CBCI Office for Education and Culture
Reaches out to the Remote North Eastern Tribal Region of India
The Catholic Church cares for and appreciates the education mission being accomplished through the numerous schools in the North Eastern Meghalaya and Assam States and that too in the very inaccessible rural areas of the State. That was the message given through the week long programme conducted by Fr. Joseph Manipadam, the CBCI National Secretary for Education and his Regional Counterpart Fr. G. Amalraj and the three Diocesan Education Directors – Fr. Alex Kalayathinal of Guwahati, Fr. Roland Lyngdow of Nongstoin and Fr. Richard Majaw of Shillong. Catholic Church’s mission is inclusive education, education for the poorer children and education that appreciates and promotes languages and cultures.
The programme in Guwahati on 5th June 2018, was presided over by His Grace Archbishop John Moolachira and attended by over 90 priests and sisters involved in the education mission of the Church. The day long interactive sessions focussed on the importance of implementing the All India catholic Education Policy so that the mission of education is oriented to the poorer children and that we form in the children true values and enable them to become men and women of character and conviction. Reaching out to the neighbourhood, care of the environment and promoting the rights of children and educating the girl child were all topics discussed. Being prepared to face the increasing challenges in imparting value based education through proactive action plan was also part of the day long study and reflection. A self study report as to how effectively they are implementing the Catholic Education Policy was also submitted by the participants by the end of the day’s programme.
The programme in the very remote Nongstoin Diocese on 7th June 2018, was attended by just 25 Fathers and Sisters who are the education coordinators of a number of clusters of schools looked after by each of them. In fact some of them have as many as 35 to 40 schools – primary and middle schools – to look after in very remote and inaccessible rural areas of the diocese. The Chancellor of the Diocese Fr. Eugene and the Education Co-ordinator Fr. Roland were the ones who saw to the logistics of the day’s programme. Imparting value education, faith formation of Catholic students and reaching our to the very poor children were the focus of study. Fr. Joseph Manipadam in his concluding message said, ”Although you do not have a resident Bishop temporarily, the Church wants to tell you that we accompany you and appreciate the very challenging mission that is being carried out by you by educating the rural and tribal children living in this very beautiful and culturally rich part of our country.”
The programme in Shillong on 8th June 2018, was presided over by His Grace Archbishop Dominic Jala SDB and attended by the Vicar General, the Chancellor and over 35 priests and sisters involved in the education mission. The day long programme focussed on fulfilling this compelling mission of education for the poorer children forming in them true values and enabling them to become men and women of character and conviction. Reaching out to the neighbourhood, care of the environment and promoting the rights of children, educating the girl child were all topics discussed as the participants were nudged to move from maintenance to mission mode and rising above just the academic excellence and campus glory alone. Being prepared to face the increasing challenges in imparting value based education through proactive action plan was also part of the day long study and reflection. How effectively are we implementing the Catholic Education Policy, was the main concern of the self study report presented by the participants by the end of the day. The programme was locally coordinated by Fr. Richard Majaw, the Education Coordinator of the Archdiocese and the parish priest of the Cathedral parish.