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Catholic Schools Week

Catholic Schools: Learning with Pope Francis to Care for Our Common Home

One of the features of Catholic schools in recent years has been the introduction of a week dedicated to celebrating the unique role that such schools play in shaping not just the students and all involved, but wider society, locally and universally. This annual celebration gives expression to the ethos of Catholic education and acknowledges the tremendous contribution that our Catholic primary and post-primary schools make, not just to Irish society, but to the mission of the Church.
Catholic Schools Week begins on
Sunday next, 29 January and runs until 4 February. All Catholic Schools are invited to partake in the week. Parish communities are also invited to support through reflection and prayer and continued practical support.
The theme for Catholic Schools Week this year is Catholic Schools: Learning with Pope Francis to Care for Our Common Home. It is hoped that this theme will help schools to gain an understanding of the Pope’s encyclical letter
Laudato Si’. This is Pope Francis’ second encyclical. Its title means ‘Praise be to you’ and it has the subtitle On Care for Our Common Home. The encyclical letter, published on 24 May 2015, discusses the harm humankind has caused on earth and calls on ‘every person living on this planet’ to make necessary changes in our lives to protect our planet.
Laudato Si’ deals with many environmental issues including pollution, climate change, drought, loss of biodiversity and the decline in the quality of human life. Pope Francis is asking us to work together to create a better world for future generations and to take care of, respect and value our common home. Pope Francis addresses his letter to ‘every person living on this planet’ in order to start an inclusive dialogue about how we are shaping the future of our planet. Pope Francis calls on the Church and humankind to acknowledge the current environmental challenges and to join him in embarking on a new path. This encyclical is written with both hope and resolve, looking to our common future.
Catholic schools can play an essential role in shaping the future of our planet by working together to care for our common home. Our world is a gift from God and we are called to act as both stewards and protectors during our time here. It is our responsibility to care for our world and make it a better place for the next generation. Through the encyclical letter
Laudato Si’, Pope Francis reminds us of the necessity and importance of caring for our common home.

During the week, there will be daily themes.
Sunday 29th – Catholic Schools Week and the overall theme to feature in prayers at Sunday Masses.

Monday 30th – Seeing the beauty of our common home

Tuesday 31st – Caring for our common home

Wednesday 1st – grandparents: Watching over our common home

Thursday 2nd – Protecting our common home

Friday 3rd – Sharing our common home.

The daily themes contain resources for the class groupings. Each day’s lesson begins with a reflective quote from Laudato Si to put the learning into context. Suggestions for the different strands are included in the resources, which can be accessed on http://www.catholicbishops.ie/2017/01/11/laudato-si-informs-the-theme-for-catholic-schools-week-2017-2/ The resources are also available in the Irish language.

There will also be a thought for each day which will be available on the resources site and which will be publicised through social media, including the Diocese of Clogher Facebook and Twitter pages and accounts.

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