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Best Practices in Adult Faith Formation. - Diocese of Pittsburgh

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BEST PRACTICES FOR ADULT FAITH FORMATIONTable of ContentsIntroductionList of AbbreviationsADULT LEARNER Helpful Tips for Effective Parish Faith Formation Multiple Intelligences across the Life Cycle How Adults Learn Shared Christian Praxis Inclusion of ALL Adults Wisdom from Our Hearts Were Burning Within Us Concrete Approaches to Adult Faith Formation ChartCURRENT BEST PRACTICES (Six tasks of Adult Faith Formation) Task One —Promote knowledge of the faith Task two — Promote knowledge of the meaning of the liturgy and the sacraments Task three—Promote moral formation in Jesus Christ Task four— Teach the Christian how to pray with Christ Task five — Prepare the Christian to live in community and to participate activelyin the life and mission of Church Task six — Promote a missionary spirit that prepares the faithful to be present asChristians in societyVARIOUS SETTING FOR ADULT FAITH FORMATION Couples Preparing for Marriage Divorced or Separated Families Married Couples Older Adults Parents Single Adults Young AdultsRESOURCES Learning Media Center Church Documents Adult Faith Formation Subject Areas Catholic Publishers Periodic Resources Online Resources Houses of Prayer Retreat CentersArt by Anne Kertz Kernion


SECRETARY FOR CATHOLIC EDUCATIONDIOCESE OF PITTSBURGH www.diopitt.org 111 BOULEVARD OF THE ALLIESPITTSBURGH, PA 15222(412) 456-3100 FAX: (412) 456-3101E-MAIL: kstubna@diopitt.orgDear Colleagues in Catholic Education,January 2011In his first pastoral letter to the Church of Pittsburgh, Bishop David Zubik challengedeach of us to do our part to make the Church of Pittsburgh the Church Alive!Adult Faith Formation “is perhaps the greatest challenge we face in our Church. Because ofthe several generations who have not received a good understanding of the faith, the Churchmust look toward many innovative ways to welcome a better understanding of the Church forthose who have not received such a good formation.”As catechetical leaders we realize that so many Catholic adults today have not moved beyondthe faith formation they received as young adolescents. In their pastoral statement on adult faithformation, Our Hearts Were Burning Within Us, the U.S. bishops remind us of the importance ofgrowing in faith and discipleship throughout our lives, and call each of us as members of the Churchto a “renewed commitment to adult faith formation.” “Lifelong (faith) formation…must be apriority in the church’s catechetical ministry; moreover, it must be considered the chief form ofcatechesis.”In response to the bishops’ document and especially to Bishop Zubik’s challenge to all themembers of the Diocese of Pittsburgh, I am pleased to provide for you this catechetical resource,Best Practices in Adult Faith Formation. I trust that you will find this Best Practices resource to be avaluable tool in your ministry with adults.Catechetical leaders from many parishes across our diocese have generously shared programsand materials that have been successful in bringing adults to a rich and full understanding of thebeautiful gift of faith that has been passed down through the ages. We are grateful for theircontribution and hope that others will find these materials useful.I am especially grateful to the Department for Religious Education and to Mrs. MaureenWood, director of the Office for Adult and Family Formation, for her efforts in bringing this manualto fruition. Our plan is to continue to add ideas and materials to this manual that others have foundhelpful in forming adults in the faith, thus enabling the Church Alive to become a reality in ourdiocese.As always, thank you for your dedication to this catechetical ministry and all that you do tobring others to a deeper love of Christ and his Church.With every best wish and prayer, I remain,Sincerely in Christ,Reverend Kris D. Stubna, S.T.D.Secretary for Catholic Education


DIOCESE OF PITTSBURGHSECRETARIAT FOR CATHOLIC EDUCATIONOffice for Adult and Family Faith FormationDEPARTMENT FOR RELIGIOUS EDUCATIONwww.diopitt.org111 BOULEVARD OF THE ALLIESPITTSBURGH, PA 15222(412) 456-3160 FAX (412) 456-3113Dear Colleague in Adult Faith Formation Ministry,I am happy to present to you the Best Practices for Adult Faith Formation for the Diocese ofPittsburgh. This is truly a labor of love that has been in the works for quite a while. It was begun by mypredecessor in the Office for Adult Faith Formation, Christopher Chapman. When he was assigned to otherduties and I became the director of the Office for Adult and Family Faith Formation, this was one of the firsttasks on my list.After much discussion, prayer and discernment, it was decided to structure this resource after the sixtasks of Adult Faith Formation content as outlined in Our Hearts Were Burning Within Us, the Pastoral Planfor Adult Faith Formation in the United States. Thus, Knowledge of the Faith, Liturgical Life, MoralFormation, Prayer, Communal Life and Missionary Spirit are fundamental aspects of Christian life andfoundational content areas for adult faith formation programs and opportunities. The responses that weregathered are organized around these content areas.It is our hope that this will be a growing, dynamic document, not static. If you have other ideas to add,we’d love to hear from you. We hope this is just the beginning of a sharing that will move us all into greaterstrides with adults learning and living the faith. This is surely an important element of Bishop Zubik’s visionof the Church Alive, in which we read:Adult Faith Formation. This is perhaps the greatest challenge we face in our church. Because of theseveral generations who have not received a good understanding of the faith, the Church must looktoward many innovative ways to welcome a better understanding of the Church for those whohave not received such a good formation…There must be an appropriate investment of resources toallow for well established adult faith programs. The end result of such an effort will truly be “theChurch Alive!” (no. 97)This resource could never have materialized without the assistance of my dedicated committeemembers. I owe a huge debt of gratitude to Andy Beckman, Barb McCarthy, Joe Killian, Marie Milburn, andGary Slifkey. They hung in there through our many meetings and multiple revisions of this document. I alsoowe a great debt of gratitude to Kathi Probo for her invaluable contributions and to Debbie Andrulonis andMary Locante for their skillful typing assistance. I am especially grateful to all those wonderful parishministers who contributed their best practices for inclusion in this resource. It is our hope that these pages willbring you many practical, helpful suggestions that can be duplicated or even better, act as a springboard foryour own creativity.I wish you God’s blessings as you continue to grow in the love of the Lord and to share that love withother adults in your faith community.Maureen Wood, DirectorOffice for Adult and Family Faith Formation


AbbreviationsUSCCAAGBACACLCLCSCTDVFAAGDCLGLTMNDCOHWBRMRTVSCSDLUnited States Catholic Catechism for AdultsDecree on the Church’s Missionary Activity (Ad Gentes Divinitus)Blessings of AgeThe Church AliveThe Church LivingThe Vocation and Mission of the Lay Faithful in the Church and in theWorld (Christifideles Laici)The Church SharingOn Catechesis in Our Time (Catechesi Tradendae)Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation (Dei Verbum)From Age to Age: The Challenge of Worship with AdolescentsGeneral Directory for CatechesisDogmatic Constitution on the Church (Lumen Gentium)Living the Mass: How One Hour Can Change Your LifeNational Directory for CatecheticsOur Hearts Were Burning Within Us: A Pastoral Plan for Adult FaithFormation in the United StatesOn the Permanent Validity of the Church’s Missionary Mandate(Redemptoris Missio)Renewing the VisionConstitution on the Sacred Liturgy (Sacrosanctum Concilium)Sons and Daughters of the Light


Multiple Intelligences across the LifecyclePeople learn in different ways. As a catechist, the more senses you engage in your teaching, the moresenses you will make and the better your students will learn and remember. Such experiential and interactivemethods often prevent or preclude discipline problems as well. Some people learn best by seeing, othershearing, others smelling, others touching, and others tasting. The combination and engagement of all thesesenses increases retention and facilitates effective learning.Another good teaching rule of thumb highlights effective progression of activities. Tell, show, do, andreview This pattern in training another to do something applies to all learning. Introduce or tell students aboutsomething, demonstrate it, let them practice, demonstrate it themselves, and evaluate with them what theyhave done.Another formula associated with Christian education is hook, look, book, took. This describes ateaching method of introducing something in a very attention-getting way (hook), applying this to our ownlives (look), finding Scripture that speaks to the topic (book), and making something to synthesize theleaning experience which one can take with them (took).Of the various theories on leaning styles, Howard Gardner's theory of Multiple Intelligences addsnew depth to leaning style particularities. He cites nine intelligences which reflect various aspects ofintelligence. 9• Linguistic intelligence, which includes the abilities to read and write• Logical-mathematical intelligence, which exercises capability in solving problems and reasoning• Spatial intelligence which engages the capacity visualize, create, draw, and design in threedimensions Musical intelligence, which helps one to learn through song, music, and/or instruments• Kinesthetic intelligence, which involves movement, dancing or sports in the learning process• Naturalist intelligence describes a way of leaning which employs experiences in the outdoors orwith the things of nature• Existential intelligence is manifested by a desire and proclivity to ponder the deep and profoundquestions of life• Interpersonal intelligence, the ability to learn from and in communication with one or more otherpeople• Intrapersonal intelligence, used personal reflection to learnThe theory is that people learn best in various ways, and this varies from person to person, perhapseven to a degree from culture to culture. These intelligences are not exhaustive, there are likely many more.The task of the catechist is to mix up one's methods in order to include learning activities which appeal to avariety of different intelligences in lesson planning. This applies across the life cycle, with children, youth,and adults.9 Gardner, Howard, Frames of Mind. (New York: Basic Books, 1993)


How Adults LearnIn working with adults it is important to remember that they bring a unique set of needs and contributions to alearning environment.• Adults prefer self direction; they are “take charge learners.”• Individual experiences of adult learners are a rich resource for learning. Participants can often aid andsupplement the facilitator and class learning.• Adults are aware of their learning needs generated by real experiences such as marriage or divorce,parenting, a new job, losing a job, and other transitional events. Adult learners’ needs and interestsserve well as starting points for learning.• Adults want to learn practical skills or acquire knowledge that they can apply directly to their lives.Life or work-related situations present a more appropriate framework for adult learning than academicor theoretical approaches.Suggested Resources:Stankard, Bernadette T., How Each Child Learns: Using Multiple Intelligence in Faith Formation, Twenty-Third Publications, Mystic, CT, 2003.Lowe, Edmunds, C., K., M. Murray and A. Seymour, The Ultimate Educator, National Victim AssistanceAcademy (Advanced), Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Justice, Office for Victims of Crime, 1999.


WISDOM FROM OUR HEARTS WERE BURNING WITHIN US:A Pastoral Plan for Adult Faith Formation in the United StatesAdult faith is clearly and explicitly rooted in a personal relationship with Jesus lived in the Christiancommunity. “The Christian faith is, above all, conversion to Jesus Christ, full and sincere adherence to hisperson and the decision to walk in his footsteps.” 4 Our understanding of the person and the away of Jesuscontinues to grow by our meditation on the word of God, by prayer and sacrament, by our efforts to followJesus’ example, and by the sure guidance of the Church’s teaching.” 5Through intimacy with Jesus, a maturing adult faith opens people to a deepening relationship with andan “explicit confession of the Trinity.” 6 Authentic Christian faith is “radically Trinitarian,” 7 and “the wholeChristian life is a communion with each of the divine persons.” 8Adult faith is explicitly connected to the life, teaching, and mission of the Church. As adults mature, asearching faith leads them to examine their lives, their world, and their faith more profoundly. In this quest,they enter into dialogue with the gospel message as professed by the teaching of the Church and lived by thepeople of God. Through this dialogical process they come not only to know, but to make the faith their own.They acquire that “ecclesial consciousness, which is ever mindful of what it means to be members of theChurch of Jesus Christ, participants in her mystery of communion and in her dynamism in mission and theapostolate.” 9Adult faith is confident because it is founded on the word of God 10 and confirmed by the wholeChurch’s supernatural sense of the faith. 11 The adult disciple seeks the clarity and knowledge of faith, so as tofind and accept it “with all joy and peace in believing” (Rom 15:13). Out of this conviction come thewillingness and ability to witness to the Christian faith whenever possible, to explain it whenever necessary,and to be confidently guided by it always.“The most valuable gift that the Church can offer to the bewildered and restless world of our time is toform within it Christians who are confirmed in what is essential and who are humble joyful in their faith.” 12The more this happens, the more it helps us create a climate of mutual esteem, reverence, and harmony” in theChurch and learn to “acknowledge all legitimate4 GDC, no. 53; cf. CT, no. 5b; cf. CCC, nos.422-429.5 Cf. Second Vatican Council, Dei Verbum: Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation (DV), no. 8. In Vatican Council II: TheConciliar and Post Conciliar Documents: New Revised Edition, ed. Austin Flannery (Northport, N.Y.: Costello Publishing Co.,1992); CCC, no. 94.6 GDC, no. 82.7 GDC, no. 99.8 CCC, no. 259; cf. CT, no. 5.9 John Paul II, Christifideles Laici: The Vocation and the Mission of the Lay Faithful in the Church and in the World, no. 64(Washington, D.C.: United States Catholic Conference, 1988).10 CCC, no. 157; cf. 1 Thes 2:13.11 LG, no. 12.12 CT, no. 61.


diversity….For the ties which unite the faithful together are stronger than those which separate them: let therebe unity in what is doubtful, and charity in everything.” 13The adult disciple enjoys the fruits of the Spirit which are “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness,generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control” (Gal 5:22-23). Mature faith is open to the action and powerof God’s Spirit and cannot remain idle or unproductive. Where the Spirit is active, faith is fruitful.Adult faith bears the fruit of justice and compassion through active outreach to those in need.Recognizing also the connection of personal sins and social consequences, they pray and work both forpersonal conversion and for systemic change and social transformation that will serve the common good and,ultimately, the realization of God’s reign of justice and peace “on earth as in heaven” (Mt 6:10).Adult faith bears the fruit of evangelization. While fully respecting the religious freedom and choiceof others, the adult disciple bears witness in the world to the gift of faith and to the treasure we have found inJesus and among the community of his disciples. In this process, the witness of the word is essential, but aliving witness in the service of love and justice speaks with special power today.These are some of the characteristics of mature adult faith. But it is essential to remember also thatsalvation is not the fruit of our innate gifts, our adult competence, or our achievements. Mature faithrecognizes that, however great or modest our competence or accomplishments, God’s favor is always a giftand a grace. “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not from you; it is the gift of God”(Eph 2:8).13 GS, no. 92; cf. John Paul II, “Eight Address of His Holiness Pope John Paul II to the Bishops of the United States during Their AdLimina Visits,” Ad Limina Addresses: The Addresses of His Holiness Pope John Paul II to the Bishops of the United States duringTheir Ad Limina Visits; March 5-December 9, 1988 (Washington, D.C.: United States Catholic Conference, 1988); John XXIII,Ad Petri Cathedram (On Truth, Unity and Peace), 1959.


