National Bible Week 2016

National Bible Week

October 24, 2016 0

Catholics have come a long way in our understanding and appreciation of the Bible. For too long, Catholics were not encouraged to read and pray Scripture. Since the Second Vatican Council, (and especially the publication of Dei Verbum, the Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation), our Church has encouraged us to delve more deeply into God’s Word. With that in mind, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops is once again inviting Catholics to participate in National […]

clipboard that reads: How much time should a catechist spend preparing lessons?
Lesson Planning

How Much Time Should a Catechist Spend Preparing Lessons?

October 21, 2016 3

I recently received an e-mail from a veteran catechist asking how much time catechists should put into planning their lessons. She had been using a textbook from another publisher for 10 years but was now using Finding God: Our Response to God’s Gifts from Loyola Press and was struck by the realization that she was being asked, not just to transmit information, but to facilitate a transformation of those she teaches. Here’s my reply to […]

Fra Angelico - The Forerunners of Christ with Saints and Martyrs
Mary and the Saints

There’s a Saint for That

October 20, 2016 0

Remember when the iPhone started appearing all over TV with its catch phrase, “There’s an app for that?” No matter the question, the iPhone had an app to answer it. In a similar vein, we Catholics are lucky because, no matter what our need or failure, worry or struggle, there’s a saint for that. And we don’t need an expensive device to get in touch with a heavenly mentor and friend; we can visit a […]

Ten Commandments Bowling and Other Games
Primary Grades

Ten Commandments Games

October 19, 2016 4

My second-grade students have very busy bodies. I have struggled to accomplish anything in class, and I have been growing frustrated—I waste too much time trying to get their attention. After a few weeks together, I am realizing that I should find ways to focus their excitement and energy rather than stifle it. I am going to try a new approach: we will play more learning games and do fewer crafts, and I will incorporate lots […]

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Intermediate Grades

Ask for What You Need

October 18, 2016 2

Every new year presents its own challenges. Not only have I switched grades this year, but I also haven’t been assigned an aide, and I’ve been asked to move my class from a classroom into the open worship space to teach. My parish only has four actual classrooms. The remaining faith formation classes meet spread out in the open worship space. While I’ve taught in this space before, it’s not an ideal teaching environment. Until […]



Junior High