SMSCE and Citizenship: Caritas in Action
As pupils at a Roman Catholic Primary School in the Diocese of Salford, all St Mary’s children will be taught their SMSCE (Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural Education) and Citizenship curriculum through the Caritas in Actionscheme. The first entitlement of all children is to be spiritually, morally, socially and culturally educated. This is the second of the two aims of the National Curriculum. In our Roman Catholic school, the Church insists that its beliefs and values provide the context for and substantially shape learning throughout the school.
The Caritas in Action scheme has been produced by Salford Diocese as a response to Catholic Social Teaching, which calls us all as Catholics to work for the common good, help build a just society, uphold the dignity of human life and work for justice and the dignity of all our brothers and sisters, especially those in the greatest need. Caritas in Action provides a unique and engaging set of teaching and learning opportunities for seven themes of Catholic Social Teaching. These themes are as follows:
Dignity of the Human Person
Every human person is created in the image and likeness of God. Therefore, every person’s life and dignity must be respected and supported from conception until the end of their natural life on earth.
Family and Community
The human person is not only sacred, but social. How society is organized, be it socially, economically, legally or politically has a direct impact on the dignity and growth of every human person and community. Marriage and family should be supported and strengthened. Every person has a right to work to support themselves and their families as well as the building up of the common good for all.
Solidarity and the Common Good
We are all People of God, one family. Therefore what happens to one has an impact ojn all, locally, nationally and globally. At the heart of solidarity is the pursuit of peace and justice. Our love for all calls us to work for a peaceful and just society where everyone has a fair share of the goods needed for a sustainable life, and opportunities for growth and development are offered equally. The dignity of every person is respected.
Dignity of Work
Work is a way in which we can continue to participate in God’s creation. Work gives dignity to life and must be carried out in such a way that the basic rights of workers are respected. Everyone has the right to productive work, to fair and livable wages, and to organize and join a union. The economy must be conducted so that it serves the needs of the people.
Rights and Responsibilities
Every person has a fundamental right to life. It is this right that makes all other rights possible. Everyone has the right to food, health care, housing, education and employment. We all need to strive to secure and respect these rights for others both locally and globally.
Option for the Poor and Vulnerable
Society is judged on how it cares for the poor and vulnerable – our brothers and sisters. We read in scripture how God has a special concern for the oppressed, poor, vulnerable and those forced to the margins of society. The Church calls us to respond to the cry of the poor and put their needs first. This preferential treatment for the poor and vulnerable must be seen in action in our daily lives.
The world God has created for us has been entrusted to everyone and we are responsible and accountable to God as stewards of the earth. The world has been given to us as a gift, to enjoy and care for so that future generations can enjoy it too. It is in caring for creation that we show our love and respect for its creator.
Over the year, every child in every year group will study each of the seven themes of Caritas in Action at their own level. During their time at St Mary’s, your child will progress through this programme and will be enriched in and through Catholic Social Teaching.