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ERIC Number: EJ1006101
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006-Sep
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 5
ISSN: ISSN-1097-9638
Responses from the Field
Curtin, Daniel F.; Byrd, Gwen; Rocchio, Dominica
Catholic Education: A Journal of Inquiry and Practice, v10 n1 p41-45 Sep 2006
In an effort to encourage dialogue and reflection on matters of common concern and interest, this journal invites responses on selected articles from other educators, who engage the text critically and offer some reflections about its utility and validity. This paper presents responses from Daniel F. Curtin, Gwen Byrd and Dominica Rocchio to the article, "Process of Compassion: Pastoral Care During School Closings," by McDevitt, Dosen, and Ryan (2006). Curtin says during the past several years, the Catholic educational community has witnessed the closing or consolidation of many Catholic schools in the United States. Decisions about the future of many of these schools are based on demographic changes, enrollment issues, and financial costs. Some faculty and administrators had served in their school communities their entire professional lives and felt much grief about losing their schools. The Process of Compassion Workshop goes a long way to support and assist those in dealing with their own feelings of grief and loss. When faculty and administrators are supported in such a way, they in turn will be in a stronger position to assist students and parents with their own emotional feelings. Byrd shares that the closing of three schools in the Archdiocese of Mobile in June 2004 caused tremendous confusion and trauma for pastors, principals, teachers, parents, and students. It also caused sadness for the larger Catholic community of the archdiocese. All three of these school communities went through stages of denial and anger. One never reached acceptance. In this case, desperate measures came from parents in the face of their denial and anger. This was not easy at the time, although they believed that time would heal. As traumatic as it was for all involved, new life has sprung due to the outstanding leadership of the receiving school communities. Rocchio says school closings have become all too frequent in the last 5 years. It is the role of leadership to help others deal with loss and change. This means that those in leadership need to have an understanding of the grieving process. Rocchio suggests the need for a national conversation that brings together three types of people--authority figures, refounding people and renewal people--to design a future for Catholic schools.
Boston College. Roche Center for Catholic Education, 25 Lawrence Avenue, Chestnut Hill, MA 02467. Tel: 617-552-0701; Fax: 617-552-0579; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United States