Mystagogy: Becoming Progressively Aware of Mystery

When it comes to inspiration about faith formation, one of my favorite quotes comes from Orthodox bishop and theologian Kallistos Ware, who said, “We see that it is not the task of Christianity to provide easy answers to every question, but to make us progressively aware of a mystery. God is not so much the object of our knowledge as the cause of our wonder.” The task of becoming progressively aware of mystery is known […]

A Prayer for Catechists: Washing Feet

This prayer originally appeared in my book, The Catechist’s Toolbox: How to Thrive as a Religious Education Teacher. Download a PDF version of the prayer here. You might also like: Holy Thursday’s Hidden Graces 3-Minute Retreat: The Lord’s Supper (also in Spanish)

Classroom Spiritual Breaks

We can all practice self-care during these days marked by social distancing, remote learning, and disruptions to our cherished routines. Here are a few spiritual practices that catechists can incorporate into sessions to help nurture the spiritual and physical well-being of young people. Calls to Mind God’s Presence in Our Lives Invite young people to sit up tall, with both feet on the floor. They may close their eyes if they want. Tell them to […]

A Prayer for Catechists: Scripture and Tradition

This prayer originally appeared in my book, A Well-Built Faith: A Catholic’s Guide to Knowing and Sharing What We Believe. Download a PDF version of the prayer here. See the related article: Promoting Catholic Identity: A Reverence for Scripture and Tradition.

Pop-Up Catechesis: Change Requires a Stimulus

How does water change to ice or steam? Well, it doesn’t do it on its own. It requires a stimulus, namely a change in temperature. When water is cooled, the molecules slow down and are bonded together to form ice. When water is heated, the molecules speed up and break free from their bonds, thus creating steam. But none of that happens without the stimulus of temperature change. In a similar way, if we hope […]

God in the Ordinary Bingo Cards

Where have you experienced God in the ordinary moments of life? That’s a great question to start a discussion with youth groups or adults exploring spirituality. And to encourage people to think about finding God in all things, some less-than-obvious, we’ve created a God in the Ordinary Bingo game, available for free download by filling out the form within this post. Play the game with rules similar to Human Bingo. Participants get a card and […]

How We Can (and Must) Be Bearers of Hope

How are you holding up? Let’s face it, this pandemic is really taking its toll on us in a variety of ways. We know already that the holidays can be a time of despair for some people—a situation that will be made even worse with shelter-at-home orders that will prevent holiday gatherings from happening. More than ever, we need some hope! As catechists, we are called to be bearers of hope, bringing the hope-filled message […]

Light in Darkness

What sacred story (yours or that of another) has recently inspired you? How has Christ led you to an encounter with him in a new and unexpected way? How has your prayer life deepened over the past few months? These are questions Jayne Ragasa-Mondoy uses to conclude her piece “Light in Darkness” over at our sister site, LoyolaPress.com. The story is about a visit to the emergency room, but the questions are good ones to […]

Reflecting on Your Calling as a Catechist

One of the themes emphasized in the new Directory for Catechesis (as in the previous General Directory for Catechesis) is the notion that catechists have a vocation. In particular, the new directory says: “The catechist is a Christian who receives a particular calling from God that, when accepted in faith, empowers him for the service of the transmission of faith and for the task of initiating others into the Christian life.” (112) This “particular calling” […]

Pop-Up Catechesis: St. Ignatius of Loyola and Striving for the More

Coaches often encourage their players to give 110%, which simply means to always strive for more. This idea of wanting to do more, or magis (MAH-jiss) in Latin, was at the heart of St. Ignatius of Loyola’s spirituality: we should always strive to do more “for the greater glory of God.” In today’s episode of Pop-Up Catechesis, we prepare for the Feast of St. Ignatius on July 31 by exploring the concept of magis.  For more […]

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