Presentation on theme: "Vision of Lifelong Faith Formation"— Presentation transcript:
1 Vision of Lifelong Faith Formation Models for Parish ProgrammingDiocese of Buffalo
2 Vision of Lifelong Faith Formation . . . encourage a living, explicit and fruitful profession of faith. . . put people not only in touch, but also in communion and intimacy, with Jesus Christ (GDC)The object of catechesis is communion with Jesus Christ. Catechesis leads people to enter the mystery of Christ, to encounter him, and to discover themselves and the meaning of their lives in him. (NDC)
3 Vision of Lifelong Faith Formation Faith is a gift destined to grow in the hearts of believers. Adhering to Jesus Christ, in fact, sets in motion a process of continuing conversion, which lasts for the whole of life.(GDC)
4 Vision of Lifelong Faith Formation . . . the main task of handing on the faith is the whole community’s task, carried out as members of the community gather together to sustain each other, go out and witness to, and even work to transform (when appropriate) the world in the name of Jesus, the Christ.(Terrence Tilley, “Communication in Handing on the Faith”)
5 Part 1 Vision of Lifelong Faith Formation How can we provide faith formation across the whole lifespan?Age groups (young children—older adults)FamiliesIntergenerationalAt the parishAt home
6 Vision of Lifelong Faith Formation Integrated & ComprehensiveFormation through participation in the life of the faith communityEducation in Scripture and the Catholic traditionApprenticeship in the Christian lifeIntimate connection with the liturgy and rituals of the ChurchDevelopment of a life of prayerEngagement in actions of justice and service(General Directory for Catechesis 90)
7 Vision of Lifelong Faith Formation Engaging Learning ExperiencesExperientialImage-richMulti-sensoryInteractive and ParticipatoryAppropriate for All Learning StylesApplicable to Real LifeProject-Centered
8 Vision of Lifelong Faith Formation Connected Faith FormationChurch Life & Faith PracticesFaith Formation Home/Family
9 Vision of Lifelong Faith Formation Connected Faith FormationPrepare people for participation in church life—worship, prayer, service, liturgical year, leadership—through faith formation programming.Engage people in church events and incorporate a learning-reflection component.
10 Vision of Lifelong Faith Formation Diversity of Learning FormatsIndependent learningSmall group learningLarge group learningStudy action projects / serviceSpiritual developmentOnline presence
11 Approaches & Models Life-Span Faith Formation thematic faith formation for all agesmilestones faith formationevents-centered intergenerational faith formationfaith formation in Christian practicesFamily and Intergenerational ModelsAge Group Program ModelsInternet & Communication Media
12 Lifelong: Thematic Align Faith Themes across All Age Groups Four Pillars of Catechism1. Creed 2. Sacraments3. Morality 4. PrayerLectionary Cycle of ReadingsChildren’s Textbook Themes
13 Lifelong: ThematicWeekly age-appropriate, learning materials on the Lectionary readingsAges: 3-5, 6-8, 9-11, 12-14, 15-18, AdultWeekly Worship Material: prayers, sermon ideasWeekly Service Materials: faith in action projects
14 Theme eg.: We Believe (Creed) Month: October Lifelong: ThematicTheme eg.: We Believe (Creed) Month: OctoberLearning GroupLearning ModelFamily3-hour family-centered programChildren4-session unit (weekly)Middle School4-week mini-courseTeens2 youth meetingsYoung Adults & Adults4-week faith sharingAdultspresentation
15 Lifelong: Milestones Birth / Baptism Becoming a Parent/ Grandparent Anniversary of BaptismWelcoming Young Children to WorshipEntering “Sunday School”Starting SchoolKids and MoneyBlessing of the BackpacksFirst CommunionReceiving a first Bible
16 Lifelong: Milestones Confirmation Graduation (HS, College) A New Home / ApartmentCareer / First JobEngagementWeddingRetirement or AARP CardTransitionsDeath / Funeral
17 Lifelong: Milestones Family Components Faith Conversations Devotions and PrayerServiceRituals and TraditionsFamily Meal
18 Lifelong: Whole Parish All Ages Intergenerational Approach
19 Lifelong: Whole Parish CharacteristicsInvolvement of all ages in faith formation togetherCurriculum centered in the life of the church: events-centeredPreparation of all generations for participation in Catholic community life, especially Sunday Mass
20 Lifelong: Whole Parish Intergenerational learning: all of the generations learning togetherFormation of the whole family, and especially parents, to create a pattern of family faith sharing and a Catholic way of life at home
21 Lifelong: Whole Parish Core Curriculum for the whole community with intergenerational learning for all agesChurch Year & ScriptureCreedSacramentsMoralityJusticePrayer
23 Lifelong: Whole Parish AdventJesus the MessiahChristmas – EpiphanyDivinity of JesusLentJourney with JesusGood FridayDeath of JesusEaster SeasonResurrectionPentecostMission of the ChristianSunday ReadingsMinistry of JesusIdentity of Christ
24 Lifelong: Whole Parish BaptismCelebrations of Baptism, Baptism of the Lord, Easter SeasonConfirmationCelebration of Confirmation, PentecostEucharistSunday, First Eucharist, Holy Thursday, Corpus ChristiReconciliationLent, Reconciliation ServicesAnointing of the SickCelebration of Sacrament, February Lectionary Readings (Cycle B)MarriageWorld Marriage Day, Holy Family SundayOrdersVocations Day
25 Lifelong: Whole Parish Connecting Faith, Worship, and LifeBased upon the Gospel and the call of Pope Benedict XVI and his predecessors for a new evangelization and stronger catechetical effort, St. Elizabeth of Hungary Parish uses a liturgy-centered, lifelong, and intergenerational approach to Catholic faith formation.The goal is to help and support everyone who wishes to become a better disciple by integrating faith, worship, and life in light of the Gospel. Since this is an ongoing, lifelong task, we invite EVERYONE in the parish to participate. All are welcome!
