Catechists in Action – Dan Ward Reflects on Having a “Breakout Year”

In this final installment of Catechists in Action featuring Dan Ward, Dan reflects on what he was hoping to be his “breakout year” as a catechist. Listen as Dan reflects on…

  • what he means by having a “breakout year.”
  • his frustrations that have prevented him from doing so.
  • the fact that now he no longer “beats himself up” when things don’t go as he had hoped.
  • his plan to have a Mass in the classroom and have the kids prepare the whole liturgy


When was your “breakout year” as a catechist? If you haven’t had a “breakout year” yet, what do you want that “breakout” to look like?

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 Comment

  1. My third year catechizing 6th graders was my breakout year (that’s an interesting and useful term). That was when I first had a comprehensive vision of how to use the catechetical year to teach the kids, without being particularly tethered to the textbook. Before that, the textbook was running the class more than I was.

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