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.

The Sorrowful Mysteries: The Carrying of the Cross and the Heaviness of Discipleship

As we continue our Lenten journey, let’s reflect on the Fourth Sorrowful Mystery: the Carrying of the Cross. When Jesus was sentenced to death by Pilate, he was made to carry his Cross—most likely a wooden cross beam weighing about 75–100 pounds, which would then be attached to a wooden pole already in the ground on Calvary. The Gospels and the Stations of the Cross remind us that, under this burden, Jesus, in his weakened […]

Pop-Up Catechesis: Holy Week

I wonder how many parents have a dandelion, given to them by a child, pressed in a memory book somewhere. A dandelion is a very ordinary thing—a weed, actually. And yet, when a child picks a dandelion to give to Mommy or Daddy to show love, it becomes a precious thing. It is not tossed out, but is set aside, first in a vase with water and then pressed in the pages of a memory […]

The Examen Can Help Teens with Anxiety

This pandemic has taken its emotional toll on all of us. Stephanie Clouatre Davis suggests that the Ignatian Examen can help teens with anxiety. She writes, “Praying the Examen can help teens become aware that God is gently accompanying them. And knowing that they are not alone can greatly reduce any feelings of anxiety.” Read the full article, Examen for Teens with Anxiety, on our sister site, LoyolaPress.com.

The Sorrowful Mysteries: The Crowning with Thorns and a Different Kind of King

Today we pause to reflect on the Third Sorrowful Mystery of the Rosary: the Crowning with Thorns. According to the Gospel accounts of Jesus’ Passion, Jesus was mocked by the Roman soldiers. One of these acts of mockery was to place a crown of thorns on Jesus’ head to ridicule the king of the Jews. This mockery went further with the placing of a purple robe on Jesus’ wounded body and a sign placed above his […]

Pop-Up Catechesis: St. Joseph and a Place for Introverts in the Church

We live in a culture that idealizes extroverts. As a society, we too often tend to equate success, not only with money, but also with the person who can talk the loudest and fastest. We live in a culture of personality. Unfortunately (and this is a pet peeve of mine), the same is often true in our Church: we too often equate discipleship with the ability to talk loud, fast, and convincingly about our faith in […]

The Sorrowful Mysteries: The Scourging at the Pillar and the Protection of the Voiceless

As we journey deeper into Lent, we pause to reflect on the Second Sorrowful Mystery of the Rosary: the Scourging at the Pillar. This violent scene is depicted in all four Gospels (Luke’s Gospel refers to Jesus being “beaten.”) with very little description, yet it is one of the most vivid images of the Passion, because it was such a barbarous act intended to humiliate the victim and instill fear in onlookers. It’s important to […]

Pop-Up Catechesis: Finding Hidden Heroes in Our Everyday Lives

We usually think of a hero as someone who has done something very dramatic, such as running into a fiery building to save someone who is trapped or rescuing someone who is drowning in a lake, river, or pond. Certainly, such acts are heroic. However, a hero is simply someone who puts personal needs aside and goes above and beyond the call of duty to make a profound and positive impact on the life of another. […]

The Sorrowful Mysteries: The Agony in the Garden and the Myth of Self-Sufficiency

As we venture deeper into this season of Lent, let’s reflect upon the Sorrowful Mysteries of the Rosary—those events that lead up to and culminate in the Crucifixion and Death of our Lord, Jesus Christ. In this first installment, we reflect on the Agony in the Garden. The Book of Genesis introduces us to the Garden of Eden—that place where Adam and Eve enjoyed absolute intimacy with God. It is within that paradise that everything […]

Pop-Up Catechesis: The Stations of the Cross

One of the hallmarks of Catholic spirituality is the practice of going on a pilgrimage, a spiritual journey to a location of significance to our faith. In the centuries following Jesus’ Death, Resurrection, and Ascension, it was common practice for people to visit Jerusalem and retrace the steps of Jesus as he was led to his Crucifixion on Calvary. As time passed and Christianity spread, it became increasingly difficult for people to travel to the Holy Land for this pilgrimage. As […]

Saint Joseph Activities Pack

We don’t know many details about St. Joseph, but he was a model of trust in God. Celebrate the life and example of St. Joseph with our fun activities pack. Perfect for this Year of St. Joseph, the pack includes: a cute puzzle for children to color a word search to spark discussion on Joseph’s hidden life a family game idea inspired by Luke 2:41–52 a sheet inviting exploration of lessons Jesus might have learned […]

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