This past Saturday, May 10, Pope Francis spoke to approximately 300,000 students and teachers from Italian Catholic schools at a rally in St. Peter’s Square, according to Rome Reports.
The aim of the conference, which was organized by Italy’s bishops, was reportedly to promote Catholic education in the country.
Pope Francis reportedly said that school “is synonymous with openness to reality. At least it should be!”
Catholic Culture reports:
The Pope recounted that his love for school began when he was six years old, when his first teacher “taught me to love it.” He continued to visit her regularly until she was 98.
… Emphasizing that schools and families should be complementary, Pope Francis said the school is also a place of socialization where a child meets persons of different ages, cultures, and abilities. He asked those assembled to repeat the African proverb, “It takes a village to raise a child.”
The Pope said that he also loves schools because the school’s mission is develop a sense of the good, the true, and the beautiful, which are inseparable. “Education cannot be neutral,” he said: it can be positive or negative, enriching or impoverishing, or even corrupting.
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