Category Archives: Association News

Momentum has a new look!

Cover Spring

Momentum has a new look!

Since 1970 NCEA’s signature publication, Momentum, serves to help call forth the next generation of Catholic leaders, to serve as an invaluable resource in professional development and to share the good news and stories of Catholic schools across the country.

What’s new:
– Member and school profiles
– Expanded From the Field column section
– Features and highlights surrounding the mission themes of “Lead, Learn, Proclaim”
– NCEA news and updates

Momentum is a NCEA member benefit. For subscription information, please contact member services at or visit

Interested in writing for Momentum? Download our contributors form at and send it, with your submission, to

At NCEA 2015? Stop by NCEA Central today, Tuesday 4/8 at 2:45 for a Meet and Greet with the editor and contributors!

Orlando Press Briefing: The State of Catholic Education


NCEA and the Diocese of Orlando held a press conference today at NCEA 2015 Convention & Expo to discuss the State of Catholic Education and provide an overview of NCEA’s United States Catholic Elementary and Secondary Schools 2014-2015: Annual Statistical Report on Schools, Enrollment and Staffing.

NCEA President Brother Robert Bimonte started the conference by stating, “Catholic schools offer a faith based and faith filled education marked by academic excellence. We have a great deal of good news to tell. Catholic education has played a significant role for generations and continues to enrich the lives of individuals, the church and our society today. We are delighted to gather educators from across the world to connect, share ideas and embrace innovation as we look to the future.”

Data for the Annual Statistical Report is collected by NCEA annually through the 106 arch/dioceses throughout the country. NCEA Public Policy & Research Director and co-author of the Annual Statistical Report, Sister Dale McDonald, BVM, Ph.D. gave highlights from the report, including enrollment trend data, the financial benefits that Catholic school choice provides the nation, the need to build new schools in growing areas, and the importance of parental school choice. . Sister Dale shares, “There are 6,568 Catholic schools in this country, 5,368 elementary schools and 1,200 secondary schools. Among the good news we share of our schools is that we are financially a gift to the nation when you consider the per pupil cost of $12,054. Our contribution is $24 billion savings each year to the nation.”

NCEA Executive Vice President Patrick Lofton, spoke of the challenges and opportunities. “I think we sometimes we get caught up in the negative news of Catholic schools and we look at the challenges we face and don’t see those as opportunities. Even in states with parental choice legislation, there are open seats.”  Lofton continued by discussing the changing dynamic of Catholic education in Milwaukee and outlined the need to look at regional areas individual needs of growth and changes in culture and faith.

Henry Fortier, Secretary for Education/Superintendent of Catholic Schools, Diocese of Orlando shared the local Orlando news perspective. “Looking at the Glenmary Research Center statistical information on religion, we see that Florida’s Catholic growth in the past 10 years has grown significantly. We have seen growth in our Catholic schools. Our population has continued to grow here in Orlando. Our five high schools are reaching capacity and developing wait lists. We have one of those good opportunities and good challenges here in Orlando on how we can meet the needs of our school and our community through education. The partnership with the parish integral. When you have the right mix of leadership it is imperative to the success of our Catholic education and school communities, working together in concert with pastors.”

“We are talking about Catholic education – not education but Catholic education. We believe that parents are the first of educators in the ways of faith and church is part of that gift to help parents become better educators,” shared Bishop John Noonan, Diocese of Orlando. “I think that Catholic education talks about the whole person: the heart and soul not just the mind. To reach that heart and soul is the gift of Catholic education. In my experience there is nothing better then opening up the heart and the whole person so that they see they are made in the image and likeness of God. Our world is a broken world and sometimes it is hard, we work to fix the mind but not the heart. Without Catholic education, what kind of future are we expecting to see in solving the world’s problems?”

Noonan continued, “There are financial challenges, there is the challenge of reaching out to parents and connecting them with resources, there are challenges of showing that Catholic schools are not just for a small group but for everyone. If parents want their children to get into schools, they should have that opportunity. We need to not just make if affordable but accessible to all.”

