THE Bishop of Sandhurst Leslie Thomlinson welcomed eight new Catholic principals on Thursday at a ceremony at the Sacred Heart Cathedral.
Sandhurst Diocese vicar of education Brian Boyle, who was appointed in January, said the evening was about beginning the school year with a clear focus on Christ.
"We want to instil the values of Christ in our school leaders," he said.
"Those values are important because that's what distinguishes Catholic schools from state schools."
Sandhurst director of catholic education Philomena Billington said it was particularly important to be clear about the values of the church because of the ongoing royal commission into institutional responses into child sex abuse.
"Our response as a church is one of deep regret and sorrow," she said.
"Listening to the commission it is clear it was not only the Catholic Church but it (child sex abuse) was a blight on Australia during a particular period of time.
"Acknowledging that hurt is part of moving forward.
"We want to build the best school community possible."
A leadership gathering will take place on Saturday night at the Catholic Education Office, with a keynote address presented by Dr Ruth Powell.
The theme of the conference is sharing Christ's story and will explore the opportunities for a proactive stance on spreading the word of Christ.