How Saint Joachim and Saint Anne Can Inspire Catechetical Ministers

Saints Joachim and Ann - icon

The upcoming memorial of Saint Joachim and Saint Anne has me thinking about how these saints can inspire catechetical ministers. Tradition tells us that Joachim and Anne were the parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary. As the Saints Kit says, “They must have set the example that Mary followed to become the loving, gentle, faith-filled, courageous woman she was—the perfect woman to bear and raise the Son of God.”

Now, none of us is perfect or raising or teaching the perfect children. But it is worth a moment of reflection to consider how Joachim and Anne raised Mary and what that example can show us.

We might ask ourselves: What kind of example do I set for the children who come to our programs? Do I model a faith-filled life for my catechists and parents, opening every gathering with prayer instead of jumping into an agenda? Do I recognize the liturgical seasons and saints’ days as opportunities to learn more about how to live a Christian life? Do I pass along those opportunities to the families in our parish? How do I model gentleness when a child is sent to my office after continuous disruptions in class? How do I model courage in working for social justice, in whatever way that manifests itself in my life?

The saints have important lessons to teach us about holiness and following Christ. Consider taking a moment to go beyond the stories of the saints and take their lessons to heart. Even imagine a conversation with Joachim or Anne, to see what they would say about being a model of faithfulness. Build a relationship with the saints, and see how they can inspire your ministry.

How have the saints inspired your ministry? What steps might you take to find inspiration from the saints as we approach another program year?

About Denise Gorss 115 Articles
Denise Gorss is a catechist with more than 20 years experience, mostly in junior high. She appreciates the gifts of Ignatian spirituality and likes sharing various types of prayer with the young people in her groups. She enjoys seeing the world on pilgrimages and lives in the Chicago area, where she works as Web Editor at Loyola Press.


  1. I tried very hard to use saints with my students and there are many fun ways to do it. Our program comes with a helpful trifile with beautiful are work and stories. I would also recommend others from a book I have of saints of that day. Our Director, took great pride in giving each class personally tours of the Church and talking about each saint on the windows etc. So saints were incorporated as much as possible. I was recently fired for no reason, so I won’t enjoy trying to focus on saints especially woman, teaching children in 46hours the curriculum takes care and a good co-teacher working on lesson plans together. My co-teacher, was an 80 years old father of the Director who didn’t think saints were important and it was time to pick new ones.

  2. St. Anne, in addition to being the mother of our Blessed Mother and grandmother to our Lord, is also the Patron Saint of the Archdiocese of Detroit. Her name is ANNE, not Ann. Please correct your website.

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