Archdiocese of Philadelphia Adopts the Catechetical Formation Series for Basic Catechist Formation

For many years, the catechetical efforts of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia have been guided by the steady hand of Ann Menna, who just recently retired. (Congratulations, Ann!) I’m proud to say that one of Ann’s last actions as Director in Philly was to adopt the Loyola Press Catechetical Formation Series for basic catechist formation in the Archdiocese. I developed the Catechetical Formation Series as an online training and formation experience for catechists and others seeking to deepen […]

Forming Catechists, Part Three: Doing

Welcome to the final installment of our series on the three dimensions of catechist formation: Being, Knowing, and Doing, this time focusing on the dimension of Doing. When I was in college, I decided I wanted to become a teacher, and I wanted to teach religion at a Catholic high school. To achieve this, I double-majored in theology and history, and I also minored in education for the purpose of achieving a teaching certificate for […]

Forming Catechists, Part Two: Knowing

We continue our look at the three dimensions of catechist formation: Being, Knowing, and Doing, this time focusing on the dimension of Knowing. In their book, Soul Searching: The Religious and Spiritual Lives of American Teenagers, Christian Smith and Melinda Lundquist Denton suggest that the “de facto dominant religion” among today’s young people in the United States can be thought of as “Moralistic Therapeutic Deism.”  They surmise that this “religion” is characterized by the following beliefs: A […]

Forming Catechists, Part One: Being

Early autumn, which coincides with the beginning of many religious education programs, is a good time to pay attention to forming catechists—especially those who are new to the ministry and are eager to learn the knowledge and skills needed to proclaim the Good News effectively! With that in mind, we’re going to take a closer look at the three dimensions of catechist formation: Being, Knowing, and Doing. These will ensure that your catechists are fully […]

Being, Knowing, and Doing

When we speak of someone being a well-rounded person, we are referring to the fact that that person is fully developed and possesses knowledge, capabilities, and skills in a wide range of areas. Catechists are most definitely called to be well-rounded! I was thrilled to see that the new Directory for Catechesis continues to use the language of the previous General Directory for Catechesis that insists that catechist formation be “three dimensional,” focusing on the areas of […]

Making Catechist Formation a Priority (And Accessible!)

The new Directory for Catechesis once again (as did the previous General Directory for Catechesis) emphasizes the importance and priority of catechist formation. I’m a firm believer in the saying, “You can’t give what you don’t have.” Through catechist formation, we deepen our own relationship with Jesus Christ so that we, in turn, can invite others into relationship with him. One of the difficulties that catechists often face when it comes to catechist formation is […]

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 […]

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