Technology and Christian Spirituality
The most important parts of OMC’s curriculum are timeless: lessons about love, justice, and mercy. We teach lessons about our Catholic faith, the beauty of creation, solidarity with those who are suffering, and how to cultivate a prayer life. The most important thing we teach is how to pray and worship God.
Because we believe in loving our neighbor and exploring God’s good creation, we are also committed to participating in society. Today’s society requires learning about technology in age-appropriate ways. In other words, we are interested in teaching technology not in spite of our faith, but because of our faith. Our faith will therefore guide what and how we teach about technology.
OMC students use technology to communicate, express creativity and conduct research. Our teachers have access to updated technology in their classrooms. We empower students with the technical skills necessary to participate in a culture and an economy that is increasingly oriented towards computers and electronic media. An OMC graduate will be prepared for high schools where technology use is required. We teach our students about technology and ethics, and train them to be savvy about things like internet privacy and safety.
However, sometimes we all need an oasis from electronics. Technology addiction can be a problem in our society. Big businesses market technology aggressively, and we want to be careful about getting caught in the hype. Therefore we also don’t hesitate to teach with old-fashioned paper and pencil, books and chalkboards. We encourage families to unplug at home regularly and often. We recommend habits such as family meals without screen time, a walk in the park without a phone call, and spending a Sunday without getting sucked online. Students should feel at home writing a hand-written letter and communicating face to face.
Each September, all OMC families sign the Philadelphia Archdiocesan rules governing the specifics of school technology use. These rules are enforced at OMC. But mere rules can never capture the ongoing challenge of integrating modern technology and Catholic faith. To do that, we should pray, and talk regularly with each other and with our children about these issues.
For all of these reasons, OMC maintains a Technology Task Force. This subcommittee includes faculty, parents, student council and parish representatives. This group meets two to four times a year to review technological trends in our community. We are a resource for the school and parish community, publishing a regular newsletter. This newsletter – Golden Knights Online – shares what we’re seeing online and in social media, including suggestions about when to engage technology, when to monitor cautiously, and when to just say no. If you have comments, questions, or would like to be a part of this conversation, please contact Ms. Ponte, Fr. Bob, or any of the Golden Knights Online editorial team.