FIRST TASKPROMOTE KNOWLEDGE OF THE FAITHSECOND TASKAdult Education ClassesAdult Formation ClassesAdult Lecture & Discussion SeriesAdvent/Lent Guest SpeakerAwakening FaithBible StudyBook Discussion GroupCatechesis of the Good ShepherdCreed - Basic Catechist Certificate Programfor Diocese of PittsburghLighthouse Catholic MediaLighthouse CD’sLittle Rock Scripture StudyParish Book RacksPastor’s ForumQuestion of the WeekSpiritual ReflectionsThe Faith Connection Email NewsletterWomen GatheredPROMOTE KNOWLEDGE OF THE MEANING OFTHE LITURGY AND THE SACRAMENTS,ESPECIALLY THE EUCHARISTAnointing of the SickBaptism PreparationEucharistic AdorationFocus on the LiturgyForty Hours DevotionMini-CatechesisMinistry WorkshopsRCIASacraments - Basic Catechist Certificate Programfor Diocese of PittsburghSunday Liturgy PrepTelevised MassesTour of Church


THIRD TASKPROMOTE MORAL FORMATION IN CHRIST,LEADING TO WITNESS IN EVERYDAY LIFEFair Trade Work of Human Hands SaleMarch for LifeMorality - Basic Catechist Certificate Programfor Diocese of PittsburghMovie NightPilgrimage to Rachel Weeping Memorial Calvary CemeterySocial Justice Speaker SeriesTheology of MoviesFOURTH TASKTEACH CHRISTIANS HOW TO PRAY IN CHRISTAnnual Retreats for Men/WomenCentering PrayerExperiential Stations of the CrossIgnatian Parish Prayer ProgramLectio DivinaLiving RosaryNovenasParish PilgrimagePowerful Pray-ers


FIFTH TASKPREPARE CHRISTIANS TO LIVE IN COMMUNITYAND PARTICIPATE IN THE CHURCH’S MISSIONCaregiver BreakfastCatholic ConversationsLet the Little Children Come to MeMartha and Joseph MinistryMen’s BreakfastMiddle MomsParish Pastoral Council FormationDiocese of PittsburghReflection BookletService Outreach to Homeless Women’s ShelterSt. John Neumann NightWelcome BreakfastWomen Wisdom & WineSIXTH TASKPREPARE THE FAITHFUL TO BE PRESENT INSOCIETYS CHRISTIANS WHO ARE ABLE ANDWILLING TO BEAR WITNESS TO THEIR FAITH INWORDS AND DEEDSBereavement Support GroupComfort Blanket MinistryDay of ReflectionFocus on OutreachFuneral Liturgy PlanningFuneral Luncheon CommitteeHealth Ministry Exercise ProgramH.O.P.E – Helping Others Seek EmploymentMissions OutreachPrison Ministry


First TaskKnowledge of the Faith 14(CCC nos. 26-1065, GDC nos. 84-85, 87)• Bring people to know, love, and obey Jesus Christ as the definitive aim of all catechesis.• Explore the Scriptures so that adults may be hearers and doers of the word.• Become familiar with the great teachings of Christianity (its creeds and doctrines) and their place inthe priority of truths—for example, “the mystery of God and the Trinity, Christ, the Church, thesacraments, human life and ethical principles, and other contemporary themes in religion andmorality”.• Study the Church’s teaching on the dignity of the human person in its social doctrine, including itsrespect-life teaching.• Learn the richness of the Church’s tradition and understand church history.• Develop the philosophical and theological foundations of the faith.• Learn the meaning and practical relevance of current church teachings as presented by the pope,diocesan bishop, Vatican congregations, and the National Conference of Catholic Bishops.14 OHWB no. 91


First Task of Adult Faith Formation: To promote knowledge of the faithThe initial proclamation of the Gospel introduces the hearers to Christ for the first time and invites conversionto him. By the action of the Holy Spirit, such an encounter engenders in the hearers a desire to know aboutChrist, his life, and the content of his message. Catechesis responds to this desire by giving the believersknowledge of the content of God's self-revelation, which is found in Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition,and by introducing them to the meaning of the Creed. Creeds and doctrinal formulas that state the Church'sbelief are expressions of the Church's living tradition, which from the time of the apostles has developed "inthe Church with the help of the Holy Spirit." DVNational Directory for CatechesisYoung AdultsIn their pastoral plan for young adults, the U.S. bishops state that the objective for parishes is "to helpyoung adults appreciate the teachings and traditions of the Church through catechesis, religious educationand pastoral care. " SDLA successful young adult ministry employs a number of strategies to reach this age group. SDLThey include:• Offering a variety of programs such as evening presentations, discussion groups, and Theology onTap.• Form Scripture study groups.• Provide information and catechetical resources through the use of technology such as emailand the Internet.• Prepare young adults who have not received their First Communion or Confirmationthrough an effective RCIA program.• Use marriage preparation to educate and connect young adults with the Church.• Provide annual retreat opportunities for young adults throughout the Diocese.AdultsA mature adult faith is one that is living, explicit and fruitful. OHWB A living faith grows anddevelops as the Christian matures and learns new things. It is a faith that seeks to understand more andgrow more in union with Christ. This is why the Church has declared on many occasions that theBaptismal Catechumenate is to be the model for all catechesis, especially that of adults. OHWB An explicitfaith is rooted in Christ, radically Trinitarian in nature, and closely linked to the Church. A fruitful faith isreflected in works of mercy and justice. It bears witness to the faith through appropriate efforts toevangelize. It acknowledges that God's favor and promise of salvation are always gifts that cannot beearned.


There are countless ways to promote knowledge of the faith in adults. Some of the more popular are:• Classes on doctrine, sacraments, Church history, and Scripture• Scripture study groups• Bulletin inserts and website articles• Online learning and distance learning• Small faith communities• Membership in such groups as RENEW, the Christian Family Movement, or Marriage Encounter• Lecture series by expertsSenior AdultsSenior adults may be in particular need of an "updating" in the truths of the faith. Many Catholicsend their formal education in the faith following the reception of the Sacrament of Confirmation and,thus, have an incomplete understanding of what Catholics believe. This may be especially true inCatholic moral teaching in areas of rapid technological change, such as stem-cell research, reproductivemethods, and end-of-life issues.As the U.S. bishops have noted, senior adults often are looked upon as recipients of pastoral carerather than as providers of care and active members of the parish community. BA But as they also note, manyseniors have the time and the interest to attend Bible study groups and other adult faith formation efforts.Parish staffs should take care to schedule such efforts during the daytime-when seniors are more likely toattend-and to combine catechetical efforts with time for socializing.


Adult Education ClassesDescriptionThis is the 8 th year for this program that is growing in attendance. It is taught by Dr. William Switala, a retiredtheology professor from Duquesne University. The classes are on Church history and Scripture. There is aclass in the fall and in the late winter or spring each year. Topics have included Early Church History,Protestant Reformation, Justice and Rights (related to Church Encyclicals), American Church History,Pittsburgh Church History, Introduction to the Old Testament, Introduction to New Testament, Writings ofSt. Paul, Four Major Prophets, to name a few.ObjectiveTo provide a continuing education program for adults in the parish.Who Should/Can AttendAny interested adultsTime FrameThe 4-6 sessions per class are held from 6:30-8:00 p.m.Suggestions/CommentsThe sessions run concurrently with the CCD classes to encourage parents to attend while their children are inclass.Contact: Dr. William SwitalaParish: St. Gabriel of the Sorrowful VirginPhone: 412-884-5910Email: switalaw@yahoo.com


Adult Formation ClassesDescriptionWe have offered a variety of classes at St Benedict. Our pastor taught a class on Church history. Hehas also taught “The Bible as Theology”, which was in response to a class be taught at Peters Twp.High School, “The Bible as Literature.” But we were innovative in offering a class on “Cooking andthe Council” where we learned about the results of the Second Vatican Council, and then went into thekitchen and cooked. We had between 15-20 people and everyone took part in either setting the table,preparing the ingredients, or cooking the food…which we all ate afterwards.ObjectiveTo bring members of the parish together to grow in their faith.To experience “communion” over a communal meal.Who Should/Can AttendAdultsCostWe had a “good will offering” basket which covered the cost.Suggestions/CommentsAdult formation in the form of classes can be tough. Most of the classes started out with between 30-50 people but dwindled with each session. The only class that didn’t was Cooking and the Councilwhere we had 15-20 each time.Contact: Jay SpecaParish: St. Benedict the Abbot ChurchPhone: 724-941-9406 Ext 114Email: Speca@stbenedicttheabbot.org


Adult Lecture & Discussion SeriesDescriptionA regularly scheduled (once a month/every other month) series of lectures covering a broad range of topics onthe history, doctrines and teachings of the Church. The sessions are meant to be a combination of lecture by asubject expert and discussion time as adults prefer to process information interactively.ObjectiveTo generate enthusiasm for ongoing catechesis of adults in the parish.To increase knowledge and understanding of all aspects of the Catholic faith.To build community in the parish around the gathering times of the sessions.Who Should/Can AttendAll adults who desire to increase knowledge of the Catholic faith.Time FrameApproximately two hours, although individual sessions can be done as successive sessions over a period oftime if greater coverage of a topic is desired.CostStipend/mileage is paid for speaker/presenter. Cost of printing flyers if applicable (sample flyer attached).Suggestions/CommentsConsistency is key so that participants become used to attending sessions on a regular basis. Parishioners canbe an excellent source of speakers and the best promoters of the program, although some due diligence iswise.Contact: Joe KillianParish: St. Alexis - WexfordPhone: 724 935-0877Email: dre@stalexis.org


Advent/Lent Guest SpeakerDescriptionOn Wednesday evenings during Advent and Lent, Our Lady of Grace has a special 7:00 p.m. evening Mass.Once during Advent and once during Lent, this Mass is followed by an adult faith formation program with aguest speaker. Topics are connected to the season. The program begins at 7:30 p.m. with a brief welcome,opening prayer and introduction of the speaker, followed by the speaker’s presentation lasting 30 to 45minutes. Around 8:15 we break for light refreshments and fellowship for 10 to 20 minutes. Then wereconvene so that the speaker can take questions. The program concludes around 9:00 p.m., but people arewelcome to stay and continue socializing. If the speaker has books or materials to share or sell, we encouragethem to do so, and if necessary, we find a volunteer to help manage this. We may conclude by passing out aprayer connected to the evening’s reflection and praying this together.ObjectiveTo help parishioners enter more deeply into the celebration of the seasons of Advent and Lent.To help parishioners grow in their spiritual lives and understanding of the faith.Who Should/Can AttendAdults and families.Time FrameAbout 2 hoursCost$100.00 to $250.00 speaker fee, plus the cost of refreshments, which can be kept simple.Suggestions/CommentsTake advantage of the connections that you have to local speakers. Advertise as thoroughly as possible withinthe parish and outside the parish. This program combines prayer, fellowship and education, providing a richformation experience. It is a response to the interest that many parishioners have in “going deeper” or “doingsomething extra” during Advent and Lent.Contact: Marie MilburnParish: Our Lady of Grace, Scott TownshipPhone: 412-279-7070Email: m.milburn@olgscott.org


Awakening Faith(Paulist National Catholic Evangelization Assoc. www.pncea.org.)DescriptionThrough essays, scripture and open discussion groups deal with areas of Spirituality, Jesus, the Holy Spirit,the Mass and the church. Meetings foster reflection, prayer, and sharing in a setting of hospitality andacceptance. A speaker or outside leader is suggested to facilitate the sessions.ObjectiveTo invite inactive Catholics to return to the church.Who Should/Can AttendWe invite those who have been away from the church, who still think of themselves as “Catholic”, peoplewho are indifferent or apathetic, who have not had enough “involvement” with the Church to think ofthemselves as “being away”.Time Frame6 sessions, usually conducted weekly for an hour and a half. 4 additional sessions are available to continuethe initial discussion period. Sessions begin with time for hospitality, icebreakers, reflection, discussion,sharing and prayer. Our sessions began with the first week of Lent.CostProgram preview pack $59.95, includes Leader guide, Participant booklet. Individual booklets are availablefor all participants (we chose not to purchase them because of cost). Leader simply copied the essay portionof each session.Suggestions/CommentsWe did an online Webinar to learn more about the program and the expected results. It indicated that even ifyou did it for just 2 people it would be worthwhile. The small group setting was very conducive to opendiscussion. We had at least 6 regular attendees weekly and plan to conduct the additional 4 sessions.Contact: Claire HildenbrandParish: St. Angela Merici ChurchPhone: 412-672-9641Email: st.angela.merici@verizon.net


