By Francesca Merlo
The unexpected crisis caused by the spread of Covid-19 has not only overshadowed many of our certainties, it has also “highlighted the fragility and the wounds of society”. In a press statement, issued on its website on 8 April, the Congregation for Catholic Education highlights our duty to “to consider more deeply the meaning of life”, stressing that “it will never be the same as before”.
According to the statement, Pope Francis gave us a clear direction during his prayer of 27 March. From that prayer, continues the statement, we received “the spiritual energy” which can help us respond to the “crisis that we are currently experiencing”.
In face of this crisis, and in the Lenten spirit, “the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ opens up a perspective of life that will have no end and that allows us to look to the future with confidence and solid hope”, reads the statement.
On this note, the Congregation for Catholic Education expresses its closeness to all Catholic educational institutions that are carrying this “heavy burden”. The statement notes that, in its Education Agenda, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has highlighted, the need to “develop educational systems that are more resilient and responsive in the face of conflict, social unrest and natural hazards – and to ensure that education is maintained during emergency, conflict and post-conflict situations”.
The Congregation’s statement points out that the pandemic has also “directly involved families” who “find themselves constrained to adapting to the need to assist their children studying at home”. Often, it says, they are not equipped with the necessary tools to do so.
Urging all involved to keep updated with what local Education Ministries are organising, the Congregation for Catholic Education says it is important to “consider the fact that the current situation may continue”. This is a “particular moment”, says the statement, and it must be faced “patiently, with active and intelligent mutual collaboration, for as long as necessary”.