To download the audio coverage of the press briefing, please click here.

For more information and data on Catholic schools, please click here. To purchase a copy of United States Catholic Elementary and Secondary Schools 2014-2015: Annual Statistical Report on Schools, Enrollment and Staffing, please click here.

Press inquiries should be directed to Shannon Andrea, Director of Marketing Communications for NCEA at

Get Involved with World Meeting of Families

This post was first published on the NCEA Religious Education newsfeed by Mickie Abatemarco, Associate Executive Director of the NCEA Religious Education Department.

world-meeting-of-families-philadelphia-2015-logo“When families bring children into the world, train them in faith and sound values, and teach them to contribute to society, they become a blessing in our world.  Families can become a blessing for all of humanity!  God’s love becomes present and active by the way we love and by the good works that we do.  We extend Christ’s kingdom in this world.  And in doing this, we prove faithful to the prophetic mission which we have received in baptism.” Pope Francis, Meeting with Families, Manila, January 16, 2015

The Eighth World Meeting of Families will take place in Philadelphia September 22-27, 2015. Held every three years and sponsored by the Holy See’s Pontifical Council for the Family, the World Meeting of Families is the world’s largest Catholic gathering of families. Each World Meeting of Families has a theme that energizes and enlivens the event while adding great depth of meaning to our understanding of families. The theme of the World Meeting of Families – Philadelphia 2015 is “Love Is Our Mission: The Family Fully Alive,” emphasizing the impact of the love and life of families on our society.

There are many ways that parishes/schools can participate in this event.  The World Meeting on Families website offers opportunities for catechesis at all grade levels as well as a prayer for the family.  There are also opportunities for the parish family to participate in this event.

If there is a possibility to plan a family trip around The World Meeting of Families event imagine what this experience could mean to your family.  An opportunity to share your lives as a Catholic family with others from around the world and to participate in Sunday Mass, on September 27, celebrated by Pope Francis. Click to register online.

Don’t pass up the opportunity to participate in this event in any way you can.  It will be an experience you will not forget.

Preparing for NCEA 2015


A Message from NCEA President Brother Robert Bimonte, FSC

It is hard to believe that the annual NCEA Convention is only a month away.  For many of us, a visit to the “Sunshine State” will be a welcome antidote to the cold and snow that seem to have become an almost daily event!

The NCEA staff has worked very hard to ensure an outstanding professional development experience for all of our attendees, and our corporate partners have once again generously supported many of our awards lunches and dinners.  We will be welcoming the new Chair of the NCEA Board of Directors, Bishop George Murry and thanking Archbishop Blase Cupich for his generous and visionary leadership during his two years in that position.

We will also be honoring outstanding teachers, principals, pastors, board members, catechists and seminary leaders.  Hearing their stories of service and of their great work in Catholic education is always the highlight of the convention for me.  I am truly humbled with each award that I present.  At the same time, I am tremendously encouraged to know all of the wonderful things that are happening in Catholic education all over the United States.

There is no doubt in my mind that each and every one of you is doing amazing work each day in your own  ministry.  I am grateful for all that you do and all that you are.

NCEA 2015 Award Winners In the News

The National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA) and its membership departments recognize the countless professional individuals, organizations, and students that are ambassadors of Catholic education, and are honored to provide many award opportunities to express accolades for their dedication and support. Our NCEA 2015 Award Winners are now posted on our website. To see a full list of winners and a description of each award, please click here.

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See our award winners in the news!

School of St. Mary’s Parents’ Association, Lake Forest, IL, Recipient of the Distinguished Home and School Association Award was highlighted in Daily North Shore.

Beth Anne Gallagher, English Language Arts and Religion Sixth Grade Teacher, St. Dorothy Roman Catholic School, Drexel Hill, PA, Recipient of the Distinguished Teacher Award was highlighted The Delaware County Daily Times and ABC6 WPVI-TV.

Have you spotted any award winners in your local news? Let us know by emailing

Bishop Murry of the Diocese of Youngstown Appointed NCEA Board Chair

Photo in suitBishop George V. Murry of the Diocese of Youngstown has been named chairman of the board of directors of the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA).  With his guidance, NCEA will continue its commitment to Catholic education and refocus its mission to lead, learn and proclaim.

