Catechesis is the responsibility of the entire community and is most effective when there is a real partnership between the parish community, the family, and those who serve as catechists in our parish programs.
The Catholic Church is to proclaim the Gospel message in such a way that it may take root in those being catechized and foster conversion to the person and message of Jesus Christ. Catechesis is an essential component of the Church’s mission of evangelization. Its definitive aim is to put people not only in touch, but also in communion and intimacy, with Jesus Christ.” (National Directory for Catechesis #19B) Catechesis echoes the faith of the multicultural Church as it is believed, celebrated, lived and prayed. It is a gradual and lifelong process with Jesus Christ at its center. A Catechist’s vocation is to communicate the Gospel message and the teachings of the Church in a way that connects with the lives and experiences of adults, youth and children and moves them to develop a living, conscious and active faith.
At St. Maria Goretti, we offer a wide range of catechetical programs in English, Spanish, and Vietnamese. We offer sessions starting with children in the first grade all the way through high school, and also for adults who are seeking initiation into or full communion with the Catholic Church (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults).
Our Sacramental preparation program is part of our catechetical program. It is a two-year process that prepares baptized children from 1st grade through high school for the sacraments of Reconciliation and First Eucharist, and Confirmation.
The sacrament of Reconciliation is known by many names including the sacrament of Confession or sacrament of Penance. No matter the name, the sacrament focuses on our need to be healed so that we can experience a restored relationship with God and our neighbor.
At St. Maria Goretti, we ask that your child experience two years of religious education through our parish Catechetical Program prior to celebrating their First Reconciliation. The preparation for this sacrament is separate from the classroom and runs concurrently with your child’s second year of religious education. This program is a family preparation program which culminates with the celebration of your child’s First Reconciliation during our catechetical communal celebration of Reconciliation prior to receiving First Eucharist. Preparation for First Reconciliation is required as part of preparation for First Eucharist.
Preparing for First Eucharist or First Holy Communion is a very special time for your child. At St. Maria Goretti Parish, our sacramental preparation is considered to be a family program and is designed to take place in the midst of the community of the faithful. While teachers give religious instruction for the children, this program is separate from the classroom and involves parent participation. It includes parent enrichment meetings, children’s sessions, family activities, and a home study component for parents and children to work together.
To prepare for First Eucharist at St. Maria Goretti, we ask that your child experience two years of religious education through our parish Catechetical Program prior to celebrating their First Eucharist. The preparation for this sacrament is separate from the classroom and runs concurrently with your child’s second year of religious education. The program culminates with the celebration of your child’s First Eucharist typically during the Easter season.
The RCIA process (Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults) is also offered for children ages 7 – 18 who have not yet been baptized. This is a family program and these classes seek to enrich how we, God’s people, grow as disciples of Jesus Christ.