What is Catholic Education?

Catholic education is a lifelong process of human growth and development. It is more than schooling. It begins in the home, continues in the school and matures through involvement with the Christian community in the parish.

These three dimensions of home, school and parish must work together if Catholic education is to truly attain its goal of forming mature human persons in the image and likeness of Christ.

Almost two thousand years ago Jesus of Nazareth spoke of the Reign of God as healing for the sick, hearing for the deaf, sight for the blind, freedom for prisoners, good news for the poor. The world is full of real problems; the pain of human experience is obvious. In facing this reality we could turn our backs in despair and throw our hands in the air at the futility of human life. But the call of Christian discipleship demands otherwise. It demands that we always seek to lift the burden. The burdens of life are real and so we need to help each other in:

  • opening our eyes to the reality of life
  • feeding those who are too weak to feed themselves
  • liberating those who are oppressed
  • expanding our minds through education
  • dispelling our fear of the unknown
  • challenging ourselves to let go of hurts and prejudice
  • unsealing our ears to hear the divine echo in our hearts
  • inspiring hope for the future

In all of these ways the ministry of Jesus is continued as ‘the blind see again, the lame walk, lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised to life, the good news is proclaimed to the poor’ (Luke 7:22). To teach as Christ taught means inviting people to live without the crutch or the grudge or the closed mind.

Catholic schools make an indispensable contribution to Catholic education. While such schools can never replace the home or the parish they have a crucial role to play in the education of the next generation of young people.