WelCom February 2019:
On Tuesday, 27 November 2018, The Catholic Institute of Aotearoa New Zealand – Te Pūtahi Katorika ki Aotearoa, hosted a graduation for its 2018 students. In a simple and heartfelt ceremony at St Joseph’s Parish, Mt Victoria, TCI admitted 23 students who graduated from qualifications in Religious Education and Pastoral Ministry. Included were TCI’s first graduates in the New Zealand Certificate in Christian Studies – Religious Education. The students hailed from the Archdiocese of Wellington and the Diocese of Palmerston North. Other TCI ceremonies will take place in other dioceses early this year. Cardinal John Dew was the principal presider, while Associate Professor Kabini Sanga from Victoria University of Wellington’s School of Education was the special guest.
Addressing the students Cardinal John said, ‘In your studies you have searched for truth. You have come to understand more about the Church, various aspects of theology, have been enlightened and helped to understand the Scriptures. What you have been doing is actually about growing in holiness. Any study we do as disciples (learners) of Jesus Christ; any study and prayerful reflection is to help us too to live out our Baptism.’
Congratulating the students, Cardinal John said, ‘It really is wonderful to know so many study through TCI, and come to a greater knowledge of Theology, Scripture, the Church. Use this knowledge wisely, pray with it, reflect on it; continue your theological reflection and your own inner renewal; for your own sake and for the sake of a stronger and more incisive witness to the Gospel in today’s world. Your faith is about your life and the lives of those you will influence through life. Faith is living consciously in the love of God who has changed our lives.’
In her student address, Lucinda Paul noted the impact of her teachers in terms of encouragement, challenge and stretch. ‘This qualification has obviously provided me with content and practical knowledge that can assist in achieving my goal. But it has given me so much more. I have made professional and personal connections with some very special people. It has both challenged and affirmed my own knowledge and faith. And it has reignited an intellectual curiosity in matters of religion, theology and faith that undoubtedly means The Catholic Institute hasn’t seen the last of me as a learner.’
TCI’s Director Gerald Scanlan offered a vote of thanks to the TCI Faculty for ‘leading the students to new insight, greater knowledge, more confidence and deeper faith.’
TCI wishes its graduates all the very best in their respective ministries.
Dr Zachariah Duke is Acting Academic Dean, Acting Head of Teaching and Learning, Lecturer in Theology and Research Fellow for TCI.