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Pointing at the bulletin letter's date (link) at left will display it's title.
October 18, 2009

A Message from Our Pastor

    We are beginning our fifth year of Generations of Faith in our Christian Formation program.  It is a good time to review the concept, not only for newer parishioners, but also to refresh the perspective of Christian Formation in the life of the parish and the lives of the parishioners as a whole. 

Traditional CCD classes followed the school model where children attended weekly class sessions usually in the afternoons after school or in the evening.  Parents were responsible to drop off their children and pick them up after classes.  Generations of Faith approaches catechetics in a completely different way:  it is a generational approach.  This approach returns to the parents their prime responsibility of being the religious educators of their children.  Children look up to their parents and elders.  They want to imitate them.  When adults give good example children are more prone to follow.  When parents sit down with their children to teach them about Christian values, they tend to be exemplary parents:  they not only tell children what to do, they do it with them.
    
Such is the generational approach:  parents and children come to the parish church together for presentations seven times per year.  They receive a packet of resources encouraging them to do at least a weekly session together, parents and children, at home.  Not only are children taught the essentials of the faith but adults are challenged to deepen their own faith.  Faith formation is a lifelong process.  We cannot “graduate” as a person of faith.  We must follow Jesus continually over a lifetime.  He wants to engage us individually.  He calls us each by name.  He loves each one of us.  He has saved all of us.  All must listen and follow. Children and adults listen and learn from the Lord and from each other.  The parish is there to help and guide. 

For the youngest of our kindergarten children through their third grade, we have short weekly sessions at each Mass.  Parents are encouraged to go over at least once during the week the handout the children bring home.  From grade 4 through 10 at least one parent is expected to attend all general sessions along with their children who are in those grades.  These sessions last two hours and are presented 7 times per year. Most “classes” take place in the home with the packets given out at the General Sessions.  In other words all parish children do “home-study” along with their parents.  The general sessions are not in any way a substitute for weekly classes.  Parents cannot in any way remove themselves or their children from participation for one or several years for any reason whatsoever.  It is the responsibility of the parish to provide materials and instruction.  It is the responsibility of the parent to follow through. 

Parents are the first and best teachers of their children in the ways of the faith.  Parishes assist and support.  We all take our responsibilities seriously while we are on the way to the kingdom.
                        Father C. Peter Dumont