Bible StudyDescriptionMany forms of Bible Study are offered in different settings. Guest speakers are invited yearly to enhance ourunderstanding of scripture.ObjectiveTo draw individuals closer to Christ through prayer and scripture.To promote a better understanding of the written word.To form community.Who Should/Can AttendAdultsTime Frame1-1/2 hoursSuggestions/CommentsWeekly reflection and study of upcoming Sunday readings or weekly reflection and study of a particular bookor theme in the Bible are two approaches that can be used.Contact: Barb McCarthyParish: St. Ferdinand ChurchPhone: 724 776-1357Email: barb@stferd.org


Book Discussion GroupDescriptionThe group selects a reading list of seven to eight books from a variety of authors, including biographies,autobiographies, essays, summations of church documents, etc., and then meets monthly to informallydiscuss the books, sharing insights, opinions and/or criticisms.ObjectiveTo offer adults the opportunity to grow in their faith, to explore other points of view, and to deepen theirunderstanding of the Church and its doctrine.Who Should/Can AttendAnyone interested in the books being read.Time FrameMonthly from September to April (excluding December).Contact: Lynne AberParish: St. Anne, Castle ShannonPhone: 412-833-3578Email: LAber@dmclaw.com


Catechesis of the Good ShepherdDescriptionCatechesis of the Good Shepherd (CGS) is a model of faith formation based on the Montessori Method whichlays the foundational relationship between the child and Jesus the Good Shepherd. CGS is grounded in thepedagogical method of the Liturgy and the content of the Holy Bible. It is a developmental approach, withthree levels: Level I for ages 3-6, Level II, for ages 6-9, and Level III for ages 9-12. One cannot be acatechist for this method unless one completes 90 hours for Level I, 90 hours for Level II and 200 hours forLevel III with a formation leader who is certified from the National Association of the Catechesis of the GoodShepherd.ObjectiveTo offer a process for adults/older teens to be certified in working with CGS Level I children ages 3-6 in aLevel I Atrium.To learn to “listen to God with children”.To grow further in our personal relationship with God.Who Should/Can AttendAny older teen or adult who wishes to grow in their relationship with God.Any teen or adult who works with children ages 3-6.Definitely every parent and grandparent!Time Frame90 hours for Level I. Courses are offered in various models in a retreat setting: 2 week-long sessions,one day/month throughout the year, 4 segments of 3-day clusters, or other options determined by theformation leader and hosting parish.CostVaries depending on formation leader and location, between $300 - $1,000 per course.Suggestions/CommentsOver 8 parishes in the Pittsburgh. area offer CGS for children. So far, St. John Neumann and St Kilianhave been sponsoring CGS formation courses.Call Celine at Saint Kilian Parish if you would like to host or attend a “Come and See” information session tobe introduced to CGS.Contact:Parish:Phone:EmailCeline MitchellSaint Kilian Parish412-600-7097 (cell phone)cmitchell@saintkilian.org


Creed: The Profession of FaithDescriptionThis is a doctrinal component of basis certification addressing the topics of: God, The Father Almighty,Creator of Heaven and Earth; Jesus, God’s Word Incarnate; Paschal Mystery; Holy Spirit: Revelation of theTrinity; and Church. Formal material regarding Prayer in the Christian Life is also addressed in this course.Both Scripture and prayer are utilized in each lesson.ObjectiveTo ground the catechist in an adult understanding of the faith.To enable the catechist to translate this same faith in appropriate ways to the age/grade level of students he orshe will be teaching.Who Should/Can AttendAll catechists and any interested person.Time Frame15-hour ProgramSuggestions/CommentsSee next two pages for Advanced/Renewal Certification Courses.Cost$30.00Contact: Sharon HachmanParish: Diocese of PittsburghPhone: 412-456-3110Email: shachman@diopitt.org


CREEDChristology: Study of ChristChurch HistoryEcclesiologyEschatology: Study of the Last ThingsMariology: Study of MaryPneumatologyU.S. Catholic Catechism for AdultsAdvanced / Renewal Certification CoursesMay be offered as Enrichment (10 or 15 hours) orWorkshop (3 or 5 hours) onlyMORALITYBeatitudesCommandments & Beatitudes: Laws & InvitationsJourney from Faith to Justice: Social Teaching of the ChurchPresent Day Threats to Human LifeSocial JusticePRAYEREncyclical on the RosaryExperiences of PrayerPrayer, Journey with JesusPraying the PsalmsSCRIPTUREActs of the ApostlesGospel of JohnGospel of MarkGospels for Contemporary ChristiansInfancy NarrativesIntroduction to the Old TestamentKeys to Studying ScriptureLetters of PaulNew Testament for Contemporary ChristiansOld Testament for Contemporary ChristiansPassion NarrativesProphetsSynoptic GospelsTeaching the Parables of JesusThe PentateuchSPIRITUALITYSpiritual FormationSpiritual/Moral Character of the Human PersonThe Transformative Character of SufferingTraditions of Catholic Spirituality


METHODSAdvanced MethodsChildren's LiturgyCreative TeachingCreative Teaching for Catholic School TeachersGifts and Fruits of the Holy SpiritGrowing in Faith: Stages of DevelopmentHow to Use a Catechetical TextbookHow to Use MediaIntroduction to Sign LanguageLiturgical Seasons: Advent, Christmas, EpiphanyLiturgical Seasons: Lent, Easter, PentecostMaintaining a Peaceful ClassroomMethods for Teaching SacramentsMethods: Special Needs InclusionMiddle School MinistryMotivation/EnthusiasmPittsburgh SaintsSacramental Preparation: Sacraments of Initiation, Healing, ServiceSaints for Advent, Christmas, EpiphanySaints for Lent, Easter, PentecostSaints for Ordinary TimeScripture & Prayer (intermediate grades)Scripture & Prayer (primary & intermediate grades)SACRAMENTSIntroduction to Christian Ritual and WorshipPreparation for ConfirmationPreparation for Eucharist (Includes Reconciliation)Sacraments of Initiation & PoliciesUnderstanding the Sunday Eucharist


Lighthouse Catholic MediaDescriptionLighthouse Catholic Media is a great resource to have available in a parish for continual spiritualdevelopment. Lighthouse Catholic Media CD’s topics include: conversion, evangelization, marriage, familylife, prayer, stewardship, the Church, Pope, sacraments, parenting, the Bible, Mary and the saints, music andmore.Some of the speakers on these CDS include: Matthew Kelly, Dr. Scott Hahn, Archbishop Fulton Sheen, MikeSweeney, Fr. Larry Richards, Mother Teresa, Father Corapi, Jeff Cavins, and more.ObjectiveTo help all to grow closer to our Lord and live lives according to God’s will.Who Should/Can AttendAny can purchase a CD from the Lighthouse display set up in the Parish. CDS are for all: parents, children,teens, young adults, single, married. Everyone who wants to be inspired.Time FrameDepends on which CD or topic is chosen.CostSuggested Donation is $20.00 for a bundle of 7 CDS or $3.00 a CD.Suggestions/CommentsFor additional information visit www.LighthouseCatholicMedia.org or call 847-488-0333Our Lighthouse Manager at Sts. John and Paul Parish is Mark Cotter.Contact:Parish:Phone:Email:Kate BiancoSaints John and Paul Parish724-935-2104 x23kbianco@stsjohnandpaul.org


Lighthouse CD’sDescriptionOur Bible study group subscribes to the Lighthouse CD’s. After we are finished using or listening to them,we label each CD with a tag inviting people to Bible study, and another tag to take home the CD, pass itaround and then return it to the box in the church vestibule for others to use. I will alert the parishionersperiodically in the parish bulletin, as to the CD titles that are in the box. It seems to work well.ObjectiveTo engage the parish in ongoing Bible study.To encourage parishioners to get involved in regular Scripture study.Who Should/Can AttendAll adults.Time FrameVariesContact: Jean M. DiDonato, D.R.E.Parish: St. Cyril of AlexandriaPhone: 412-734-0505Email: stcyrilreled@yahoo.com


Little Rock Scripture Study (LRSS)DescriptionThis Scripture study began in 1974 as a Catholic alternative to evangelical Protestant Bible studies such as theBible Study Fellowship. It has, for many years, been a ministry of the Catholic Diocese of Little Rock inpartnership with Liturgical Press, which provides the materials.There are four elements to a typical study:1) daily personal study20 minutes a day using a Bible, commentary, and study guide2) small-group sharingled by a trained facilitatorgroups of 8-12several types of questions3) wrap-up lectureapprox. 20 minutessums up important themescan be a local speaker, but very good DVDs and CDs are available from LRSS4) conversational prayer—a simple method of shared prayer in four stepsThere is a wide variety of studies available, varying in format and length. See the LRSS website:www.littlerockscripture.org.ObjectiveTo bring people to a greater understanding of the Bible, an awareness of God’s living presence in sacredScripture, and an appreciation of how the Bible can be applied to daily life.Who Should/Can AttendAdults and older teensTime FrameWeekly sessions of about 1½ hours (preceded by a meeting of small group leaders if numbers so require).Suggestions/CommentsCatholics believe that “in sacred Scripture, God speaks through human beings in human fashion” as thefathers of the Second Vatican Council put it (Dei Verbum, #12). The human dimension of the Scriptures waspoorly understood before modern biblical studies. One particular strength of LRSS is that it takes seriouslyboth the divine and human dimensions of the Scriptures by using the insights of recent Catholic biblicalscholarship.Contact: Andrew K. BechmanParish: St. Scholastica, AspinwallPhone: 412-781-0186, Ext. 18Email: andybechman@saintscholastica.com


Parish Book RacksDescriptionOur Lady of Grace has book racks in three different locations around the church, with books from IgnatiusPress. Ignatius has an excellent selection of books on Catholic doctrine, prayer, lives of the saints andreligious art and is the leading publisher of the writings of Pope Benedict XVI. Since we are a bookseller, wereceive a 30% discount on orders of 1-4 books, a 43% discount on orders of 4-24 books, a 45% discount onorders of 25-49 books, and a 47% discount on orders of 50-99 books. Our book racks are managed with thehelp of our St. Vincent de Paul Society. Envelopes are placed within each book with a label listing the priceand instructions to put payment in the envelope and the envelope in the poor box. Profits benefit the St.Vincent de Paul Society. An order of about 50 books is place about four times a year by the Adult FaithFormation Director. When new books arrive, a sale is held in the church hall after each weekend Mass,during which parishioners can purchase any book at a 25% discount. If a book has sat for six months withoutselling, it is returned to Ignatius for a refund; the church is responsible for the cost of shipping.ObjectiveTo make excellent spiritual reading available to the members of our parish, so that they can grown in faith andunderstanding.Who Should/Can AttendMost of the selections are for adults, but some are for children and teenagers.Time FrameBooks are available year round; an effort is made to provide selections that reflect the liturgical seasons.CostBecause of the discount offered by Ignatius Press, the parish makes a small profit from the sale of books,which is given to the St. Vincent de Paul Society.Suggestions/CommentsTo set up an account as a bookseller, contact Ignatius Press: 1-800-360-1714. To view the selection of titlesavailable through Ignatius, visit: www.ignatius.com .Contact: Marie MilburnParish: Our Lady of Grace, Scott TownshipPhone: 412-279-7070Email: m.milburn@olgscott.org


Pastor’s ForumDescriptionFr. Sam Esposito, Pastor of Saint Benedict, writes a weekly forum in our parish bulletin based on the readingsof that Sunday. He relates it to what is going on in our parish as well as in the world.ObjectiveTo provide an additional communication outlet from pastor to parishioner.Who Should/Can AttendEveryone is welcome to take a bulletin or they can subscribe to have the bulletin emailed directly to them.Suggestions/CommentsA lot of parishioners read Fr Sam’s forum. In fact, I have had people tell me that they look forward toreading it.Contact: Jay SpecaParish: St Benedict the Abbot ChurchPhone: 724-941-9406 Ext 114Email: Speca@stbenedicttheabbot.org


Question of the WeekDescriptionFr. Sam Esposito, Pastor of Saint Benedict, invites parishioners to email or send him a question that they mayhave about their faith. He answers one of the questions every week. He will also answer or respond to issuesthat arise in the parish.ObjectiveTo reach our parishioners and give them a means for communicating questions/concerns/ideas.Who Should/Can AttendEveryone is welcome to take a bulletin or they can subscribe to have the bulletin emailed directly to them.Suggestions/CommentsThis has been very successful. People can go to our website and send Fr. Sam an email with a questionanonymously. He gets some very interesting questions.Contact: Jay SpecaParish: St Benedict the Abbot ChurchPhone: 724-941-9406 Ext 114Email: Speca@stbenedicttheabbot.org


Spiritual ReflectionsDescriptionOnce a month a short spiritual reflection is placed in the bulletin along with a question for meditation and aninvitation to take action on a topic of faith formation.Monthly Themes1. Baptismal Covenant.Find out baptismal date and celebrate – pull out pictures, videos and memorabilia.2. Church as Community.Attend parish functions and invite family, friends and neighbors.3. Christian Discipleship.Discover who may need help in your neighborhood and reach out to them.4. Holy Gratitude.Make a list of the ways God has blessed you and create a litany of thanksgiving for your familyprayer.5. Stewardship conversion.Donate to our collections for the homeless.6. Prayerful Living.Sign up on the Prayer Calendar to pray for the parish.7. Grace-Full Living.Examine your life and relationships to see if there is anyone with whom you need to makepeace and then do so either in person, a phone call, a letter or, if not possible, in prayer.8. Sacrificial Giving.Give up something and make a donation of the money saved to charity.9. Christian Worship.Enter into worship fully listening for the Word of God for you.10. Community Outreach.Reach out to those in your family or neighborhood in need of service and volunteerfor one of our ecumenical or parish outreach programs.11. Parish Ministries.Thank those in ministry for their service.12. Parish Vision.Share with us what you would like our parish to be in the future. Write it out and putit in the collection basket.ObjectiveTo utilize the bulletin for faith formation through reflection and response.Who Should/Can AttendThe entire parish.Time FrameOnce a month.Contact:Bernice Dumitru, Pastoral AssociateParish:Church of the ResurrectionPhone: 412-563-5589Email:bernicedumitru@msn.com or bernicedumitru@verizon.net


