Catechesis of the Good Shepherd
We are excited to announce that the parish will be providing catechetical formation this year through the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd! The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd (CGS) is a unique approach to the Christian formation of young children. It is deeply rooted in the Scripture and the Liturgy of the Church and finds its structure in the educational principles of Maria Montessori. In a prepared environment called "the atrium" the child encounters the essential proclamations of the Christian message through sensorial rich materials, which allow him to engage body and soul in God’s Word and in the Life of the Church. It is a place of prayer and profound joy seeking only to help foster in the child a deep and lifelong relationship with Jesus, the Good Shepherd and His Church. We invite you to learn more about the CGS approach to catechesis here and here.
To enroll your child in a Level 1 atrium (ages 3-6) or a Level 2/3 atrium (ages 6-9 & 9-12), please click the link below. We will offer our atria at John Paul the Great Montessori Academy (JPGMA) on Mondays, 3:30-5:30pm, beginning September 25, and at St Edith Stein School (SES) on Thursdays, 3:30-5:30pm, beginning September 28. (All of our atrium environments are now full. Confirmation class is still open.)
Please note: the Level 2 atrium environment prepares children to receive both the sacraments of Penance and Eucharist.
For older children preparing to receive the sacrament of Confirmation (grades 7 and 8), we are continuing to offer our Scripture-focused Confirmation preparation classes. This will also be on Mondays but from 4:00pm to 6:00pm to allow for WCPS students to attend after school. Confirmation class will begin on Monday, October 16.
We are partnering with our local Catholic academies to offer CGS to our parishioners at a highly reduced rate from what is typically available. The parish is heavily subsidizing the costs. A suggested donation of $75 per child is requested.
CLICK HERE TO ENROLL (please see note above about availability)
Adults who are interested in pursuing CGS training should contact David Wallace, Director of Religious Education, [email protected].
Parents who wish to homeschool their children for catechesis are certainly welcome, even for sacramental preparation years! If you need resources, including books and materials, please contact David Wallace: [email protected].
Catechesis is an education in the faith of children, young people and adults which includes especially the teaching of Christian doctrine imparted, generally speaking, in an organic and systematic way, with a view to initiating the hearers into the fullness of Christian life.
-St John Paul II, Catechesi tradendae 18
Education in the faith by the parents should begin in the child's earliest years. This already happens when family members help one another to grow in faith by the witness of a Christian life in keeping with the Gospel. Family catechesis precedes, accompanies, and enriches other forms of instruction in the faith. Parents have the mission of teaching their children to pray and to discover their vocation as children of God. The parish is the Eucharistic community and the heart of the liturgical life of Christian families; it is a privileged place for the catechesis of children and parents.” (CCC 2226)
Adult Faith Formation
Weekly Bible Study
Come read, study, and pray the Sacred Scriptures with Deacon Rafael Goldsmith. Thursday mornings at 10:00am in Padre Pio Hall.
Director of Religious Education
David has been the director of religious education at St John the Baptist since 2017. He also serves as the business manager and bookkeeper for the parish. Before coming to St John’s, he was the DRE for a decade at another parish in the Arlington Diocese. David received both his BA and MA from Christendom College. He also is an adjunct for the Christendom College Graduate School of Theology and an instructor for the Catholic Education Center’s catechist training courses utilized by the Diocese of Arlington. He lives in Front Royal with his wife and seven children. A Ukrainian Greek-Catholic, he attends SS Joachim and Anna Ukrainian Catholic Church and lives and teaches according to the motto of St John Paul II: “the Church must breathe with her two lungs!” - East and West.