26 Lifelong: Whole Parish Connecting Faith, Worship, and LifeSeptember: Mass for the 24th Sunday in Ordinary TimeOctober: Mass for the 28th Sunday in Ordinary TimeNovember: Mass for the 32nd Sunday in Ordinary TimeDecember: Mass for the 2nd Sunday of AdventJanuary: Mass for the Baptism of the LordFebruary: Mass for the 1st Sunday of LentMarch: Mass for Palm SundayApril: Mass for the 4th Sunday of EasterMay: Mass for Holy Trinity Sunday
27 Family Faith Formation “. . . in every Christian family the different aspects and functions of the life of the entire Church may be reflected: mission; catechesis; witness; prayer etc. Indeed in the same way as the Church, the family ‘is a place in which the Gospel is transmitted and from which it extends.’ The family as a locus of catechesis has a unique privilege: transmitting the Gospel by rooting it in the context of profound human values. …It is, indeed, a Christian education more witnessed to than taught, more occasional than systematic, more ongoing and daily than structured into periods.”(General Directory for Catechesis, 1997)
28 Family Faith Formation For the good of families and the whole Christian community, the church must provide opportunities to equip homes as centers of faith formation at every stage of life, and this needs to be a primary goal for congregational ministry.Congregations need to make family faith formation one focus of everything they do as a church community.
29 Family Faith Formation The evidence clearly shows that the single most important social influence on the religious and spiritual lives of children and adolescents is their parents.
30 Family Faith Formation “We’ll get what we are.” Most parents most likely will end up getting religiously of their children what they themselves are.The best way to get most youth involved in and serious about their faith communities is to get their parents more involved in and serious about their faith communities.(Christian Smith, Soul Searching)
31 Family Faith Formation Caring ConversationsFamily MealOur GoalFamily Faith PracticeDevotions and PrayerServiceRituals and Traditions
32 Family Faith Formation Utilize church ministries and programming to teach, model, and demonstrate family faith practices, and then provide the resources for families to live the practice at home, e.g., Sunday Worship.
33 Family Faith Formation Involve the whole family in congregational life, programs, and leadership roles.Redesign programs to incorporate family learning.Involve the whole family in worship and leadership roles.
34 Family Faith Formation Offer family learning programs:monthly large group family sessionsfamily workshops on family faith practices, church year seasons, and/or family topicsfamily cluster or small group learning programsfamily-centered lectionary-based programfamily-centered vacation Bible schoolfamily retreats and campsfamily Bible studyfamily-centered sacramental preparation
35 Family Faith Formation Develop family faith formation around lifecycle milestones.Life cycle specific faith formation around life span milestones at home and in the congregation, utilizing daily, seasonal, and yearly practices and traditions.The life span approach creates a partnership between home and parish.
36 Family Faith Formation Offer family service programs & projects.Provide at-home resources for the family faith practices.Use the Internet to resource and connect families.
38 Family Faith Formation Provide parent education, resources, support, and encouragement.Classes, workshops, retreats, and/or support groups to nurture parental faith; to teach parenting skills, ways to share faith at home, etc.Parent-child/teen programmingParent information and resources: print, audio, video, and/or web-based.Parallel parent program to the children and adolescent program.
