Setting the Stage: Creating the Space for Prayer

September 3, 2015 Joyce Donahue 0

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 the aroma of incense. We are accompanied in our liturgical prayers by statues of the saints, Scripture stories in stained […]

Teaching Young Adults to Pray

July 28, 2015 Becky Eldredge 0

When I look back on my faith journey as a young adult, I am extremely grateful for the older adults in my life who took the time to teach me how to pray. Their gifts of sharing their wisdom and teaching me the practical tools of our faith serve me well as I journey through the transitions of young adulthood. The young adults I have worked with on retreats hunger for methods of prayer that […]

Forming Children and Youth for the Mass, Part 4: Intercessory Prayer

July 16, 2015 Joyce Donahue 0

This is the fourth article in a series about forming children for active participation in the Mass. In the Universal Prayer or Prayer of the Faithful at Mass (formerly called the General Intercessions), the people claim their baptismal priesthood “by offering prayers for the salvation of all.” (General Instruction of the Roman Missal, 69) How can we help children and youth growing up in a culture that focuses on “me first” to understand and join […]

Share Prayer: Breaking the Culture of Silence

June 17, 2015 Julianne Stanz 1

Pope Francis has spoken many times of the value and power of intercessory prayer in Christian life. “When evangelizers rise from prayer, their hearts are more open; freed of self-absorption, they are desirous of doing good and sharing their lives with others.” (The Joy of the Gospel #28) Have you ever run into someone who asked you to pray for him or her? Did you take the time at that moment to stop what you […]

End of the Year Guided Reflection for Catechists

May 12, 2014 Joe Paprocki 9

Several years ago, I put together a guided reflection for catechists to reflect on the catechetical year in a prayerful manner. This can be done alone or in a group setting. For your convenience, I’m re-posting it here. We often tell our learners to use their imaginations. Now it’s your turn. Use your imagination to reflect on this past year as a catechist. (Pause.) First, find a position that feels most comfortable to you. (Pause.) […]

How to Lead Spontaneous Prayer – As Easy as Ber-a-khah!

January 28, 2014 Joe Paprocki 4

For many Catholics, the thought of being called upon to lead a spontaneous prayer can darn near bring on a panic attack! Never fear! Our Judeo-Christian heritage provides us with a simple formula to follow that will guide you in organizing your thoughts into a cohesive, intelligent, and heart-felt spontaneous prayer. First, take a look at his prayer offered by King Solomon (2Chronicles 6:14-17). At first, it looks like a lot of words, however, we’re […]

3-Minute Retreat: A Heart Seeking Goodness

September 15, 2013 Joe Paprocki 1

Happy Catechetical Sunday! Now before another busy week begins, take a quiet moment to pray for your ministry and for your fellow catechists. A former high school teacher of mine enjoys reminding me and my best friend that, when we were students in his class, we tried so hard to be bad and failed so miserably! It just wasn’t in us to be bad. We came from good families who instilled the love of God […]

3-Minute Retreat: Chosen to Love

September 8, 2013 Joe Paprocki 0

Now before another busy week begins, take a quiet moment to pray for your ministry and for your fellow catechists. When I was a kid, we were always choosing sides to play games, usually baseball. I was always hoping to be chosen by my cousin Mona who could crush a softball farther than any of us! It felt so special to be chosen by someone that I admired and looked up to. How affirming it […]

3-Minute Retreat: We Are on a Mission

September 1, 2013 Joe Paprocki 2

As we start the month of September and look forward to Catechetical Sunday and a new year of faith formation, I’ll be sharing my reflections on several 3-Minute Retreats the next few weeks. Please add your own reflections on this retreat in the comments. Now before another busy week begins, take a quiet moment to pray for your ministry and for your fellow catechists. Relationships have a way of changing us. Perhaps that’s why we […]

Personal Prayer Symbols

September 18, 2012 Joe Paprocki 5

Last evening turned out to be a very lovely evening with my 6th graders. First, we gathered in Church for the Opening Mass with the pastor. I was able to recall many of my students by name as they arrived and that always makes them light up. They were well behaved during Mass (as I’ve mentioned before, almost too well-behaved, meaning that they are so passive and hardly respond to the parts of the Mass, […]

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