Grandparents and Grandchildren Go to Faith Camp

Grandparents can play a unique and important role in family faith formation. The General Directory of Catechesis describes the family as the primary place where catechesis takes place: “In this family catechesis, the role of grandparents is of growing importance. Their wisdom and sense of the religious is often times decisive in creating a true Christian climate.” (236) Pope Francis echoed a similar message in a tweet about grandparents: How important grandparents are for family life, […]

Celebrating Advent by Making Wreaths with Your Families

As our young families gathered on the first Sunday of Advent, the buzz of excitement was undeniable. Our parish hall was transformed into an Advent workshop where they created their very own Advent wreaths. Before me lay a sea of long tables at which the families worked, chatted, collaborated, and prayed. Christmas music harmonized with the hum of warm and friendly conversation; the atmosphere was most certainly alive with joy. Together, our families wove the […]

Intergenerational Catechesis: An Apprenticeship of Christian Life

When it was time for my youngest to learn to tie her shoes, our family gathered together and knelt on the ground to take turns demonstrating and gently guiding her own attempts. Over the next few weeks Mom, Dad, or older brother would be sure to be at her side to coach and guide until, in very short order, she was tying them up right along with us. Catechesis, at its heart “…is an apprenticeship […]

Four Ideas for Engaging Parents in Faith Formation

While there is often agreement among catechists that parental involvement in their children’s faith journey is essential, it can often be quite challenging to actually encourage and engage parents in the process. The business of family life, the idea that the teaching of the faith is a role reserved for the classroom teacher, DRE, or pastor, and the fact that this level of involvement may not have been required in parish programs in the past […]

Combatting the “Drop-Off” Mentality

This afternoon, I met with Deb Breakey, the DRE of St. Cajetan Parish in Chicago, to brainstorm a new way to kick off the catechetical year this Fall designed to combat the “drop-off” mentality that so many parents have when it comes to their children’s faith formation. We are working on designing an experience on the first night of religious education that, in essence, will be an intergenerational event. Parents will be asked to gather with […]

Sacraments Learning Stations at St. Gabriel’s in Riverdale, the Bronx

As they say, imitation is the highest form of flattery so I am indeed flattered to learn that a parish in the Bronx – St. Gabriel – adapted my Sacraments of Initiation Learning Stations for use with their Family Faith Day, an intergenerational event. I’ll let Marie Gwertzman, the Sacramental Coordinator, fill you in and then you can enjoy the pics she sent along! Hats off to Marie and her DRE Glenn McCarthy! November 14, […]

40 Ideas for 40 Days – Lenten Activities: The Passion and Resurrection Activity Centers

Today’s Lenten activity may be of more interest to DREs than to catechists, however, knowing catechists, they will be able to find ways to adapt some of the activity centers to their classes. Following is an Intergenerational Event which is designed to conclude with a Good Friday prayer service. Activity Centers for Intergenerational Event: The Passion and Resurrection of Our Lord This entire intergenerational event is available on the Loyola Press Web site. Here is […]