Children's Faith Formation

 

Pope Francis spoke with catechists from around the world at a gathering in Rome in 2013. He stated, “So, as I look out at you, I think: Who are catechists? They are people who keep the memory of God alive; they keep it alive in themselves and they are able to revive it in others.” Moms, dads, grandparents, godparents, the catechists, the Pastor, staff and whole community at St. Athanasius are united in this mission. We proclaim the gospel in word and action and make it come to life. This is evangelization, it is found in the Church’s deepest identity. We keep the memory of God alive in ourselves and revive it in the lives of others.

 


Weekly On-site Children's Faith Formation, Preschool - Grade 8

 

 

Children in Preschool through grade 8 are served by a program that meets Monday evenings from 6:30-8:00 PM. Children gather in small classes and are led by volunteer catechists using diocesan-approved texts. Formation includes the presentation of age-appropriate teachings in regard to Jesus, the Church, the Kingdom of God, Morality, Scripture, the Sacraments, and the Trinity. In addition, students participate in opportunities to study and experience prayer styles, serving the parish and the poor. Special events when parents are asked to participate are: Eucharistic Liturgies, Prayer Services, and Family Reconciliation Services. They are included to provide formation and participation in community life.

 

Family Program at Home Faith Formation

 

Children in Preschool through grade 8 are served by a program that meets Monday evenings from 6:30-8:00 PM. Children gather in small classes and are led by volunteer catechists using diocesan-approved texts. Formation includes the presentation of age-appropriate teachings in regard to Jesus, the Church, the Kingdom of God, Morality, Scripture, the Sacraments, and the Trinity. In addition, students participate in opportunities to study and experience prayer styles, serving the parish and the poor. Special events when parents are asked to participate are: Eucharistic Liturgies, Prayer Services, and Family Reconciliation Services. They are included to provide formation and participation in community life.

 

Sacramental Preparation

 

Sacramental preparation programs are offered for all children of the parish. First Communion and First Reconciliation preparation programs normally take place in the second grade—but arrangements can be made for children of other ages. Parents attend preparation meetings and receive workbooks for First Reconciliation and First Eucharist to prepare their children at home, and there is a First Communion retreat. Confirmation preparation takes place during eighth grade and similarly includes components of home/family preparation, classes, and a retreat.

 

RCIA for Children

 

The RCIC At their parent’s request, children who are thinking about becoming Catholic participate in a special children’s version of the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA). Normally these children participate in a few introductory meetings together with their parents and a catechist (and friends or family may also join in). Then, if they wish to continue on to become Catholic, they attend Mass weekly and join in with regular Children’s Faith Formation classes, and enter the Church at the Easter Vigil or other appropriate time. Meeting times are adjusted to fit family schedule. Contact Victor Boerio at 412-931-4624.

 


 

Events and Activities

 

Vacation Bible School

 

Vacation Bible School is offered one week in June for children ages 4 through 3rd grade, and provides an enjoyable approach to Sacred Scripture, through music, storytelling, crafts, games and more. Many older children and teens also enjoy participating as mentors and leaders, along with many volunteer adult leaders.

 

Liturgy of the Word for Children

 

Liturgy of the Word for Children is offered each Sunday at the 9:00 AM Mass. Before the readings begin, an adult leader comes and leads any interested children, ages 3 through second grade, to the Church Hall (downstairs) for a child-friendly presentation of the Gospel, and prayers of the faithful. Parents normally remain in Church, but are welcome to accompany young children who need reassurance.

 

 

 

Faith Formation