Catechesis of the Good Shepherd
This Fall we plan to offer Catechesis of the Good Shepherd to the preschoolers in our Mother’s Day Out program and hope the next year to open it up to 3–6-year-olds during regular Faith Formation classes, and eventually to ages 2-12.
The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd is a hands-on, Montessori-based method of religious instruction that leads children to fall in love with the Good Shepherd Jesus Christ and His Church. The CGS classroom or “Atrium” is carefully prepared environment crafted just for the children to encounter the love of Jesus Christ and beauty of His Church. Instead of mostly reading out of a textbook as in most religious instruction methods, children learn to listen the Word in Holy Scripture, then they prayerfully work with specially crafted materials which to help them enter into the precious mysteries of our faith, such as the Incarnation, the Paschal Mystery and the Kingdom of God.
In a way they can understand, children encounter the personal love of the God for them, and learn how to cultivate a close relationship Him, learning that our response to and dialogue with Him is prayer.
A special focus is given to understanding the Holy Liturgy. We will have miniature versions of the altar, tabernacle, articles of the Mass, and priestly vestments, so through hands-on learning children will discover the beauty and meaning behind our Church’s Sacred Mysteries. Children will realize the gift of Eucharist, in which the Good Shepherd lays down his life for them. This understanding leads to more reverence and active participation in our Liturgies and the Mass, and a deeper love for the riches of our Catholic Faith.
Most of the materials for the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd must be handmade, many of wood, which is quite expensive right now. We also need to purchase child-sized tables, chairs, and shelves. We’re asking for donations to help us make this special program a reality for the little ones of our parish. During the weekend of July 17-18, 2021, after Mass at each exit there will be volunteers accepting donations and and a table in the plaza with some examples of the materials used in Catechesis of the Good Shepherd and more information. You may also drop off or mail donations to our Church Front Office.
To learn more about the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd, go to www.cgsusa.org.
Thank you and God bless you!