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.

Pop-Up Catechesis: All Souls and Overcoming the Fear of Death

In the Chicago area, where I live, there is a great deal of ethnic diversity. One of the most prominent ethnic groups in Chicago is the Mexican-Americans. I’ve always enjoyed experiencing and observing the many traditions of the Mexican-American community. One tradition that I have observed on numerous occasions is the family picnicking at the grave of a deceased loved one. I’m not just talking about visiting the grave; I’m talking about a full picnic […]

Forming Catechists, Part Three: Doing

Welcome to the final installment of our series on the three dimensions of catechist formation: Being, Knowing, and Doing, this time focusing on the dimension of Doing. When I was in college, I decided I wanted to become a teacher, and I wanted to teach religion at a Catholic high school. To achieve this, I double-majored in theology and history, and I also minored in education for the purpose of achieving a teaching certificate for […]

Pop-Up Catechesis: Don’t Be Afraid of Halloween!

Some years ago, I was trying to make small talk with a little child who lived on my block and wandered over to say “Hi” to me as I was raking fall leaves. I asked him what he was going to be for Halloween, and he responded, “We don’t observe Halloween. It’s of the devil. We’re Christian.” He was clearly parroting something his parents had taught him. This was not the first time I had […]

A Diversity of Saints

When I was in parish ministry, our faith community was gradually becoming more ethnically diverse. When a nearby parish was closed and merged into our parish, a small but vibrant community of Black Catholics added to the richness of our diversity. While making plans to welcome our new parish members, I realized that not one of the images of saints in our church and parish center were people of color! For All Saints Day that […]

Pop-Up Catechesis: Celebrating the Feast of St. John Paul II

While many of us folks of a certain age think of Pope St. John Paul II as a contemporary, many of our young people probably would consider him as “ancient history.” After all, he passed away in 2005, which means that none of our pre-K through grade 8 children have a living memory of him. Likewise, those college-age young adults who may have vague memories of him from their childhood probably only recall him as […]

Forming Catechists, Part Two: Knowing

We continue our look at the three dimensions of catechist formation: Being, Knowing, and Doing, this time focusing on the dimension of Knowing. In their book, Soul Searching: The Religious and Spiritual Lives of American Teenagers, Christian Smith and Melinda Lundquist Denton suggest that the “de facto dominant religion” among today’s young people in the United States can be thought of as “Moralistic Therapeutic Deism.”  They surmise that this “religion” is characterized by the following beliefs: A […]

Pop-Up Catechesis: Teresa of Avila and the Doctors of the Church

When we think of doctors, we tend first to think of medical doctors working in hospitals and medical centers, caring for sick people. However, there are many other kinds of doctors. Someone who has earned a doctorate in his or her field is seen as one who has achieved the most advanced degree in an academic discipline. Such doctors are regarded as authorities in their fields. In the Catholic Church, there are several dozen—36 to be exact—saints […]

Five Tips for Teaching Children with Autism

Deacon Larry Sutton, author of Teaching Students with Autism in a Catholic Setting, shares five of his tips for making the academic year enjoyable and productive for teachers and students. Watch the below video for a preview of the hints, and then read the full article that inspired the video: Five Tips for Teaching Children with Autism.

The Difference Between a Hero and an Idol

When I was growing up, most of my “heroes” were sports figures: Ernie Banks (Chicago Cubs), Bobby Hull (Chicago Blackhawks), Muhammed Ali (boxing). In retrospect, I think it’s safe to say that they were my idols rather than heroes. An idol is simply someone who is adored for various reasons: good looks, accomplishments, charisma, and so on. A hero, on the other hand, is someone who puts personal needs aside and goes above and beyond […]

Pop-Up Catechesis: The Calming Effect of Praying the Rosary

Many contemplative practices involve the use of a mantra, or the repetitive uttering of a sacred word or group of words (or sometimes a sound) in order to deepen one’s focus, avoid distractions, and create a sense of calm that permits one to enter into an “altered state.” Too often, Catholics are suspicious of such practices, thinking of them as foreign to our tradition. Nothing could be further from the truth! One of the best examples […]

1 8 9 10 11 12 265