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Catholic schools called to be a family of families – Bishop Monahan

By Sarah Mac Donald - 27 January, 2018

Catholic Schools Week – the annual all-Ireland celebration of Catholic education – runs from 28 January to 4 February.

Catholic education gives people a “distinctive spirit, selfless motivation” and the “drive to go the ‘extra mile’ to educate the total person, to be part of a selfless tribe or family that would do anything for each other,” Bishop Fintan Monahan has said.

Speaking in St Flannan’s College, Ennis, at the launch of Catholic Schools Week, the Bishop of Killaloe paid tribute to Catholic education for being attentive to the whole person – spiritual, moral, intellectual, physical, practical.

He said Catholic education offers a way to bridge the gap and get the broader picture that educates the total person.

“A healthy approach to education, a system that is inclusive, open to all and promotes the common good is one that keeps an eye on the practicalities of education that will help one to progress and thrive in the world while also developing the sometimes neglected, important spiritual and aesthetic side of our beings,” he said.

This year’s theme of Catholic Schools Week is ‘Catholic Schools: Called to be a Family of Families’, which connects with the upcoming World Meeting of Families that will take place in Dublin in August.

During this annual week, Catholic schools are invited to reflect on the relationship that exists between home, school and parish.

In his homily, Dr Monahan revealed his own family’s connections with education.

“With my mother, father, sister and brother-in-law all being teachers, it was probably not surprising that I caught the bug also and spent 24 very happy years in the milieu of Catholic education in a number of schools and aspired to claim the title of being a teacher,” he said.

At the beginning of Catholic Schools Week, which runs from 28 January until 4 February, the Bishop said schools “unite as a member of the tribe and banner of Jesus Christ, our inspiration, our leader, our guide, our saviour, our supreme Master and Teacher”.

Catholic Schools Week allows us to celebrate and rejoice as a Family of Families, communities of faith, hope, love and profound joy.

Separately, in partnership with the WMF2018, the Catholic Schools Week steering committee has developed a one-year catechetical programme for Catholic primary and post-primary schools.

The theme for this 2018 programme is Catholic Schools: Called to be a Family of Families’.

The programme invites Catholic schools to celebrate the relationship that exists between home, school and parish through participation in four sub-themed catechetical moments.

The Catholic Schools Week steering committee has made a series of resources available for schools, each with its own unique daily theme, on www.catholicschools.ie

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