Sunday, May 23, 2021

The higher calling of Catholic Education

Gerry Turcotte at The Catholic Register (Toronto).

"[John Henry] Newman’s now famous treatise [The Idea of a University] reminds us of the unique charter of a liberal arts, and of a Catholic, university: 'The end of university education,' he tells us, is to provide 'a comprehensive view of truth in all its branches, of the relations of science to science, of their mutual bearings and their respective values.'

"Newman recognizes that true education is about the 'real cultivation of the mind,' one that 'grasps what it perceives through the senses … which takes a view of things; which sees more than the senses convey.' Newman was not advocating for a narrow definition of one area of study but for the importance of developing critical thinking skills, a well-rounded understanding of poets, historians, philosophers, mathematicians, theologians and more. It is this comprehensive field of understanding, embedded in an unshakable moral foundation, that would allow graduates to enter 'with comparative ease into any subject of thought, and of taking up with aptitude any science or profession.'"

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