A Progress Report on Religious Education from 1974 to Today

I was thrilled to receive an invitation from Kerry Weber, Managing Editor of America Magazine and author of Mercy in the City, to write an article for America’s religious education issue on the progress of religious education. Their idea was to reprint an article from 1974 titled, “Where is Religious Education Going?” (written by Rev. Francis D. Kelly, then-director of the Office for Religious Education for the Diocese of Worcester, MA) and to have me respond to the article 40+ years later with an assessment of how well we have fulfilled Rev. Kelly’s challenges. I hope you enjoy the article: “Progress Report: Much Remains to Be Done to Improve Religious Education,” by Joe Paprocki, D.Min.

I look forward to your comments on your own assessment of how far we’ve come in religious education since 1974.

America article screenshot

About Joe Paprocki 2704 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 A Progress Report on Religious Education from 1974 to Today

  1. Hi Joe-
    I just got around to reading your article in AMERICA, thank you.
    Two parishes here in Tacoma, WA use the method of the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd, which was developed by Sofia Cavaletti in Rome (RIP). I suggest you google CGS if you have not heard of it. It involves a quiet prayer space- the Atrium- where the children do works involving scripture and liturgy, where the children come to know Jesus in a most particular way, where the children can fall in love with God. There are parent meetings and they are urged to read books that Sofia and others have written. Some of the parents have taken the training.
    It is Montessori based, so there are 3 levels, ages 3-6, 6-9 and 9-12.
    I have fallen in love with the CGS and have worked in the atrium with children for 18 years. Currently I work in the level III, the theme being the Plan of God.
    Thank you for this opportunity to share.

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