Resources for Parish and Catechetical Leaders
Here are some models of family catechesis happening around the country. Combinations of these options are often used to create a well-rounded family catechetical program throughout the year.
- Intergenerational Whole Community Family Catechesis: parents stay together with their children for the entire time, the program lasts for 2 ½ hours and follow the Six (6) Program Design Steps:
Introduction of Theme to Whole Group
In-Depth Learning (Whole Group or Activity Stations
Shared Learning Summary
Explain Home Kit
- Intergenerational Whole Community Family Catechesis (Modified): parents are separated from children for in-depth learning portion
- Catechetical sessions are split: First or last fifteen minutes includes a learning or prayer experience with the parents and the remainder of the class time is in age level grouping with a Catholic parenting/domestic church session for adults who remain
- Flipped Learning: Family learns at home together through an approved curriculum and online program and then gathers with other parish families once a month for faith sharing, worship, service or other “heart” based activity moving learning from just knowledge to knowledge in action
- Multi-Media Family Catechesis: families watch a movie that is age-appropriate, that offers a Catholic moral/theological teaching, showing a short clip/portion of the movie at a time; offer reflection questions for the families to discuss after each movie clip at the parish; end with prayer.
- Family Prayer Celebration: families participate in a Catholic devotion or another Catholic prayer service together e.g. rosary, stations of the cross, Eucharistic adoration; offer some direction before the ritual / prayer experience; offer reflection questions for the families to discuss after the ritual at the parish; give an activity / review sheet to be brought home after the ritual.
- Activity-Centered Family Catechesis: families participate in an arts & craft activity together that offers a Catholic moral/theological teaching and/or practice; start with some or all of the following: hospitality/ prayer/introduction to a theme; offer reflection questions for the families to discuss at the parish and/or home.
- Family Christian Service Project: families participate in a Christian Service project together at or outside the parish; offer reflection questions for the families to discuss after service project is done; give an activity/review sheet to be brought home after the service project is done.
- Family Christian Holiday Celebration: families participate in a Christian Holiday meal or tradition together at the parish; offer reflection questions for the families to discuss after the celebration at the parish; give an activity/review sheet to be brought home after the Holiday celebration.
- Family Pilgrimage: families participate in a pilgrimage together, visiting a holy/sacred site; offer reflection questions for the families to discuss after the pilgrimage; give an activity/review sheet to be brought home after the pilgrimage.
- Family Retreat Day: families participate in a retreat experience together; the retreat day would offer time for prayer, reflection, discussion, community building.
- Children attend a summer intensive 1-2 week religious education program and then attend a family gathering once a month for reinforcement and application of the faith
Resources for Parents
Books and articles:
A Catholic Parent’s Toolbox: Raising Healthy Families in the 21st Century
By Dr. Joseph White
“Catholic Parenting 101: Tips for Building Strong Catholic Families”
Finding God E-Newsletters by Loyola Press