Keys to Catholic Leadership: Sacramental Life, Prayer, and Scripture

Jonathan Doyle - Global Catholic Speaker

In this episode of the Catholic Teacher Daily Message, Jonathan Doyle shares insights from his speaking tour in Tasmania, Australia, where he reflects on the essence of Catholic leadership principles. Delving into the significance of sacramental life, prayer empowerment, and scripture immersion, Jonathan emphasizes the transformative impact these elements hold for Catholic educators and leaders. Join him as he navigates through the core tenets that define and enrich the Catholic educational journey.

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    Welcome Aboard

     Hello there, my friend, Jonathan Doyle, with you. Welcome aboard to the Catholic Teacher Daily Message. If you’ve been following along this week, I am on the road on a speaking tour here in the beautiful state of Tasmania, here in Australia. For all my American listeners and viewers, if Tasmania sounds exotic and interesting, it actually is. It is a very beautiful part of the world. Yesterday, I got to drive from Hobart up here to Launceston, and it’s just beautiful. And for a card-carrying introvert like me, it was just beautiful to stare out at the scenery, very special memories.

    Catholic Education Leadership: Guiding Principles

    Jonathan Doyle addressing at a national Catholic conference
    Jonathan Doyle addressing at a national Catholic conference

    I’ve been working on leadership here for a week. I’ve had a chance to do four major keynotes to different groups of leaders and it’s been an absolute blast. Yesterday I had a group of self-nominated teachers who are interested in the path of leadership. That was so awesome to be part of. I had the best day. I said to them at the start that if this kind of ambition if it’s filtered, the ambition to lead in the Catholic context is a good thing because the purpose and goal of that ambition is to ask yourself, ‘How many people can I serve?’

    Catholic leadership is different from leadership in the wider corporate context because we’ve got a completely different anthropology and a completely different view of reality. So we want to serve as many people as possible. Now, what I want to offer everybody listening or watching today is related to the way that I finish these keynotes. If you’ve ever seen me in a live audience, you’ll notice that I try to go from philosophy and high-level cognitive ideas around things. But I always try to give practical things that we can actually do.

    Sacramental Life: Nourishing Your Leadership Journey

    The sacramental life is essential for becoming who Christ created you to be
    The sacramental life is essential for becoming who Christ created you to be

    Yesterday I finished off talking about the three key things that we really need Catholic leaders and teachers to be doing. That is number one, the sacramental life. Number one is the sacramental life, eucharist and confession, particularly. I think the generation of leaders that we need in Catholic education and the generation of teachers that we need are people deeply rooted in the sacramental life.

    Here I was yesterday in Launceston, and it took me ages to get on the internet and to hunt around and find it. I tried to find it, but I found a mass at the beautiful Church of the Apostles. If you follow me on Instagram, you will have seen some of the photos I took in the church yesterday. But my point is that I had to walk for like 25 to 30 minutes to get to this church. It’s just beautiful and it was a beautiful mass.

    I’ve just been saying it for years, the sacramental life is absolutely central. Obviously, Sunday mass is the minimum. But I try to get to mass as often as possible because it is the source and the summit of our faith. Christ is present in the Eucharist. It changes you over time and helps you become who Christ created you to be.

    Prayer Empowerment: Fueling Your Teaching Impact

    Prayer - Allocate time for solitude with Christ to nurture your relationship with Him
    Allocate time for solitude with Christ to nurture your relationship with Him

    So number one is the sacramental life. Number two is just really building into that life of prayer. The leaders that we need and the teachers that we need are people who have a genuine prayer life. There’s a beautiful, sort of quote from St. Alphonsus Liguori that says, ‘God is not likely to talk to people who do not talk to him.’ It’s not that God’s being capricious, it’s like he wants a relationship.

    I joked yesterday at the end of the session. I said, Look, God’s told me he wants to hear from you. He’s waiting to hear from you. So I think it’s really important that we press into this life of prayer. That we build time and space in our lives to be alone with Christ, and that we develop that relationship. It’s been central to me for so long. I strongly encourage you to live a sacramental life of prayer.

    Scripture Immersion: Illuminating Your Teaching Path

    Bible - Brighten your path of teaching with the timeless wisdom found in scripture
    Brighten your path of teaching with the timeless wisdom found in scripture

    Finally, daily exposure to time in scripture. I’ll finish with this idea. Yesterday’s reading from the gospel of John was where Jesus says, ‘If you make my word your home, you will come to know the truth, and the truth will set you free.’

    And he goes on to say that anybody who sins is a slave to sin, but isn’t it interesting that Jesus actually wants you and me to make His Word, which is given to us in the Gospels, our home. What is a home? It’s a place where we spend most of our time; it’s a place of most of our relationships; it can be a place of rest and recovery, and hopefully peace and joy at times. I have teenagers. But make his word our home.

    It just really jumped out at me yesterday that, again, the great Catholic leaders that we’re going to need and the great Catholic teachers we’re going to need are going to be men and women whose Jesus’ word is their home. So I just want to encourage you today to press back into the sacramental life, go deeper into your own life of prayer, and go deeper into your daily exposure to scripture.

    So when I’m home, I’ve got about six different bibles and bible studies, and I really love  to learn scripture. That’s just me. I really have highlighters, and I write notes, and I really try to take them in when I’m on the road. I’ve got the Universalis app on my phone. So it’s not quite as traditional and beautiful, but I still get the word of God every day, and just as I finish this video, I’m going to go through the daily readings with some hotel coffee. Pray for me.

    Conclusion: Engage and Act

    That’s it, friends. Please make sure you’ve subscribed to the channel by listening to the podcast or here on YouTube. Please check out the website, Because if you want to book me to speak live, to work with your teachers, your staff, your diocese, and all sorts of conference events, you can find everything you need to know about me there. And if you’re on Instagram: @jdoylespeaks, because I do a lot of stuff on Instagram just to encourage people, you can find me there.

    God bless you. This has been the Catholic Teacher Daily Message, you and I are going to talk again tomorrow.

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    Jonathan Doyle


    I’m on a mission to liberate the potential of the incredible people that make up your organisation, school, or business.

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