Saturday, 30 January 2016

Spiritually Connected: Collectively we can achieve more than individually

"Spiritually connected" were the words that resonated with me from Fr Wayne Healey's homily last weekend. The simple act of standing and listening to the Gospel, connects us spiritually with millions of Catholic Christians across the world and from our past.
New Facebook Page to connect NZ Teachers & Leaders in Catholic Schools
In 1 Cor 12:12-13, Paul uses the image of one body, with many parts and applies this to the church. In one Spirit, through baptism all, despite diversity of ethnic or social origins, are integrated into one organism (The Catholic Study Bible p1616).

As teachers and leaders in Catholic schools, we are spiritually connected through our unique goal. The Catholic school is first and foremost "a place to encounter the living God who in Jesus Christ reveals his transforming love and truth." It's primary goal is "above all a question of communicating Christ, of helping to form Christ in the lives of others. That is the goal against which the effectiveness of Catholic schools must be assessed, because it is the reason for their existence (NZ Catholic Bishops, 2014).

Attending a national event such as the NZ Catholic Education Convention 2015, helps teachers and leaders in Catholic schools to realise we are all part of one body, the Catholic church. Speaking with colleagues from the primary and secondary education sector, we are aware we have similar challenges and joys in our schools. Being part of a Learning and Change Network helped me to understand that schools can achieve much more when they work together.

Many of our Catholic schools are geographically isolated. Imagine the potential for "communicating Christ" and for actioning our primary goal if we could readily share our gifts, talents and resources. Individually we can contribute to a vibrant, energised and spirited whole.

Following the lead of the successful NZ Teachers Facebook Page, my colleagues and I have launched a Facebook page for NZ Teachers & Leachers in Catholic Schools. This is an opportunity to connect staff from our Catholic pre schools, primary and secondary schools as we come together in many parts to form one whole. Please share this Facebook Page with colleagues and use it to ask questions, share resources, displays, prayers and photos.

Collectively, we can achieve more than individually, as we work together "to help to form Christ in the lives of others" in our Catholic schools across New Zealand.

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