Arts & Entertainment
Church-run schools need public financial support, Vatican envoy says
VATICAN CITY — A Vatican official praised Church-run schools as valuable components of modern education, saying they deserve public financial support and must not be muzzled on moral issues.
Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, addressing a U.N. meeting in Geneva July 6, said educational systems work best when they include participation by parents and various elements of civil society, including religious organizations.
For that to work, he said, "public financial resources must be made available in order to assure fairness" for those promoting alternative educational programs.
In carrying out its educational role, the state "should respect the choices that parents make for their children and avoid attempts at ideological indoctrination," Archbishop Tomasi said. He cited the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, which defends the freedom of parents to choose nonpublic schools and ensure the religious and moral education of their children in conformity with their own convictions.
"And this includes the right to make moral judgments on moral issues," the archbishop said.
He said religious organizations are often better positioned to provide education to the most vulnerable children and families, including those in remote or rural areas, those with special needs or drop-outs.
Archbishop Tomasi noted that the Catholic Church has about 200,000 primary and secondary schools located in every continent, with about 58 million students and 3.5 million teachers.
"While protecting their identity, these schools welcome students from every ethnic and religious background and socio-economic class," he said.
Catholic schools teach children how to make "free, reasoned and value-based decisions," the archbishop said.
It's not enough for schools to convey technical information, he added. The goal of education must include formation of the person and transmission of values like personal and social responsibility, a work ethic and a sense of solidarity with others."
Archbishop Tomasi, the Vatican's representative to U.N. agencies in Geneva, was speaking at a session on global education sponsored by the U.N. Economic and Social Council. He noted that although the number of children without access to primary education is dropping, about 68 million children remain out of school.
If current trends hold, he said, the international community will not be able to meet the goal of universal primary education by 2015.
He said educational levels are directly tied to poverty levels. Another key factor is war and civil strife; some 28 million children not attending school live in countries affected by conflict, he said.
— John Thavis, Catholic News Service
'Bean is Born': Project 2 Heal puppy teaches lessons on love, acceptanceWAXHAW — Two years ago an adorable Fox Red Labrador Retriever was born in a litter at Charlie Petrizzo's Project 2 Heal home kennel, where he raises Labs for service organizations to work with children with special needs. Little "Bean" wasn't...
For Mother Dolores Hart, it's time for her close-up — againWASHINGTON, D.C. — Don't look now, but Dolores Hart is about to become a star again, 50 years after her last movie. Hart — that's Mother Dolores, the prioress of a Benedictine women's monastery in Bethlehem, Conn. — has just...
Holy Spirit parishioner's CD ministry meant to bring peace, comfortPictured: Roger Boswell cantors as part of the music ministry at Holy Spirit Church in Denver. (Doreen Sugierski, Catholic News Herald) DENVER — Roger Boswell and his wife Maria knew they were in the right place when they moved from California...
Competing on game show 'good witness' of joy of giving life to ChristWASHINGTON, D.C. — "The right earlobe, right thumb and right big toe," answered Sister Peter Joseph. The crowded cheered as host Jeff Foxworthy affirmed her answer to the question of what parts of the body God instructed Moses to anoint. Sister...
For the love of painting: Lifesize portrait painted of Monsignor MarcaccioGREENSBORO — Last month Monsignor Anthony Marcaccio, pastor of St. Pius X Church in Greensboro, was hung. On a wall. In the church. Last year, St. Pius X parishioners hired up-and-coming British artist Nancy Fletcher to paint a life-size...
McLeansville artist sees his work as evangelizationGREENSBORO — One gift changed Paul Nixon's life. Today the McLeansville man is a working artist, with sculptures on display throughout Guilford County. His latest, a sculpture of the Lamb of God, was installed at St. Thomas More Church...
Shroud of Turin broadcast set for Holy SaturdayDENVER — Pope Benedict XVI's decision to allow a TV broadcast of the Shroud of Turin on March 30, Holy Saturday, has been lauded by experts for highlighting the link between the shroud and the death and resurrection of Christ. "Pope Benedict...