Home Page

Creating Young Catholic Leaders – A Seminar

The Second Vatican Council and every Pope since that event have called for the laity to evangelize the culture in which we find ourselves, that is, the world of the arts, education, politics, family, commerce. How is that done? By shining the light of the Gospel on every facet of human existence. Unfortunately, that has not been happening for decades now, and both the Church and society have suffered as a result.

In 1975, Pope Paul VI declared: “The strength of the Church in America [is] in the Catholic schools.” If that is so, then the primary instrument of the new evangelization to which the post-conciliar popes have called us should be the graduates of our Catholic schools. To that end, the Catholic Education Foundation (together with Catholic Education Online/MOOC and the Aquinas School of Leadership, Management and Organizational Development), with the cooperation of Holy Apostles Seminary, are sponsoring a week-long seminar for rising juniors and seniors of Catholic high schools from around the country, designed to give students the necessary equipment to emerge as societal leaders to serve as the leaven, salt and light which Christ challenges His disciples to be in and for the world.

The principal guide for the seminar will be St. Thomas Aquinas. Aside from being a brilliant human being and a person of sanctity, Aquinas was one of the greatest organizational geniuses and educational leaders the world has ever known. The chief aim in this course will be to examine St. Thomas's understanding of philosophy and theology elaborated in the light of revealed truth, in order to show the philosophical and theological principles he combined and the way he combined them, resulting in his unique organizational and leadership methodology.

Course activities will involve pre- and post-class course assignments plus five consecutive days of morning and afternoon sessions. The topics covered in these classes will be:

  1. Philosophical Background for Understanding St. Thomas’s Teaching about Leadership and Organization.
  2. Aquinas’s Teaching about the Human Person, Human Motivation, and the Moral Intellectual Virtues.
  3. St. Thomas’s Teaching about the Nature of Unity, Opposition, and Aims and How These Relate to His Teaching about Leadership and Organizations.
  4. St. Thomas’s Teaching about the Nature of Leadership and Organizations and How to Manage Them as a Truly Great Leader.

The academic material (for which college credit will be available) will be presented within the context of a lived Christian community experience, including daily Mass and the Liturgy of the Hours, along with enjoyable recreational activities. The short-term goal of the seminar is that its participants will return to their Catholic high schools to share the insights they have gained, especially within student government and various aspects of student life; the long-term goal is that participants will feel confident in their future respective spheres of influence to be a competent and positive voice for Christ and His Church.

When? Beginning on the evening of Sunday, August 3, and concluding at noon on Friday, August 8. Note that registration is limited to fifty (50) students.

Where? Immaculate Conception Seminary, Huntington (Long Island), New York.

Cost? $600 (which covers room and board; college credit is additional).

Further Information? Contact Fr. Peter Stravinskas at: 732-914-1222 or fstravinskas@hotmail.com.