Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of September 6, 2004
Catholic teachers told to remember the wisdom of God
By BILL GLEN
WCR Staff Writer
The role of the Catholic educator is to always remember the wisdom of God, Bishop Lawrence Huculak said during the opening Mass of the Edmonton Catholic School Division.
"When Jesus taught in the synagogue on the Sabbath and met a man with an unclean spirit preventing the man from receiving the spirit of God, he commanded the unclean spirit with his authority and power," said Huculak to a standing room only audience at the Winspear Centre, Aug. 31.
"Even the spirit of the world can be overcome by the spirit of God."
The spirit of God lives in all of us and it is vital for everyone in education and formation, to remember that on one hand they are teaching the wisdom of the world, he said in his homily.
"We teach our students that one and one is two. But as Christians we are challenged to carry out this instruction with the spirit of God within us so that we can empower students with the Holy Spirit," Huculak said.
"When we do this, they will learn that this is part of God's wondrous and mysterious plan from before the ages. The challenge of Catholic education is to show how tremendous our God is."
"In Edmonton Catholic Schools, we have a singular mission, to ensure every student in our schools learns in an environment that is filled with faith," said superintendent Dale Ripley.
"We have a better chance of succeeding if all of us contribute to this mission."Ripley called upon everyone, from custodial staff to support staff, from techies to teachers, to share their faith with each other and with the students. The work of each person is significant and worthwhile.
"Catholic teachers must remember they are not simply bringing the curriculum to the kids they teach, or just bringing the message," he said.
"Teachers are called to be the message in not only what they teach or how they teach it, but how they conduct their lives and the examples they set for the kids, through the quality of their relationships with the students, their parents and with their colleagues. This is what is distinct about our schools and Catholic about our programs."
Archbishop MacDonald High School teacher Dean Turchansky found Huculak's homily visual and provocative. He thought the opening Mass was a fine way to begin the school year.
"The Mass sets the tone for the year," he said. "When Bishop Huculak spoke about going into the synagogue with the voice of authority, I saw myself in my classroom. He reminded me that I'm not just teaching academics, but I'm also building people. I saw how it's all tied together."
Jennifer Dimas, Grade 6 teacher at St. Clement School, agreed.
"The opening Mass is an excellent chance to get together and share our faith at the beginning of the school year. We do several celebrations in the classroom with the students, but this is a chance to do it with the staff as well."