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.

My Most Recent Book Now Available in Spanish! Preparar corazones y mentes

Our Church is blessed with incredible diversity, and we are privileged to be experiencing rapid growth in the presence of Hispanics/Latinos in the U.S. Church. In fact: Hispanics account for 71% of the growth of the Catholic population since 1960. 40% of all Catholics in the U.S. have a Hispanic background. Six out of ten Catholics under the age of 18 are of Hispanic background. U.S.-born Hispanics make up two-thirds of the Hispanic population. On […]

Pop-Up Catechesis: Dealing with Temptations

You know what it’s like to have a mosquito bite that you want so badly to scratch! Of course, the more you scratch, the more it itches and, eventually, you risk breaking the skin. It’s not easy to avoid the temptation to scratch such an itch. Similarly, in life, we sometimes grow restless or “develop an itch” that we are tempted to scratch in a variety of ways, not all of them healthy. These temptations […]

A Prayer for Catechists: Using Technology

This prayer originally appeared in my book, The Catechist’s Toolbox: How to Thrive as a Religious Education Teacher. Download a PDF version of the prayer here. This year asks many of us to try new technologies in spreading the Word of God. What has been your experience with technology in faith formation?

Lent: Promises Made, Promises Kept

There are many ways to enter into Lent and to draw from the riches of the season and its Scripture readings. One very effective way is to focus on the Old Testament readings for each Sunday of Lent (this year, Cycle B). During Lent, the Old Testament readings stand by themselves in many ways, which means that we shouldn’t try too hard to bend and shape them to connect with the second reading or the Gospel, […]

Pop-Up Catechesis: The World Day of the Sick

Let’s face it: being sick is no fun. Serious illness is one of the most depressing things we can face in life. Not only does it make us feel powerless, it also makes us feel alone and isolated. For this reason, the Church encourages us to practice the corporal work of mercy of visiting the sick. Even if we can’t care in-person for those who are sick—especially during the pandemic—we can let others know that […]

Lent in a Time of Pandemic: Déjà Vu

As we enter the month of February, 2021, with the realization that Ash Wednesday and Lent are just a few weeks away, we will no doubt begin experiencing a sense of déjà vu—that sense that we have lived through the present situation before. And while we have all lived through Ash Wednesday and Lent before, this will be the second year that our Lenten experience takes place within the context of a worldwide pandemic (although, […]

Pop-Up Catechesis: The Feast of the Presentation of the Lord

One of the hallmarks of Catholicism is sacramentality, which means that we rely on tangible, visible objects in our prayer and worship to raise our awareness of the intangible, invisible graces of God. One popular example of this sacramentality is our use of candles for prayer and worship. We know that we’ve entered into a Catholic church when we see the flickering of vigil candles and smell the scent of burning wax. These burning candles represent the […]

Liturgical Year Family Activities

The Church’s liturgical year forms us so that we more closely reflect the image of God. Families can facilitate this formation by observing the liturgical calendar and by engaging in family rituals and activities that mark the seasons and feasts of the Church year and remind us of their significance. To help families in observing the liturgical calendar, download our Liturgical Year Family Activities. This resource is full of ideas to draw families more deeply […]

Nurturing Imagination and Creativity in Young Children

I’m sure you’ve seen little children opening presents on Christmas or a birthday and being more enamored with the box and the wrapping paper than the actual gift! Somehow, young children are able to look at a plain cardboard box and imagine that it is a car, an airplane, a boat, or a spaceship. It is that imagination that we must tap into when it comes to early childhood faith formation. According to Webster’s Dictionary, imagination […]

Pop-Up Catechesis: Practicing the Lenten Disciplines

With Lent coming upon us very soon, it’s a good idea to begin thinking about how best to observe this wonderful season of renewal. Too often, it seems, we rack our brains trying to think of what to do during Lent when the formula is laid out for us: we are to pray, fast, and give alms. While that may sound like the “same old, same old,” it’s important to know that these three practices, […]

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