The Liturgical Catechist

Be sure to take a look at The Liturgical Catechist, a new Web site put together by my friend, Joyce Donahue, Catechetical Associate in the Religious Education Office in the Diocese of Joliet, IL. Joyce is one of the most talented people I know in the fields of catechesis and liturgy and she does such a wonderful job of bringing these 2 aspects of Catholic life together (where they belong!). She’s a great resource and now […]

Getting Ready for the Feast of St. Ignatius

July 31 is the Feast of St. Ignatius! This date has personal significance for me since I attended St. Ignatius College Prep and Loyola University of Chicago (undergrad and graduate degrees) and work for Loyola Press! That’s a lot of Ignatian influence! Of course, we are all blessed to have been influenced in some way, shape, or form by this great man. With that in mind, I’d like to share a couple of ways to […]

“People like that have poop for brains” – Pardon my “French”

Last evening’s class was a lot of fun and very productive. I told the kids that they were going to take a “final exam” and, of course, they all freaked out. I then proceeded to calm their fears and tell them that we were going to review first and that the test was just a way to see what “stuck” and what we might need to cover on our last class. I then did the […]

The Daily Examen – Learn By Doing

From time to time here on my blog, you’ve noticed me talking about the Daily Examen, a form of prayer promoted by St. Ignatius of Loyola. Now you have a great opportunity to learn how to pray the Examen by praying the Examen! Jim Manney, author of A Simple, Life-Changing Prayer, is offering an opportunity to experience the Examen online as he leads you step-by-step so that you can learn how to pray this way on […]

A Little Rusty

Last evening’s class went very nicely, however, I really felt like I needed to ovecome some “rust” after a few weeks of not teaching (because of interruptions in the schedule). For one, I forgot to include our little ritual gesture of marking our foreheads, lips, and hearts with the sign of the Cross at the start of class! Didn’t think about it till I got home and was reviewing in my mind how the class […]

Ten Commandments

It feels as though I have not taught my 4th graders for a few weeks now, because of guest speakers and Presidents’ Days, etc. Tonight, that all changes as I get back to the basics with my li’l ones and focus on the Ten Commandments one last time! As you may recall, back in January, we made a DVD of the kids doing mini-presentations on the Ten Commandments. For tonight’s class, I put together the […]

4th Graders on the Red Carpet

Last night was the successful premiere of the Ten Commandments DVD that my 4th graders filmed over the past few weeks! It opened to an audience of about 8-9 parents who visited my classroom as part of the Open House. The parents enjoyed watching their little stars on the big screen and the kids were tickled to see themselves. All in all, it was very successful. I made a copy of the DVD for each […]

Scripts for Ten Commandments Video Presentations

As I mentioned yesterday, I plan to videotape my students doing brief presentations/demonstrations on the Ten Commandments and then showing the video to the parents who attend the Open House later this month. Here are the scripts that I’ve prepared: Ten Commandments Video Scripts These scripts are adaptations of the Ten Commandments Two-Minute Drills that I did with my Confirmation class last year. Some of the adaptations were to make the activities more appropriate for 4th […]

Singing Grace Before Meals

At the Being, Knowing, and Doing workshop I did in Newark, NJ, last week, we prepared to eat lunch. We were invited to pick up a little prayer card on our tables and to sing the following, using the melody of the Old One Hundreth (Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow). I love it! Perfect for Thanksgiving! Be present at our table, Lord Be here and everywhere adored. Thy creatures bless and grant that […]

A Language of Mystery

Funny how a segue I had planned for my class this past Monday turned out to be one of the most significant moments of the entire session, thanks to one of my students and the Holy Spirit. I was seeking to introduce the concept of SIGNS and how we encounter Jesus through the signs we call the Sacraments. I invited 3 volunteers to come forward for a “contest.” I had 3 clear plastic cups on a […]

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