“I am honored to have Bishop Murry succeed me as chair,” said Archbishop Blase Cupich of Chicago, who has served as NCEA chairman since 2013. “The NCEA makes an invaluable contribution to the Church and this appointment is a good fit. Bishop Murry has been recognized for his exceptional leadership and commitment to Catholic education at all levels.”

NCEA President Brother Robert Bimonte expressed gratitude to Bishop Murry for his willingness to serve as board chair. “Catholic education is facing both exciting and challenging times. Bishop Murry has a deep faith in the importance of Catholic education for students, families and communities. His vision will be a great gift to NCEA and its members.”

In acknowledgement of his appointment, Bishop Murry shared, “I am honored to serve as board chair and support the mission of the National Catholic Educational Association. Catholic schools have made a tremendous contribution to the growth of the faith in the United States. It is my hope that together we will work to fortify our Catholic schools and recommit ourselves to the ongoing growth and development that is needed for present and future generations to thrive in the 21st century.”

Bishop Murry has served as bishop of the Diocese of Youngstown since 2007. He was born in Camden, New Jersey, in 1948. After graduating from Catholic elementary and high schools, he attended St. Thomas Seminary in Bloomfield, Connecticut, and St. Mary’s Seminary in Baltimore, Maryland, where he received a bachelor’s degree in Philosophy in 1972. That same year he entered the Jesuits and was ordained a priest on June 9, 1979. He earned a Master’s of Divinity degree from the Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley in 1979 and a Ph.D. in American Cultural History from George Washington University in 1995.

Bishop Murry served on the faculty and was Dean of Student Activities at Gonzaga College High School, Washington, D.C., from 1974-1976. He was adjunct professor of American Studies at Georgetown University from 1986-1990, and president of Archbishop Carroll High School in Washington, D.C., from 1989-1994. He was named Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs at the University of Detroit in 1994.

Pope John Paul II appointed him Auxiliary Bishop of Chicago where he was ordained to the episcopacy in 1995. John Paul II appointed him Bishop of St. Thomas in the United States Virgin Islands in 1998, and in 2007, Pope Benedict appointed him the fifth Bishop of Youngstown.

Bishop Murry has served on numerous boards including the University of Detroit and Loyola Academy, St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, Mount St. Mary’s College in Maryland, and Loyola University in Chicago. Presently, he is a member of the board of Fairfield University in Connecticut, Walsh University in Ohio and the Butler Museum of American Art in Youngstown, Ohio. He also serves on the Ohio Governor’s Task Force on Community-Police Relations.

Bishop Murry will begin his term in April 2015 and will meet with members at NCEA’s Convention & Expo in Orlando on April 7-9.

Praying with you this Lenten season


A message from NCEA President Brother Robert Bimonte:

The heart of the Gospel message is repentance and forgiveness. Each year, the Church gives us the gift of Lent – filled with rich and vibrant Scripture readings – to help us learn once again how necessary it is to forgive ourselves and others. We will never experience the new life of Easter until we let go of our pride, selfishness and whatever else is keeping us from living fully.

Lent is an invitation to look at ourselves and our choices, our attitudes and behaviors, and to seek new ways of living that will bring us the peace and integrity for which we all yearn.

Please know that all of us at NCEA are on this Lenten journey with you in prayer and in spirit.

May God bless you with the gifts of growth, forgiveness and reconciliation so that you may experience fully the new life of Easter!


Visit NCEA’s webpage at for prayers, infographics and other seasonal resources.

Welcome to NCEA Talk

Praying handsAs NCEA embraces its bold and innovative new vision, we are excited to introduce our new blog: NCEA Talk. This blog promises to serve as a platform for discussion and celebration of all things related to Catholic education.

Join us as we lead, learn and proclaim! The blog will be live Catholic Schools Week 2015, so be sure to check back the week of January 25 to join the conversation.

Questions or comments? Please send us an email at