The Faith Connection Email NewsletterDescriptionThe Faith Connection newsletter, produced by RCL Benziger, is distributed weekly (sample copy attached).This can be done as an email/in regular mail or as a bulletin insert. Included in each week’s edition arevarious reflections/prayers/information/questions on the themes and messages of the Sunday and dailyreadings.ObjectiveTo increase preparedness for the Sunday liturgy.To improve focus on the liturgy/readings throughout the week.To encourage families to develop an ongoing routine of reading and reflecting on the Scriptures.Who Should/Can AttendDistributed to all adults who desire to more deeply prepare for the Sunday liturgy as well as the readings fordaily Masses.Time FrameWeeklyCostBasic Membership is $199 per year.Premium Membership is $249 per year.Suggestions/CommentsSince RCL is our religious text book publisher (Faith First), this resource ties very nicely to the materials thatour students receive in our school and religious education programs. Parish publishers should be consulted forsimilar resources that may be a better fit for the specific parish. An email approach is ideal if the mailing listis well developed and maintained, because it provides access to these very attractive and brightly coloredresources.Contact: Joe KillianParish: St. Alexis - WexfordPhone: 724 935-0877Email: dre@stalexis.org


Women GatheredDescriptionWomen Gathered is a Bible study, reflection and prayer community for women. All women of our parish andbeyond are invited to be a part of this wonderful, prayerful community of women.ObjectiveTo grow as women of faith in a setting of prayer, caring, listening, inspiration and community.Who Should/Can AttendAny woman.Time Frame1-1/2 hours weeklyContact: Barb McCarthyParish: St. Ferdinand ChurchPhone: 724 776-1357Email: barb@stferd.org


Second TaskLiturgical Life 15(CCC nos. 1066-1690, GDC nos. 84-85, 87)• Understand, live and bear witness to the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus, celebrated andcommunicated through the sacramental life of the Church.• Understand church doctrine on the Eucharist and the other sacraments.• Acquire the spirituality, skills and habits of full, conscious, and active participation in the liturgy,especially the Eucharistic liturgy.• Value the dignity and responsibility of our baptism.• Understand the roles of the laity and ordained in liturgical celebrations and Christian mission.• Understand and participate in the Church’s daily prayer, the Liturgy of the Hours; and learn to pray thepsalms, “an essential and permanent element of the prayer of the Church”.15 OHWB, no. 92


Second task of Adult Faith Formation: To promote knowledge of themeaning of the Liturgy and the sacraments.Since Christ is present in the sacraments, SC the believer comes to know Christ in the liturgical celebrations ofthe Church and is drawn into communion with him. Christ's saving action in the Paschal Mystery is celebratedin the sacraments, especially the Eucharist, where the closest communion with Jesus on earth is possible asCatholics are able to receive his living Flesh and his Precious Blood in Holy Communion. Catechesis shouldpromote "an active, conscious genuine participation in the liturgy of the Church, not merely by explaining themeaning of the ceremonies, but also by forming the minds of the faithful for prayer, for thanksgiving, forrepentance, for praying with confidence, for a community spirit, and for understanding correctly the meaningof the creeds."' GDC Sacramental catechesis prepares for the initial celebration of the sacraments and providesenrichment following their reception.National Directory for CatechesisYoung AdultsThe goal at this age is to invite, empower and enable young adults to participate in the life of the Churchthrough worship and sacramental life. FAA Some strategies include:• Encourage homilists to address a wide range of life's issues. FAA• Invite young adults to be liturgical ministers, and provide necessary training. FAA• Provide opportunities for and encourage continued use of the Sunday readings for dailyreflection.• Unite young adults with the prayer of the Church by encouraging them to pray the Liturgy ofthe Hours.• Young adults can be blessed publicly at Mass when joining the parish, moving away, going on tocollege, going to military or mission service, entering seminary or religious life, during pregnancy,at the birth of child, etc. They can also be prayed with and for during times of unemployment.AdultsAdults of all ages can benefit from faith formation efforts to deepen their understanding of, and appreciationfor, the Eucharistic Liturgy and the other Sacraments. Parishes should have a Liturgy Committee comprisingparishioners representing all the different groups in the parish. The pastor and staff can benefit fromhearing the recommendations of the parishioners regarding Liturgy and this is also an excellentopportunity to catechize these parish leaders.Here are some other ideas:• Several times a year, schedule a "Teaching Mass," in which a commentator explains the meaningof the Eucharistic Liturgy. A carefully crafted script here can be a great way to reach a largenumber of people at once. One idea is to focus on the Liturgy of the Word in the fall and theLiturgy of the Eucharist in the spring.• Consider scheduling the Koinonia courses on the Liturgy and the Sacraments of Initiation.


• Promote the special events at the Diocesan Pastoral Centers that focus on Liturgy andSacraments.• Keep a well-stocked parish library that includes books and DVDs that parishioners mayborrow. The Appendix to the Guidelines includes a listing of sources for good catecheticalmaterials.Senior AdultsSeniors often are a neglected group when it comes to liturgical involvement. Every parish can make specialefforts to help them participate fully and enable them to give witness to their lives of faith.• Large print worship aids, good sound systems, accessible Church architecture (ramps, handrails,non-slip flooring) are all signs of welcome for seniors. Consideration can be shown/offered toelders during periods of kneeling or long periods of standing• Older parishioners should continue to be included among the liturgical ministers and be mentors tovarious liturgical ministers. They should be represented on the parish Liturgy committee.• They should be included as "Pray-ers" on behalf of the community; this ministry is available tothe homebound as well as those who are not. (see Ministry of Praise in the Appendix) Seniorsshould also be included as "composers" of the intercessions for Mass and consulted in homilypreparation.• Seniors can make good RCIA sponsors, sponsor couples for marriage preparation, and can be veryactive in sacramental preparation and bereavement ministry.• Elders should be anointed in the community setting-during Mass when possible.• Milestone wedding/religious profession anniversaries (and any wedding/religious professionanniversary yearly after 50!) should be celebrated with blessings during the Sunday Liturgy, withthe parish community. Grandparents and great grand-parents can also be blessed.


Anointing of the SickDescriptionThe Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick is administered after all masses on the third Sunday of the monthat St. Wendelin Parish, Carrick. Anyone who would like to receive the sacrament simply sits in the frontpews. They are anointed on the forehead and hands. This monthly reminder is helpful in making allparishioners aware of the purpose of the sacrament and making it readily available to them.ObjectiveTo make the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick readily available to those who would like to takeadvantage of it.Who Should/Can AttendAny fully initiated Catholic who is suffering from physical, mental or emotional sickness and would like toask for healing.Time Frame10-15 minutesContact: Rev. Ed WichmanParish: St. Wendelin ParishPhone: 412-882-1480


Baptism PreparationDescriptionOur Baptism Preparation is primarily offered every other month at our parish and is facilitated by our BaptismPreparation leaders. The elements of the Baptism preparation program can include: welcome, prayer-Scripture, overview of the sacrament of Baptism, small group discussions, video, Catechesis of the GoodShepherd based Baptism presentation, handouts/resources, guided meditation, letter writing—(we invite thosepresent to take time at this session to write a special letter to their child(ren) soon to be baptized—spiritualmusic is playing in the background during this time—we ask those present to take their letter home and save itto give to their child(ren) years later at Confirmation), closing prayer. Some preparation gatherings alsoinclude the opportunity for the group to gather in the Church to witness and celebrate a Baptism that is takingplace that day.ObjectiveTo lift up this most precious gift of Baptism in the lives of all.To provide an opportunity to come together to listen, to share, to prepare, to discuss, and to enter into thewonder of the richness of this sacrament.Who Should/Can AttendParents/God-parents/child(ren) to be baptized can attend.Time Frame1 to 1 ½ hoursSuggestions/CommentsThis Baptism preparation program was created in collaboration with our Baptism preparation team, and St.Alexis Parish.Contact:Parish:Phone:Email:Kate BiancoSaints John and Paul Parish724-935-2104 x23kbianco@stsjohnandpaul.org


Eucharistic AdorationDescriptionEvery Friday following the 9:00 a.m. Mass parishioners are encouraged to pray and keep watch before theBlessed Sacrament.ObjectiveTo promote prayer and devotion to the Blessed Sacrament.To provide parishioners an opportunity to “come away for a while to a quiet place.”Who Should/Can AttendAnyoneTime Frame9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.Contact: Barb McCarthyParish: St. Ferdinand ChurchPhone: 724 776-1357Email: barb@stferd.org


Focus on the LiturgyDescriptionFor a series of eleven weeks, at the Liturgy we focused on one aspect of the Liturgy and catechized thecongregation through word and action. The homily highlighted the focus. A catechetical teaching on thataspect was included in the bulletin, a visual poster was placed at all entrances as a reminder and a suggestionwas made as to how to incorporate this in daily life.Themes:1. Come let us worship the Lord, with hearts full of kindness, mercy and forgiveness.Focus on the dispositions for coming to worship and the penitential rite.2. Lift up your voice in song. Reach out your hand to greet. Offer your heart in praise, in worship, in love tothe Trinity. “Glory to God in the Highest.” Focus on song and gesture in worship.3. We are called to listen to, learn from, delight in and live the Word of God.Focus on the Liturgy of Word.4. We believe in our Mighty God who hears and answers our prayers.Focus on the Creed and Prayers of the Faithful.5. We celebrate Eucharist with hearts full of Thanksgiving.Focus on the Liturgy of Eucharist as our worship of Thanksgiving.6. What we offer is an act of Worship and continues the mission of the Church.Focus on what we offer to God in the Offertory.7. Christ loved us and gave Himself up for us.Focus on the offering Christ made of Himself and the Eucharistic Prayer.8. Father forgive me as I forgive others.Focus on our family prayer, the Our Father as preparation for Communion.9. Those who take and eat are One Body in Christ.Focus on the Communion Rite.10. God speaks to us in the silence of our hearts.Focus on Liturgy as prayer and the times of silence.11. Take the Word to the nations. Shine the Light of Christ! May the witness of our lives transformthe world anew. Focus on the Rite of Dismissal.ObjectiveTo lead the congregation “to that full, conscious and active participation… called for by the very nature of theliturgy…” by focusing systematically on the various parts, attitudes and movements of the liturgy to heightentheir understanding and awareness of their meaning.Who Should/Can AttendThe worshipping assemblyTime FrameEleven weeks during liturgy.Contact: Bernice DumitruParish: Church of the ResurrectionPhone: 412-563-5589Email: bernicedumitru@msn.com or bernicedumitru@verizon.netSection B


40 Hours DevotionDescriptionThe Blessed Sacrament is exposed for three days and parishioners are encouraged to sign up on the sheetsprovided to spend some time in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament.ObjectiveTo focus on the 40 Hours Devotion as a source of God’s blessings and graces on the parish, the school and allthe families of St Gabriel.Who Should/Can AttendAll are welcome and encouraged to attend.Time FrameMonday 11 a.m. - 4 p.m., Tuesday 10 a.m. -8 p.m., Wednesday 10 a.m. - closingSuggestions/CommentsProvide sign-up sheets to be sure all the time slots are covered.Contact: Fr. John HaneyParish: St. Gabriel of the Sorrowful VirginPhone: 412-881-8115Email: sgabeschurch@yahoo.com


Mini-CatechesisDescriptionAfter Holy Communion invite the congregation to be seated for a brief faith formation session centered on theScriptures of the day not incorporated in the homily, the feast or season of the Church Year, the saint of theday, a point in church history suggested by the Scripture, current events or a timely moral issue.These would be occasional sessions remaining sensitive to the weather, the climate in the church and the civicevents that may be occurring.This could also be planned to create a series on the sacraments, social issues, prayer etc., (in the spirit of theHoly Father’s teachings at the Angelus).ObjectiveTo utilize the liturgy as the primary source of faith formation to maximize the number of adults that arereached.Who Should/Can AttendThe assemblyTime FrameOccasionally during Sunday and weekday liturgies after Holy Communion.Suggestions/CommentsKeep it brief, engaging and informative.Contact: Bernice DumitruParish: Church of the ResurrectionPhone: 412-563-5589Email: bernicedumitru@msn.com or bernicedumitru@verizon.net


Ministry WorkshopsDescriptionWe offer workshops for each liturgical ministry where we explain its history, what it means to be in ministry,our parish’s mission statement and how it is related to their ministry; as well as how they are to perform theirministry.ObjectiveTo evangelize our liturgical ministers and, eventually, the parishioners in the pew.Who Should/Can AttendEach minister should attend their specific workshop.Time Frame1 ½ - 2 hoursSuggestions/CommentsI have received a good response with these workshops. I do follow-up sessions called Prayer and Formationsessions with the liturgical ministers where we faith share, pray, and discuss their ministry. (I have ministersasking when the next session will be). I try to do these 3 times a year for each ministry.Contact: Jay SpecaParish: St Benedict the Abbot ChurchPhone: 724-941-9406 Ext 114Email: Speca@stbenedicttheabbot.org


