Youth Faith Formation Overview

Youth Faith Formation refers to the religious education programs offered to families with children in Elementary, Middle School, and High School, including those seeking First Holy Communion and Confirmation.

We first learn about God and live according to God’s teachings in our family: “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.” (Catechism of the Catholic Church 2226)

 

YOUTH FAITH FORMATION

Grades 1-8 and First Holy Communion:

The Youth Faith Formation Program is open to all families with children in grades 1-8. For those children who have not received First Holy Communion, the Sacrament Preparation process in the Diocese of Venice takes two years. Thus, a family with children in need of Sacraments participates for two years, with First Holy Communion usually happening in May of the second year. However, faith formation and religious education is an ongoing process throughout our lives, and families should feel free to send their children from grades 1-8 even when it is not a sacrament preparation year.

 

High School and Confirmation Preparation:

The Confirmation preparation program is available to Youth in High School who have received the sacraments of Baptism and First Holy Communion.  Confirmation preparation in the Diocese of Venice is also a two-year process. The student is expected to begin Confirmation studies in 9th grade with the reception of the sacrament in 10th grade. Exceptions may be made on an individual basis for high school students who have missed the sacrament in 10th grade for a variety of reasons.  

Classroom-based:

All faith formation programs for children will meet in the school classrooms. Grades 1-8 will meet on just two Sundays each month, the FIRST and THIRD SUNDAYS from 10:15am-11:45am. In this way families may attend the 9am Mass together and then bring their child(ren) over to the school for class.  Those attending the Spanish language Mass at 12 noon will bring their child(ren) to the school for class and then pick them up at 11:45am in time to attend the 12pm Mass. Our Pastor, Fr. Eduardo, and the catechetical staff with him, invite all families in the religious education program to attend one of these Masses.

Language

While all our catechesis/teaching is performed in English (by Diocesan rule) we recognize the fact that many of our families are bilingual, with parents or guardians speaking and reading primarily Spanish while the children speak and read English. To better include Spanish-speaking parents and guardians in their children’s faith formation process we attempt to choose programs available in both English and Spanish. 

 

PRACTICAL MATTERS

Program Calendar: October tthrough May

Class session days: First and Third Sundays of each Month

Class time: 10:15am-11:45am

 

PARTICIPATION: 50/50 Pledge

We, the parish leaders of St. Andrew Parish, make the following promises to your family: 

(1) We will offer a quality Faith Formation program that is approved by the local bishop and faithful to Church teaching.

(2) We will provide the necessary training for the catechists to carry out their work in our parish.

(3) We will provide opportunities for your family to deepen your Catholic faith by participating in parish life.

(4) Our staff and catechists will live out the Gospel values that our church teaches so we are appropriate models of the faith for the children.

Our family promises the following to the best of our ability: 

(1) We will attend and actively participate, as a family, in Sunday Mass on a regular basis. 

(2) We will attend Sessions, make up any missed sessions (only 2 absences allowed), and support our child(ren)'s faith at home.

(3) We will participate fully and respect the time and efforts of catechists, volunteers and staff. We will also communicate any special needs or circumstances that may affect our child's participation. 

We ask that all families agree to this 50/50 Pledge in their registration.