I’m Just Getting Warmed Up!

Yesterday, I told you about my new book, Beyond the Catechist’s Toolbox, which you can pre-order (available February, 2013). Well, I’m just gettin’ warmed up!!! I’ve got lots more to tell you about. I’ve been a busy little catechist and writer this year and I’m happy to share with you 2 new resources that I am very proud of and that will help to meet a pressing need in catechesis (catechizing children who are “out […]

Continuing Our Discussion of Divine Pedagogy and the Shared Praxis Approach

Last week, we began an excellent conversation about the catechetical process and, in particular, the principles of divine pedagogy and the role of human experience (the shared praxis approach of Dr. Thomas Groome). Thanks to all for your rich insights and thoughts. Today, I’d like to continue that conversation by offering my critique of Dr. Caroline Farey’s article, “The Truth Will Set You Free”), Faith Magazine, Vol. 41, No. 5, Sept-Oct 2009) which I referred […]

Welcome, Drs. Groome and Farey to Our Catechetical Conversation

Yesterday, I posted about a current hot catechetical topic which is the role of lived experience in the catechetical process and we’ve begun an excellent conversation (see the comments below that post). I am pleased and honored that Drs. Thomas Groome and Caroline Farey have responded to my invitation to contribute to the conversation. Dr. Groome asked me to post his email (since he doesn’t “do blogs”) and Dr. Farey will join in the conversation […]

Where Have You Gone, Thomas Groome? The Role of Experience in Catechesis

When I was a mere “babe” in the catechetical ministry (early 1980s), I was introduced to the notion of the catechetical process. At the time, those 2 words could not be spoken without also mentioning the name of Dr. Thomas Groome and his groundbreaking work, Christian Religious Education: Sharing Our Story and Vision . At the heart of Groome’s approach is an unmistakable connection between lived experience and the faith Tradition of the Catholic Church. […]

Fidelity Oaths for Catechists?

One of the stories in Catholic news recently is the issue of some dioceses requiring catechists and religion teachers to take an oath of fidelity. In particular, the Diocese of Arlington, Virginia, has been in the news after some teachers and catechists quit rather than submit to taking the required oath of fidelity. The oath, which is to be signed and publicly administered on Catechetical Sunday, basically asks catechists to state that they, “with firm faith, belive […]

Another Plea for Help

OK, friends, another colleague of ours has sent out a plea for help! This one comes from a catechetical leader named Steve. Please offer your advice, thoughts, comments, and questions in the box below under Leave a Reply and thanks in advance for so generously sharing your wisdom. Joe, Last year I had several problems with some middle school kids who were unable to change behavior on their own.  In several instances I had a parent […]

Thinking of Becoming a Catechist?

I have an exciting new page to share with you titled Becoming a Catechist which consists of numerous links to posts, videos, articles, and other resources from my blog that can help someone to discern if they wish to accept the call to serve as a catechist. The page includes my popular Top Ten Reasons to Become a Catechist, stories from current catechists about their calling and dedication to this ministry, videos from my Catechists […]

Positive Approach to Recruiting Catechists

In case you haven’t noticed, we’ve had an outpouring of response here on Catechist’s Journey to a plea for help from a catechetical leader named Barbara that I posted the other day! Thanks so much to everyone for offering such good advice, not only for Barbara’s benefit, but for all of us. In particular, I wanted to highlight a response from Mary Ann in which she not only provides some advice but also shares some examples […]

A Call for HELP!!!

I received the following email from a volunteer catechetical leader named Barbara who is in need of our help and support. Please offer your suggestions by leaving a comment at the end of this post (click be”Leave a Reply”). Thanks! Hi Joe:I am DRE in a very small parish in the Diocese of Allentown, PA. We have approx 100 children in CCD. The parents are lackadaisical at best regarding their children’s faith formation.We hold CCD […]

What is the Year of Faith?

As many of you know, Pope Benedict XVI announced that the Church will celebrate a Year of Faith beginning this October, 2012, through November, 2013. Recently, I had a little time to wrap my head around the guidelines for this upcoming event and I’ve written a very brief summary of what the Year of Faith is all about. I thought this might be helpful to you in the months to come. Enjoy. What is the […]

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