Ediucation - The Cornerstone of Life

Education – The Cornerstone of Life

Recently we celebrated National Catholic Schools Week, and our parish reflected on this school year’s accomplishments so far. Holy Name Parish eagerly celebrated the students attending our school by planning enjoyable and meaningful activities so that they could recognize their accomplishments. The students were also encouraged to reflect on the benefits of Catholic education and how the grounding in faith, knowledge and service it provides will help them throughout their lives.

The parish must also continue to reflect on where we are as it relates to the status of our school and where are we going from here. We must do this in order to insure that we will be successful into the future. It would go without saying that in speaking to our fellow Catholics would be like preaching to the choir regarding the importance of a quality Catholic education for our children. While we all understand that in making the supreme sacrifices to care for and nurture our children, it can become nearly, if not impossible to stretch the budget-it will only go so far.

Now this is not to excuse us from the responsibility of providing a solid moral foundation that our children desperately need to develop a sound moral compass. This will certainly aid them to survive in a harsh environment that the world will subject them to-it’s a cruel reality. We see that reality everyday, all around us, without a doubt. Nonetheless, we still must provide that solid foundation one way or another; otherwise we risk an eternity for them.

We don’t have to remind you that Catholic schools exist to assure us that our children will in fact receive a wholesome well-balanced education, including all of the standard disciplines that are contained within the overall educational process. More important than that, is the need for the standard curriculum be intertwined with the teachings of the Church and of Jesus Christ. Our children must be introduced to Jesus early in their lives so that they have the opportunity to grow in their love for Him. Obviously through their exposure to the catechesis, celebration of the Sacraments, and due diligence paid to the studies of worldly things, they can gain a deeper appreciation for creation and the Creator.

As we face the stark realties of life and fearfully sensing we are drowning in a sea of despair, grasping for anything that can become our lifeline, we can begin to appreciate just how critical it is to protect and to continue to nurture our current Catholic education system, and to make it better.

It is important for us to recognize why Catholic schools are crucial in the development of our children through a wholesome, well-balanced curriculum, and the spiritual aspects of their lives. We can all recognize that this is absolutely true, and even though we know that the Catholic Church runs the largest network of private schools in the United States, leading the way in promoting a safe spiritual environment for our children, we must also come to learn that the spiritual points are what really makes it all work; for without the spirit, The Holy Spirit, society can lose it’s way.

Another crucial aspect of Catholic Education is recognizing and accepting True Reality and what impact it can have on the young mind. But the young minds have to be gently opened in order to receive the graces that the Good Lord has in store for them. That is where we, the Clergy and the Laity, along with our graciously dedicated teachers and volunteers come in; we have to be those mind openers.

We as practicing Catholics don’t need to be reminded that faith is not just a word to be tossed around like a bag of trash as you are about to fling it into the dumpster. It really means something; like you truly trust (have faith) that your kids are going to clean their rooms. You worked hard as they grew from childhood to teach them how important it was to maintain a clean environment in the home in order to remain healthy. They slowly came to understand this, at least in their minds, when they connected the dots between taking a daily shower and not feeling so well sometimes. Hopefully they didn’t become obsessed with that concept, but I think you get the picture.

As simplistic the example above illustrates it serves as a basis whereby you can measure the physical growth of your children. As they learn how to take care of themselves, the better they can project the quality of their future. As time moves on they are able to take charge of their environment so that they can ensure control of the physical aspects of their lives. It all started with you! Because of your love and care, and because you had faith they would follow your lead, they have grown up to become viable, productive citizens. And most importantly you have passed on to them a sense of faith simply because they recognized that you had faith in them-you trusted them.

As we continue to grapple with the logic of the thoughts we share here, the progression that is most critical to us lies in the fact that educating our children is of paramount importance. Not just secular education, but spiritual enlightenment as well. We want our children to learn not just about our planet and the stars and how they work for the betterment of society, we want them to come to understand why they exist in the first place and more importantly where, why and how we fit into this picture.

Throughout all time spiritual enlightenment has always manifested itself, coming to us in many different shapes and forms, and sometimes in unusual ways. History has shown us that spiritual education, perhaps not necessarily through formal institutions as per modern times, has always been realized either through church or home, thus allowing for spiritual enlightenment to be enshrined in our immortal souls.

Now that we fully appreciate the value of why we desperately need to not only to guide our children through the matters of the world, we also want for them to see what lies ahead beyond this life here on earth. We must come to grips with the reality that education is fluid and ever shifting by nature and must serve as a reflection of who we are and what our values represent. In order to clearly understand what this means, we must understand what education will do for them and us.

It is important that we as parents get involved with the things that our children are doing so that they can recognize that there is value in what they do, because you see that value as well, and that you want the very best for them-they will come to know that you care.

To educate is to lay the groundwork for how we live out our lives, how our children will be able to live out their lives. Education and life go hand in hand, one leads to the other.

In providing an education for our children, both spiritual and non-spiritual, we will plant a seed of knowledge that goes well beyond the scope that is readily seen today. If viewed through the lens of The Creator, we will see what may seem to us unbelievable and indescribable. Yet Jesus promised us that this would come to be.

With Knowledge our children, and us too, will gain the ‘ability to judge correctly about matters of faith and right action, so as to never wonder from the straight path of justice.’ As our children grow in knowledge they will be enlighten and be able to embrace all the other Gifts that The Holy Spirit has in store for us all, and to use them in the advancement toward their destiny.


The better parents, teachers and scholars can see what they are up against the more enthusiastic, the more supportive and the more they will feel empowered, thereby the more active and involved they will become.

Now is the time to protect our children and their hunger for knowledge! 

Our future depends on it!



   © Harry Perez 2012