About Joe Paprocki
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.

Sound Collector Chart

Listening is an important life skill for relating to others and foundational for a life of prayer. Help children practice listening by inviting them to be sound collectors. This month’s downloadable activity is inspired by The Virtue of Listening by Aleix Cabrera and Vinyet Montaner. Download the Sound Collector Chart to use with young children at home or in classroom settings. Here are some ways to use the chart in faith formation: Collect sounds in […]

Doing Confirmation Prep Digitally During the Pandemic

While you may be proceeding with plans for an in-person celebration of Confirmation at some point in 2021, chances are that your Confirmation prep is taking place this fall in the midst of the pandemic. Of course, this means that you are scrambling to figure out how to do Confirmation prep remotely! Never fear, Confirmed in the Spirit—the popular Confirmation preparation program from Loyola Press—is now available digitally! This includes the following: Young People’s Book My […]

Pop-Up Catechesis: Letting God’s Word Sink In (Lectio Divina)

When giving directions to young people for completing a task, catechists and teachers have grown accustomed to hearing at least one participant respond with, “Wait, what?” Experienced educators know that, when giving directions to young people, we have to repeat several times and check for comprehension. We can’t assume that the first time we say something, it has been heard and received! The same holds true with the Word of God. Often, upon first hearing, […]

Experiencing Screen Fatigue? Engage Children with Books This Fall!

Let’s face it: as a result of social distancing, many of us and our children are spending a lot more time sitting in front of a screen these past few months! While convenient, it does indeed result in a kind of fatigue. Do yourself and your children a favor this fall, and get your hands on some great books in hard-copy form. One of my favorites, and a book that my wife and I read to […]

Pop-Up Catechesis: Who Do You Follow?

There are leaders, and there are followers. It’s important to know that being a follower is not a bad thing—that is, as long as you are following the right person or thing! Disciples are basically followers. To be a disciple is to adhere to the teachings of someone. In the Gospels, anyone who adheres to the teachings of Jesus is referred to as a disciple. Today, the Church is calling each of us to discipleship—to […]

Making Catechist Formation a Priority (And Accessible!)

The new Directory for Catechesis once again (as did the previous General Directory for Catechesis) emphasizes the importance and priority of catechist formation. I’m a firm believer in the saying, “You can’t give what you don’t have.” Through catechist formation, we deepen our own relationship with Jesus Christ so that we, in turn, can invite others into relationship with him. One of the difficulties that catechists often face when it comes to catechist formation is […]

Pop-Up Catechesis: What’s in Your Trophy Case?

In many of our homes, we can find a display of trophies and medals representing our accomplishments or those of our children. A trophy is a symbol of victory, of triumph over all opponents. As Catholics, we traditionally display a “trophy” of the ultimate victory: the Cross of Jesus Christ, which celebrates his victory over sin and Death. In this episode of Pop-Up Catechesis, we prepare for the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross […]

Catechetical Sunday 2020: Commissioning Our COVID-Era Catechists

This year, like any other year, we celebrate Catechetical Sunday on the third Sunday of September. This year, however, is unlike any other year as we will be commissioning catechists to teach during the COVID-19 pandemic and to cope with all of the complexities that go with it. Some will be teaching in person, others will be teaching remotely, some will be doing a mix of both, and others may be assisting parents in teaching […]

Pop-Up Catechesis: Make a Wish and Blow Out the Candles

Among the many traditions that are part of a birthday celebration is that of the celebrant making a wish and blowing out the candles. This tradition most likely has its roots in ancient Greece, when people would offer cakes and candles as an offering to the gods. It was believed that the smoke rising from the blown-out candles carried the offering to the gods. On September 8, we celebrate the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin […]

Old Testament Timeline Activity

Explore some of the Old Testament stories we hear during Ordinary Time with the help of our Old Testament Timeline Activity. This one-page sheet for children pairs the engaging art of Loyola Kids Book of Bible Stories with an activity to engage logical/mathematical learners. Pull out the glue and scissors, and look at stories from Isaac, Jacob, and Esau to the wise King Solomon. Use your Bible or the Loyola Kids Book of Bible Stories […]

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