Catechetical MethodologyCourse Level: Intermediate

Course Summary

ATTENTION: Only persons in the Archdiocese for Military Services will be accepted into this course.

This course is both instructional and formational in nature, and is intended to provide a comfortable, prayerful, theological, relational and practical approach to catechetical formation for all ministers of catechesis: those who serve as Catholic community catechetical leaders; catechists for adults, young adults, teens, and children; and RCIA coordinators. This course will guide catechetical ministers as they grow in appreciation of their own identity and role as catechists. It will equip them with basic principles and skills for wise choices and effective use of catechetical methods and materials that are consistent with Forming Disciples for the New Evangelization: Archdiocesan Religion Curriculum Guide.

The Church does not have a particular method for transmitting the faith. Rather, she encourages catechists to discern contemporary methods in light of the pedagogy of God and to use with liberty "everything that is true, everything that is noble, everything that is good and pure, everything that we love and honor and everything that can be thought virtuous or worthy of praise"¯ (Phil 4:8). Effective catechists will choose those methods which are not contrary to the Gospel and adapt them to the subjects in the curriculum. Catechetical methodology has the simple objective of education in the faith. It applies the educational sciences and skills of communication to catechesis and inspires the learned to life the faith and share it.

Successful completion of this course earns 2.5 CEU's. Click here for more information about CEU's.

General Course Objectives

  • Explain the identity and role of a catechist
  • Apply the “Six Tasks of Catechesis” (See NDC p 59 ff.; Our Hearts Were Burning Within Us #91-96) to lesson planning based on the Standards and Indicators in the Archdiocesan Religion Curriculum Guide
  • Incorporate into lesson planning the principles and various adaptations of five core methodologies: the person of the catechist, storytelling, critical thinking, art and environment, and service
  • Integrate prayer and scripture into catechetical lesson plans
  • Create lesson plans based on specific Standards and Indicators and incorporate selected methods adapted to a specific age group

Course Materials

  • Required Book: USCCB National Directory for Catechesis USCCB Publishing, 2005 ISBN: 1574554433

Course Structure and Highlights

  • Week 1: The Person of the Catechist in the Ministry of Catechesis
    • Review the meaning of the “ministry of catechesis”
    • Contemplate Scripture passages that illustrate Jesus’ qualities as a “catechist”
    • Identify qualities of catechists who make their very presence a kind of “methodology” for catechesis
    • Describe the 5 Core Catechetical Methodologies
    • Clarify the source, meaning and use of "key elements, standards and indicators"¯ in relation to Forming Disciples for the New Evangelization: Archdiocesan Religion Curriculum Guide[br]
  • Week 2: Storytelling as a Catechetical Methodology
    • Identify the elements of every good story
    • List and describe adaptations of storytelling; e.g. role playing, dramatic readings, comedy, creative writing, faith-sharing, musicals, parables, myths, etc.
    • Recall Scriptures passages that illustrate Jesus’ use of storytelling as a catechetical methodology
    • Apply the theory of multiple intelligences in lesson planning
    • Explore ways to “tell” stories through various types of media and technology; e.g. Film, TV, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Podcasts, Blogs, etc.
    • Write a lesson plan that incorporates storytelling as a methodology
  • Week 3: Critical Thinking as a Catechetical Methodology
    • Gather a list of variations of critical thinking as a methodology
    • Observe and discuss a given dialogue as a form of critical thinking
    • Recall Scriptures passages that illustrate Jesus’ use of critical thinking as a catechetical methodology
    • Identify different types of questioning that stimulate critical thinking and apply them to catechesis
    • Apply the use of critical thinking in lesson planning
  • Week 4: Art and Envionment as a Catechetical Methodology
    • Review various “multiple intelligences” and give examples of their connection to music, graphic arts, dance, environment, etc.
    • Evaluate the space(s) where you do catechesis in terms of good art and wholesome environment
    • Reflect on the ways Jesus used art and environment in his teaching
    • Incorporate art and environment in a lesson plan
  • Week 5: Service as a Catechetical Methodology
    • Make connections between “service learning” and the seven themes of Catholic Social Teaching
    • Recall Scripture passages that reflect Jesus’ use of service as a catechetical methodology
    • Experience and reflect on the give and take of service to others
    • Incorporate service learning in a lesson plan