Religious Education Departments;
History, Development & Impact
The Religious Education Office (REO) has been very instrumental in fulfilling the Mission and Vision for which the Catholic Schools were founded. Currently there are 233 Primary Schools in Kampala Archdiocese. Kampala Vicariate: 35 schools, Entebbe Vicariate: 46 schools, Wakiso Vicariate: 68 schools, and Mitala Maria Vicariate: 84 schools. The Catholic founded Schools were established for the purpose of imparting Catholic Spiritual formation and understanding the Foundation of Catholic Faith, among the children and youth through the integration of Academic Programs and Catholic Religious Faith Programs in the School Curriculum. Therefore, the teaching of Catholic Religion in our schools is Paramount importance as, stated in the book of A Catholic’s Mission in the Archdiocese of Kampala 2016. Pg 96. In the last fifty Years the REO has endeavored to nurture pupils into unwavering Catholic Faith, rooted in the Gospel Values of Jesus Christ and to create a Christ- Centered academic environment that promotes visible Catholic Identity. The children grow up in understanding their Baptismal call to discipleship and learn at appropriate levels the richness of the social teachings of the Church. All this is in conformity with the declaration of the Synod of the African Bishops which affirmed that Catholic schools are, at one and the same time, places of evangelization, well-rounded education, enculturation and initiation to the dialogue of life among young people of different religions and social backgrounds (The church in Africa p.76).
The Religious Education Programs are designed and intended to enable all Primary Schools in Kampala Archdiocese to participate in the Evangelization Mission of the Church. The 4 Vicariate Education Secretaries and all the Fathers-in-Charge of Schools in all the Parishes in collaboration with other agents of Evangelization including: the Parish Priests, Deanery and Vicariate Coordinators, Teachers and Catechists play a vital role in implementing the following annual Religious Education Program Activities in Schools in their respective Vicariates at the Grassroots level:
a) Workshops for Catholic Teachers in our schools
b) Evaluation of the Catholic Religious Instruction through Primary 6 RE Examination
c) Catholic Music Dance and Drama (MDD) Festivals from Parish Level to Archdiocesan Level
d) Vicariate Seminars for all Catholic Teachers and Head teachers
e) Periodical inspection of Schools with the focus on Catholic environment and Identity. The Annual Training workshops, Seminars, and Retreats, target Teachers and Catechists with the purpose of empowering them with relevant skills of imparting the Catholic Values and Doctrine rooted in the Gospel, coupled with spiritual nourishment. Those who participate annually in the above mentioned program have been helped to remain relevant in the Evangelization Ministry of Children. As a result, teachers are more consciously committed to maintain visible Catholic Identity in our Schools. During the workshops the following topics are covered;
– The Biblical back ground of the Catholic Catechism
– The meaning and Value of Catholic Identify in our Schools
– The New approach of teaching the New Catechism Syllabus using the Bible as the main Source of reference
– Music Festival s as one of the Media of Evangelization Annually, the Religious Education Office prepares MDD Competitions for Primary Schools from Parish Level to Archdiocesan Level based on the Archdiocesan Theme of each year.
This activity is done in collaboration and with the support of the Parish Priests, Fathers In-Charge of Schools, Vicariate Education Secretaries, Vicariate and Deanery Coordinators. The purpose of the Music, Dance and Drama (MDD) Activities is to help develop pupils’ Skills and talents. Pupils assimilate the message of Faith and the values embedded in the Archdiocesan annual Theme very easily.
Through Catholic MDD activities Pupils get opportunity to develop their God given talents, they also learn healthy positive values of competition. This activity has helped our catholic founded Schools to develop a sense of solidarity and belonging to the Catholic Church. Every year, the Religious Education Office endeavors to evaluate then Catholic Religious Instruction given to our pupils in Primary Schools. This is done through the Catholic Religious Examination given every year to Primary (6) six pupils, who at this stage have completed their Final Catholic Faith Commitment Instruction or are ready to make it. The successful candidates are awarded Certificates For the Purpose of the smooth running of the above mentioned Program activities, the Religious Education Office, in collaboration with Education Secretaries and Vicariate Education Secretaries, have put in place a Planning and Monitoring Working Committee comprised of Vicariate Coordinators and Deanery Coordinators. These are Head teachers who assist the REO in monitoring the implementation of the Archdiocesan Program Activities in their respective Vicariates and Deaneries.