January 25, 2008

Catholic Schools Week Supplement

National convention in March showcases Catholic education

By John Shaughnessy

For the first time, the archdiocese will host the 2008 National Catholic Educational Association’s annual convention on March 25-28 at the Indiana Convention Center in Indianapolis.

Here are five things you should know about the convention, according to Kathy Mears, an associate director of schools for the archdiocese:

  • About 10,000 people from across the country are expected to attend the convention.
  • About 1,500 Catholic school administrators, teachers, students and volunteers from central and southern Indiana will be needed to have the convention run smoothly.
  • The theme of the convention is “At the Crossroads: Where Challenge Meets Opportunity.” “We really believe that the work of our catechists, teachers and administrators makes a difference in the lives of children, parents, our world and the Church,” Mears says.
  • The convention is committed to a “green” theme, recognizing the integrity of the Earth. “This is one of the great challenges facing our Church and the world, and we want our teachers to understand and learn different ways to help make our students more environmentally aware,” Mears says. “As Catholics, we want to make sure that we are leading the way in modeling how to be good stewards of the Earth.”
  • One of the convention’s special events will include a trip to Saint-Mary-of-the-Woods, the home of St. Theodora Guérin, one of eight Americans to become a saint.

“We have few opportunities in this country to walk where saints have walked,” Mears says. “It is really important that people coming to our convention are made aware of St. Theodora’s life. We are planning to share more about St. Theodora during a general ­session so that a very large audience will become more aware of her life.”

(For more information about the NCEA convention, visit the Web site, at www.archindy.org/ncea.) †

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