RCIADescriptionThe RCIA is a process for full initiation with the Catholic faith. It is rooted in forming not a person’sreligion, but their Catholicism as a way of life – affecting all aspects of their life consciously. RCIA is amulti-step, self-paced process. Ministers and leaders serve as educators and coaches offering encouragement,but do not “push” a candidate along the four-step process. The individual discerns their relationship with Godand the Church as they decide to progress toward full initiation. This is facilitated by a process of continualeducation in sacred Scripture and routine sessions in the teaching and doctrine of the Church along with theexperience of the weekly Sunday liturgy. To support those interested in full membership with the CatholicChurch, the RCIA offers instructors who concentrate on Bible teaching, instructors who present topics ofdoctrine and Catholic teaching, sponsors whose responsibility is to accompany a person preparing for fullmembership and integrate them into experiences of the greater Church, and pray-ers whose sole task is tooffer daily prayer for all those in RCIA.ObjectiveTo more closely study and apply the Sunday readings after being dismissed following the homily.To present doctrinal sessions each week following a curriculum built on beliefs of the Church, sacraments andprayer, moral teaching.To discern one’s readiness to become a full member of the Catholic Church.Who Should/Can AttendThe RCIA is oriented toward individuals who have an interest in full membership with The Catholic Church.Full membership is defined as receiving the sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation. Individuals who enterthe RCIA are unbaptized, baptized in another Christian faith tradition, or baptized as a Catholic, but havenever received Confirmation.Time FrameMinimum of one year, however, this process is self-pacedSuggestions/CommentsHave two sets of catechists – one for Sunday Scripture lessons, and one for doctrine lessons – this way aperson can join the RCIA at any time of the year e.g., if someone comes in January, they can begin byattending the Sunday Mass/lesson, but will not start the doctrinal lessons until the following fall.Evangelization – brochures, bulletin announcements, websites. Also create a culture on the staff as childrenregister in the school/religious education, offer information to non-Catholic parents; with clergy when couplescome for marriage, refer non-Catholics to the RCIA; in marriage preparation, offer a short segment on RCIA;put periodic updates in the bulletin about the number of people in the process; offer a “neophyte spotlight” inthe bulletin from a recent initiate telling of their experience of RCIA.Celebrate the rites – meet with the music director and plan the rites as parish celebrations. Educate thecommunity when the rites are and explain each one. Include that information in the prayers of the faithfulregularly, not just during Lent.Contact: Deacon Joe CompomizziParish: Saint Elizabeth of Hungary ParishPhone: 412.882.8744Email: deaconjoe@st-elizabeth.org


Sacraments: Celebration of the Christian MysteriesDescriptionThis is a doctrinal component of basis certification including the topics of: The Sacramental Economy andActions of the Church; The Sacraments of Initiation, Part A: Baptism and Confirmation; The Sacraments ofInitiation, Part B: Eucharist; The Sacraments of Healing; and Sacraments at the Service of Communion.Formal material regarding the Traditional Prayer (Our Father) is addressed during the course. Scripture andprayer are utilized for each lesson.ObjectiveTo address an adult understanding of the faith.Who Should/Can AttendAll catechists and any interested person.Time Frame15-hour ProgramCost$30.00Suggestions/CommentsIt is geared toward all catechists working with any age group cradle to grave; religious education and school,special religious education, youth ministers, catechists for adults (marriage preparation, preparation for infantbaptism) and RCIA catechists.See next two pages for Advanced/Renewal Certification CoursesContact: Sharon HachmanParish: Diocese of PittsburghPhone: 412-456-3110Email: shachman@diopitt.org


CREEDChristology: Study of ChristChurch HistoryEcclesiologyEschatology: Study of the Last ThingsMariology: Study of MaryPneumatologyU.S. Catholic Catechism for AdultsAdvanced / Renewal Certification CoursesMay be offered as Enrichment (10 or 15 hours) orWorkshop (3 or 5 hours) onlyMORALITYBeatitudesCommandments & Beatitudes: Laws & InvitationsJourney from Faith to Justice: Social Teaching of the ChurchPresent Day Threats to Human LifeSocial JusticePRAYEREncyclical on the RosaryExperiences of PrayerPrayer, Journey with JesusPraying the PsalmsSCRIPTUREActs of the ApostlesGospel of JohnGospel of MarkGospels for Contemporary ChristiansInfancy NarrativesIntroduction to the Old TestamentKeys to Studying ScriptureLetters of PaulNew Testament for Contemporary ChristiansOld Testament for Contemporary ChristiansPassion NarrativesProphetsSynoptic GospelsTeaching the Parables of JesusThe PentateuchSPIRITUALITYSpiritual FormationSpiritual/Moral Character of the Human PersonThe Transformative Character of SufferingTraditions of Catholic Spirituality


METHODSAdvanced MethodsChildren's LiturgyCreative TeachingCreative Teaching for Catholic School TeachersGifts and Fruits of the Holy SpiritGrowing in Faith: Stages of DevelopmentHow to Use a Catechetical TextbookHow to Use MediaIntroduction to Sign LanguageLiturgical Seasons: Advent, Christmas, EpiphanyLiturgical Seasons: Lent, Easter, PentecostMaintaining a Peaceful ClassroomMethods for Teaching SacramentsMethods: Special Needs InclusionMiddle School MinistryMotivation/EnthusiasmPittsburgh SaintsSacramental Preparation: Sacraments of Initiation, Healing, ServiceSaints for Advent, Christmas, EpiphanySaints for Lent, Easter, PentecostSaints for Ordinary TimeScripture & Prayer (intermediate grades)Scripture & Prayer (primary & intermediate grades)SACRAMENTSIntroduction to Christian Ritual and WorshipPreparation for ConfirmationPreparation for Eucharist (Includes Reconciliation)Sacraments of Initiation & PoliciesUnderstanding the Sunday Eucharist


Sunday Liturgy PreparationDescriptionThe Formation Office posts Sunday’s Gospel, a commentary, and a question on our website so parishionerscan prepare for Sunday’s liturgy.ObjectiveTo help parishioners be more aware of the Sunday liturgies by reading and thinking about the Gospel aheadof time.Who Should/Can AttendAdultsTime FrameWeeklySuggestions/CommentsThis is new but the number of hits on the website has increased over the last few weeks.Contact: Jay SpecaParish: St Benedict the Abbot ChurchPhone: 724-941-9406 Ext 114Email: Speca@stbenedicttheabbot.org


Televised MassesDescriptionThe diocesan Department for Media and Technology produces the Mass for Shut-ins that cablecasts on thePittsburgh Cable News Channel (PCNC) and The Retro TV Network (RTV) on Sunday mornings at 6:00a.m. Check your local cable system for listings for PCNC and RTN. The department also records andcablecasts certain diocesan events from Saint Paul Cathedral and makes available these videos through theLearning Media Center.The Mass from Saint Paul Cathedral cablecasts on the Christian Associates’ Channel (Comcast Channel 95in the City of Pittsburgh) at 8:15 a.m., Monday through Saturday. On Sunday mornings, the Mass cablecastsat 8:00 a.m.Daily Mass from Saint Mary of Mercy Church is televised on WBGN-TV (check your local cable system) oron the Christian Associates’ Channel (Comcast Channel 95 in the City of Pittsburgh).ObjectiveTo proclaim the Gospel and the teachings of the Catholic Church by using all available forms of mediaincluding the internet and television.Who Should/Can AttendAnyone. It is especially beneficial for shut-ins.Contact: Department for Media and TechnologyParish: Saint Paul Cathedral; Saint Mary of MercyPhone: 412-456-3116Email: lectronicmedia@diopitt.org


Tour of ChurchDescriptionProvide a prepared diagram of the church with clearly marked areas and sacred vessels displayed. (SeeSample from St. Mary, Glenshaw). Provide descriptions of each item in the church. Invite the parent orguardian to do the tour with their children stopping at each numbered area on map diagram to read thedescription to the children.ObjectiveTo provide basic understanding about the sacred space used for worship and devotions unique to ourCatholic faith.Who Should/Can AttendFamilies, catechists, RCIA groups – each at different times for emphasis to the particular group.Time Frame45 minutes: 30 minutes for tour, 15 minutes for questions or observations to be shared.Suggestions/CommentsIt was very helpful to have our sacristan by the main altar to show the altar stone placement as well as speakof the thurible and monstrance since they are not used frequently at this parish.See next page for diagram of the church used for this tour.Contact: Rose StegmanParish: Saint Mary – GlenshawPhone: 412-486-5521Email: stegmanr@stmaryglenshaw.org


Third TaskMoral Formation 16(CCC nos. 1691-2557, GDC nos. 84-85, 87)• Understand how the “entire Law of the Gospel is contained in the ‘new commandment’ of Jesus, tolove one another as he has loved us”.• Study the Ten Commandments, the Beatitudes, and the moral teachings of the Church, and live inaccord with them.• Understand the dignity, destiny, freedom, and responsibility of the human person.• Understand the meaning and nature of sin and the power of God’s grace to overcome it.• Learn how to acquire and follow a well-formed conscience.• Recognize, defend, and live by the truth of objective moral norms as taught by the Church’smagisterium in its moral and social teaching.• Promote a thorough catechesis on the Gospel of life so that respect for life from conception untilnatural death is honored in personal behavior, in public policy, and in the expressed values andattitudes of our society.• Live a lifestyle reflecting scriptural values.16 OHWB no. 93


Third task of Adult Faith Formation: To promote moral formation in JesusChrist.Jesus' moral teaching is an integral part of his message. Catechesis must transmit both the content of Christ'smoral teachings as well as their implications for Christian living. Moral catechesis aims to conform thebeliever to Christ—to bring about personal transformation and conversion. It should encourage the faithful togive witness—both in their private lives and in the public arena—to Christ's teaching in everyday life. Suchtestimony demonstrates the social consequences of the demands of the Gospel. CTNational Directory for CatechesisYoung AdultsAs with all adults, the primary object with young adults is to assist them in forming their consciences so that,throughout their lives, they are prepared to make good moral judgments according to Gospel values. RTVYoung people today need considerable help, support and guidance as they enter into romanticrelationships; move away from home, friends and their faith communities; and enter the workforce.All of the adult faith formation strategies discussed elsewhere in these guidelines are appropriate for helpingyoung adults learn about the moral life. Some specific strategies include: Use the Ten Commandments, Beatitudes, Catholic Social Teaching, and the moral teaching of theChurch as a way of promoting conscience formation. Provide opportunities for pastoral counseling and/or spiritual direction. Influence conscience formation in young adults by lived example. Encourage frequent use of the Sacrament of Reconciliation.AdultsThe U.S. Bishops have identified seven content areas for adult faith formation in the moral life: Understand how the "entire Law of the Gospel is contained in the 'new commandment' of Jesus,to love one another as he has loved us, and promote each disciple's formation in the life of therisen Christ. Study the Ten Commandments, the Beatitudes, and the moral catechesis of the apostolicteachings, and live in accord with them. Appreciate the dignity, destiny, freedom, and responsibility of the human person, together withthe reality of sin and the power of God's grace to overcome it. Learn how to acquire and follow a well-formed conscience in personal and social life, clarifyingcurrent religious and moral questions in the life of faith, and cultivating a Christian discernmentof the ethical implications of developments in the socio-cultural order. Recognize, defend, and live by the truth of objective moral norms as taught by the Church'sMagisterium in its moral and social teaching.


Promote a thorough catechesis on the Gospel of life so that respect for life from conception untilnatural death is honored in personal behavior, in public policy, and in the expressed values andattitudes of our society. Live a lifestyle reflecting scriptural values of holiness, simplicity, and compassion. OHWBBy the time an individual reaches adulthood, he or she will have strong opinions on some moral issuesand ambivalent feelings about others. Most will be unfamiliar with much of Church teaching on moralissues. In particular, adults who stopped their formal formation in the faith early in life will lackunderstanding of the reasons behind Church teaching.Pastoral experience has shown that adults learn best when they are given the opportunity in small groupsto discuss Church teaching on moral issues in light of their own lived experience. They are especiallyinterested in knowing and struggling with the Church's teaching on such "hot button" issues as: Stem-cell research and its possible applications End-of-life issues, including the use of artificial feeding and ventilation Human cloning Human sexuality, including issues surrounding divorce and remarriage "Just war" theology as it applies to the various wars and conflicts in the world todayThe catechist should encourage an atmosphere in which adults are free to express their opinions, evento disagree openly on issues. A stance of respectful listening while challenging the learner to newinsights can be an important tool in conversion of heart and mind. It is useful, too, to have on hand alist of local spiritual directors who can assist the adult who is struggling to live the Gospel life morefully.Senior AdultsLike all adults, seniors will have extensive experience in facing moral issues. In particular, they likelywill have survived the death of a spouse, child or other loved one. They may also have needed to makedifficult decisions regarding medical care and end-of-life issues. Seniors who have faced such difficultissues may be a good resource for others. They can be especially effective in organizing grief groups,family support groups, and other ministries.In his 1999 "Letter to the Elderly," Pope John Paul II "The signs of human frailty which are clearlyconnected with advanced age become a summons to the mutual dependence and indispensable solidaritywhich link the different generations, inasmuch as every person needs others and draws enrichment fromthe gifts and charisms of all." (n. 10)


