National Catholic Teachers Day launched by CBC National Catholic Education Commission
Port Moresby: “The impact of Catholic Teachers extends far beyond the classrooms; we are called to be ambassadors of the Catholic Faith to share the Joy and beauty of our traditions with our students and the wider community.”
This bold statement was shared by the Deputy Secretary of the National Catholic Education Commission of CBCPNGSI Mr. Victor Piniau during the launching of the National Catholic Teachers Day on Friday May 12 with the theme “A Catholic Teacher as Salt and Light”.
NCEC invited heads of the different Catholic schools in Port Moresby, Dr Catherine Nongkas Vice President of Don Bosco Technological Institute and chair of the National Catholic Education Board, Ms Grace Wrakia National Coordinator for La Salle Family, Mrs Paula Bomai CES of the Archdiocese of Port Moresby, Doug Tennent CBC Land and Justice officer as well as staff of CBC.
The launching began with a Eucharistic celebration led by Fr Martin We-en followed by speeches from the different heads who shared their perspectives and reflections as well as their messages to Catholic teachers.
Deputy Secretary for the National Catholic Education Commission Mr Victor Piniau gave the keynote address during the program followed by a reflection and message to Catholic teachers by the National Catholic Religious Education Coordinator Sr. Roshni Kachuwa.
Mr. Piniau stressed that Catholic teachers and schools must work together and build a just and compassionate society that reflects the values of the Gospel.
“Education in Papua New Guinea is pioneered by the early missionaries, the government came in later and that’s why as heads of schools, you must take pride and take the lead. The Catholic Schools are part of the Church set up where you find a parish, you also find two things and they are a Catholic school and Catholic health service.”
Mr Piniau also extended his appreciation to the Salesians, De La Salle’s, Missionaries of the Sacred Heart, the Marist Brothers, the Christian Brothers, the SVDs, OLSH sisters, and others. “These congregations have paved the way and they are still guiding us. The missionaries will not be in PNG forever and we must start taking the lead. What are we doing to show that we are ready to take the lead? Are we willing to learn? Are we willing to humble ourselves? And Are we willing to take the hard road?” challenged Mr Piniau.
The same sentiment was shared by Doug Tennent, the Land and Justice officer for CBC.
“What about our own roles as educators to address issues affecting our environment? If we go around Port Moresby what do we see so much? We see rubbish and that is why I’m challenging the schools to do something about it. Work with NCEC we the Catholic Church must take the lead.” He said.
The National Catholic Teachers Day is celebrated annually on May 15th on the feast of St John Baptist De La Salle, the patron Saint of teachers.