Rice Lake, Wisconsin

Greetings to all the good folks up in Rice Lake, Wisconsin! I was up there Tuesday and Wednesday for the Diocese of Superior Fall Conference, doing a couple of workshops on “Teaching to Generation Me.” Some of you may recall that a few months back, I did a series of posts on a book titled “Generation Me” by Jean Twenge, M.D. and offered some thoughts on how catechists can respond to the unique challenges this […]

My Speaking Engagements

I updated my list of speaking engagements (see the link to the right), but I thought I would just give a brief glimpse of my October itinerary: I will be doing the following presentations and workshops: OCTOBER 3 – Holy Trinity (Westmont), Liturgy and Catechesis (catechist formation) 6 – Ave Maria Press High School Religion Teacher Enrichment Day (Notre Dame, IN), Scripture 10 – Diocese of Superior, Wisconsin Fall Conference (Rice Lake, Wisconsin) – “Teaching to “Generation Me” […]

Field of Dreams

I had a wonderful time in Peosta, Iowa, with over a hundred catechists, talking about the skills and knowledge that we need to be effective in our ministry. Thanks to all for the warm hospitality! I had a chance to visit the Field of Dreams Movie Site in Dyersville! It was like a dream come true. This is one of my favorite movies of all time and it was so much fun to be there […]

The Catechist's Toolbox: Selling Like Hotcakes!

The sales people at Loyola Press tell me that the phones are ringing off the hook with requests for my new book, The Catechist’s Toolbox! Apparently, almost 20,000 copies have already been sold! I’m so excited! This is a testament to the catechetical ministry and to catechists everywhere who are showing that they are passionate about this ministry and hungry to grow in effectiveness as we proclaim God’s Word!

Feed the Catechists!

And I’m not just talking about food. Last night, I was with about 40 catechists from 2 different parishes and the interesting thing was that all but 2 of them were returning catechists! That rate of return is a testament to the care and support of their catechetical leaders who are both very professional and have outstanding vision for the catechetical ministry. They know how to “feed” their catechists. We catechists owe so much to […]


Take a look at the very nice review of The Catechist’s Toolbox by Dan Pierson who has a blog named eCatechist. Thanks, Dan, for giving my book such a nice plug! I look forward to visiting your blog! I hope that as people dig into The Catechist’s Toolbox, we can discuss a myriad of issues here on my blog. The book is a starting point for ongoing discussion of our ongoing ministry. Please share your insights, […]

Theology on Tap – Catholic Identity

Over the next week, I’ll be a “catechist” for young adults in a program in the Chicago Archdiocese called Theology on Tap, a speaker and conversation series for people in their 20s and 30s to learn more about the Catholic faith, make connections between faith and everyday life, and enter into conversation with peers. The program is being hosted at 40 locations throughout the Archdiocese of Chicago and 14 in the Diocese of Joliet from July 8 – […]

National Catholic Bible Conference Misleading

As a catechist, I have often participated in the Chicago Catechetical Conference. Naturally, when I hear of such a conference, I can safely assume that it is sponsored by a Church agency in Chicago which of course it is (the Office for Catechesis and Youth Ministry). Likewise, when I attend the National Conference for Catechetical Leadership, I can safely assume that it is sponsored by a national catechetical organization which of course it is: NCCL. […]

The Catechist's Toolbox – A Testimonial

Here is a wonderful testimonial about my new book, The Catechist’s Toolbox (Loyola Press). This endorsement was written by Sr. Judy Dieterle, Associate Director of the Office for Catechesis and Youth Ministry in the Archdiocese of Chicago. Thanks Sr. Judy! Over many years now as an Archdiocese we have provided training for new catechists as they step before their first group of learners. Our “handout” packet was continually growing, along with major concerns about destruction […]

What's In a Catechist's Toolbox?

As I mentioned a few posts ago, I have a new book being published by Loyola Press titled The Catechist’s Toolbox: How to Thrive As a Religious Education Teacher. Here is the table of contents so that you can see what I personally feel belongs in each catechist’s toolbox: Shop-talk: The Language Of Catechesis Blueprints – Planning and Preparation Socket and Wrench Set – Finding Activities That Fit Color Charts – Selecting Learning Activities Different […]

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