Fair Trade Work of Human Hands SaleDescriptionA Fair Trade sale provides a market for artisans and farmers in developing countries to sell their products at afair price.ObjectiveTo raise money for the parish or a parish charity. (see cost below)To provide an opportunity to talk about Catholic Social Teaching and Global Solidarity.To provide a great parish community building event.To provide an opportunity for volunteers of all ages to work together.Who Should/Can AttendIt is great to have parishioners attend and/or volunteer but usually sales are also open to the public.Time FrameSales can be one day or over a weekend, with shopping available after weekend Masses. A sale, dependingon size, can be held in conjunction with another parish event.CostDepending on how you do the sale affects cost. At our sale we ask for donations of cookies from volunteers.Then we have fair trade coffee available for people to taste along with the donated cookies. We have adonation basket there and we have usually been able to cover a lot of our cost through those coffee/cookiedonations. In addition, the parish would make between 10%-15% profit on net sales which can be used tocover promotion and shipping costs or support a charity. Sales can be done through Catholic Relief Serviceswww.crs.org/fairtrade or Ten Thousand Villages www.tenthousandvillages.com which is a Mennonite basedorganization. There are also many other fair trade organizations.Suggestions/CommentsOur sale was sponsored by the Justice and Charity Outreach Committee but it could be sponsored by differentparish committees or several together. The focus of a fair trade sale can be expanded to include raisingmoney for or giving out information about other justice issues. Our parish has included BethlehemOliveworks, the River Nile School project that supports one of the Lost Boys of the Sudan and his efforts tobuild a school back in the Sudan, Partners in Progress, a locally based organization that works for sustainablerural development in Haiti and other similar organizations. We have also done this sale in conjunction withneighboring parishes and this is a great way to collaborate across parish lines. It helps with the volunteer poolas well.Contact: Mimi DarraghParish: St. Valentine ParishPhone: 412-831-8312Email: mimidarragh@aol.com


March for LifeDescriptionBeginning with Respect Life Sunday in October, our school children help by having our Birthright andGenesis roses available after all Masses (suggested one dollar donation for our babies and moms). I speak toour students and have information in the bulletin on pro-life activities. We have coffee, juice and doughnutsafter all Masses; pro-life materials are available, and slides are shown in the Family Life Center.The 7 th and 8 th grade and high school students are encouraged to attend the March. At the beginning ofJanuary, we begin talking up the March’s pro-life activities. We take one adult for every five students,although younger children must be with an adult.ObjectiveTo raise awareness about pro-life issues in intergenerational settings.Who Should/Can AttendWe encourage all parishioners and families with childrenTime FrameOur two 48-passenger buses leave after a 5:30 a.m. Mass on January 22 nd and return at midnight.Cost$20 roundtrip, but we never turn anyone away. Many people sponsor a student. We usually break even.Suggestions/CommentsWe also have a Mother’s Day flower sale. On that Sunday I have all the school children help. Proceeds go toour Crisis Pregnancy Centers.Contact: Ms. Carolyn SopherParish: St. Thomas MorePhone: 412-257-0780


Morality: Life in ChristDescriptionThis is a combination of topical material from the Catechism of the Catholic Church and foundationalmaterial for the Catholic Vision of Love. Topics include: Dignity of the Human Person; Created Both Freeand Responsible; the Problem of Personal Evil: Sin; Salvation—the Moral Law, Grace and Justification;Human Community/Social Teaching; and Guidance in the Practice of Love of God and Neighbor.ObjectiveTo provide for catechists and any interested adults good opportunities to be well informed about the faith theywill pass on to their students and children.Who Should/Can AttendAll catechists and any interested person.Time Frame21-hour CourseCost$40.00Suggestions/CommentsThe first six lessons based on an adult understanding of faith draw upon Scripture and prayer and integrateobjectives for the Catholic Vision of Love. The seventh lesson is necessary for those catechists who will beteaching the Catholic Vision of Love Lessons to Grades 5-8 and is option for all other participants. Theseventh lesson covers the Foundational Principles for the Catholic Vision of Love, the student backgroundand the four specific lessons for each grade level 5-8.See next two pages for Advanced/Renewal Certification CoursesContact: Sharon HachmanParish: Diocese of PittsburghPhone: 412-456-3110Email: shachman@diopitt.org


CREEDChristology: Study of ChristChurch HistoryEcclesiologyEschatology: Study of the Last ThingsMariology: Study of MaryPneumatologyU.S. Catholic Catechism for AdultsAdvanced / Renewal Certification CoursesMay be offered as Enrichment (10 or 15 hours) orWorkshop (3 or 5 hours) onlyMORALITYBeatitudesCommandments & Beatitudes: Laws & InvitationsJourney from Faith to Justice: Social Teaching of the ChurchPresent Day Threats to Human LifeSocial JusticePRAYEREncyclical on the RosaryExperiences of PrayerPrayer, Journey with JesusPraying the PsalmsSCRIPTUREActs of the ApostlesGospel of JohnGospel of MarkGospels for Contemporary ChristiansInfancy NarrativesIntroduction to the Old TestamentKeys to Studying ScriptureLetters of PaulNew Testament for Contemporary ChristiansOld Testament for Contemporary ChristiansPassion NarrativesProphetsSynoptic GospelsTeaching the Parables of JesusThe PentateuchSPIRITUALITYSpiritual FormationSpiritual/Moral Character of the Human PersonThe Transformative Character of SufferingTraditions of Catholic Spirituality


METHODSAdvanced MethodsChildren's LiturgyCreative TeachingCreative Teaching for Catholic School TeachersGifts and Fruits of the Holy SpiritGrowing in Faith: Stages of DevelopmentHow to Use a Catechetical TextbookHow to Use MediaIntroduction to Sign LanguageLiturgical Seasons: Advent, Christmas, EpiphanyLiturgical Seasons: Lent, Easter, PentecostMaintaining a Peaceful ClassroomMethods for Teaching SacramentsMethods: Special Needs InclusionMiddle School MinistryMotivation/EnthusiasmPittsburgh SaintsSacramental Preparation: Sacraments of Initiation, Healing, ServiceSaints for Advent, Christmas, EpiphanySaints for Lent, Easter, PentecostSaints for Ordinary TimeScripture & Prayer (intermediate grades)Scripture & Prayer (primary & intermediate grades)SACRAMENTSIntroduction to Christian Ritual and WorshipPreparation for ConfirmationPreparation for Eucharist (Includes Reconciliation)Sacraments of Initiation & PoliciesUnderstanding the Sunday Eucharist


Pilgrimage to the Rachel Weeping Memorialat Calvary CemeteryDescriptionCalvary Cemetery in Hazelwood has a beautiful memorial, Rachel Weeping, for unborn children lost toabortion and their mothers. In front of the memorial in the form of a cross are paving stones inscribed withthe names of children whose mothers have asked for them to be remembered there. In October, a small groupof pilgrims caravanned from Our Lady of Grace to Calvary Cemetery. Our pastor, Fr. Richard Infante,obtained permission to celebrate Mass at the beautiful Our Lady of the Rosary Mausoleum/Chapel, which iswithin walking distance from the Rachel Weeping Memorial. After Mass we prayed a Litany for Life at thememorial. In May, we returned to the memorial and planted flowering trees, shrubs and hosta plants tobeautify the area. Afterward we prayed the Divine Mercy Chaplet.ObjectiveTo make a prayerful journey, employing our bodies, as well as our hearts and minds, to honor the lives ofchildren lost to abortion.To pray for the children, their mothers, and all those suffering on account of abortion.To pray for an end to abortion.Who Should/Can AttendFamilies and single parishioners, including children at their parents’ discretion.Time FrameWe chose to make these pilgrimages on Saturday afternoon. Because of the funeral schedule at CalvaryCemetery, do not plan to arrive before 2:00 p.m. The length of your stay at the memorial will depend on theactivities that you plan.Suggestions/CommentsIf you are interested in planning a similar pilgrimage, contact Sr. Pat at Calvary Cemetery 412-421-9959.Contact: Marie MilburnParish: Our Lady of Grace, Scott TownshipPhone: 412-279-7070Email: m.milburn@olgscott.org


Social Justice Speaker SeriesDescriptionWe had three talks on Sunday afternoons, given by professors from Duquesne’s Theology Department. Thefirst was by a woman who teaches courses on theological ethics – Catholic social thought, the second was byher husband who teaches courses on care of creation, and the third was by the two of them speaking on howthey try to live as a young Catholic couple (with a baby) in today’s world.ObjectiveTo introduce parishioners to the teachings of the Church on social justice.Who Should/Can AttendAdult parishionersTime FrameThis event occurred on Sunday afternoon after our last Mass. The talk was about 45 minutes followed byquestions and a continuation of the discussion over light refreshments.Suggestions/CommentsWe were pleased that such knowledgeable speakers from Duquesne were willing to come to our parish to givethis series.Contact: Barbara MateraParish: Saint John Neumann ParishPhone: 412-366-5885 Ext. 18Email: bfmatera@yahoo.com


Christian Theology of MoviesDescription"What shall we say the kingdom of God is like, and what parable shall we use to describe it?" Mark 4:30Just as Jesus used parables to help the people of his day reflect on God and themselves, many movies (theparables of our time) have underlying theological themes that connect with our faith and with properreflection can help us gain insight into where God is leading us in our own lives. Many times the writers anddirectors themselves unknowingly (but sometimes knowingly) include theological themes of faith, hope,conversion, the dignity of persons, healing, salvation, redemption, freedom, resurrection and forgiveness,among others. Sometimes there are direct scriptural parallels. The idea is for us to start watching filmsthrough a theological lens so that when one of these themes is present it will awaken something in us that says"Ahhhh, that's an image of self-sacrifice!" which reminds us of Christ. Or "That character is involved in aconversion," which might cause us to reflect on our own ongoing conversion. It takes some practice, but it'snot long until we see religious themes popping up in all kinds of movies - even ones that seem far removedfrom religion. Participants will watch the movie and then spend time discussing it using questions prepared bythe facilitator.ObjectiveTo engage in the teaching method of Jesus, using parables, to combine theological ideas with engagingstories.To enable the Church to reenter the surrounding culture, help decode its images interpret its stories and probeits values.Who Should/Can AttendThe focus should be on adults and young adults, though can expect children to show for films like Shrek andFinding Nemo, (excellent movies for this endeavor, by the way). Advertising for the event should include themovie's rating and why it rated like that. Sometimes it is helpful to use the USCCB's rating instead.You'll find a different crowd (but possibly a few of the same people) attending than might sign up for a sixweek course on the Book of Jeremiah.Time Frame2 to 3 hoursSuggestions/CommentsComfortable space, comfortable seating, as big a screen as possible (a video projector shown on a white wallworks fine!), “movie” snacks, etc.A motion picture license is generally needed and highly recommended! Please read the FAQ page of theMotion Picture Licensing Corporation at www.mplc.orgSometimes, making arrangements to show your film at a local theater can complete all of the abovesuggestions.Contact: Deacon Tim KillmeyerParish: Holy TrinityPhone: 412-787-1472Email: timkillmeyer@verizon.net


Christian Theology of MoviesFor various reasons over the years, the church has sometimes tried to separate itself from secular culture,offering its own popular diversions, forcing many spiritual questions to remain in secular discourse.Church attendees, inundated by images from the web, DVDs, TV, advertisements, cable, and movies, findthemselves dividing theological life from perceived life. A separation develops between the ideas about Godon Sundays and the entertaining stories, images, and emotional truths Hollywood provides the rest of theweek. This is why Jesus spoke in parables, combining theological ideas with engaging stories.Images linger in our memories: two dying lovers clasp during the final moments of a Titanic disaster; aKingdom as small as a mustard seed blossoms into beauty; a "True-man" (Truman) adrift at sea shoutsdefiantly at his manipulative Creator; a woman sweeps her home searching for a lost coin; a hollow vestige ofan English teacher trembles at life's horrors while Saving Private Ryan.A well planned Theology of Movies program can help our people see through the surrounding culture, helpdecode its images, interpret its stories, and probe its values. Christian leaders can join the cinematic dialogue,feel its heartbeat, hear its questions, and direct the journey towards spiritual enlightenment.Just as Jesus used parables to help the people of his day reflect on God and themselves, many movies (theparables of our time) have underlying theological themes that connect with our faith and with properreflection can help us gain insight into where God is leading us in our own lives. Sometimes the writers anddirectors themselves unknowingly (but sometimes knowingly) include theological themes of faith, hope,conversion, the dignity of persons, healing, salvation, redemption, freedom, resurrection and forgiveness,among others. The idea is for us to start watching films through a theological lens so that when one of thesethemes is present it will awaken something in us that says "Ahhhh, that's an image of self-sacrifice!" whichreminds of Christ. Or "That character is involved in a conversion," which might cause us to reflect on our ownongoing conversion. It takes some practice, but it's not long until we see religious themes popping up in allkinds of movies - even ones that seem far removed from religion. Have you ever taken a real good look at TheMatrix?How does one go about drawing spiritual analogies from the movies? Like anything else, "sanctifying ourvision" develops over time through practice. There have been a number of books written on the subject anddespite the disheartening mass of Christian publications attacking a film's surface content, a few Christianpublications (and websites) have managed to offer substantive observations regarding the wealth of spiritualimages in the cinema.There are basically two approaches that can be taken: one made possible through movies with obviousreligious subjects (like The Apostle, The Third Miracle, Entertaining Angels, The Dorothy Day Story, orJoshua), and one that involves making metaphorical connections to a movie's narrative. The latter usuallyincludes character types or drama that reflects biblical truths. The triumph of good over evil (Star Wars), awhite clothed redeemer comes down to the once perfect garden (farm) to confront evil taking over the land


