10 Memorable Moments in Catechesis—and Your Chance to Win a Saints Stories Package

December 5, 2016 Joe Paprocki 2

Editor’s note: Today we kick-off a celebration of our 10th anniversary here at Catechist’s Journey. Ten years ago, Joe Paprocki started writing about the joys and frustrations of his classroom catechetical experiences. Since that time, we’ve welcomed a group of regular contributors to this blog to share their wisdom and experiences in the field of religious education. In honor of our anniversary, we’ll have special posts all this week and next Monday (the actual anniversary […]

The Gift of a Less-Than-Perfect Year

June 14, 2016 Lisa Jones 0

Another year of faith formation classes has come to an end, and I’ve got a big smile on my face and a few tears in my eyes. This has been my sixth year of teaching third-grade religious education classes at my parish, and as I look back on the year, I know I will happily sign up to teach again next year. This wasn’t my best year. I missed classes due to illness; I didn’t […]

Hidden Gems the Holy Spirit Hides

April 20, 2016 Lisa Brown 0

When I think about how I teach my class, I tend to highlight those lesson plans that were spectacular or sessions when I left feeling confident that that my students truly understood the lesson. I tend to forget—or ignore—those times when I felt “off,” when I didn’t prepare as much as I would have liked, or when I lacked confidence in my own understanding of the material. However, I have found that those classes are […]

Will God Wipe Us Out?

March 29, 2016 Lisa Jones 0

In my third-grade faith formation class, the story of Noah’s Ark came up while we were discussing another topic. One of the girls asked, “If God punished the whole world with a flood and wiped everyone out because of sin, could he wipe us all out as well? We are all sinners.” My immediate thought was, “Wow, what an incredible question!” I loved that she remembered a previous lesson when we had talked about how […]

Not Every Year Will Be Like This One

June 9, 2015 Denise Gorss 0

Another catechetical year has ended, and I have to admit that I am glad this one is over. I had a challenging class this year, and many of my tried-and-true methods didn’t reach this group. There were good moments, but there were more frustrating ones. So today I am writing especially to the first-year catechists: Your year might have been a resounding success or not, but not every year will be like this one. Reflect […]

Assessing the Year of Faith Formation

June 2, 2015 Lisa Jones 1

Our year of faith formation has ended at my parish. It is both a happy and sad time for me as a catechist. I’m thrilled to see my class of third graders move on, but I’m also sad to see them go after our year together. Our DRE asks us catechists at the end of each year to commit to teaching again the following fall and allows us first choice on the grade level. Before […]

Faith Formation for Parents: Bruce’s Story

April 30, 2015 Eric Gurash 7

As he sat down, he leaned to the mom next to him and whispered, “Don’t ask any questions; I want to get out of here before eight!” This was Bruce*, a 40-something professional man whose daughter Denise was enrolled in our Confirmation program. The setting was a parent session offered before the children’s sacramental preparation began. Bruce rarely went to church, had little to no spiritual life, and no real knowledge of his Catholic faith […]

Make Teaching Fun

April 21, 2015 Lisa Jones 0

Did you ever have one of those days where teaching religious education made you smile? Today was one of those days. After weeks of difficult and sometimes rowdy classes, we spent this class reviewing the material before the end of the year. Because I like games and like to teach with games, I decided to make our review into a game. I kept it simple. The children chose teams, and I asked each team a […]

Sacramental Readiness: WWYD?

May 7, 2013 Joe Paprocki 23

Here is an opportunity to help one of our colleagues (we’ll call her Monica) who is faced with a situation of determining sacramental readiness. Please offer your advice by leaving a reply below. Hi Joe — One of our RCIC students, 13 year old, missed lots of classes, has not done any home make up work (his Mom says they have been too busy with ‘work’); and the boy is rather glum, sullen, disinterested.  Polite […]

Final Assessment Results

April 16, 2013 Joe Paprocki 1

So last evening, I conducted a Jeopardy-like review with my 6th graders and then followed it up with a final assessment. Here’s a summary: As part of our opening prayer, we included prayers for all those affected by the bombings in Boston. It is lamentable that, in the course of several months, we catechists have had to talk to our young people about the Newtown tragedy and now this. Let’s pray for an end to […]

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