Keeping the Triduum at Home

This year, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic and the cancelling of church services, families have the opportunity to observe the Triduum—the three days of Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and Holy Saturday—at home. Here are some ideas: Holy Thursday On this day, we recall the institution of the Eucharist at the Last Supper, Jesus washing the feet of his disciples, and the agony in the garden. To recall the institution of the Eucharist, the […]

Preparing for Holy Week at Home

I find it strangely ironic that, as catechists, we have always expressed a desire for parents to be more involved in their children’s faith formation and now, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, parents have been thrust into this role. The problem is, parents can feel as though they’ve been thrown into the deep end of the pool unless we provide them with the support they need and deserve to form their children in faith. One such […]

Teaching Finding God and Christ Our Life Lessons at Home

Recently, I shared some tips for parents teaching religion lessons at home during the COVID-19 crisis. Now, I’d like to take a moment to speak directly to folks using either of our Loyola Press programs, Finding God or Christ Our Life, for at-home lessons. As a Catholic publisher, our mission is to provide you with the resources you need to facilitate transformative experiences of God for the children and families you serve. In light of the current […]

10 Tips for Teaching Religion Lessons to Your Children at Home

In the midst of this COVID-19 threat, many parents find themselves in the position of doing a certain amount of homeschooling with their children, including teaching religion lessons that would normally be taught in Catholic schools or parish religious education programs. Teaching religion lessons is different from teaching other subject areas, because in faith formation, we do not teach a subject, we facilitate an encounter with Jesus Christ! With that in mind, here are 10 […]

Considering a Family Catechesis Approach for Next Year? Start Planning Now!

This is a powerful paragraph from the Catechism about the role of parents in faith formation: Parents have the first responsibility for the education of their children. (CCC 2223) Education in the faith by the parents should begin in the child’s earliest years. This already happens when family members help one another to grow in faith by the witness of a Christian life in keeping with the Gospel. Family catechesis precedes, accompanies, and enriches other […]

Six More Strategies for Empowering Families to Be the Domestic Church

The following is excerpted from All God’s People: Effective Catechesis in a Diverse Church by Donna Toliver Grimes. As a catechetical leader, you are called to form not just children but entire families. Moving forward, your task is to equip and empower families to once again embrace their role as the domestic church: a place where faith takes root and is nurtured. What approaches does the twenty-first-century catechetical leader need to take to make this […]

Five Strategies for Empowering Families to Be the Domestic Church

The following is excerpted from All God’s People: Effective Catechesis in a Diverse Church by Donna Toliver Grimes. As a catechetical leader, you are called to form not just children but entire families. Moving forward, your task is to equip and empower families to once again embrace their role as the domestic church: a place where faith takes root and is nurtured. What approaches does the twenty-first-century catechetical leader need to take to make this […]

Saints Among Us Retreat

One of my favorite activities with my third graders is a simple retreat designed to help them recognize and appreciate the saints, not only those in heaven, but those in our homes and those we are called to be. It is great for family catechesis as well. We include children from both the school and the parish religious education program and require at least one parent to attend. The retreat usually takes place on the Saturday […]

First Holy Communion Novena

Encourage families preparing a child to receive First Eucharist with a novena-style prayer to pray at home. Download the First Holy Communion Novena and make copies for parents, instructing them to begin praying 10 days before the day of First Holy Communion. Each day’s prayer time includes parts for children and parents, as well as a suggestion for a family practice for the next day. The text for the novena is from Christ Our Life, […]

Come to the Table: A First Communion Retreat (Part 2 of 2)

This is the second of two articles about hosting a retreat for children preparing for their First Holy Communion and their parents. This article provides the outline and schedule for the retreat. The preparations, planning, and materials needed for the retreat were described in the first article. Registration and Gathering The retreat begins with snacks and registration. At registration, hand out a welcome kit to each family. Ask each family member to write their names […]

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