In a few short weeks, just after Labor Day, we will welcome Ms. Maria Junco as our first Cluster Faith Formation Director. Maria, who is young, eager, and ready, brings a wealth of talents and skills to a critical task in our parishes as we strive to become a missionary Church that evangelizes the society around us as it nourishes its own members. Maria, who is of Colombian descent, is bilingual and bicultural. She has had long and intense experience with young Catholics, particularly through LifeTeen, and has engaged in social work. Maria is ideally situated to help guide our parishes in areas of critical need: nurturing faith among our families and children, building a vibrant Church experience for young people, uniting our many people to form one body in Christ, and reaching out to the many around us who have not discovered the richness of our life in Christ.
Faith Formation For Children and Families
We hope to build upon the good foundations laid over many years by dedicated parish catechists. Take note of two shifts of great importance: A shift towards a family-centered approach. The new norms for catechesis published by our diocese put great emphasis on the formation of children in their faith, rather than on the mere transmission of knowledge. This task calls for an increased participation of parents and families in the formal religious education of their children. We will begin this catechetical year with sessions for parents (on the weekend of Sept. 14,15 ) and hold parent meetings every month. A shift in classes from Sunday mornings to Saturday mornings. Our new parish situation with one parish priest makes the Sunday morning class situation very difficult. We plan to shift to Saturday morning classes for religious education with multiple times available for parent participation.
Have you had experience in teaching young people our Catholic faith or are you interested in becoming a catechist? Now is a great time to have an initial conversation about this very satisfying experience!
In the weeks ahead, we will have much more news about faith formation, particularly about our Confirmation program, Lifeteen, the Catechumenate, and adult opportunities to grow in your faith.