and returns riding toward the sky (Shane), the importance of community (Babe ), or the discovery ofunconditional Love (AI – Artificial Intelligence) are good examples. A character type may be a "Christfigure," or someone who comes from outside a community and transforms it for the better, usually in asacrificial nature. (One immediately thinks of movies like One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, The SpitfireGrill, Edward Scissorhands— even Superman.) This isn't meant to imply such a character entails the essenceof Christ or exhibits perfect behavior, but can serve as a striking metaphor for his impact on our world.The point isn't to congratulate ourselves on our ability to make connections and formulate modern parablesout of the cinema, but to help others see how the narratives and themes that appeal to them on a deep level aresymptomatic of spiritual realities. Love, sacrifice, justice, mercy, community, service, equality, and otherthemes are elements of the biblical narrative that are often reflected by good drama. Movies have a structure(setup, confrontation, and resolution) that our episodic lives seem to lack, and therefore show us how our livescan fit into a larger, universal pattern like the metanarrative provided by scripture.In addition, spiritual metaphors (which often highlight "mythic" truths deeply embedded in our culture) don'thave hard and fast rules and there are bound to be many interpretations of any particular film. Take TheTruman Show, for example. One perspective might be that Truman represents Adam and humanity's free willrejection of God, while another might contend that Truman represents humanity saved through redemptivelove and its liberation from a false god, while another might believe Truman is a Christ figure leading the waybeyond the dishonest and broken society around him. None of these views are "right" or "wrong," but serve asmemorable pictures of several theological truths. That the film takes great pains in establishing the creator ofTruman's world as a godly figure is a given, through his control of "nature," through references to "the BigGuy" up above, and through scenes depicting his voice booming down through the clouds. Good theologicaldialogue can arise from the interaction of interpretations, and specific views will often reveal unexpectedtruths about us.Movies can serve as modern parables in the sense that they often convey spiritual truths in basic metaphoricalcontexts. New Testament scholar C. H. Dodd defines a parable as "a metaphor or simile drawn from nature orcommon life, arresting the hearer by its vividness or strangeness, and leaving the mind in sufficient doubtabout its precise application to tease it into active thought." The best films will evoke a similar experience.Parables are often contrasted with allegories (used more frequently in Old Testament books like Daniel)which are mythic stories or events where every detail symbolizes an intentional meaning thereby promoting aseries of messages. Biblical analogies in the movies shouldn't be understood as representing spiritual truths inevery detail, but like parables, should be used as dramatic stimuli with one primary meaning.Here are some suggested questions to ask oneself when approaching a film from a theological standpoint(some films have study guides available on the internet or for purchase in book form):-What are the film's assumptions about God?-What is the central problem (or sin?) that disrupts the initial balance? How is it resolved?-What is the movie's sense of justice? Is everything tied up or are there still some loose ends?-Is there a redeemer, or Christ figure, used in the narrative?-What ethical or moral questions are presented? How is truth perceived?


-What moral or ethical decisions do character's make and how do they affect the overall plot?-How does the film depict Christians, the church, or religious faith in general? (Note these may be different.)-Can the spirituality of the characters be readily ascertained? How does this affect their role in the plot?-What insights into cultural worldviews are presented?-What scriptural analogies can be made?-Does the narrative, or parts of it, resemble stories Jesus told?The discussion following the movie is a very important part of the evening. Be sure to let the group know that.The leader should view the movie beforehand and prepare questions for the group such as these for Ray (thestory of Ray Charles):Ray’s mother took a very pragmatic approach toward his oncoming blindness. How did that affect Ray'sability to deal with it? What kind of personal attitudes and decisions can cripple a person?Ray Charles isn't the only performer who has dealt with the addictive substances. What pressures may leadsuccessful people to get caught up in the world of drugs and alcohol? What challenges come with living in thespotlight?What makes Ray's wife stay with him despite his lifestyle? What strengths does Della Bea have that Rayrelies on? What things have to be considered before ending a relationship? Are the reasons for staying (orleaving) always the same for everyone?As a woefully wounded soul, Ray Charles Robinson had several handicaps that rivaled his blindness. He wasa notorious heroin addict and womanizer. And when it came to business practices, Charles could be shrewdand aloof. Whether you look inside the church or without, the most gifted among us are often the same peoplewho struggle most with addiction, depression, philandering, and behavior disorders of all sorts. Much hasbeen made of the artistic temperament, but is it not possible to be both artistically proficient and spirituallyand morally upright? (Whatever caustic cloud that hovered over the harried singer’s head could be consideredcompelling and cautionary because it made the colorful coolness of Ray Charles emerge into one of thegreatest pop cultural figures ever to crawl into our musical mindset.)His integrated music reflected his hope for an integrated world.Breaking down his personal barriers was his own greatest triumph. He broke down the barrier of drugs, whichhad caused segregation in his own life. Separation from the important parts of his life, like his wife and kids.He finally was able to integrate his own life into a beautiful holistic lifestyle.More personal questions:“The least of these”: Ray Charles certainly fell into this category, at least in the early years of his life: poor,blind, a second-class citizen in his own country. As Christ notes in the parable from which this phrase is taken(Matthew 25:31-46), such people tend to elicit the dark heart or the Good Samaritan in all of us. That wascertainly true in Charles’ life. Some took advantage of him because of his blindness, some loved him in spiteof it, and a rare few realized that blindness is not a physical disability; it is a state of being. In that sense,


Charles could see better than most. This also made me think about how we treat people with disabilities in oursociety. Our church is full of people with physical and mental disabilities. In fact, they are one of our four“pillars.” But how do I respond to them? To be honest, often with fear or, worse, apathy. Could it be that I amthe one with the disability?Angry with God: Like Charles, many people hold God at arm’s length because of some sort of perceivedinjustice. For Charles, it was blindness and the death of his brother. What is it for you? Have you ever spokento God about this issue? What did he say?Here is a list of most of the movies I have done. I have a flyer and my notes for most of them.The licensing information can be found at: www.mplc.org50 First DatesThe Fisher KingBroadway Danny RoseEntertaining Angels (The Dorothy Day Story)Spitfire GrilThe Third MiracleRemember the TitansThe Green MileThe MatrixShrekThe Family ManThe Fourth Wise ManAbout a BoyAbout SchmidtCry the Beloved CountryFinding ForresterEmperor’s ClubLife as a HouseThe MatrixShaneSignsHolesBruce AlmightySt. ThereseJoshuaBig FishSecondhand LionsTuck EverlastingRomeroOh Brother Where Art ThouMy Big Fat Greek WeddingHart's WarThe Count of Monte CristoAI (Artificial Intelligence)


Fourth TaskPrayer 17(CCC nos. 2558-2865, GDC nos. 84-85, 87)• Become familiar with the diverse forms and expressions of Christian prayer, with special attention to“the Our Father, the prayer which Jesus taught his disciples and which is the model of all Christianprayer”.• Experience and appreciate the richness of the Catholic tradition of mysticism and contemplation.• Develop a regular pattern of personal prayer and spiritual reflection, recognizing vocal prayer,meditation, and contemplative prayer as basic and fruitful practices in the life of a disciple of Jesus.• Engage in shared prayer with others, especially family prayer, as well as at parish meetings and insmall communities of faith.• Recognize and encourage practices of popular piety and devotion that help believers express andstrengthen their faith in Jesus Christ.17 OHWB no. 94


Fourth task of Adult Faith Formation: To teach the Christian how to praywith Christ.Conversion to Christ and communion with him lead the faithful to adopt his disposition of prayer andreflection. Jesus' entire life, death, and Resurrection were an offering to his Father. His prayer was alwaysdirected toward his Father. Catechesis should invite the believer to join Christ in the Our Father. Prayershould be the ordinary environment for all catechesis so that the knowledge and practice of the Christian lifemay be understood and celebrated in its proper context.National Directory for CatechesisYoung AdultsYoung adults have most likely evaluated the faith they were raised in and decided for themselves just what isto be kept and what us to be discarded. They have most likely surveyed their most important values anddecided to be true to them. Ideally, the power and practice of prayer has been real and regular in theirlives, and they can now use prayerful discernment to sort out what they are being called to in this life.What career or vocation will they pursue? Will they marry? Do they feel called to the priesthood or thereligious life? These are monumental decisions that require guidance through prayer.Often, if they have been away from the Church for awhile they may return at this time, especially at theoccasion of the baptism of a child. Young adults are asking the "big questions" of life: Why am I here? Whatam I supposed to do with my life? Why is there suffering?Parishes can: Form young adult groups for Scripture study or reflection on a topic. Provide information on lectures and formative events that will help them to grow in their faith. Provide a resource library with topics of interest to young adults. Educate young adults about spiritual direction; provide a list of spiritual directors in the area.AdultsAdults can be helped to see the importance of regular and consistent prayer. Hectic lifestyles militate againstthis, but to be a disciple requires discipline. Adults can be helped to explore the tradition of prayer in thechurch. Reading and workshops on various forms of prayer are available. The adult is encouraged to go on aretreat at least once a year in order to view his or her life from a fresh, prayerful perspective. It has been saidthat the three most common places where adults pray are the bathroom, in the car and outdoors. Couples cannurture their prayer lives by praying together on a daily basis. The saints of the Catholic tradition can bementors for adults, modeling how to pray in everyday activities as well as in time of great hardship.Parishes can: Offer a variety of classes on various forms of prayer such as centering prayer, lectio divina,contemplative prayer, Ignatian, Augustinian, and other forms and ways of praying. Offer information on local retreats and/or plan a parish retreat. Offer a school of prayer which teaches about the earliest traditions of prayer in the Church and invitesadults into a daily routine of prayer. Provide regular opportunities to pray the Liturgy of the Hours, especially Morning Prayer and Evening Prayer.


Senior AdultsFor seniors, there are many ongoing issues of loss. Loss of health, independence, physical capacity, and/orcareer can be countered by an ever growing dependency on God. Many elders find great solace inparticipating in daily Mass. For others, the rosary is a constant companion. Seniors can be a great source ofwisdom in teaching about the power and practice of prayer. Prayer and Scripture groups can be offered,especially during the day, when it is easier for older adults to participate. These types of groups may alsoprovide and important social function for older adults. Bus trips to Shrines and pilgrimage sites are alsopopular for those who are ambulatory.Seniors who can no longer come to church because of physical limitations must rely on the ministry ofExtraordinary Ministers of the Eucharist who bring "Church" to them. They can also be encouraged toparticipate in Mass via radio or television (the Hallmark cable channel shows Mass from Notre Dameevery Sunday at 8 a.m.)Parishes can: Help convene pray and Scripture groups for older adults, preferably during the day. Have special seasonal gatherings such as Soup and Scripture Luncheons during Lent. Send prayerful lectionary-based pamphlets or other devotional materials out to elders through the mailor Eucharistic visitors to the sick. Form grief/loss groups to pray through losses as a faith community. Have an elder person organize a prayer chain for the parish. Invite elders to visit religion formation classes to share their life of prayer, and how prayer hasbeen important in their lives. Identify volunteers who will become prayer partners with those in nursing homes.


Annual Retreats for Men/WomenDescriptionOur Parish Retreat Coordinators publicize in our parish bulletin for a specific weekend retreat. The men’sgroup traditionally goes to the Saint Paul of the Cross Retreat Center for a weekend. The women’s groupgoes to Martina Center or Kearns Spirituality Center for retreats planned at those places.ObjectiveTo provide spiritual enrichment opportunities for adults beyond the parish.Who Should/Can AttendAny adultTime FrameUsually weekends or evenings of reflection.CostVaries as to the institution hosting the event.Suggestions/CommentsHaving parish coordinators for the retreats has proven to be helpful for providing ongoing announcements forretreats and extending personal invitations to adults.Contact: Jim FinnParish: Saint Mary of the Assumption, Glenshaw, PAPhone: 412-486-4101Email: finnj@stmaryglenshaw.org


Experiential Stations of the CrossDescriptionThis is an experiential way to pray the Stations of the Cross for both children and adults.ObjectiveTo provide both deep prayer experience and a hands-on learning opportunity for the Religious Educationclasses.To provide the whole parish (adults, teens and children) an opportunity to more deeply connect with and praythe passion and death of Jesus.Who Should/Can AttendReligious Ed Classes, any adult who would like to pray the Stations.Time Frame45 minutesSuggestions/CommentsWe have had good feedback from all ages.Contact: Joan PilatParish: St. FidelisPhone: 724-482-2362Email jpilat@zoominternet.net


Ignatian Parish Prayer ProgramDescriptionThis is a parish-based way for participants to engage in the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola. Thefull program stretches in segments over two years.YEAR 1:• Advent Retreat in Daily Life: Spiritual Exercises “Preparation Days”(5 days of directed prayer in Advent).Participants commit to spending 20 minutes per day in Prayer; also Meetings w/ SpiritualDirector for 20 minute sessions for 5 consecutive days.• Lenten Directed Prayer: Meeting Jesus in Lent (3 weeks of directed prayer in Lent).Participants commit to 30-45 minutes of daily prayer. Meetings: as a group; Weekly for 1hour.YEAR 2:• Fall: 5 weeks of directed prayer: “First Week” of the Exercises. Participants agree to 45minutes of daily prayer. Meetings: as a group; weekly for 1 hour.• Spring: 16 weeks of directed prayer: “Second, Third and Fourth Weeks” of the Exercises.Participants commit to 45-60 minutes of daily prayer. Group Meetings: Weekly for 1 hour.ObjectiveTo deepen the participants’ lives in prayer and discipleship.Who Should/Can AttendAdultsTime FrameSpanning two years, as detailed above.CostsYear 1: $350; Year 2: $650. Many parishes/pastors have agreed to fund half of the costs for each participant.Please contact Sr. Catherine Higgins for more details.Suggestions/CommentsThe response in general has been extremely positive… those who have accessed it are truly grateful for theexperience. It is a unique opportunity for folks to experience prayer and learn the Ignatian method, and formany of them, it is their first true experience of ‘Lectio’ or praying with Scripture.The program is facilitated Diocesan-wide by Sr. Catherine Higgins, CSJ, catherinehiggins@comcast.netContact: Lori McMahonParish: St. Anne, Castle ShannonPhone: 412-531-5964Email: mitchmcm@verizon.net


