In the know with Father Joe
Dear Father Joe: Someone told me that, as Catholics, we are supposed to send our kids to Catholic schools. We are wondering if it’s really worth the financial struggle; are we obligated to do this?
Thank you for asking this: it’s quite the important issue. I’ve been blessed to serve as a priest for a little more than 17 years, and every assignment I’ve been given in that time has had a school connected to it. Over the years, I’ve really come to see that Catholic schools are a great gift God offers us; a gift that we often overlook.
Is Catholic education a sacrifice? Of course. If it’s not, you’re doing it wrong. Catholic education, for many people, is a great sacrifice.
It’s a sacrifice for the teachers who, in my experience, are paid significantly less than their public school counterparts. It’s a sacrifice for the parish that the school is tied to, as that parish commits no small amount of its resources toward running, improving and supporting the school. It’s a sacrifice for parents who choose to work to come up with the money needed to pay the tuition. It’s a sacrifice for the students who often are in a building that is not as nice as the public school options.