Br. Armin Luistro FSC gave a speech with the theme “Educational Challenges for the Global Village” to more than 1,000 participants of the OIEC World Congress 2019. This was held at Fordham University in New York City on 7 June 2019.
Excerpts from the Brother Visitor’s Speech:
“Catholic schools would need to undergo some serious soul-searching if we were to respond with fidelity and courage to these contemporary crises in education. On the issue of educational access, if we were to superimpose the map of the location of Catholic schools in the world together with the heat map of the highest incidence of OOSC (out-of-school children), could Catholic schools claim to make any significant impact on the lives of the 263 million who still have no access to basic education? Catholic schools are simply physically distant from those who need them most. On the learning crisis, have we made any serious studies on learning effectiveness in our schools especially with respect to those who belong to the 20% of learners who are lagging behind? Do we have intervention programs for those at risk of dropping out or do we simply send them away to the public schools?
Pope Francis reminds us in Laudato Si (205) that: “Human beings, while capable of the worst, are also capable of rising above themselves, choosing again what is good, and making a new start.” Educators are called anew to plant seeds of hope in the hearts of anguished children and hurting adolescents. Believers are invited anew to cast their nets on the other side of the boat despite the empty catch and exhausting night. Disciples are sent anew to Emmaus so they can retell the old narrative and experience once again how their hearts burned when the Lord walked with them.
We asked, “Can we save the world?” Jesus says, “you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses... to the ends of the earth.” May the Holy Spirit enkindle in us the fire of God’s love. Thank you very much. Happy Pentecost! “