It can be argued that the prime purpose for the existence of Catholic schools is the spiritual, moral and social formation of young people within the specificities of Catholic religious culture and that all of their other activities exist to serve and support these ends. However, this proposition generates a host of related questions. Among them are questions such as ‘what constitutes an appropriate spiritual, moral and social formation in Catholic education?’ and ‘how is it possible to know whether this has been achieved or not?’
Wright (1998, pp. 97–8) reflects upon some of the difficulties related to education as spiritual nurture:
Since there is no universal understanding of the nature of spirituality1 … it becomes the responsibility of the school to make decisions regarding the spiritual tradition that informs the whole curriculum. A school with spiritual integrity must take this responsibility seriously.