52 Ways to Get Mission and Mercy in Motion

A Church on the Move by Joe Paprocki

As you may know, my most recent book is now available: A Church on the Move: 52 Ways to Get Mission and Mercy in Motion. Many parishes are using this book with their parish staff and/or parish pastoral council and other groups of parish leaders to jump-start some creative brainstorming for energizing their parish faith communities. […]

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18 Questions on the Paschal Triduum

Crucifixion icon

Today, we enter into the most solemn three days of our liturgical year: the Triduum. For many, these three days may seem a bit confusing. We celebrate with profound and reverent rituals that are only seen, felt, and experienced at this time of the year. To help with our understanding of the Triduum, the USCCB […]

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The Challenges of Teaching Holy Week

palm branches

Teaching Holy Week to second graders is a bit like herding cats: daunting, if not impossible, without the guidance of the Holy Spirit. I’ve made many mistakes when teaching Holy Week. In the past, I’ve attempted to cram the principles of the Triduum and Easter on the last Sunday of class before Easter break (which […]

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Preparing for Holy Week in Junior High

Holy Week - road to the cross

In our last session before Holy Week, I like to walk through the Passion story with my group. Last year I tried starting with Joe Paprocki’s Bible story treasure hunt. I hid pictures of symbols related to the events of the Passion around the room and gave the young people a few minutes to find […]

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Finding the Faces of Jesus in Your Life

face of smiling young woman

I’ve always had a feeling of synergy when working with my friend and colleague, Tom McGrath. All he has to do is open his mouth and share some insights and wisdom and I immediately feel like I can turn it into an activity that others can use and benefit from! Recently, Tom led a reflection […]

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Palm Sunday of the Lord’s Passion, Year C

Morgner - "Entry of Christ into Jerusalem"

Throughout the Gospel of Luke, the power of evil is lurking and the heavenly hosts stand ready to go into battle, beginning with the appearance of an army of angels to the shepherds at the birth of Christ. Evil tempts Jesus in the desert. Throughout Luke’s Gospel, Jesus drives out demons. However, the ultimate battle […]

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Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day the Catholic Way

St. Patrick stained glass window

Having grown up in Ireland for the first 23 years of my life, I have a simple request: Stop the St. Patrick’s Day madness! For the love of St. Patrick, it is not Paddy’s Day (or Patty’s Day, which is even worse), but Saint Patrick’s Day. Some of the traditions that I see today associated […]

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Sacraments of Initiation Learning Stations—Free Lesson Plan

Sacraments of Initiation Learning Stations

We encounter Jesus through the Sacraments of Initiation—Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist. In this lesson, young people will complete activities at 12 different learning stations—each sacrament has four stations—that will deepen their understanding of the Sacraments of Initiation. The free lesson plan packet includes instructions for how to set up learning stations that get children out […]

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A Simple Way to Choose Volunteer Readers

raising hand to volunteer

My third-grade class likes to read aloud during our faith formation classes. Fortunately, I have no shortage of volunteers: they all want to take turns reading. While this is a good problem for a teacher to have, it’s not without its drawbacks. I struggle with how to be fair in calling on students to read […]

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Bringing Pope Francis to Children

Dear Pope Francis

While you may not be able to bring Pope Francis to your faith formation session as a guest speaker, you can still bring him closer to the children you teach! By now, I’m sure you have heard of the amazing book, Dear Pope Francis. In this book (also available in Spanish), Pope Francis answers questions […]

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