What’s Your Story? Touching the Sacred

Here’s a beautiful story from Jean about how a moment when she felt touched by the presence of God in her catechetical ministry. Shortly before my class was to make their first Communion, one of the mothers said she did not believe her son was ready since he was unable to answer the questions in the Baltimore Catechism. I explained that we had used a different book and approach to teaching. She was dubious so […]

Week Three of Stories on the Journey – Touching the Sacred

I can’t thank you enough for the wonderful stories you’ve been sending in for Stories on the Journey, our summer renewal experience here on Catechist’s Journey! If you’ve just joined us, take a look: Week One: How Did I Get Into This? Week Two: Kids Say/Do the Darndest Things Now, it’s on to Week Three and our topic is: Touching the Sacred – describe a time when you really and truly¬†felt the presence of God […]

More About Pretzels

In my 40 Ideas for 40 Days of Lent calendar, Monday, March 14 is an activity titled “What’s with the Pretzels?” which goes into the meaning of the pretzel as a traditional lenten food. I received an email from a 6th grade catechist named Marie who had quite a bit to say about the topic. Thanks, Marie! Enjoy! Joe, I’ve been on your mail list for about three months and have enjoyed the information and […]

An Example of Catholic Sacramentality

As part of my presentation in Alabama, I talked about the Catholic sense of sacramentality…how we learn to recognize God’s presence in all things. During the break, I stepped outside and saw a garden in between the church building and the parish center. In the middle of the garden was a little sign that read the following which I believe is a very good example of the Catholic sense of Sacramentality: A kiss of the […]

Except for Bathroom Breaks…

Except for an excessive number of requests to go the the bathroom, last night’s class was extremely successful! ūüôā Although I had informed the kids on the first class that they needed to go to the bathroom before coming to class, last night at least 5 kids asked to go at separate times! It breaks up the momentum and takes my aide out of the classroom. Other than that, however, the class was extremely successful. […]

Blessed be the LORD, My Rock

For today’s class, we will be focusing on how we can trust in God, who is our “Rock” (drawing from Psalm 144:1). To reinforce the idea, I’m giving each of the students a rock with the words “Blessed be the LORD, my rock” Ps 144:1 Where did I get these from? It so happens that I live near some railroad tracks, so I went over there and picked out a number of gray rocks with […]

God Is Our Father

Here’s what I’m planning for this coming Monday’s session: Theme (from textbook) – God is Our Father Big Idea: We can trust God our Father to protect us The session focuses on how Jesus taught us to call God our Father and how we pray for the coming of the Kingdom. A king is someone who leads and protects his people. We can trust God to lead and protect us from sin. God arms us […]

Testing the 4th Grade Waters

As part of my lesson this past Monday, I wanted to emphasize how human beings are the greatest part of God’s creation and I wanted to incorporate the use of the Internet in my classes for the first time. I located a brief YouTube video that shows images of babies growing in the womb. I made sure that the video did not have any images relating to the act of sexual intercourse or the fertilization […]

God Creates the World

So, I’ve been doing some planning for my first class with my 4th graders! Here’s a look at what I hope to accomplish this coming Monday: Theme (from the text book) – God Creates the World My BIG Idea:¬†We Care¬†for God‚Äôs Gift of Creation ENGAGE STEP (10-15 min) As the students arrive, I will greet them at the door and hand them a worksheet that invites them to identify the names of some famous beautiful¬†locations […]

The 4 Pillars of Our Faith: Prayer

This week, I’m featuring short excerpts from my book, A Well-Built Faith, focusing on the 4 pillars of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Here’s a brief look at the fourth pillar: Prayer. A survey conducted years ago asked people in successful marriages to identify the top ten qualities of a healthy marriage. One might think that sex, given all the attention it is given in our culture, would have been the number one quality. […]

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