Making the Ordinary Powerful: A Religious Education Website that Speaks!

Parish religious education websites can be pretty cut-and-dry. But I recently encountered one that speaks on so many levels. Check out this example of a First Grade catechesis page (all of the grades are similarly done).

What I love:

  • The descriptive language about the content and goals of that year of faith formation.
  • Promoting the use of weekly e-mails to parents, so that they can continue the faith formation at home.
  • A downloadable .pdf of the year-long schedule so parents can see the big picture of God’s story of salvation being told to their children! Seeing something like that might spur a parent to realize that he/she desires more faith formation themselves…
  • The invitation to “Please pray for the team members and the people they serve.” This makes the “ordinary” listing of volunteer/staff names an opportunity for prayer. And it demonstrates the reliance on prayer and divine guidance that is so essential to our humble service to our Lord as Christians!
  • The use of a “coordinator” for a larger number of single-grade level catechists…this shows the empowerment of leaders at every level, rather than a wheel-and-spokes model where a program revolves around a pastor or single lay leader. This speaks to the call for all of the baptized…it demonstrates what discipleship can be for those who are uncertain of their call.
  • Most striking, the descriptions of the catechists. These lovely descriptions accomplish a few things. #1 – they help parents see what catechists bring to their ministry…it shows these people are serious! (and it’s not just babysitting…). #2 – the descriptions are subtle recruitment for more catechists…the diversity of calls, motivations, and backgrounds shows that that modern day disciples come from as many walks of life as Jesus’ first disciples did 🙂

Thank you, Christ the King Parish in Ann Arbor, for this new website!

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