The national launch of Catholic Schools Week 2018 took place yesterday in Saint Flannan’s College, Ennis, Co Clare, led by Bishop Fintan Monahan, Bishop of Killaloe. Catholic Schools Week 2018 will take place from Sunday 28 January to Sunday 4 February. The theme of CSW2018 is ‘Catholic Schools: Called to be a Family of Families’.
Bishop Monahan was joined at the launch by Father Ignatius McCormack, Principal of Saint Flannan’s College, and Canon Tom Deenihan, Executive Secretary of the Irish Episcopal Conference’s Education Secretariat as well as staff and students from Catholic Primary and Secondary Schools across the diocese.
During the launch, Saint Flannan’s student Pádraig Casey spoke on the ways in which Catholic schools allow young people to grow in faith and in life, highlighting the charitable outreach in which the students engage throughout the year. Pádraig said that supporting groups like St Vincent de Paul, Project of Hope in Kolkata, India, and Clare Crusaders gives students a profound sense of place in the world and their obligations to service and compassion that lie at the heart of the ideals of Catholic Schools. He added that participation in events such a pilgrimages, retreats, prayer experiences and local youth councils provide a wonderful opportunity for personal growth and development for young people.
Also speaking at the launch, Canon Deenihan highlighted the theme of this year’s Catholic Schools week, ‘Catholic Schools: A Family of Families’, which links with the upcoming World Meeting of Families which takes place in Dublin in August this year, and praised the positive influence that our Catholic Schools have on the quality of life in the local community.
The launch was concluded with the celebration of the Eucharist in St. Flannan’s College Chapel at which Bishop Monahan presided. Staff and pupils from Coláiste Muire and Saint Flannan’s College enhanced the liturgy with music and song.
In his homily Bishop Monahan underlined the links between Catholic Schools, the home, the parish and the world. He spoke of ‘that extra substance called ethos that appeals to the whole person – mind, body and spirit – that is an integral part of our Catholic Schools’.
‘Catholic Schools have that selfless motivation and drive to go the extra mile. Catholic Education is inclusive, open to all and promotes the common good,’ Bishop Monahan said, encouraging schools to be ‘families of faith, hope, love and joy’.
You can watch highlights from the launch of Catholic Schools Week 2018 here.
On Sunday 4 February Bishop Monahan, will be the chief celebrant at Mass for the conclusion of Catholic Schools Week 2018. This Mass will be broadcast by RTÉ on radio from the Cathedral of Saints Peter & Paul, Ennis. As well as the local parish community of Ennis, the liturgy for this year’s Mass for Catholic Schools Week will be enhanced by the participation of students, staff and parents from local schools.