Calling Forth Catechists: Your Pool of “Candidates”

If your efforts to call forth catechists boil down to an “all call” approach (a bulletin announcement inviting anyone to respond to a need), you will not have much success. The most effective way to call people to the vocation of serving as a catechist is through PERSONAL INVITATION!

Barton Springs below the poolOne catechetical leader recently told me that, last year, she made 43 individual contacts (either in person or by phone) and ended up with the best “crop” of catechists she ever had! The personal touch is simply the most appropriate way to call people to a vocation. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the “pool” of potential catechists in your parish:

  • Catechist aides
  • Parents of participants in RE
  • Retired parishioners
  • RCIA Neophytes *
  • Actively engaged parishioners
  • Lay Ministry participants
  • PPC (Education commission) members
  • Professional teachers (public school and Catholic school)
  • Former catechists
  • Referrals from staff
  • Recommendations from current catechists

* Don’t be too quick to pounce on Neophytes…they may need some time

Are there other potentials that I’ve missed?

Next up: Approaches


[photo courtesy of  David Ingram via Compfight]

About Joe Paprocki 2345 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

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