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A new Catholic Resource Centre (CRC), situated at the Chancery in Port Elizabeth, was officially launched earlier this year by Bishop Vincent Mduduze Zungu OFM.
The new Centre replaces the old "Cathedral Bookshop", and incoporates the the St Michael Libray, as well as the Diocesan Archives.
The new centre primarily occupies the premises previously housing just the library and has been significantly upgraded and improved. Smart, modern new decor, better utilisation of natural light and a bright, friendly atmosphere, all contribute to the welcoming ambience of the Centre, enhanced by the friendly smile of its manager, Denise Steenkamp.
Also part of the Centre is a research and study area, with a desk and comfortable chairs.
The Catholic Resource Centre - the realisation of a dream by the late Bishop Michael Coleman some 30 years ago.
The Catholic Diocese of Port Elizabeth has embarked on some meaningful developments which I believe will be of value to everybody: the Clergy, the Religious, the Laity of all ages and all men and women of good will.
The Catholic Resource Centre (CRC) which started as Bishop Coleman’s dream some 30 years ago became reality on the 18th of July 2016, while the ‘Cathedral Bookshop’ as a stand-alone entity ceased operations.
This Centre is structured on the solid foundations of our extensive library of religious books, which shall be made more accessible to the wider public through dissemination of information by means of brochures and the internet. There is also a serene and quiet space where our visitors are made welcome: they can sit down, browse through our material, simply read, consult other online Catholic libraries and bookshops or order specific books for personal use. Visitors can also purchase various items from the repository section of the CRC.
The services formerly rendered by The Cathedral Bookshop, Repository and Library will continue and be improved, absorbed into the new all-in-one concept of the Catholic Resource Centre along with the inclusion of the Diocesan Archive. This last inclusion is intended to make our local historical information more accessible to the people whom it was designed to serve.
The Catholic Resource Centre is what it says - a homely assembling point, “iziko” (the ‘hearth’ in Xhosa) where the needs of the Christian Community are catered for so that they can acquire knowledge and ongoing faith formation in order to respond to the radical demands of the Gospel and challenges of living in the 21st century. We would like to make known our best kept secrets as Catholics, namely the wealth of the ‘Social teaching of the Church’.
It is hoped that the CRC will be recognised as a centre of learning and ongoing formation for all members of the church and all those who desire it.
I hope that all will share with me in this exciting development which can assist those of all ages to reach their dream of increasing their knowledge, skills and honing their GOD given talents.
Ongoing formation is the great engine of personal growth and development. It is committed to holistic Christian formation that is, spiritual, intellectual, human, pastoral and integral.
Catholic education and formation which the CRC seeks to advance, “must pay special regard to the formation of the whole person, so that all may attain their eternal destiny and at the same time promote the common good of society.” (Canon 795)
“It is through education that the daughter of an ordinary person became a doctor, that the son of a mine-worker can become the head of the mine, that a child of farmworkers can become the president of a great nation. It is what we make out of what we have, not what we are given, that separates one person from another.” (Nelson Mandela - Long Walk to Freedom, 1994)
+ Bishop Vincent Mduduze Zungu OFM