Benedict XVI Blog

Published on Tuesday, October 11, 2022

Dr. Topping Delivers Keynote for Launch of New Institute opened by Cardinal Collins

In late September, Dr. Ryan Topping presented a keynote address at an event hosted by Thomas Cardinal Collins of the Archdiocese of Toronto. Dr. Topping’s lecture, “Renewing Catholic Education – Six Signs of Hope” was given before an audience of about 100 invited leaders representing various institutions and ministries from the Toronto area, to help launch a key initiative for the Archdiocese.

Held at St. Augustine’s Seminary of Toronto, the event marked the official opening of the St Monica’s Institute for Education and Evangelization. In addition to talks and panels, the day also included a Mass held in the seminary’s chapel which included the blessing of a beautiful new icon of St. Monica, especially commissioned for the Institute. The Institute has been years in the making, and was founded by Collins to provide formation, policy development, and support for lay Catholics serving in four areas: education, parish life, family life, and the public square.


Dr. Topping’s message focused on the need to recover the classical sources of our educational tradition. His paper drew upon insights from his book The Case for Catholic Education (Angelico Press, 2015), research from Canadian sociologist Reginald Bibby, case studies from the noted economist Thomas Sowell, as well as episodes in Canada’s legal history. 

After painting a picture of both the strengths and weaknesses within publicly funded Catholic education in the Canada, Topping explored how all Catholic educators can draw from the insights and best practices of various models of formation – including Charter Schools, Homeschools, and especially those found in the Catholic classical education movement.

The St. Monica’s Institute of Education and Evangelization offers courses, workshops, certificate programs, retreats, and roundtable discussions for Catholics in all walks of life.  For more information about St. Monica’s Institute see here.

Dr. Ryan Topping is Vice President and Director of the Benedict XVI Institute for the New Evangelization at Newman Theological College in Edmonton.


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Author: Danielle Godin

Categories: Benedict XVI Blog