Recruiting, Nay, Calling and Forming Catechists

enthusiastic woman with megaphone

Recruiting and forming catechists is responsibility “numero uno” for catechetical leaders and is an ongoing challenge. You’re not just looking for any warm body but for people with the gifts that enable them to apprentice others into the faith.

With that in mind, I prefer to use the word calling instead of recruiting. We recruit people to perform a function. We call people to live out a vocation! Serving as a catechist is more than simple volunteerism. It is more than performing a function. It is more than filling a slot. It is a vocation: a call from God to serve his Church!

Perhaps this notion of catechists as having a vocation is new to you. In days gone by, we thought of vocations as pertaining to priests and nuns. While that is true, all people have a vocation: a call to live a life of holiness. In addition, some people have vocations to serve the Church in very important ways. Being a catechist is one of them. The Church refers to the vocation of the catechist in the General Directory for Catechesis (#23):

“Indeed, efforts must be made to encourage in parishes and Christian communities vocations for catechesis.”

As a catechetical leader, you are not simply recruiting volunteers; you are calling people to a vocation to serve as a catechist. This is the mindset you should have as you set forth to call catechists: announce this as an opportunity for adults to grow in their faith, in their relationship with the Lord, and in holiness. Don’t just present it as a function (i.e. “teaching kids”).

Next up: A Catechist Role Description

About Joe Paprocki 2136 Articles
Joe Paprocki, DMin, is National Consultant for Faith Formation at Loyola Press. He has more than 30 years of experience in ministry and has taught at many different levels. He is the author of numerous books, including the bestseller The Catechist’s Toolbox and Under the Influence of Jesus.

4 Comments on Recruiting, Nay, Calling and Forming Catechists

  1. I love it Joe! “an opportunity for adults to grow in their faith, in their relationship with the Lord, and in holiness”. What a beautiful call for Catechists!

  2. Joe,
    Thank you for reminding us all that parish catechists are celebrating their Christian vocation in a way particular to them in their response to God’s call. As catechetical leaders and/or fellow catechists, one of our many responsibilities is to help identify others within our communities that might not be ready to hear the whisper in the wind.

  3. Bev writes:

    Thank you, Joe for reminding me that this vocation is a very special gift from God. Consequently, we should not expect others to “help out” just because we are shorthanded. Blessings, Bev

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