Preparing Hearts and Minds Strategy 2: Introduce Jesus as Someone You Can Trust

As we continue our summer series, Preparing Hearts and Minds: 9 Simple Ways for Catechists to Cultivate a Living Faith (based on my new book of the same name), we explore establishing a climate of trust. Strategy #2: Introduce Jesus as someone you can trust. Advertisements seek to gain your trust. The goal is to convince you that your money will be well-spent on whatever product or service is being sold. In a similar way, […]

Accompaniment Requires Trust

One of the key phrases in our current conversations about evangelization and discipleship is what Pope Francis has described as the art of accompaniment. To accompany someone is to walk along with that person on his or her journey. It is important to recognize, however, that a prerequisite to accompaniment is trust! If someone is going to allow us to walk with him or her on the journey, that person needs to know, first and […]

Don’t Chase God; Be Caught Instead

This reflection is part of the Spirituality of the Catechist Online Retreat. Craig, Janice, and their two young daughters could always be counted on to participate in parish family life programs. By all accounts Craig was the super-Catholic dad: a humble man of faith; a role model for other dads. After a particularly long afternoon of family-ministry activities, I noticed Craig sitting in a far corner of the church lawn. I wandered over, sat beside […]

The Spirituality of the Catechist: An Openness to God (Online Retreat Week 2)

Welcome back to the Spirituality of the Catechist, our online retreat. This week we’ll look at the first characteristic of our spirituality: An Openness to God. Thank you for posting your introductions last week as we began our retreat. Your stories were very inspiring, and they helped to form a sense of community among us retreatants. If you’re just joining us, you can read the overview and introductions here (Feel free to add your own!) […]

Three Lessons Catechists Can Learn from St. Joseph

St. Francis of Assisi is often attributed as saying, “Preach the Gospel at all times. If necessary, use words.” This quote is very fitting for the life of another saint whose actions spoke louder than his words: St. Joseph, the foster-father of Jesus. In fact, St. Joseph does not say one word in the Gospels. Yet he speaks volumes. What can catechists learn from the life of this holy man? 1. Silence We tend to […]

According to Your Word

In the life of a parish, there are going to be good days and bad days. The good days include sacramental events such as First Communions and Confirmations. Bad days might force us to deal with troubled children, angry parents, or upset pastors. If we want to celebrate the good things and rise above the negative, the Virgin Mary might be an example for us to pattern ourselves after. Throughout her life, Mary no doubt […]

Session 6: October 22, 2013 – When We Don’t Trust God, We Face Consequences (Adam & Eve; Cain & Abel)

Here is my plan for this evening’s session. I will have 60 minutes to teach before we take the kids to church for the Rosary in honor of the Month of the Holy Rosary. Big Idea: When We Stop Trusting God, We Face Consequences (Adam and Eve; Cain & Abel) Preliminaries: (15 mins)  As students enter, have them work immediately on coloring their Creation Drawings from last week. Allow 10 mins total and then share and collect. Opening […]

Trust Me!

In my ongoing efforts to teach according to a principle set forth by St. Ignatius of Loyola—”When teaching, enter through their door, but be sure to leave through your door”—I have found a couple of cute video clips that fourth graders should be able to relate to as a way of introducing the concept of trust and how God can be trusted because he kept his promise of salvation. The first is the Geico insurance […]

God’s Plan of Salvation

Here’s what I’m planning right now for my class this coming Monday, September 27, 2010. Theme: God’s Plan of Salvation Big Idea: God, our Rock, can be trusted because he kept his promise. Although God gave us the wonderful gift of Creation, we sinned against him and one another. The story of Adam and Eve describes how this happened. Despite our sin, God promised to save us from sin and he kept his promise by sending […]

1 2