“Spiritual formation” is a key objective of the Ingenium School formation.

Commonly, “spiritual formation” is equated with “religious formation.” In this sense, Ingenium, as a Catholic school,  provides Christian formation to its students;  and the whole subject of Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao, mandated by the DepEd, has been developed by Ingenium to center around the values of the Christian faith. The classroom instructions are complemented by the practices of the Catholic faith. Regular Masses, First Communion, retreats, and recollections are worked into the students’ program of activities of the year. The focus of Ingenium’s Christian and Catholic religious formation is on the loving presence of God in Jesus Christ, and the corresponding response of love on the part of the students through effective love of the neighbor. (Thus Ingenium’s core value of “Caritas” = “Love is shown in deeds,  not in words.”)

For Ingenium,  the Christian faith is not a mere compilation of doctrines or rules or practices  to be memorized. It is, as St. Paul says, “a new life”, a “new creation”. But   human life is not all logic and understanding, thought and reason;  it is also emotions and feelings,  friends and companionships. Thus, the transmission of the Christian faith, in Ingenium, is intimately linked with what is now becoming more popularly known as “social-emotional learning”, or SEL.

It is from the proper respect, understanding, and appreciation of the “social-emotional” component that one progresses to that which is the “spiritual” in the student.  For while the social and the emotional are part of being human, the student is still an individual, an autonomous person. What makes the student to be a unique individual person is the capacity for self-direction, personal decision, free choice. What, in turn, makes free choice possible is self-awareness.  And  self-awareness is the reality that is meant by the word “spirit”.

The only experience man has of what “spiritual” means is this capacity for self-awareness. Without self-awareness, there is no morality, no responsibility, no right or wrong. Without self-awareness, there is no truth, no science, no history. Without self-awarness there is no person nor “I”; no “they” nor “society”; no “we” nor community.

Thus, the  development of the spiritual in the child—of the capacity for self-awareness—is very critical. Any authentic religious life,  including authentic Christian life,  is founded on this fundamental reality.  And this is the reason why the “spiritual formation”, which is a very distinctive feature of Ingenium School formation.  is focused on this “spiritual” reality of the student even as it cultivates the social-emotional that always acccompanies self-awareness .

For Ingenium, such “spiritual formation”  starts from the earliest pre-school years and is sustained and deepened through the high school years. Like the human body itself and its physical capacities, like the psyche itself and its social-emotional capacities, the human spirit and its spiritual capacities are developmental and requires proper nourishment and guidance for its fullness of growth.

On the basis of what has been explained above, it should be obvious that while Ingenium professes itself to be a Catholic school, it is sincerely open  to all students of  all religious persuasions.

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