Recruiting and Retaining Catechists Who Evangelize with GIFTS

Many catechetical leaders are familiar with the struggle of trying to find catechists at the last minute and begging parishioners for help. We have all heard the horror stories of people who tentatively volunteered and two weeks later found themselves standing in front of a room full of students, unsure of themselves and wondering how they ended up in this position. If our catechists are the backbone of our faith formation programs, then recruiting and […]

Catechist Recruitment via Webinar

Like in many parishes, the faith formation department at my parish is challenged to find enough catechists each year. We’ve held meetings and created a webpage with videos, job description, and links to useful resources. We’ve explained our need for catechists (and the benefits of being a catechist) in a family e-newsletter, the parish bulletin, and on Facebook. We’ve posted colorful flyers and asked for volunteers via the parish Twitter account. Whether we write long […]

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 […]

Nothing Beats the Personal Touch When Recruiting Catechists

This Sunday’s Gospel (Matthew 4:12–23) is a reminder to us that nothing beats the personal touch when it comes to inviting people into ministry. And this time of the year—late winter—is a good time to start your catechist recruitment efforts for next year. Jesus did not put up posters or distribute literature inviting people to follow him; he used the personal approach. He asked people what they were looking for and then he invited them to […]

10 Things Every Catechist Needs to Hear—My Blog’s 10th Anniversary

It’s hard to believe but today is the 10th anniversary of Catechist’s Journey! We have journeyed long and far together, and it continues to be a great joy to walk the journey of this splendid ministry together with you! I can’t thank you enough for accompanying me. I have learned so much from you and deeply appreciate all of the ways you have shared your wisdom and experience with me and my readers. To celebrate […]

Last-Minute Catechist Recruitment: Don’t Compromise!

In an ideal world, all of our recruitment for catechists would have wrapped up early in the summer, so that now we could just move forward with training, formation, and the start of the catechetical year. In reality, however, we know that last-minute openings pop up, and catechetical leaders find themselves scrambling to do some last-minute recruitment of catechists. It’s important to remember that, while time is short, we must not compromise on our standards […]

Give Me One Good Reason I Should Consider Serving as a Catechist!

Now that the catechetical year is coming to a close, it’s time for you to do whatever you can as a catechist to assist your catechetical leader in recruiting new catechists for next year. The best encouragement comes from people who are in the trenches doing the work of catechesis and finding such great rewards (in the midst of the challenges)! With that in mind, let’s all chip in and offer at least one good […]

Challenges and Successes of Being a Catechetical Leader

Every year as a Director of Religious Education has its own unique challenges and successes. I keep telling myself that if I’m doing the same thing as the year before, then I’m doing it wrong. Here are some continual challenges I face and the ways I have found success amidst them. Challenge 1: Recruiting Catechists I have a large program, and even though I have some very dedicated catechists, I also have an average turnover […]

How Do We Recruit New Catechists? INVITE Them!

What is it that all DREs know about the majority of Catholic families today? They are overwhelmed by an overbooked schedule of events and work, and growing our faith is often deferred to those once-in-a-while moments when things are quiet; that is not necessarily weekend Mass. So how do we find future catechists? I propose we INVITE people to consider the call to be a catechist. I = INITIATE a conversation. Regular parent gatherings or […]

The Power of Invitation to Church Ministry

Being invited to participate changed my life. I was 17, a senior in high school, and I opened a letter from my pastor inviting me to participate in the Catholic Leadership Institute (CLI), sponsored by the Diocese of Baton Rouge. Until that moment, my faith lived within the boundaries of Sunday Mass and in the spiritual activities my Catholic high school offered. Reading that letter opened up a desire within me to engage further with […]

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