July 21, 2023
As we settle back to school, let's take time to prepare ourselves spiritually. Together we pray for God's blessing upon the schools, for the safety and sanctity of children, and for the wisdom and holiness of our students, teachers, principals, and parents. Let us thank God for every new day and the new school year. Let us be calm and mindful of God's presence with us as we face the joys and challenges of each day.
The Catholic schools in the Diocese of El Paso provide high-quality education and religious formation and are staffed by men and women who have dedicated their lives to helping students receive a high-quality education and to help them develop a love of God and their faith. The Office of Education works closely with the Progress: Catholic Ministry Appeal to support Catholic Schools.
Results from the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) over the last 20 years show that students in Catholic schools consistently score higher in reading and math than students attending public schools.
Academically, Catholic schools hold high expectations for students, instilling solid study skills and work ethic.
Pope Francis has said that Catholic education and formation are more important now more than ever in “an age awash in information often transmitted without wisdom or critical sense.” Pope Francis continued, “As educators, you are called to nurture the desire for truth, goodness, and beauty that lies in the heart of each individual so that all may learn how to love life and be open to the fullness of life.” “Catholic education is also evangelization: bearing witness to the joy of the Gospel and its power to renew our communities and provide hope and strength in facing wisely the challenges of the present time,” Pope Francis said.
I asked a few families why they chose to choose Catholic education and what it means for each of their families. Here is what they each had to say.
" As a father, you may have several reasons for enjoying having your kids in a Catholic School. One reason could be the emphasis on strong moral values and character development. Catholic Schools often prioritize teaching virtues such as compassion, honesty, and responsibility, which can help instill a sense of integrity and social responsibility in your children. The religious education provided at Catholic Schools can also foster a deeper understanding of faith and spirituality, allowing your children to develop a strong foundation in their religious beliefs. Furthermore, Catholic Schools often offer a supportive and close-knit community where parents, teachers, and students work together, creating a sense of belonging and a network of support for your family. Ultimately, the decision to enroll your children in a Catholic School is a personal one, and these reasons reflect some potential benefits that you, as a father, may find valuable for your children's education and upbringing" Mario Marmolejo Jr. and wife Claudia Gabriela Marmolejo said.
"The education that my daughter has received in her 10 years of Catholic School has been integral in teaching the values that we as parents seek to instill in our children. Her teachers devoted their time and resources to ensure her success at every grade level. She was surrounded by good friends from good families and knowing that she could always rely on her faith and God to get her through her middle school years was a true blessing" Linda Caro said.
"When it came time for our oldest daughter to start school, my husband and I knew without a doubt, she would attend a Catholic School. St. Raphael Catholic School provides a strong educational and spiritual foundation that we wanted our daughters to have. The smaller classes allow the teachers to be able to focus on the students one on one, and the curriculum includes our Catholic faith in everyday tasks. As a product of Catholic Education,, I wanted to make sure my daughters had the same gift my parents gave to me and my sister, a relationship with God at an early age. My husband and I are very happy to see our daughters excited about their studies and about their Catholic Faith,” Elizabeth Milan said.
Many may see obtaining a Catholic education financially as not attainable, however, the gifts from donors help those families who are seeking a Catholic Education manageable. This allows the children an opportunity to be able to thrive in their studies and learn about our Catholic Faith and a safe and warm environment.
In a world where God has been taken out of the picture in so many places, Catholic Schools place Him at the forefront of what they teach. He is the reason for Catholic Schools and the inspiration for how all should live. Students in Catholic Schools are invited to develop a moral compass and a deep set of values based on the Gospel to guide their future lives. Come, see how Catholic Schools offer high-quality education and lead our youth into deeper faith-based relationships with God.
The vital work of the Office of Education is made possible by the Progress: Catholic Ministry Appeal and your continued sacrificial generosity and support. We invite you to participate in the Progress: Catholic Ministry Appeal both through a commitment to prayer and a Progress: Catholic Ministry Appeal gift. Visit 2023progress-cma.org today!