Dinner with 600 (give or take) of My Best Friends!

Last night, my wife and I had the pleasure of attending the annual Chicago Archdiocesan Catechetical Ministries Awards Banquet at the Drury Lane in Oak Brook. This wonderful affair is a celebration of all things catechetical and is attended by over 600 catechists, DREs, pastors, and archdiocesan officials, including Cardinal Francis George, OMI, the Archbishop of Chicago. The evening is an opportunity for the Archdiocese to recognize 8 Archdiocesan honorees as well as a bevy of parish recipients for their dedication and achievements in the catechetical ministry. I love the opportunity to meet and greet so many wonderful catechetical ministers and to celebrate our ministry together! Hats off to the staff of the Office for Catechesis and Youth Ministry for another outstanding event!

Cardinal George and OFCYM Director Maruja Sedano pose with 2 Archdiocesan Honorees
Cardinal George and OFCYM Director Maruja Sedano pose with 2 Archdiocesan Honorees

 

Cardinal George addresses the crowd as OFCYM Director Maruja Sedano listens
Cardinal George addresses the crowd as OFCYM Director Maruja Sedano listens
Some of the more than 600 people in attendance
Some of the more than 600 people in attendance

 

About Joe Paprocki 2645 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.

3 Comments on Dinner with 600 (give or take) of My Best Friends!

  1. Wow…you’ve got more close personal friends than Sammy Davis, Jr.!

    “I love the opportunity to meet and greet so many wonderful catechetical ministers and to celebrate our ministry together!”

    I bet that’s a terrifically affirming event. Our parish has a yearly banquet for all the volunteers, including catechists, which is great, but of course it’s not like this affair.

    What sort of awards are given out? I’ve never heard of catechetical awards.

    • Hi Christian, yes this is a very affirming event for catechists, DREs, pastors, and diocesan staff. It means a lot to all of them to have the Cardinal Archbishop verbally offer his appreciation for all their efforts. The 8 archdiocesan awardees are nominated by DREs and chosen by the catechetical office staff, to those who “best exemplify the standards of catechetical and youth ministry excellence advocated by the Office for Catechesis and Youth Ministry.” Each of the 8 receive a plaque and have a picture taken with the Cardinal as he congratulates them. Parishes are also able to recognize individual catechists as “parish recipients” “for the dedication, support, and belief in the work of catechetical and youth ministries as recognized by the parish leadership.” Over 40 parishes honored catechists who then come forward to be congratulated by the Cardinal (and I believe the receive a certificate). For most, this is their first encounter with their Cardinal archbishop so indeed it is very affirming. AND, it is a lovely dinner!

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