Ahhh…August! It’s the time when those who direct school-year catechetical programs are scrambling for catechists, dealing with late registrations and making sure that textbooks and supplies are ready. So where does formation of those new catechists fit in?
We may wonder how we can ask more of catechists who are already giving so much. Yet formation is essential; it increases both confidence and competence in sharing the good news. It indicates to catechists—and to the parish at large—that their role is important enough to require training and that they’re committed to doing their important task well.
With shrinking diocesan and parish staffs, the challenge of forming catechists increases for the parish catechetical leader. Catechists are busy people, as are we all these days, and need opportunities for formation that they can fit into their lives. Many are making use of online courses, such as those offered through the University of Dayton’s Virtual Learning Community for Faith Formation
Others may turn to a classic video series by Gaynell Cronin, one of the most respected pioneers in catechetics, to assist in this effort. In groups at the parish or at home alone, catechists have much to learn from Gaynell’s timeless wisdom. Catechist Training
is a collection of seven practical, inspiring and faith-infused training sessions. I’ve selected a short clip from the session “Discovering Faith” to share with you (RealMedia
| Windows Media
). Work these training sessions into your own catechist-formation efforts or simply send the DVDs home with catechists to view on their own. Either way, you’ll be supporting their formation as catechists and as adult persons of faith.
May you enjoy God’s guidance as you work to recruit, form and support your volunteer catechists!