Gratitude for our Seasoned Catechists!

A catechist named Fran sent this comment along to include in our discussion of reasons for becoming a catechist:

One of the best reasons to be a catechist, for me, is that the children provide me with energy and hope. Sometimes people think they are too old to be a catechist, but young people need to have that experience we come with.

I’m not sure just how old Fran is (I’m trying to find out!) but we owe so much to our “seasoned” catechists, many of whom are looked to as another grandparent by the kids they teach.

When I was at St. Mary of the Assumption parish in Chicago, we had a catechist – Jeanne M. – who had been a catechist for over 40 years! She was such an inspiration to us all.

Fran’s comment is so insightful and I hope it inspires some folks who are in their golden years to consider serving as catechists. If you’re nervous about doing so, ask the DRE for a co-catechist or an aide who can assist you. A young aide can often help to bridge whatever gaps may exist between a catechist and a group of kids.

DREs…don’t exclude folks who are of retirement age from your catechist recruitment! Their wisdom and experience can be invaluable to those they teach and to other catechists.

About Joe Paprocki 2705 Articles
Joe Paprocki, DMin, is National Consultant for Faith Formation at Loyola Press, where, in addition to his traveling/speaking responsibilities, he works on the development team for faith formation curriculum resources including Finding God: Our Response to God’s Gifts and God’s Gift: Reconciliation and Eucharist. Joe has more than 35 years of experience in ministry and has presented keynotes, presentations, and workshops in more than 100 dioceses in North America. Joe is a frequent presenter at national conferences including the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress, the Mid-Atlantic Congress, and the National Conference for Catechetical Leadership. He is the author of numerous books, including the best seller The Catechist’s Toolbox, A Church on the Move, Under the Influence of Jesus, and Called to Be Catholic—a bilingual, foundational supplemental program that helps young people know their faith and grow in their relationship with God. Joe is also the series editor for the Effective Catechetical Leader and blogs about his experiences in faith formation at www.catechistsjourney.com.

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