Celebrating the Saints: Four Ways to Be a Catholic Superhero

As a child I always thought of the saints as Catholic superheroes. While they may have started out as normal people like you and me, I imagined that they received their super powers of holiness after being bitten by a radioactive, grace-infused spider or by falling into a chemical pit of sacred ooze. The fact […]

Celebrating the Month of the Holy Rosary

As we celebrate this month of the Holy Rosary, I am happy to once again make available my free PowerPoint presentation on October: The Month of the Holy Rosary. To download the Rosary slideshow, click on the link above or the images below (also in Spanish).   Also see these other resources on the Rosary: Rosary Activity […]

Best Practices for Leading Group Prayer

This is the second article in a series about leading prayer. Whenever Catholics pray before group activities—whether a staff, catechist, or parent meeting or a gathering of the parish youth group—we offer all our efforts to the Father. We acknowledge that when we are gathered, Jesus is present with us. We invoke the Holy Spirit […]

Can Your Catechists Tell THE Story?

Whenever I serve in my parish as a catechist, I notice something distressing: children generally have little knowledge of Bible stories. Many of them cannot connect the dots from Jesus’ birth in a stable to his Death and Resurrection. Even fewer can connect Adam and Eve to Jesus; only a few have heard of such […]

Which American Saint Are You?—Free Lesson Plan

When we learn about the saints, we must remember that they were ordinary people just like us. Like us, the saints had to figure out who they were in the eyes of God and then live out that vision. They give us examples of how people dedicate their lives to God. Learning from them, we […]

Creating People for Others Partnerships

Last Friday, I posted about creating mercy opportunities for fifth graders, tied in with the doctrine being taught in each chapter of the Finding God fifth-grade book. Several of the suggestions made mention of partnering with Loyola Press’s “People for Others” campaign. Here’s some background and a proposal. Being a “person for others” is a very […]

Celebrating Catechetical Sunday

The theme for this year’s Catechetical Sunday is essential to our ministry as catechists: Safeguarding the Dignity of Every Human Person. As catechists, we are charged with this task in different ways. First, we are charged with safeguarding the dignity of those in our classes. We do this by treating each child with loving respect […]

Setting the Stage: Creating the Space for Prayer

This is the first article in a series about leading prayer. When Catholics pray, we are often surrounded by reminders of who we are. At Mass, we can easily identify the current liturgical season or feast from how the sanctuary is decorated, the color of the priest’s vestments, the hymns we sing, and sometimes from […]

Happy Feast Day of St. Augustine!

Other than my patron saint, Joseph, and St. Ignatius of Loyola, few saints have inspired me as much as St. Augustine, whose feast we celebrate today. When I was a student at St. Ignatius College Prep in Chicago, I studied Latin for four years and also took an elective on The Confessions of St. Augustine. The […]