Change of Perspective in Evaluating Faith Formation Programs

May 25, 2017 Special Contributor 0

For many faith formation leaders, this time of year is filled with the critical evaluation of our programs, our curriculum, and our catechetical efforts over the past 9–12 months. We invite feedback from catechists, parents, and sometimes the students as well. We assess our successes and our challenges, seeking to adjust and improve what we do as we plan for next year. As a busy DRE, I know I often used the same evaluation tools […]

Transitions and Connecting to the Community

May 11, 2017 Special Contributor 0

Some years ago I ended a period of ministry at a parish and school that had become my spiritual home. During the time I served there, I had developed many relationships with catechists, parents, students, and staff, and I had participated in many affirming and community-building endeavors over the years. I had felt called to serve this particular place, but it was time to serve in new ways. I was not quite sure what the Lord […]

Real Presence in the Eucharist

May 4, 2017 Special Contributor 0

The subject of the Real Presence in the Eucharist came up during a lunchtime conversation. I am always a bit surprised to hear Catholics question what to me is a central tenet of our faith. I am reminded that unity of faith may be more an ideal than a reality. The question was left unanswered, but caused my reflection on what I really believe, and why, and what difference it makes in my ministry. Some […]

St. Catherine of Siena and Teaching Virtues

April 27, 2017 Special Contributor 0

“The purpose of education is to instill the virtues in the next generation,” says Bob Burnham, author of Little Lessons from the Saints. In honor of St. Catherine of Siena, whose feast day we celebrate April 29, watch the brief video featuring Burnham below. He says Catherine is an example who can teach us about virtues. How do you teach about the virtues in your classroom?

Easter Is a Season, Not One Day

April 19, 2017 Special Contributor 0

For many Christians, Lent is a popular, longsuffering road culminated by one Sunday of celebrating the Resurrection of Christ. Yet we know that the liturgical season of Easter is, in fact, a 50-day journey. During the Easter season we hear of the excitement of the first Christians, the power of the Holy Spirit as the new Church developed, and the conversion of many to this new faith. Unfortunately, I find too many Catholics are unfamiliar […]

Journeying with the Scriptures in Lent

March 8, 2017 Special Contributor 1

Many years ago I was inspired to create an interactive Lenten bulletin board based on the popular children’s board game, Candy Land. Using colored construction paper squares, I fashioned a winding path to represent the 40 days’ journey from Ash Wednesday to Good Friday. Instead of Lollipop Mountain and King Candy’s Castle, I created stops along the way that reflected the Gospel readings for the six Sundays of Lent and ended at Calvary. Visual clues […]

Tapestry

March 7, 2017 Special Contributor 0

A reflection on Matthew 17:1–9 Light and dark woven together colors blend together to provide an image threads of our lives intertwined to create each unique life Only God and I can see my tapestry Not even my closest companion not even my soul-mate can know the full tapestry that is me. Even I cannot see, at times. The image changes shifts blurs My eyes tune out the colors I do not wish to see […]

Praying with the Stations of the Cross—With Free Station to Station Questions for Reflection and Discussion

February 22, 2017 Special Contributor 0

This article is by Gary Jansen, author of Station to Station: An Ignatian Journey through the Stations of the Cross. On Good Friday, 1991, Pope John Paul II introduced an alternative way to pray the Stations of the Cross. Foregoing some of the traditional scenes that are not found in the Bible (e.g., Veronica wipes the face of Jesus), this new approach to the centuries-old devotion allowed believers to engage in the mysteries of Christ’s […]

Looking Ahead to Lent

February 9, 2017 Special Contributor 0

We’ve got Lent coming up soon, so that means it’s a great time to revitalize both yourself and your approach to your catechetical program. Using the Lenten practices of almsgiving, fasting, and prayer, explore how you can keep up your energy and effort as we continue winter sessions. Almsgiving Any practicing Catholic has heard repeatedly about the importance of donating time, talent, and treasure to the Church. As you gear up for Lent, take a […]

Helping Families Celebrate Lent

February 8, 2017 Special Contributor 0

The Lenten devotionals started arriving in my mailbox before Advent was over. We keep a box in the office. On one side it says “Lent/Easter,” on the other, “Advent/ Christmas.” The box fills quickly. Churchy people like me delight in the selection and struggle to make just the right choice for helping families celebrate Lent with this year’s meditation and prayer. We think everyone should be as excited about this season as we are. We […]

1 2 3 7