The BF brethren are a diverse bunch, and nothing brings out that range of opinion like a discussion on the place of Catholic schools in NZ. So presented without any preamble are two recent-ish quotes for your consideration and discussion…
“In the dioceses of New Zealand an extensive network of schools and Colleges exists with more resources dedicated to this apostolate, than any other. Some question this preference. Yet, in a secular country such as mine, where most of those who identify themselves as Catholic no longer frequent a parish Church, the primary community of faith has become the school. It is in our schools that the large majority of the baptised, and the yet to be baptised, encounter for the first time, in any systematic way, the person of Jesus Christ, prayer, liturgy and the sacramental life of the Church. Teachers rather than parents have become in many instances the first formators in faith of our young.”
Intervention of Bishop Charles Drennan to the Synod on the New Evangelisation for the Transmission of the Christian Faith, 7-26 October 2012, Rome.
“Schools are now the main faith communities for our young Catholics – and I am talking baptized, not necessarily currently practicing Catholics. Expecting these young people who attend our schools to automatically attend mass is a frustrating position…we need to accept the reality that there is now a stage between school and parish life that we need to be concerned with and work in”
Fr Michael Holman, address to Catholic Schools Conference, Wellington, July 2012