Congregation for Catholic Education
Joining efforts in a broad educational alliance
According to some recent data provided by international agencies, around ten million children will not have access to education in the coming years, widening the existing educational gap.
The Congregation for Catholic Education sent a circular to schools, universities and educational institutions, entitled “Putting the relationship with the concrete and real person at the center”.
The wide spread and persistence of the pandemic over time also created a generalized sense of uncertainty among teachers and educators. His invaluable contribution, which has changed profoundly over the years, both from a social and technical point of view, needs to be supported through a solid continuous training that knows how to meet the needs of the times, without losing the synthesis between faith, culture and life, which is the peculiar cornerstone of the educational mission implemented in Catholic schools and universities. Teachers have so many responsibilities and their commitment must increasingly be transformed into real, creative and inclusive action. Thanks to them, a spirit of fraternity is nourished and shared not only with students, but also between generations, religions and cultures, as well as between man and the environment.
The person in the center
For this to happen, it is always necessary to place the relationship with the concrete person and between the real people who form the educational community at the center of educational action; a relationship that does not find enough home in the interaction mediated by a screen or in the impersonal connections of the digital network. The concrete and real person is the soul of formal and informal educational processes, and an inexhaustible source of life due to its essentially relational and community nature, which always implies two dimensions: vertical (open to communion with God) and horizontal (communion between men and women) ). Catholic education, inspired by the Christian view of reality in all its expressions, aims at the integral formation of the person called to live responsibly a specific vocation in solidarity with other people.
In a world in which “everything is closely related”, we feel united in the search, according to Christian anthropology, for new training paths that will allow us to grow together using the relational instruments that current technology offers us, but above all, opening ourselves to the irreplaceable sincere listening to the voice of the other, giving time for common reflection and planning, valuing personal stories and shared projects, the teachings of history and the wisdom of past generations. In such a process of formation in the relationship and in the culture of the encounter, the “common home” with all creatures also finds space and value, as people, as well as forming themselves for the logic of communion and solidarity, already work “to recover serene harmony with creation ”, and to configure the world as“ a space for true fraternity ”.
Service as an end
The current situation has strongly emphasized the need for an increasingly community and shared educational pact that, drawing strength from the Gospel and the teachings of the Church, contributes in a generous and open synergy for the diffusion of an authentic meeting culture. For this reason, Catholic schools and universities are called to train people willing to put themselves at the service of the community. In service, we can experience that there is more joy in giving than in receiving and that ours can no longer be a time of indifference, selfishness and divisions: “The whole world is suffering and must unite to face the pandemic”, since “The challenge we face unites us all and does not make a difference in people”.
The Congregation for Catholic Education, as already expressed in the communiqué of May 14, 2020, renews its closeness and expresses its deep appreciation to all the educational communities of Catholic school and university institutions that, despite the health emergency, have guaranteed the performance of its activities so as not to interrupt that educational chain that is at the base not only of personal development, but also of social life. From the perspective of future school and academic planning, despite the uncertainties and concerns, those responsible for society are called to give greater importance to education in all its formal and informal dimensions, coordinating efforts to support and guarantee, in these difficult times, educational commitment of all.