Closure

Tonight is the last session that I will be teaching for my 6th graders this year (next week is our closing Mass). I’ll reflect soon on what this experience has been like for me (in brief, it’s been wonderful!) but for now I’d just like to offer a glimpse of what I’ll be doing tonight. Preliminaries (15 mins) Gather, attendance, misc. – young people write prayer intentions Opening prayer ritual/procession Engage (10 mins) I plan […]

Faith that is CAUGHT, not TAUGHT – What Makes a Message “Contagious”

In ministerial circles, it is not uncommon to hear the phrase “Faith is caught, not taught.”The point of the phrase is that faith is something that involves more than just transmitting information. With that in mind, it might be helpful to know just what makes a message go “viral” – what makes a message “contagious.” Seeking answers, I recently read a very good book: Contagious: Why Things Catch On by Jonah Berger (Simon & Schuster) […]

You’ll Never Repent a Lent Well-Spent! Ash Wednesday is Here!

I love that phrase! “You’ll never repent a Lent well-spent!” My wife heard that from one of the Marist brothers she teaches with at Marist HS in Chicago so I couldn’t resist “re-appropriating” it! How true it is: if we make the most of this Lenten season, we’ll not regret it. And now, with Ash Wednesday upon us, we officially enter into the Lenten season, 2013. A great big THANK YOU to all who participated in […]

How To Host a DAY OF FAITH During This YEAR OF FAITH

Many people have been asking about what they can do in their local parish to mark this Year of Faith. In response, I’ve put together a new resource that you can use called DAYS OF FAITH! This is a kit that contains everything you need to host a faith formation event in your own parish during Lent or some other time of this Year of Faith. In this kit, I share 4 PowerPoint® presentations – each 60-minutes […]

I’m Just Getting Warmed Up!

Yesterday, I told you about my new book, Beyond the Catechist’s Toolbox, which you can pre-order (available February, 2013). Well, I’m just gettin’ warmed up!!! I’ve got lots more to tell you about. I’ve been a busy little catechist and writer this year and I’m happy to share with you 2 new resources that I am very proud of and that will help to meet a pressing need in catechesis (catechizing children who are “out […]

Indiana Conference for Catechetical Leadership – Hoosier Catechesis!

I was privileged to spend a wonderful day with nearly 100 catechetical leaders from across the great State of Indiana at the Indiana Conference for Catechetical Leadership in Indianapolis. They invited me to be their keynote speaker and to do a couple of breakout sessions and I was thrilled to have the opportunity to spend the day looking at how we can set hearts on fire during this Year of Faith. My deepest thanks and congratulations […]

Continuing Our Discussion of Divine Pedagogy and the Shared Praxis Approach

Last week, we began an excellent conversation about the catechetical process and, in particular, the principles of divine pedagogy and the role of human experience (the shared praxis approach of Dr. Thomas Groome). Thanks to all for your rich insights and thoughts. Today, I’d like to continue that conversation by offering my critique of Dr. Caroline Farey’s article, “The Truth Will Set You Free”), Faith Magazine, Vol. 41, No. 5, Sept-Oct 2009) which I referred […]

Year of Faith Retreat – Week 1, Day 4: What Are You Afraid Of?

WEEK ONE: The Creed DAY 4: What Are You Afraid Of? (Sin, Salvation, and the Cross of Jesus) Fear is a natural human condition. The following are considered some of the most common fears. Which do you share? Spiders, snakes, heights, closed spaces, lightning, injections, social situations, flying, germs/dirt, public speaking, darkness It often seems as though we have many things to fear. Perhaps this is why one of the most commonly used phrases in the […]

Year of Faith Retreat – Week 1, Day 2: Trusting God’s Word

WEEK ONE: The Creed DAY 2: Trusting God’s Word (Scripture and Tradition) If someone claims to have authority to perform a very important task, we want to know that we can trust that individual. If someone pounds on your door and says, “Open up! Police!” you certainly want to verify that they have a badge before you let them in. Authority and trust go hand in hand.  When it comes to our faith, the question of […]

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