Parents as First Catechists

We hear time and again that parents are the first catechists of their children…and rightly so.

I try to remember this when I am teaching, reminding myself that I am an ally of parents. Of course some parents are more invested in their children’s religious formation than others. My job is to do all that I can to provide parents with opportunities to embrace their role as the primary catechists of their children.

Having said all that, allow me to take a moment to salute my first catechist – my mom – as we celebrated her 80th birthday last night! Mom (and Dad, who is with the Communion of Saints), you did such a wonderful job of sharing the light of Christ with me…thanks so much! Happy birthday Mom! Love ya.

About Joe Paprocki 2742 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


  1. I tell my parents the Rel Ed reinforces and supports what you as parents do. If you do nothing that’s what we support! Nothing.

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