About Joe Paprocki
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.

Think Young! Intentionality in Planning and Recruiting

January 30, 2017 Joe Paprocki 0

One of my favorite lines from the movie La La Land comes from the lips of the character Keith, played by John Legend, as he tells the character Sebastian, played by Ryan Gosling: Jazz is dying because of people like you. You’re playing to 90-year-olds at the Lighthouse. Where are the kids? Where are the young people? You’re so obsessed with Kenny Clarke and Thelonious Monk. These guys were revolutionaries. How are you going to […]

Candlemas: Celebrating Light!

January 27, 2017 Joe Paprocki 0

February 2—the Feast of the Presentation—is also traditionally known as “Candlemas,” the day on which the candles we use at home are blessed. This tradition is inspired by a line from the Gospel for the Feast of the Presentation in which Simeon, a devout man whom Joseph and Mary encounter at the Temple, explains that Jesus will be “a light for revelation to the Gentiles.” (Luke 2:32) This feast falls at a time of the […]

Lenten Actions Cards

January 25, 2017 Joe Paprocki 2

Encourage families to take practical steps toward practicing the traditional Lenten pillars of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. Print out our Lenten Actions Cards and give sets to the families you serve. Instruct parents to cut out the cards, fold them in half, and place them in a jar or small box. Place the jar or other container in a central location in the home, perhaps on the dining room table or the counter next to […]

Hosting Adult Faith Formation Viewing Parties

January 23, 2017 Joe Paprocki 6

Nowadays, it is very common for people to host viewing parties for all sorts of occasions including pop culture events like the Academy Awards, significant civic events such as a presidential debate, a sporting event, or the premiere or series finale of a TV show. Such viewing parties are hosted in someone’s home, and the hosts send out invitations (usually verbal or through social media) for people to attend and offer hospitality and refreshments for those who […]

Nothing Beats the Personal Touch When Recruiting Catechists

January 20, 2017 Joe Paprocki 0

This Sunday’s Gospel (Matthew 4:12–23) is a reminder to us that nothing beats the personal touch when it comes to inviting people into ministry. And this time of the year—late winter—is a good time to start your catechist recruitment efforts for next year. Jesus did not put up posters or distribute literature inviting people to follow him; he used the personal approach. He asked people what they were looking for and then he invited them to […]

Does Your Parish Have a Director of the Corporal Works of Mercy?

January 16, 2017 Joe Paprocki 1

Recently, as I was searching for a video on the Corporal Works of Mercy, the following caught my eye. It is from St. Michael’s Church in Poway, CA, and features the pastor, Fr. John Dolan, introducing how the parish practices the Corporal Works of Mercy. Within the first few minutes of the video, we also meet Bridget Beas, who is the parish Director of the Corporal Works of Mercy. First, I think it is fantastic that […]

Practicing Real Presence

January 13, 2017 Joe Paprocki 0

Sometimes we make theological concepts harder to understand than is necessary. One such is example is the Real Presence of Jesus Christ. I tell parents all the time that practicing real presence is one of the highest demands of parenting. As a parent, you make every effort to be truly present to your child, especially for special occasions such as his or her birthday, first day of school, graduation, recitals, and big games. Likewise, you […]

If You’re Not Already Thinking About Lent, Why Are You Waiting?

January 9, 2017 Joe Paprocki 1

Anyone in ministry knows that you have to live with one foot in the present and one in the future, since planning and preparation are so key to our success. While the liturgical season of Christmas is just now ending, planning for the Lenten season should already be in full swing by now. Ash Wednesday is just over seven weeks away (March 1, 2017). Having said that, however, it is not too late if you are […]

Epiphany: God Does All the Work

January 6, 2017 Joe Paprocki 0

This Sunday, we celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany—that day when Jesus Christ was revealed to the world as represented by the Magi. In the Eastern Tradition, the epiphany or theophany (revelation) to the Magi is seen as one of four “manifestations” of Jesus to the world: the Nativity, the Magi, the Baptism of Jesus, and the Wedding Feast at Cana. In all four of these manifestations, Jesus’ identity and mission are revealed to a […]

Adult Faith Formation and the Problem of “Church Groupies”

January 2, 2017 Joe Paprocki 10

When doing faith formation with young people, one of the problems is that no one wants to show that they enjoy being there; that would not be cool. I have found that, when doing faith formation with adults, there are some folks present who are at the opposite extreme. I call them “church groupies.” I’m not talking here of the same loyal folks who faithfully support everything and show up most of the time. I’m […]

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