to strike the delicate balance between human experience and understanding. To fulfill their responsibility of speaking about the Father, educators in Catholic schools, with very few exceptions, should be practicing Catholics who are committed to the Church and living her sacramental life. • Catholic schools are instrumental in building communities of faith, hope, and love. But this role, following on from the principle of subsidiarity, facilitates rather than displaces the initiative of the family. The gospel spirit should be evident in a Christian way of thought and life which permeates all facets of the educational climate. 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