Thursday, June 24, 2021

The Calling of a Catechist

The word vocation and catechist are not always used together.  However, the article cited below explains how serving as a catechist (religious education teacher) is a "calling."  It follows the understanding of Pope Francis who recently elevated the role of catechist as a ministry in the Church. 

Article by Joe Paprocki, Loyola Press webpage

Recruiting and forming catechists is a primary responsibility for catechetical leaders and is an ongoing challenge. You’re not just looking for any warm body but for people with the gifts that enable them to apprentice others into the faith.

With that in mind, I prefer to use the word calling instead of recruiting. We recruit people to perform a function. We call people to live out a vocation! Serving as a catechist is more than simple volunteerism. It is more than performing a function. It is more than filling a slot. It is a vocation: a call from God to serve his Church!

Perhaps this notion of catechists as having a vocation is new to you. In days gone by, we thought of vocations as pertaining to priests and nuns. While that is true, all people have a vocation: a call to live a life of holiness. In addition, some people have vocations to serve the Church in very important ways. Being a catechist is one of them. The Church refers to the vocation of the catechist in the General Directory for Catechesis (#23): “Indeed, efforts must be made to encourage in parishes and Christian communities vocations for catechesis.”

As a catechetical leader, you are not simply recruiting volunteers; you are calling people to a vocation to serve as a catechist. READ MORE HERE

Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Ministry of Catechist Instituted by Pope Francis

INSTITUTING THE MINISTRY OF CATECHIST

APOSTOLIC LETTER
ISSUED "MOTU PROPRIO"
BY THE SUPREME PONTIFF

FRANCIS

1. The ministry of Catechist in the Church is an ancient one. Theologians commonly hold that the first examples are already present in the writings of the New Testament. The service of catechesis may be traced back to those “teachers” mentioned by the Apostle in writing to the community of Corinth: “Some people God has designated in the Church to be, first, apostles; second, prophets; third, teachers; then, mighty deeds; then, gifts of healing, assistance, administration, and varieties of tongues. Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work mighty deeds? Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues? Do all interpret? Strive eagerly for the greatest spiritual gifts. But I shall show you a still more excellent way” (1 Cor 12:28-31). 

Saint Luke begins his Gospel by stating: “I too have decided, after investigating everything accurately anew, to write it down in an orderly sequence for you, most excellent Theophilus, so that you may realize the certainty of the teachings you have received” (Lk 1:3-4). The evangelist seems to be well aware that his writings offer a specific form of instruction that can give firm assurance to those already baptized. The Apostle Paul, for his part, tells the Galatians that: “one who is being instructed in the word should share all good things with his instructor” (Gal 6:6). As is evident, this text provides yet another detail; it speaks of the communion of life as a sign of the fruitfulness of an authentic catechesis.

2. From the beginning, the Christian community was characterized by many different forms of ministry carried out by men and women who, obedient to the working of the Holy Spirit, devoted their lives to the building up of the Church. At times, the charisms that the Spirit constantly pours out on the baptized took on a visible and tangible form of immediate service to the Christian community, one recognized as an indispensable diakonia for the community. The Apostle Paul authoritatively attests to this when he states that “there are different kinds of spiritual gifts but the same Spirit; there are different forms of service but the same Lord; there are different workings but the same God who produces all of them in everyone. To each individual the manifestation of the Spirit is given for some benefit. To one is given through the Spirit the expression of wisdom; to another the expression of knowledge according to the same Spirit; to another faith by the same Spirit; to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit; to another mighty deeds; to another prophecy; to another discernment of spirits; to another varieties of tongues; to another interpretation of tongues. But one and the same Spirit produces all of these, distributing them individually to each person as he wishes” (1 Cor 12:4-11). 

Within the broader charismatic tradition of the New Testament, then, we can see that certain baptized persons exercised the ministry of transmitting in a more organic and stable form related to different situations in life the teaching of the apostles and evangelists (cf. SECOND VATICAN ECUMENICAL COUNCIL, Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation Dei Verbum, 8). The Church wished to acknowledge this service as a concrete expression of a personal charism that contributed greatly to the exercise of her mission of evangelization. This glance at the life of the first Christian communities engaged in the spread of the Gospel also encourages the Church in our day to appreciate possible new ways for her to remain faithful to the word of the Lord so that his Gospel can be preached to every creature.

Continue reading....





Monday, March 15, 2021

Year of St. Joseph Resources


 In this Year of St. Joseph, here some free resources that you can use in your catechetical programs: 

St. Joseph Catechesis.   

Reach out to Sister Marla Marie if you need assistance with developing a catechesis on Saint Joseph. (contact: maronitereligioused@gmail.com)

  

Join the Meeting with Patriarch Rai March 27




Friday, March 12, 2021

Syriac Maronite Themes in Passion Week



Father Aaron Sandbothe, pastor of St. George Maronite Church in Uniontown, PA presents on Syriac Themes in Passion Week.  You can access the series on this link.  These workshops are an excellent resource for catechist or adult on-going formation.  

Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Maronite Saints Coloring Pages

 

These coloring pages are designed for grades K-2 to teach the life of saints in the Maronite calendar. 
Parents and catechists are encourage to print them and use them on the feast of each particular saint or 
throughout the catechetical year.