Laudate for Catholic Schools Week

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Laudate Festival 2018

Celebrating Families of Faith in Song

Church of St Colmcille, Knocklyon on Monday 29 January at 7.00 pm
Our Lady of Victories, Ballymun Road on Tuesday 30 January at 7.00 pm
Church of the Guardian Angels, Newtownpark Avenue on Wednesday 31 January at 7.00 pm


The Laudate Festival 2018 is being celebrated in the Archdiocese of Dublin during Catholic Schools Week 2018 involving 2500 pupils from 45 Catholic primary schools guiding parents, friends and parishioners in song and reflection on three evenings.  The festival focuses on the theme of Families of Faith drawing on the theme for Catholic Schools Week and preparing for the World Meeting of Families 2018.

The purpose of the Laudate Festival project is to build a common repertoire of hymns between school and parish so that all may sing praise to God together across the generations.  The chosen repertoire for the festival is composed of a selection of hymns from a variety of genres: tradition, modern hymns of an enduring nature and quality and Gospel songs.  The hymns will be integrated in parish liturgical celebrations and school assemblies so that all generations may share the prayer language of song and praise of God.

The Catholic Schools in the Archdiocese of Dublin were invited to participate in Laudate 2018, following on a successful pilot run in 2017.  Forty-five schools responded instantly and engaged with tremendous enthusiasm with many others expressing interest in participating in the future.  Representatives from each school presented for an evening in October when the repertoire was demonstrated and the materials made available to all.  Parish choir representatives attended a Laudate workshop at the diocesan Autumn Liturgy Gathering in order to bring the material to local parish celebrations.

Laudate 2018 takes place in the parish churches of St Colmcille’s in Knocklyon, Our Lady of Victories on Ballymun Road and Guardian Angels on Newtownpark Avenue with pupils from schools in a broad catchment gathering to celebrate together.

Many of the participating schools are presenting the repertoire at parish celebrations during Catholic Schools Week 2018 declaring their intention that they wish to have a lasting place among parishioners.  The parishes in which the schools are located are generous in their support of the schools and of their involvement in the life of the parish.

The list of hymns that have been used in Laudate Festival 2018 have been made available to all the parishes of the archdiocese so that children and families may have the opportunity to experience a common repertoire wherever they may choose to attend liturgical celebrations.

What happens after Laudate Festival 2018?  Is that the end?  Schools and parishes are encouraged to seek/build an event or opportunity at which the repertoire may be revealed, extended and celebrated locally.  There are many ways by which the value of Laudate could be extended:

•  The Parish Team may choose to formulate a parish prayer service at which the pupils could lead singing of the Laudate repertoire
•  The school and parish community may gather for a shared evening of song, reflection and celebration
•  Pupils from the school may be asked to join the parish choir on a regular basis or for particular events
•  Hymns from Laudate may be played on piped music when a choir or cantor is not leading singing
•  The Parish Pastoral Council may provide the pupils who participated in Laudate Festival 2018 with certificates on behalf of the parish
•  Pupils may be invited to be part of a sub-committee of the Parish Liturgy Group or Parish Pastoral Council so that they may have a voice in choice of music used in the life of the parish
•  Laudate hymns could be included in school assemblies, Masses to celebrate school events, sacramental celebrations, funerals and weddings.

The Laudate Festival is becoming part of the customary practice during Catholic Schools Week in the Dublin Archdiocese, bringing with it a lasting repertoire that becomes a living expression of prayer and faith in school and parish and shared in the home. Catholic Schools carry their characteristic spirit throughout the year, simply celebrating it during Catholic Schools Week.


The opening night of the Laudate Festival 2018 in the Church of St Colmcille, Knocklyon on Monday 29 January


Catholic Schools Week 2018

Catholic Schools: Called to be a Family of Families
28 January – 4 February


One-year Catechetical Programme for Schools

Pope Francis chose Ireland to host the next World Meeting of Families and it will take place from 21–26 August in Dublin.  Families from all over the world will gather to celebrate their lives, to share their experiences from different parts of the world, to reflect on the different challenges they face and to grow together in faith.  This celebration offers a special opportunity to school families to celebrate not just parents as the primary educators of their children, but also the vital role that Catholic schools play in assisting parents.

In partnership with the WMOF, the Catholic Schools Week Steering Committee has developed a one-year catechetical programme for Catholic primary and post-primary schools.  The theme for this 2018 programme is ‘Catholic Schools: Called to be a Family of Families.’

The programme invites Catholic schools to celebrate the relationship that exists between home, school and parish through participation in four sub-themed catechetical moments.  Moment Two is the high point of the catechetical programme for primary and post-primary schools.  During CSW Catholic school families participate in a week of reflection on this year’s theme.

The Catholic Schools Week Steering Committee has made a series of resources available for schools, each with its own unique daily theme, on