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The Message
Evansville, Indiana
April 19, 1996     The Message
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April 19, 1996

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" -- The Message -- for Cath( New elements were " celebrations at many churches Evansville during Holy Week son. At St. Anthony Church, upper left, new members be baptized during the Saturday. Father John E Robinson. :: Steven Burch and Jessica take part in a hand-washing € Supper involving sixth-grac students at St. John Church, Ministers of Sacred tion of Sherri Haas, enact John Church, ticipants include Mary ter, Alissa Halter, Jeff Wedng; Julie Haas, Sarah Haas and Complex, volving Grace Arvin Shirley Jeffers Ji  Catherine Larman, Top right, emontary Catholic edu cators praised, challenged at annual NCEA coy , By:CAROL ZlMMERMANN : : i'Catholic News Service PHILADELPHIA (CNS) Themore than 17,000 Catholic educators who met in Philadel- phia April 9-12 for the National Catholic Educational Associa- "tion o'nvention were praised for putting their faith into ac- tion and challenged not to rest on their laurels. During the opening day of "the 93rd annual convention, NCEA delegates who braved Philadelphia's unexpected cold rain and snow were urged to draw on their own faith to help their students• Norbertine Father Alfred McBride, an educator, lecturer and author, said students must not only come to see faith as a personal relationship with God, but as something that makes them part of a great chain of believers." "Faith is belief in the mes- sage of Christ and his church," he said in the keynote address. "It is not an either/or action. Faith embraces both belief in the person of Jesus and belief in the message of Jesus." Former U.S. Surgeon Gen- eral Antonia Novello, the keynote speaker April 10, fo- cused on the need t0 bring 00,lXlYMI .UMBER ;OMPANY* today's students up to speed with the rest of the world. • She noted that the majority of young people today are un- able to compete on a global market because so many of them do not know basic skills such as calculating fractions or reading a map. Educators can change this, she said, if they "aggressively prepare students for a new global world and the needs of a new age." She acknowledged that today's teachers encounter more demands than ever be- fore. They not only have to deal with gang violence and teen pregnancies, she said, but they also must "parent and police their students, which detracts from their teaching•" In the face of such chal- lenges, she urged Catholic edu- cators to "keep up the momen- tum" and not to "fall prey to complacency." Cokie Roberts, ABC News corresPondent, who had 12 years of Catholic education, also warned the conventmn del- egates not to be too self-satis- fied with their work. During the April 11 general session she told the educators they had "every reason to con- gratulate themselves and be d#.-; FIRST FEDERAL :, i Li, ,,. Saves and Loan Association ,' ," :Wasffington & Loogootee ' proud of their work," but she also warned about the "danger of getting smug and thinking that the way you do things is the only way." "We always have to learn while we teach," she said, pointing out that reporters are teachers too. She described her own edu- cation as "truly wonderful" not only due to its "intellectual rigor," but primarily because the sisters who taught her were "women in the '50s who took women seriously." "They believed we could be anything we wanted to be, ex- cept priests, and instilled in us a strong sense of duty to achieve," she said. The legacy of these women and the sisters who founded re- ligious orders continues in Catholic schools today, she said, ."especially in inner cities, where Catholic schools take up the slack in enormous fashion•" And the work of Catholic schools does not go unnoticed either. "The whole conversation today about values in education Built with Quality to Save You Time & Money Factory and General Office - ttwy. 231 S., Jasper, IN . ' (812) 482-1041. emulates what's been happen- ing in Catholic schools," she added. But even if Catholic schools are on the cutting edge with their values-based education, they can never be popular and still remain integrally Catholic, said Christian Brother Patrick Ellis, president of The Catholic University of America in Wash- ington. Brother Ellis, who delivered the closing address at the con- vention, said any hope for Catholicism to gain popularity in the larger society diminished in the '60s and then all but dis- appeared with the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision legal- izing abortion. With the Roe vs. Wade deci- sion, in particular, Catholic schools had to "start taking po- sitions that were against popu- lar opinion," he said. But the •college president said the unique distinction of Catholic schools provides them with special opportunities. For ,RESTAURANT SPECIALIZING IN " ' : DELICIOUS GERMAN FOOD PRIME RIB CHARBROILED STEAQK - COUNTRY FRIED CHICKEN .... SEAFOODS • SALAD BAR BANQUET ROOM .FOR PRIVATE PARTIES FOR ALL YOUR CATERING NEEDS, CALL  i482-26401 HWy, lS: , 393 3rd. Ave., Jasper, IN example, freest ers are ,free for their have boards "loo He only to the best "The a "not an e: first-rate ulaL • He calh member make a to do so, 6 ques choice o: shops on ,,