Announcing a New Online Catechetical Formation Series! And It’s Free!

Recently on Catechist’s Journey, we invited readers to participate in a poll indicating their preferences for catechist formation formats (reading a book, watching a video, attending a workshop or class, or online). Thanks to the many who responded! It is interesting to note how 22% (as of 3/12/2020) of those responding indicated a preference for online learning. And with the coronavirus keeping many of us at home, the option of online learning is helpful. With […]

How Would You Like That “Cooked”? A Poll Question About Catechist Formation

When you go to a restaurant and order an entrée, depending on what you’re getting, the server may ask, “How would you like that cooked?” It’s nice to have options so that the meal will be prepared in a way that suits your tastes. When it comes to catechist formation, we also have many options. Catechist formation can be “served up” in a variety of formats, depending on your preferences and learning style. With that […]

Advocating for More Robust Catechist Formation

Recently, I had the honor of being invited to present on the topic of catechist formation to the U.S. Bishops’ Committee on Evangelization and Catechesis, chaired by Bishop Robert Barron. You may well know that Bishop Barron is a leading voice in the country when it comes to the topics of evangelization and catechesis—especially with regards to those who are disaffiliated from the Church. He does this primarily through his Word on Fire ministries. I’ve known […]

Which Area of Your “Garden” Needs Tending? A Poll Question

Throughout the summer months, many of us spend time tending to our lawns and gardens, ensuring that they are receiving the attention they need to flourish and grow. We make sure they are receiving the nutrients they need, are free from weeds, and are being watered sufficiently. Often, our focus is drawn to one or two “trouble spots” where we know we have to pay some increased attention. In a similar way, summer is a […]

Three-Dimensional Formation of Catechists

The Wai’anae and Ko’olau volcanic mountain ranges flank the Hawaiian island of Oahu. Miles of scenic hiking trails wind through their ancient forests and majestic peaks. Some trails are easy and child-friendly, others steep and strenuous. One trail in particular requires great stamina to conquer: the Koko Head Crater Steps. The stairs (pictured above) are remnants of railroad ties from the World War II era, built to haul munitions to the crater’s 1,200-foot summit. It’s […]

Catechist Formation: More Than a Path to Certification

Typically, when you fall in love with someone, you are eager not only to spend as much time with that person as possible, but also to learn as much as you can about him or her: “What’s your favorite food? Favorite hobby? What irritates you? What do you like to read? What are you dreams?” and so on. Ultimately, catechist formation, like all faith formation, is the way we seek to learn more and thus […]

Four Tips to Recruit and Train New Catechists

Just when I think I have a fantastic team of catechists in place someone moves out of town, schedules change, or some other issues arise, and I find myself searching for new catechists, often at the last minute. Recruiting and training catechists is an annual endeavor for every catechetical program. Here are some simple strategies I have used to recruit and train catechists. 1. Find people in your parish with teaching experience. Teachers can make […]

How Will You Grow This Coming Year?

I’m enjoying watching all the new life bursting forth from the earth this spring—a reminder that nature seeks to grow! As part of God’s creation, it is in our nature to grow as well. Unlike plant life, however, we can be tempted to ignore that natural tendency. Such is the nature of the deadly sin of sloth: it is not just laziness; it is spiritual laziness. Sloth causes us to be distracted from that which […]

Unique Approaches to Scheduling Catechist Formation

Recently, I came across a couple of parishes that take a unique approach to scheduling catechist formation so that it is integral to their faith formation program and not seen as something optional. One parish that holds their faith formation sessions weekly on Monday evenings designates the first Monday of each month for catechist formation. The young people do not have classes on that evening, but catechists are required to attend. Since the formation sessions occur […]

Confident Catechists: How to Prepare for the New Year

During Advent and Lent, the Church prepares for the feasts of Christmas and Easter. Similarly, summer is the season when catechists prepare for the upcoming catechetical year. The more time we take to prepare, the more comfortable and confident we will be echoing the Word of God in our classrooms. Prayer, Prayer, and More Prayer The most important thing we can do to prepare for the new catechetical year is to pray. Through prayer, the […]

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