Successful REP Kick-Off Event!

Thanks be to God, we had a wonderfully successful kick-off event for the Religious Education program at St. Cajetan that focused on the adults as well as the children. The goal was to begin to chip away at the “drop-off” mentality and I think it is safe to say that last night we made a significant dent! I counted at least 100 adults present and we prepared 115 folders! Here’s a pictorial summary: Signage was key […]

One Book, One Parish: Perfect for Adult Faith Formation

Here’s an idea for your parish Adult Faith Formation program: it’s called One Book, One Parish (affectionately referred to as OBOP here at Loyola Press). One Book, One Parish provides spiritual works that explain our Catholic culture and history; books that illuminate, inspire, provoke, and entertain; books that have a unique perspective and compelling authority.  We seek to help you establish communities of conversation around our faith and get people to re-engage with the parish […]

Dry Run for REP Kick Off Nite

Last evening, I got together with Deb, the DRE at St. Cajetan, to do a “dry run” in preparation for next Tuesday’s Kick-Off for the Religious Education program. We had many logistics to go over such as the sound system, the lighting, the video, the music and so on. In particular, I realized that I have to practice my timing with the songs/videos that I’ll be projecting throughout the prayer service…it’s as if I’m the […]

REP Kick-Off Event with Adult Focus

This year, in addition to my work in Adult Faith Formation at St. Barnabas Parish, I am also assisting the DRE at St. Cajetan, Deb Breakey, where I served as a 6th grade catechist last year. Together, we are focusing on changing the “drop-off” mentality of the parents of kids in the Religious Education program. To that end, the first night of RE (September 16) will have a totally different look than in years past. […]

Men’s Spirituality

Last week, I had the pleasure of sitting in on the Men’s Spirituality group at St. Barnabas parish. This initiative began as a follow up to the parish’s Men’s Christ Renews His Parish (CRHP) and meets once per month under the direction of the Associate Pastor, Fr. John Hetland. From what I’m told, different guys come and go but in general about a dozen gather each month. There was an enthusiastic group of 9 on […]

Service, Adult Faith Formation, and the St. Vincent de Paul Society

Let me start by emphasizing that service to others is a constituitive element of all faith formation, including adult faith formation (see the Six Tasks of Catechesis). With that in mind, I met last evening with 2 extraordinary gentlemen (both named Bill) from the St. Vincent de Paul Society at St. Barnabas parish in Chicago where I am exploring the ins and outs of adult faith formation. Both of these gentlemen are in their 70s and […]

Adult Faith Formation: It’s About Relationships!

I had the pleasure of chatting with a co-worker here at Loyola Press, Julie Berggren, about her role as a Minister of Care at her parish, St. Francis Xavier in Wilmette, and the ongoing formation that the ministers of care are involved in there. First a little background: SFX Parish has between 80-100 Ministers of Care who visit and bring Holy Communion to the sick and homebound, in hospitals and in homes and nursing homes. […]

Adult Faith Formation – Laying the Foundation

I met this morning with Maryellen, the staff liason for Adult Faith Formation at St. Barnabas, for our first meeting to begin laying out a vision for what we hope to accomplish in AFF this year. We both agreed that the place to begin is NOT with a program but with a VISION and a PLAN! With that in mind, we are looking to meet with the Faith Formation Commission of the Parish Pastoral Council […]

Catechists for Parish Organizations

The post I put up the other day about designating catechists for Men’s and Women’s clubs in parishes struck a positive chord with lots of people. In particular, a comment posted by Maureen summed up precisely what I was aiming at when she said that the idea: …also speaks to one of the foundational principles of the USCCB pastoral plan for Adult Faith Formation, “Our Hearts Were Burning Within Us”: parish life itself is the […]

How About Catechists for Parish Women’s and Men’s Clubs?

Too often, we Catholics approach adult catechesis with the notion of beginning a program that we hope to get folks to attend, when in fact, many people are already attending parish functions but not necessarily receiving faith formation as a part of the experience. One such example are Women’s and Men’s Clubs (Mother’s and Father’s Clubs, Holy Name Society, etc.) These are groups that gather numerous parishioners on a regular basis for a wide variety […]

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