39 Intergenerational Faith Formation Elements of Intergenerational Learningan all-ages learning experience for the whole assemblyage-appropriate in-depth learning experiences for families with children, adolescents, young adults, and adultsan all-ages contributive learning experience in which each generation teaches the other generationsreflection on the learning experience and interactive group sharing
40 Intergenerational Faith Formation Meal and Community Building (30 minutes)Part 1. Gathering and Prayer (10-15)Part 2. All Ages Learning Experience (20-30)Part 3. In-Depth Learning Experience (75-90)Option 1. Whole GroupOption 2. Age GroupOption 3. Activity CenterPart 4. Sharing Learning Experiences and Home Application (15-20)Part 5. Closing Prayer (5-10)
42 Intergenerational Faith Formation Develop a faith formation curriculum for the whole community using intergenerational faith formation as the primary learning model.Extend a topic or theme being featured in the faith formation program for children or adolescents, to the whole community through intergenerational learning.Replace a topic in the children or adolescent program with intergenerational learning on the same theme.
43 Intergenerational Faith Formation Add intergenerational learning to sacramental preparation and celebrations.Conduct intergenerational faith formation before major church year feasts and seasons, as well as church events.Add intergenerational learning to a vacation Bible school or summer program.Conduct intergenerational learning around justice issues, events, and action projects.Sponsor an intergenerational retreat for the whole community.
44 Age Group Learning Models Models of learning for age groups:Independent learningSmall group learningLarge group learningStudy action projectsSpiritual developmentOnline presence
45 Independent Learning 1. Independent Learning podcasts and audio learningvideo podcasts and video-based learningonline courses & online learning centersparish web site
46 Small Group Learning 2. Small Group Learning discipleship or faith sharing groupsBible study groupstopical study groupspractice-focused groupsspecial interest groupsministry groups
47 Large Group Learning 3. Large Group Learning multi-session courses speaker seriesone-session programround table discussionsparent parallel learningfield tripsworkshopsfilm festivals
48 Study-Action4. Study-Action Projects: combine study, action, and reflectionJustice and service projects: local, national, globalAge groupsFamiliesMulti-generationalChurch ministry/leadership groups
49 Study-Action Engage People in a Variety of Study-Action Projects Local, national, global projectsAge groupsFamiliesMulti-generationalProcessStudy Action ReflectionAction Reflection Study
50 Study-ActionAdd an Action Project to a Learning Program: for Participants, Families or for the Whole ChurchProgram Action ReflectionOption for PoorCreation/EnvironmentDignity of Human LifeRights and ResponsibilitiesPeace
51 Spiritual Development Offer retreat experiences for age groups, families, & intergenerationalInfuse spiritual practices into all program: classes, youth programs, adult programs, meetings, leadership groups
52 Spiritual Development Teach spiritual practices and disciplines (variety of prayer forms and techniques)silence and silent prayercentering prayermeditative prayerpraying with poetry, art, or musicreading and meditating on Bible storiesprayers of praise, confession, petition, intercession, and thanksgiving
53 Spiritual Development When youth leaders practice the presence of God within their ministries, lives are changed (adult and youth).When youth ministries pray and attend to God, there is greater patience, generosity, kindness, self-discipline, hope, joy, and love, as well as other fruits of the Spirit.With regular exposure to spiritual exercises youth began to notice their youth programs felt more centered on God and the spiritual life, and less focused on social and recreational activities.
54 Spiritual Development In evaluating the young people’s experience of silence, solitude, and contemplative prayer, a majority of students within the project expressed a desire for continual growth in prayer and spiritual practice.Young people remarked about the lack of open time and space in their lives and were surprised by the “holy leisure” they encountered in the project’s contemplative retreats and in their youth groups.
55 Spiritual Development Other young people felt affirmed by the diversity of prayer within the Christian tradition and found the different forms of prayer encouraging to their own spiritual growth.There was a widespread desire among youth in our participating churches to integrate spiritual practices into daily life, such as using workout times as times for prayer and meditation, journaling, and setting aside time in the early morning or before bed to practice silent prayer.
56 Internet & Communication online learning courses and activitiesonline small groups, courses, and reading groupsfaith formation resources for individuals and familiessocial networkingdaily Bible study / prayer-of-the-dayaudio and video podcasts of sermons and guest speakers, and links to other sources (iTunes)e-newsletter
59 The Seven Storey Mountain by Thomas Merton The American Catholic ExperienceBiblical Literary FormsThe Gospel of John: The Book Of GloryJesus Christ: Yesterday and TodayLiturgy: A Guide for the PerplexedThe PapacyThe Letters of St. PaulCatholic Prayer: The Lord’s Prayer, the Hail Mary, and the DoxologyThe Creed: We BelieveCore Course: An Introduction to Theology
60 Sacred Space www.SacredSpace.ie We invite you to make a 'Sacred Space' in your day, and spend ten minutes, praying here and now, as you sit at your computer, with the help of on-screen guidance and scripture chosen specially every day
62 ConclusionFor more information about any of the models described in the power point, please contact:Mary Beth Coates, directorDepartment of Lifelong Faith FormationDiocese of BuffaloAcknowledgement: Adventures Project, January 2007; author: John Roberto, Lifelong Faith Associates.