New tool to help pick Catholic education

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  • March 16, 2011
CCCM president Fr. Daniel Renaud and CCCM co-ordinator Lori Neale. (Photo by Deborah Gyapong)OTTAWA - Canadian Catholic Campus Ministry (CCCM) has devised a tool to help guide students in choosing a university where there` can keep their faith alive.

The tool can help students find a school where there is a “vibrant, active student ministry” that will help “nurture their faith” and allow them to “blossom,” said CCCM co-ordinator Lori Neale.

The 2011 Status Report on Catholic Campus Ministry in Canada is the first of a series of status reports on the state of campus ministry across Canada. Neale said CCCM will track the information by doing a similar study in another two or three years.

CCCM president Fr. Daniel Renaud, chaplain of Saint Paul University in Ottawa, noted a frequent disconnect between a vibrant parish life a high school student might be experiencing and university. The tool can help anchor students in a vibrant campus ministry and “play into decisions” parents make on where to send their children,” he said.

The report found there are 66 Catholic campus ministry programs in Canada; 34 have one or more full-time dedicated campus ministers, while 32 depend on part-time ministers. Catholic campus ministries reach 77 per cent of campuses in Canada and 87 per cent of Canada’s students are on campuses where Catholic campus ministers serve.

The study showed that 70 per cent of campus ministers reported their ministry involves all 12 areas CCCM had identified as a comprehensive campus ministry, among these prayer and the sacraments, retreats and lectures, evangelization, catechesis, fostering a culture of vocations and justice and service.

Campus ministers are well-trained, the survey showed, with 74 per cent having a graduate degree in ministry and another 17 per cent a graduate degree in a related field. Forty per cent of campus ministers are priests, either diocesan or religious. Forty-six per cent are lay people, of whom more than half are religious.

The study shows a map of Canada outlining universities with campus ministries, including details on whether they are staffed and how they are funded.

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