Putting the Kids to Work

A while back, I posted about a very good book I read – Dedication and Leadership (Douglas Hyde) – and how, back in the day, the Communist Party experienced success by employing strategies which included the following:

  • putting demands on their own people (expecting a “heroic” response);
  • deliberately and immediately sending new members into action;
  • developing new leaders.

Douglas Hyde, a convert from Communism to Catholicism, strongly recommended that the Catholic Church employ many of these same strategies when it comes to evangelization and catechesis. With that in mind, I plan to put my students to work tonight!

First, we are going to finish going over the Rosary (since October is the month of the Holy Rosary) with a step-by-step introduction on how to pray the Rosary. Last week, we covered the Mysteries of the Rosary. I asked my class how many knew how to pray the Rosary and one young lady (out of 9) raised her hand without hesitation and said she had been taught by her grandparents and her mom and that her family prays the Rosary. I’ve decided that this week, I will ask her to demonstrate for us how to pray the Rosary! I’ll be at her side to assist if needed but I am confident that she can simply show us how she prays the Rosary with her family as the other children follow along. Then, we are going to actually pray the Rosary (I’ll have them spread out in the room, going to their “sacred space”) and, if it appears that this young lady really knows her Rosary, I’ll invite her to lead. In this small way, I hope that I will be doing as above: putting demands on a student; putting a student into action; and developing a new leader.

Bible Bookmarks

During the second half of class, we are going to return our attention to our “Bible Boot Camp” one more time as we will walk through the Bible, dividing it into eight sections using the Bible Bookmarks that are available in my book,  The Bible Blueprint. In each section, they will need to find a specific story/passage:

  • Pentateuch – any Moses story
  • History – any David story
  • Wisdom – Psalm 100
  • Prophets – the prophet Jeremiah
  • Gospels – the crucifixion
  • Acts of the Apostles – the coming of the Holy Spirit
  • Letters – a letter to the people of Galatia
  • Revelation – the phrase “Yes, I am coming soon” near the end of the Bible

This activity also places demands on the students, puts them into action using their Bibles and finding stories, and develops their leadership skills as they become more familiar with the Bible.

For your convenience, here is a download with the Bible Bookmarks, whether just for your own class, or in a parent-child setting, which works very well.

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 www.catechistsjourney.com.

2 Comments on Putting the Kids to Work

  1. Thanks Joe,
    This is great. We have a group of parents from our R.E. program that meet at the same time as the kids (Sundays 11:15 to 12:15) and on every first Sunday of the month it is dedicated to some formal teaching. Last Spring they decided they wanted to do your Bible blueprint book.. And we try to have the Parents meet in the classrooms 3 times a year in what we call parent coaching days. I am going to adapt your How to Host Parent-Child session on the Bible for my catechist and their classes. Thanks for the great idea and the connection is definitely spirit filled and timely. Bless you and your work

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