9/5/12 | 614 views
Document Addresses ‘Catechetical Leader in the Third Millennium’
The Bishops of New York State along with the state Council of Diocesan Directors of Religious Education have collaborated on a new document, “The Catechetical Leader in the Third Millennium,” highlighting the importance of catechetical leadership in transmitting the faith in today’s world.
The new document will be introduced Thursday, Sept. 27, at a daylong meeting of pastors and catechetical leaders with the state’s bishops at Immaculate Conception Center in Douglaston, Queens.
Cardinal Dolan, in a letter of invitation to pastors and catechetical leaders, said the new document “underscores the role of catechesis at the heart of evangelization and the crucial importance of professionally prepared catechetical leaders of children, youth and adults.”
“The very vitality of our parishes is dependent on the quality of the catechesis we offer,” the cardinal added, “not just to children and youth, but also to adults, many of whom have a sketchy understanding of the faith and are in danger of slipping away, taking their children and the future of parish life with them.”
The document identifies five areas, along with doctrine and tradition, in which catechetical leaders must display proficiency. They are: evangelization, the changing parish landscape, the family, cultural realities and technology.
“We think it’s a landmark document,” said Sister Joan Curtin, C.N.D., director of the archdiocesan Catechetical Office, in an interview with CNY.
“It will set the vision for the catechetical leaders in the diocese and within the State of New York for the next few decades.”
An accompanying document, titled “Comprehensive Plan for the Formation of Catechetical Leaders for the Third Millennium,” is divided into four sections: The Formation of the Catechetical Leader, Leadership Qualities and Management Skills, Implementing the Vision, as presented in “The Catechetical Leader in the Third Millennium,” and Sustaining the Vision.
The documents were developed after a meeting Cardinal Dolan had with the state diocesan directors of religious education two years ago.
Working closely with the diocesan directors in writing “The Catechetical Leader in the Third Millennium” were Bishop Terry LaValley of Ogdensburg and Auxiliary Bishop Frank Caggiano of Brooklyn, both of whom will speak about the document at the Sept. 27 meeting. The day will begin with Mass celebrated by Cardinal Dolan and include an afternoon session on evangelization led by Bishop Richard Malone of Buffalo.
The new text is intended as a complement to the 1998 document, “The Catechist in the Third Millennium.” The introduction to “The Catechetical Leader in the Third Millennium” states, “The Church in New York State, having journeyed already one decade in this century, needs a renewed commitment to the call, recruitment, formation and affirmation of women and men of faith as parish catechetical leaders.”
Other catechetical events this fall include the celebration of Catechetical Sunday in parishes of the archdiocese on Sept. 16. The theme of the national observance this year is “Catechists and Teachers as Agents of the New Evangelization.”
In celebration of the Year of Faith, an Adult Faith Formation and Evangelization Forum called “Light the Fire of Faith!” will be offered on Saturday, Nov. 10, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Cathedral High School in Manhattan. The keynote speaker will be Bill Huebsch, executive director of Pastoral Planning.com. A clergy workshop will be moderated by Father John Hurley, C.S.P., executive director of the Department of Evangelization in the Archdiocese of Baltimore.
Workshops will be offered by Word on Fire Ministries, Little Rock Scripture Study, Renew International, the Society of St. Paul and others. The forum is a collaboration of the Catechetical Office, the Adult Faith Formation Office and the Lay Ecclesial Movements in the archdiocese. Information, beginning on Sept. 17: nyfaithformation.org.
Forum 2012, the annual Catechetical Forum for catechetical leaders and catechists in the archdiocese, will be offered for those in the upper counties at Sacred Heart parish in Monroe on Saturday, Oct. 13, and for those in New York City and the lower counties at Cardinal Spellman High School in the Bronx on Saturday, Oct. 20. The day runs from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at both venues. Cost: $25, or groups of five for $100. Information: (845) 292-9100.
On Wednesday, Sept. 26, Father Richard Gill will lead a retreat day for Catholic teachers in public schools on the theme “Jesus Our Brother.” The day, which runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., takes place at Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers Center in Ossining. Cost: $25. Information: Helen Doon, (646) 794-2822 or Helen.Doon@archny.org.
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