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Catechist InitialFormation DayReligious Education Office of the Diocese of Joliet
Welcome …and thank you for answering the call to join the apostolic mission of the Church!Bishop R. DanielConlon
IntroductionsIn your tablegroups:-Name-Parish-Grade/age level
Who Am I ? A little about me, your presenter, and why I am dedicated the ministry of forming catechists…
Overview of the Day Today is an opportunity to:•Discover who you are as a catechist.•Understand your role in relationship toChrist, the Church and your learners.•Observe catechetical methods you canactually take home and use.•Continue your own lifelong faithformation - your best qualification forsharing faith with others.
How will we do this? Presentation Reflection Discussion
Jesus calls the first disciples Luke 5: 1-11; 8: 1-3• How did Jesus get the attention of the disciples?• What allowed the disciples to hear and respond to Jesus’ call?
“ Called…”Your story: How were YOU called to serve as a catechist?
Called by our baptism…• We participate in the life of Christ, connected to the community of believers in all times and places.• We have the privilege of serving others by sharing our faith.• This is how the Church continues from age to age.
Authenticity & theCatechist • You cannot give what you do not have! You must attend to your own spirituality! • Openness to God, the Church & the World • Your life should be an example of faith in ALL things.
The New EvangelizationTerm originated withPope John Paul II . It refers to the need to preach the Gospel in a new way, especially to those who live in a traditionally Christian country and think ofthemselves as Christians, but who in reality have asecular humanist outlook.
Where do we get guidancetoday to form people infaith? General Directory for Catechesis (1997) – for the world (from Rome) National Directory for Catechesis (2005) – for the United States (from the US Catholic Bishops)
The Goal of allCatechesis: "The definitive aim of catechesis is to put people not only in touch, but also in communion and intimacy, with Jesus Christ". (GDC #80)
The Six Tasks of CatechesisFrom the NDC:1.Promoting knowledge of the faith2.Liturgical formation3.Moral formation4.Teaching to pray5.Education for community life6.Missionary initiation
The GDC & the NDC call catechists to…• RECEIVE our learners “They are special gifts given to us” – we walk with them.• PROCLAIM just like Jesus “that God is alive and active in the world• ALLOW the person to encounter God - we are the facilitators: the Holy Spirit is responsible. We do not make faith happen.
The catechetical times have been a-changing… Home madeJust the facts Experience God is love! Curriculum Curriculu m& Experienc e196 197 198 199 200 TODAY0 0 0 0 0CCD Religious Education FaithFormation
Why is Catechesis more difficult today? In the past, our work at the parish with children & youth was supported by: 1. Family 2. Community 3. Culture That support is virtually gone today !
The Challenge of CultureUSE ANY MEANS FROM THE CULTUREto reach those you catechize: Use “media, audio, video, the printed word, computers all the gifts of technology” and any other resource or means of communication (NDC)… from the culture of thelearners – not just fromyour own comfort zone!
A Word about Methodology What do people remember the most? Lecture (5%) Reading (10%) Audiovisual (20%) Demonstration (30%) Discussion Groups (50%) Practice by Doing (75%)Teaching Others & Immediate Use of Learning (90%) (Joseph White, PhD)
Where do we get the content ofwhat we teach? Scripture, Tradition, Church teaching – interpreted in: • Catechism of the Catholic Church – 1997. • Approved textbooks – in Conformity with the Catechism – USCCB list. • Diocese of Joliet Faith Formation Curriculum & Standards - 2005
NEXT: ROLES OF TODAY’s CATECHIST • Teacher-Companion • Leader of Prayer • Storyteller • Witness for Catholic Social Justice
Use Different Types of Prayer Prayer may be Vocal Meditative Contemplative It may consist of Blessing /Adoration Petition /Intercession Praise Thanksgiving It may use Scripture, music, gesture, ritual, symbol and silence
A note on prayer with children & youthPray at their appropriatelevel of understandingInvolve the students inplanning prayer experiencesWhen possible, use experiencesthat speak to the culture of thestudents
Peace Prayer Peace before us Peace behind us Peace under our feet Peace within us Peace over us Let all around us be peace (additional verses: Love… Christ…)
Using Your Own StoriesStories from reallife can always beused to illustrate afaith concept.These witness tohow God is activein everyday things.
Scripture: Story of God’s LoveDon’t be afraid of Scripture. The Bibleis quite simply the story of how Godloved his people from Creation until thetime the Bible was assembled into theversion we have today.
Yes, Virginia, there is a CATHOLIC Bible!Catholic Bibles have more books than aProtestant Bible. We include the “Apocryphal”books, removed by Martin Luther.Best Bible to use in faith formation class isthe New American Bible (NAB), the one wehear at Mass, or if the reading level is toodifficult, be sure the title page says it is aCatholic version.For younger students, a good Bible storybookis appropriate.
How Scripture was WrittenGod is the AUTHORof all Scripture, butthere were humanwriters, who lived in aculture at a particulartime and place andwere talking to aparticular audience ina context that ishelpful to understand.
Catholic Interpretation of ScriptureCatholics are NOT “fundamentalists” – theBible text is never the only place to look forhelp in understanding it. A good CatholicBible has FOOTNOTES that refer to otherplaces besides the Bible itself.Catholics use history, scientific &archaeological evidence, culture studies,studies of literary form and a variety ofinterpretative techniques. We also look at howthe scripture has been used in the Church forclues to a passage’s meaning.
Context forCatholic Social Justice • The Beatitudes • The Ten Commandments • The Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy
The Works of Mercy• Feed the hungry • Admonish the sinner• Give drink to the thirsty Instruct the ignorant •• Clothe the naked • Counsel the doubtful• Visit the imprisoned • Comfort the sorrowful• Shelter the homeless • Bear wrongs patiently• Visit the sick • Forgive all injuries• Bury the dead “ Corporal Works of Mercy” • Pray for the living & the
What We Learned: A Catechist is…A teacher, a companion – like Jesus during hisministry on earth.A leader of prayer who helps others connectwith God through good leadership andmeaningful ritual.A storyteller, able to recognize where God actsin his/her life and tell others so they can look forsigns of God in their own lives… whounderstands how to read Scripture in a Catholicway.Always, a witness of justice, peace & mercy inour world.
How you can allow theSpirit to work in yourclassroom…Ask questions that invite reflectionTell Lots of faith stories, use images,examples and creative activitiesEncourage learners to “look andsee” for themselvesInvite learners to make decisions to livetheir faith
In Your Folder . . . • Resources & small gifts • Catechist formation & certification • Evaluation – please complete! • Pick up your Catechist’s Record of Formation • Create your online portfolio; enter 4 hours under Ongoing Formation (only 2 more hours needed this year!)