A Little Help? Creative Ideas for Parent Reconciliation “Meeting”

I’m looking for some creative ideas for Parent Sacramental Prep “Meetings” for First Reconciliation. My goal is to get away from the all-too-familiar 45-60 minute talk given by the pastor, associate pastor, DRE, or guest speaker, during which the parents sit passively and listen and then are given some logistics about First Reconciliation and sent on their way. I would like to do something that is more mystagogical – engaging the parents in some reflection […]

Great New Liturgy Apps!

Here’s some information about some great new Apps on the Liturgy! The first is the My Picture Missal App from Loyola Press. This App, available in the iTunes store at this link: My Picture Missal App, was developed for children with special needs and  for young children. The intent of this interactive app is to help children learn, understand, and fully experience the Mass. Children with special needs have spiritual lives and, with communication assistance, can […]

Creative Activity on “Full, Active, Conscious” Participation in the Liturgy

Here is a wonderful idea from Rocio M. for an activity to teach about “full, active, and conscious” participation in the Liturgy (as per the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, 14). Thanks for sharing Rocio! Hi Joe, First, I want to thank you for all the support and materials you have shared with us. I teach Confirmation (8th grade) and I want to share with you an activity I recently did with my class. My […]

Apprenticeships Instead of Service Projects

I recently received this comment from Jared Anderson about something creative and outstanding he is doing with his Confirmation program: The way that we incorporate Mission into our Confirmation program is that I require the candidates to do 4 month long Apprenticeships in an already existing Parish Ministry. There are 12 ministries (including myself as Director of Confirmation and Youth Ministries) that provide an adult mentor to provide ministry-specific formation and opportunities to get their […]

The Conversion Process – “Stirrings”

The New Evangelization is a renewed invitation to conversion. Unfortunately, conversion is a word that is often misunderstood. We tend to think of conversion as either the changing from one Christian denomiation to another or a dramatic bolt of lightning in which we hear God’s voice loud and clear, calling us to a major change in life.  As a result of these rather limited understandings, most people don’t feel that they have experienced, are, experiencing, or […]

Come, Let Us Adore – Worldwide Eucharistic Adoration with Pope Francis

One of the most loved and famous Christmas hymns is O Come All Ye Faithful (Adeste Fideles) and it’s great refrain: “O Come let us adore him!” To adore someone is to desire to devote all of your attention to him or her. It means to think of that person as being above all others and to admire his or her beauty. Catholics have a great tradition called adoration. For a good description of the practice […]

Sacramental Readiness and Initiation – Developing New Habits

We’ve had a good conversation here about sacramental readiness over the last few days thanks to a plea for help from “Monica.” Thank you to all who have so generously shared their wisdom. Our discussion got me thinking about the notion of readiness and the fact that all of our catechesis takes its cue from the process of Initiation which is an apprenticeship into a way of life. Assessment of knowledge of the faith is […]

Helpful Resource to Deepen Kids’ Understanding of the Mass

Recently, I received a review copy of a DVD titled Understanding Sunday Mass: A Kid’s Point of View by David Yrisarri (Anchor Productions, sundaymass4kids.com). David is a visual effects producer who worked with the Diocese of Orange, CA, to produce this instructional video after his own son’s First Communion. David felt that his son and his peers learned a lot about Christ and their Catholic faith but not enough about the Mass. You can read […]

A Lesson Plan on the Sacraments of Initiation

For the past week, while traveling from coast to coast, I’ve been rambling about my lesson for this evening on the Sacraments of Initiation (and a connection to the Old Testament) and posting bits and pieces here and there as I came up with them. Now, I’ve put it all together into a coherent (hopefully!) lesson plan for this evening! Here ’tis: The Sacraments of Initiation Big Idea: We pledge allegiance to God through the Sacraments of […]

Connecting Exodus, Passover, and the Sacraments of Initiation

As I mentioned in a previous post, I am preparing a lesson on the Sacraments of Initiation for this Monday evening and plan to connect it to our study of the Old Testament, in particular, the Exodus/Passover story. As part of that, I put together a review of the Exodus/Passover story – 10 pictures from the Exodus story that need to be placed in order – that can be used in one of 2 ways: I […]

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