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Washington cardinal receives top honor from Catholic educators

.- Theodore Cardinal McCarrick, archbishop of Washington, received the 2004 Elizabeth Ann Seton award yesterday for being a proponent of parental choice in education and an advocate of the Center City Consortium, designed to strengthen inner-city Catholic schools in Washington.

The Seton award is presented by the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA). It is the highest honor given by Catholic educators and recognizes significant philanthropic or leadership contributions to Catholic education.

Due to Cardinal McCarrick's influence on Washington's inner-city schools, says a press release, the city will inaugurate a new federally funded school voucher program for inner-city schools.

A scholarship is presented in the name of each Seton recipient to a student from a Catholic school. The Seton Scholar for Cardinal McCarrick is Patrick Phillips, an eighth-grade student at St. Catherine Laboure School, Wheaton, Md.

NCEA is the largest, nonprofit educational association in the world. It represents 200,000 members, who in turn serve 7.6 million students. The organization was founded in 1904 and is celebrating its centennial year.

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