And I’m not just talking about food.
Last night, I was with about 40 catechists from 2 different parishes and the interesting thing was that all but 2 of them were returning catechists! That rate of return is a testament to the care and support of their catechetical leaders who are both very professional and have outstanding vision for the catechetical ministry. They know how to “feed” their catechists.
We catechists owe so much to our catechetical leaders (DREs) who provide support, guidance, and resources so that we may be more effective catechists.
Let’s pray that the Church and especially pastors continue to find ways to offer the same support and care for catechetical leaders. Too many parishes are trying to do without DREs, thinking that all that they need to do is order books and fill catechist slots with warm bodies while saving money with reduced payroll.
This approach is like shooting ourselves in the foot. In the short run, parishes without DREs will have leaner budgets and the RE program might maintain itself for the most part for a few years. However, in the long run, there will be no vision for growing the catechetical ministry to better form catechists and to make adult catechesis the priority it should be. Catechists who are not supported, formed, and nourished quickly burn-out and drop off and a vicious cycle begins of constantly recruiting new catechists who will never get proper formation and will not last. And without proper formation, the quality of catechesis suffers, and eventually the catechetical program becomes moribound.
So please, FEED THE CATECHISTS!