Pastoral Pedagogical Principles of Marcellin Champagnat as Paradigm for Youth Education in Abakaliki Dioceseni

Ph.D Thesis Chima Boniface Onwujuru, FMS

2010-12-06

In keeping with the title of this dissertation, that is "Pastoral Pedagogical Principles of Marcellin Champagnat as Paradigm for Youth Education in Abakaliki Diocese, the development of the study is by and large based on those researched Champagnat principles. Thus "This study which is at the same time, pastoral, theological, educational and catechetical in its development and application, is based on the pastoral and pedagogical principles of St. Marcellin Champagnat. His is the researcher's chosen and cherished paradigm which is strongly believed would bring innovation, drive, dynamism, effectiveness and enhancement to the brand of youth education being envisaged and proposed".

"Marcellin Champagnat was a man who believed in principles. A highly principled person himself, he learnt and formulated several principles in the light of Christian theology, Holy Scripture, Tradition and Magisterium. In his pastoral and educational ministry, he effectively taught and applied the principles which progressively bore fruit and yielded practical results" (p. 8). Accordingly, "those principles are intended to serve as a paradigm of youth education in Nigeria but especially in the Catholic Diocese of Abakaliki" (p. 118). "The education of youth is not just a profession — it is a religious ministry and genuine apostolate" (p. 118).

Education is as precious and valuable as the child. It is indeed a "treasure hidden in the field" (Matt 13:44). Its acquisition can be both slippery and elusive. Yet with intelligence, diligence and discipline, education can be easily explored, acquired, shared and fostered. The dissertation at hand is a long desired product of a tedious educational process. The objective has been to provide a quality model and strategies of youth education in all its ramifications.

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