As we look to the start of another school year, we’re reminded of the crucial role of Catholic Education in our country. In the coming weeks, we’ll find ourselves with almost 800,000 young souls entrusted to the mission of Canadian Catholic Education!
We know that this mission began more than 2000 years ago when Christ journeyed with and taught those who were following him – and this upcoming school year is a continuation of this mission which has been passed down from generation to generation.
As we approach September, it’s essential that, in addition to the necessary professional development which will be carried out in the coming weeks, we also prepare our minds and hearts for the incredible responsibility handed on to us from Christ.
We scoured the internet for the best resources we could find to help trustees, board members and staff to be encouraged and renewed in their commitment to the mission of Catholic Education and to offer wisdom, guidance and support for Catholic Schools from coast to coast.
Here are 8 resources (with links included!) which can be used for professional, spiritual or personal guidance as we approach the 2022 / 2023 School Year.
As Catholic Educators, we’ve been entrusted with the responsibility of assisting in the formation of the next generation of young people. To provide true education within this particular season of Canadian history, it’s essential that we take time to listen to the words of Pope Francis as he guides and leads the Church in a way forward in Truth and Reconciliation with our Indigenous Communities.
The historical Papal visit to Canada this summer was a significant event in the life of our Church and country and Catholic Educators are now given the task to convey age-appropriate coverage of Pope Francis’ words and reflections.
The Canadian Catholic Bishops have created a page on their website for easy access to the speeches of the Holy Father’s visit. One of particular relevance to our Catholic schools is from his meeting with young people and elders at Primary school in Iqaluit on Friday, July 29, 2022.
Our prayer is that Catholic Educators across Canada would take after the example of Pope Francis in offering loving dialogue. Fostering healing, truth and reconciliation is not a one-time event but a call to ongoing formation and guidance – and our Catholic school hallways, classrooms and chapels need to be spaces which facilitate this important formation. May our Catholic Schools play a vital role in ensuring a more peaceful and loving future.
Earlier this year, we published an article on the extraordinary role of Catholic School Teachers. We have deep admiration for the endless hours of generosity, service and love which our teachers give to our schools. Assuming the most crucial aspect of our mission of Catholic Education, teachers are called to be Christ to each one of our Canadian Catholic School students. We wanted to highlight this beautiful role – which is the glue that holds our entire mission together – and we did our best in this article.
This is a great, quick read for teachers and staff who are looking to refresh their understanding of their vocation and share more deeply in the mission of Canadian Catholic Education this year.
During our 2021 Virtual AGM, Cardinal Collins guided Catholic School trustees and board members through a beautiful reflection on scripture. This is an excellent video resource for anyone who is involved in Catholic Education and looking to find some meaningful prayer and reflection in the Word of God as a way of preparing for the school year.
As the heart of our mission of Catholic Education entails ‘announcing the good news of the Gospel’, reflecting and meditating on the scriptures is an essential aspect of back-to-school readiness.
Taken from a presentation given by Vancouver’s Archbishop Michael Miller, this excellent document provides a thorough overview of the fundamental aspects of the mission of Catholic Education and practical goals for ensuring each school’s mission is aligned with that of the Church. As board members, trustees and staff across Canada begin to gather and discuss goals, strategies and missions for this upcoming school year, this unifying document offers profound wisdom and practical insight into our goals as Catholic Educators.
Tip: Print off enough copies for each trustee, board member or staff and take sections to read at each meeting during the Fall.
We’ve referenced this address several times in our online articles because it’s not often we have a Pope in Canada addressing Catholic Educators! This address, made available on the Vatican website as a short 5 minute read, is chock-full of beautiful encouragement and wisdom from the Church for anyone involved in Catholic Education.
Whether you’re looking for a new quote to put up in the school staff room or an easy-to-read guiding document to set the tone for a new school year of board meetings, this timeless address will be a deep encouragement to anyone involved or interested in the mission of Catholic Education.
“Evangelization” is now a common buzzword when it comes to the Church – but what exactly is our aim of evangelization in Canada and how do Canadian Catholic School’s participate in this most important mission of the Church?
The Canadian Catholic Conference of Bishops provided an excellent webinar series specifically for anyone involved in the evangelizing mission of the Church in Canada. This webinar features a range of speakers who bring theological context and background, on-the-ground experience and a wealth of wisdom in moving forward in our common mission of evangelization. This is a perfect tool for ongoing professional development and teacher faith formation as well as a great resource for personal study and growth. We highly recommend taking some time for this wonderful webinar!
Why are young people leaving the Church? What is our central mission as Catholic Educators in the midst of this crisis of faith? What are 5 ways we can better understand what is at the heart of Catholic Education?
These crucial questions are discussed and answered in Bishop Barron’s video presentation, “Evangelizing is Priority: Bishop Barron speaks to Catholic Educators.” This wonderful resource was filmed in 2021 when Bishop Barron gave a presentation on Catholic Education to the Archdiocese of Vancouver. Hitting on all of the central themes of Catholic Education and the primary role of evangelization, this engaging and thought-provoking talk is a top-quality resource for anyone involved in Catholic Education. This easy-to-watch format makes this resource an excellent one for a board or staff meeting to watch and facilitate follow-up discussions!
In 2018, the Assembly of Catholic Bishops of Ontario published a pastoral letter for those involved in Catholic Education. This 25-page letter offers deep insight from Ontario Bishops on the value and role of Catholic Schools. It uses the story of the Road to Emmaus to draw on themes of community, relationship and journeying with students.
This beautiful letter, written specifically for Catholic Educators, helps staff and teachers connect their daily mission with that of Christ’s – whose mission was to walk beside and journey with those in-need. Whether it sits on the coffee table of the school staff room or is used as a study document for teacher faith formation, this beautiful, pastoral letter will offer scripture-based guidance and encouragement for those who are journeying with our school communities this year.
Be assured of our prayers for each of you as you discern the way forward in your provinces, associations and school boards this year. May Catholic Schools across the country be places where the light of Christ shines and offers hope and peace to students and families this year.