Seven Oakland schools will become Lumen Christi Academies in fall 2018

"A robust academic setting permeated with Catholic values"

St. Elizabeth Catholic School is the second-oldest in the Oakland Diocese (image from school website)

Seven schools in the Diocese of Oakland will become Lumen Christi Academies in fall 2018. They are Queen of All Saints, Concord; St. Anthony, Oakland; St. Catherine of Siena, Martinez; St. Cornelius, Richmond; St. Elizabeth, Oakland; St. Paul, San Pablo; and St. Peter Martyr, Pittsburg.

“Our beloved Catholic schools have always been places of hope, inspiration and success; we must ensure this gift for our future generations,” Bishop Michael C. Barber, SJ, said Sept. 29 in announcing the legal incorporation of Lumen Christi Academies of the Diocese of Oakland.

“Lumen Christi Academies is a renewal of our commitment to strengthen and sustain Catholic education for our families,” he said.

The creation of the network of seven schools had been announced in January. The schools were selected through a rigorous review of their strengths and resources; demographic data shows these schools are needed to make Catholic education accessible to families who desire it, the diocese said in a statement.

The Lumen Christi Academies are being modeled after similar, successful efforts in Catholic dioceses across the country. The academies are expected to attract families and major foundations interested in a robust academic setting permeated with Catholic values.

“Lumen Christi Academies are an innovative model of Catholic education,” said Elizabeth Guneratne, who is serving as the project lead for Lumen Christi Academies during this transition year.

“Leveraging the resources and knowledge of our diverse network of schools, we will build upon our traditions of spiritual and academic formation for children with a renewed focus on excellence, equity, and enlightenment,” she said. “We are blending the best of our Catholic school traditions with a bold new commitment to preparing ethical scholars who will illuminate a more just and joyful future. We are not just keeping the lights on — we built a new grid and we are lighting the way together for our children, families and communities.”

The academies will be led by a board, approved by Bishop Barber, consisting of community leaders committed to Catholic education with diverse professional backgrounds. It will have its own dedicated management to guide its mission, collaborating with the existing Department of Catholic Schools.

Full story at Catholic Voice Oakland.

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Comments

  1. I clicked on the link to read the full story, but even after reading the story I don’t understand what a Lumen Christi Academy is. I read a lot of bureaucratic and administrative gobbledygook but no explanation of what distinguishes a Lumen Christi Academy from an ordinary Catholic parish school.

    • Spoken like a real “covfefe.”

    • Really good question. It appears to be a private company. Did they sell the schools? How does this work?

    • This phrasing is not in this article or the one in the link. It is from a press release.
      Bishop Michael C. Barber, SJ, announced today the legal incorporation of Lumen Christi Academies of the Diocese of Oakland, an organization of seven Catholic elementary schools within the Diocese.

  2. What is the mission of Lumen Christi schools? It’s not clear. More important — what is the mission of those who will be running the schools? Once we learn that, we will have a better understanding of what will or will not be taught.

  3. FrMichael says:

    Just another effort to centralize the schools and remove what little influence parish priests have to maintain Catholicism in their schools. This type of thing is going on all over the country at the urging of the Professional Catholic educrats. Everywhere it has been tried, to my knowledge, it has led to increased priest indifference to school affairs. Look how well that had worked out at the collegiate and high school levels.

  4. Elizabeth Guneratne says blah blah blah. Woohoo my buzzword bingo card got blackout. Nothing about providing a Catholic education consisting of (put description here).

    • “traditions of spiritual and academic formation…best of Catholic school traditions…”
      It may be good. It may be bad. It may be neutral.
      We had a problem with CCD. Originally, the parish selected the catechisms. (They were doctrine-free, focused on the Gospel.) The diocese decided it was going to select the catechism. It took half the year for them to pick one, then after they did, our parish DRE didn’t like it and never ordered it.

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COMMENTS POLICY: Comments are limited to 750 characters and will be truncated at 750. Comments should not contain offensive or libelous language. Please strive to be civil. All comments are subject to approval by our moderator and to editing as the moderator deems appropriate. Inclusion of your email address is optional.