Lectio DivinaDescriptionWe start our meetings with Sunday’s Gospel reading, share what we heard (what word or phrase stood out)and what we think God is asking us to do.ObjectiveTo form our parishioners, using the RCIA model, by sharing our faith journeys with one another.Who Should/Can AttendThis is something that we are asking all organizations meeting at St Benedict to do.Time FrameDepends on the number of people attending.Suggestions/CommentsPeople are getting used to opening meetings this way. We haven’t pushed it on all the organizations yet; butso far, all council meetings and staff meetings open with it. We are also introducing a question during thehomily for groups to discuss before they open their meetings. It can be used along with Lectio Divina orinstead of it. Most people enjoy sharing their thoughts and their faith.Contact: Jay SpecaParish: St Benedict the Abbot ChurchPhone: 724-941-9406 Ext 114Email: Speca@stbenedicttheabbot.org


Living RosaryDescriptionA life-size rosary or a crucifix and the appropriate number of beads and spacers are placed in the church,classroom, garden, home or anywhere the Rosary will be prayed. Each participant stands holding a rosarybead and prays out loud, the prayer particular to that bead, thus the people become the rosary.ObjectiveTo teach how to pray the Rosary.To allow people to become the rosary.To unite the community in prayer.Who Should/Can AttendAnyoneTime Frame30 minutesContact: Barb McCarthyParish: St. Ferdinand ChurchPhone: 724-776-1357Email: barb@stferd.org


NovenasDescriptionNovenas are specific prayers prayed on consecutive days, usually nine, to give honor to God, and seek the aidof a particular saint, Mary or one of the three Persons of the Trinity. The early disciples waited and prayed fornine days in the upper room as they awaited the coming of the Holy Spirit.ObjectiveTo be faithful to our prayer as God is faithful to us.Who Should/Can AttendAnyoneTime Frame20-30 minutesSuggestions/CommentsSome possibilities are novena to the Holy Spirit before Pentecost, novena to St. Theresa, novena to St.Anthony.Contact: Barb McCarthyParish: St. Ferdinand ParishPhone: 774-776-1357Email barb@stferd.org


Parish PilgrimageDescriptionA journey to a designated holy site, such as a church, chapel, grotto, Basilica or birthplace of a saint.ObjectiveTo be in community with fellow pilgrims.To pray for private prayer requests and prayer requests of others.To take time to let go and let God lead us to new places.Who Should/Can AttendAnyone who is able.Time FrameOne dayCostIt variesSuggestions/CommentsOur parish has taken eight yearly pilgrimages. These are some examples: Washington D.C.-Basilica of theImmaculate Conception and Holy Land replica, St. Francis-Loretta PA, Emmetsburg MD-Mother SetonShrine, Our Lady of Sorrows in Bellevue OH.Contact: Barb McCarthyParish: St. Ferdinand ChurchPhone: 724 776-1357Email: barb@stferd.org


Powerful Pray-ersDescriptionFour sessions were held with a character witness story. We introduced St. Patrick (and his breastplate prayer),St. Francis of Assisi (prayer for peace), St. Teresa of Avila (The Interior Castle), and St. Augustine(Confessions). Many others could be included. This concept was based on “Biblical Women Alive” bySr. Jackie Ketterer. Parish volunteers researched the saints and played the characters.ObjectiveTo introduce different people of prayer and different ways/methods of prayer.Who Should/Can AttendAnyone over 10 years oldTime FrameOne hour and 15 minutesSuggestions/CommentsThe person in character gave a first-person account of his/her life story, and talked about the search andencounter with God using the saint’s own writings. Another person gave people time to discuss and write ashort closing prayer following the “pattern” of the saint. This was especially easy with St. Patrick.Contact: Barbara StokesParish: Saint John Neumann ParishPhone: 412-366-5885 Ext. 13Email: barbara.stokes@yahoo.com


Fifth TaskCommunal Life 18(CCC nos. 811-870, GDC nos. 84, 86, 87)• Foster spiritual growth in the community.• Cultivate the human values and Christian virtues that foster growth in interpersonal relationships andin civic responsibility.• Nurture marriage and family life.• Share actively in the life and work of the parish, and foster the potential of small communities todeepen the faith relationships of members, to strengthen the bonds of communion with the parish, andto serve the Church’s mission in society.• Learn the Church’s teaching on the nature and mission of the Church, including an understanding ofthe Church’s authority and structures and of the rights and responsibilities of the Christian faithful.• Support the ecumenical movement and promote the unity of God’s people as an important dimensionof fidelity to the Gospel.18 OHWB no. 95


Fifth task of Adult Faith Formation: To prepare the Christian to live incommunity and to participate actively in the life and mission of theChurch.Jesus said to his disciples, "Love one another. As I have loved you. ..." Jn 13:34 This command provides thebasis for the disciples' life in community. Catechesis encourages an apprenticeship in Christian living that isbased on Christ's teachings about community life. It should encourage a spirit of simplicity and humility, aspecial concern for the poor, particular care for the alienated, a sense of fraternal correction, common prayer,mutual forgiveness, and a fraternal love that embraces all these attitudes. Catechesis encourages the disciplesof Jesus to make their daily conduct a shining and convincing testimony to the Gospel. CL "He also distributesspecial graces among the faithful of every rank. By these gifts he makes them fit and ready to undertakevarious tasks and offices for the renewal and building up of the Church, as it is written, ‘the manifestation ofthe Spirit is given to everyone for profit’ (1 Cor 12:7).” LG Preparation for community life has an ecumenicaldimension as well: “In developing this community sense, catechesis takes special note of the ecumenicaldimension and encourages fraternal attitudes toward members of other Christian churches and ecclesialcommunities.” GDC It should always provide a clear exposition of all that the Church teaches and at the sametime should foster a "true desire for unity" CT and inculcate a zeal for the promotion of unity amongChristians. Catechesis will have an ecumenical dimension as it prepares the faithful to live in contact with personsof other Christian traditions, "affirming their Catholic identity while respecting the faith of others." CTNational Directory for CatechesisYoung AdultsYoung adults are persons in their late teens, twenties, and thirties who represent a broad diversity. "They arecollege and university students, workers, and professionals; they are persons in military service; they aresingle, married, divorced or widowed; they are with or without children; they are newcomers in search of abetter life." NDC Given this portrait, it is a challenge to discern how to assist them to take their rightful place inthe life and mission of the community.It is essential that the Church raise up the unique gifts of young adults and the extraordinary difference theycan make. They possess:• Lively faith and hope• A deep hunger for social justice and to serve• A spirit of optimism and idealism• Wisdom borne of their experience of diversity• A yearning for deepened spirituality NDCThe Church must provide a persistent invitation to bring these gifts into ministries where they are sorelyneeded, such as marriage preparation, preparation for the Sacrament of Baptism, career discernment, and soforth. Making room for their voice in an authentic and meaningful way will allow their passions to animatethe life of the community.


AdultsIn order for the Good News of the Kingdom to penetrate all the various layers of the human family, it iscrucial that every Christian play an active part in the coming of the Kingdom… All of this naturally requiresadults to play a primary role. Hence it is not only legitimate, but also necessary to acknowledge that a fullyChristian community can only exist when a systematic catechesis of all its members takes place, and when aneffective and well-developed catechesis of adults is regarded as the central task in the catechetical enterprise.ACCCAll adult catechesis, in whatever form it takes, supports the fifth task of catechesis. It "fosters activeparticipation in the Church as she is realized in families, small faith-based communities, parishes, dioceses,and the communion of saints. It helps adults to develop a deeper sense of their cooperation with the HolySpirit for the mission of the Church in the world and for her internal life as well." NDCParish leaders should find a variety of ways to catechize adults in the roles they fulfill in the life of thecommunity, including:• Liturgical ministries• Parish Finance Councils• Parish Pastoral Councils• Catechetical ministries• Ministries of justice and direct service to the poor and marginalized• Peer ministries to those dealing with grief and loss; midlife issues; loss of employment; parentingof adolescents; care of aging parents; and so forth.


Caregiver BreakfastDescriptionCaregivers are invited to come together periodically to enjoy breakfast and a speaker.ObjectiveTo give caregivers the opportunity to be with other caregivers in a supportive community.To give caregivers the opportunity to be renewed, to share common experiences, to learn new ways ofapproaching their daily call to be caregivers.Who Should/Can AttendAnyone caring for someone at home.Time Frame2 hoursContact: Barb McCarthyParish: St. Ferdinand ChurchPhone: 724-776-1357Email: barb@stferd.org


Catholic ConversationsDescriptionCatholic Conversations is meant to be a departure from the standard format of a speaker giving a talk,followed by a few questions and answers. I believe firmly that conversation is a fine approach for adulteducation and formation. It is more interactive than the standard speaker format, encouraging the participantsto ask questions and to make comments as they arise rather than waiting for a tacked-on Q&A at the end.Here’s how it works. I invite a person who is doing things that I hope our parishioners might find interesting.Some examples so far: a new pastor in the area, a Catholic theologian from the Philippines who is teaching inPittsburgh, a local Catholic singer/songwriter, a doctor practicing medicine on the streets for homeless people,a woman who heads a local Jewish organization that promotes dialogue with Christians. We do offer ourguests a fee for their time. They are often very willing to participate because the format does not involvethem having to make a presentation or write a talk. They just need to come and talk with us!I do some research beforehand into the person’s background or into some of the main areas that I think theywould be interested in talking about. Then I write up some questions. My goal is to find interesting peopleand then tap into the things that light a fire under them.Our sessions begin with a prayer. I invite the guest to bring one if he or she wishes. This is one way for theguests to introduce themselves to us— through the content or style of their prayer. At the beginning, thesession proper starts as an interview. With most guests, I like to ask for some of their life story first. As theytell their story, the things they are passionate about often come quickly to the fore, and we’re off! The“audience” is encouraged to become participants by asking questions or making brief comments as theconversation continues. Of course, there is the usual danger of someone going on at length, but it is then themoderator’s job to try to keep things flowing while showing respect for all participants.We usually take a break after about 40 minutes and return for another 30-40 minutes of conversation.ObjectiveTo help people become aware of the vitality of our Catholic community.To help them become more comfortable asking questions and expressing themselves on matters of faith.Who Should/Can AttendAdults and older teensTime FrameAbout an hour and a halfCostAbout $100-150 for a speaker fee; more for refreshments. We do not ask for money from the participants.Suggestions/CommentsI like to have café-style seating around tables (we have some small round ones), and to have refreshmentsavailable throughout the session.Often the guest has a good deal to say and the other participants are content (at least early in the session) tolisten. That’s fine—conversation is the ideal, but the reality often lies in some middle ground betweenpassive listening and full conversation.Contact: Andrew BechmanParish: St. Scholastica, AspinwallPhone: 412-781-0186, Ext. 18Email: andybechman@saintscholastica.com


Let the Little Children Come to MeDescriptionMoms, dads and caregivers of young children are invited to come and share with their children in a fun, faithfilled experience. They learn one of the gestures involved in the Mass, move to inspiring music, visit Jesus inthe tabernacle and join in craft time. Also included are visits to personal care homes, helping other with yearround donations for Genesis House, Every Child, Inc. and winter wear for local shelters.There are also monthly social nights for moms with prayer and coffee and for dads with Catholic Men’sFellowship.ObjectiveTo welcome and unify the People of God as one family.To enable and deepen the spirituality of each individual.To nurture and share our talents for the enrichment of the parish and the community.To strengthen and increase participation through meaningful liturgy.Who Should/Can AttendThis program is for moms, dads or caregivers of children five and under.Time FrameWednesdays – Check website for details: www.stmaryglenshaw.orgContact: Monica HoehlerParish: St. Mary of the Assumption ParishPhone: 412-492-0242Email: kmhoehler@verizon.net


Martha and Joseph MinistryDescriptionFolks are invited twice a year to wash and polish the wood pews, doors, altar, woodwork, etc. in our church.A week is set aside on our church calendar to accomplish this work. Cleaning products are supplied by theparish. The volunteers bring rags and buckets.ObjectiveTo provide opportunities for parishioners to be good stewards of the church building.To work with fellow parishioners in community.To foster respect for the church building.Who Should/Can AttendAdults of all ages and familiesTime FrameOne weekContact: Barb McCarthyParish: St. Ferdinand ChurchPhone: 724-776-1357Email: barb@stferd.org


Men’s BreakfastDescriptionAll men of the parish are invited to a monthly breakfast on Saturday morning from October thru May.Initially we began at 8:00 a.m. with breakfast prepared by volunteers followed by a short prayer service and aguest speaker. A variety of topics was featured – sports, health, service, witness, etc. The morning concludedby 10:00 a.m.The men now gather for 9:00 a.m. Mass with the parish community. Breakfast follows and then the guestspeaker or featured program is introduced and is usually of a spiritual nature. The morning ends by 11:00a.m.During the summer we meet once on a weekday evening for a cook-out.ObjectiveTo foster fellowship among the men of the parish.Who Should/Can AttendAll men of the parish are invited from age 18 and up.Time FrameMonthly (October thru May) on Saturday mornings, 9:00 – 11:00 a.m.CostFree will offering to cover food and speaker stipends.Suggestions/CommentsMost participants are age 40/50 +. Younger men may attend when a topic addresses their interests – usuallysports or business. We have a contact list of 60+ names. Our regular attendance is around 20. The summercook-out has the largest response.Contact:Parish:Phone:Email:Andrew JamesSt. John Neumann Parish, Franklin Park412-366-5885 x11ajames@stjohnneumannpgh.org


Middle MomsDescriptionMothers of school age children are invited to gather together for support, spiritual growth, reflection andsharing. Guest speakers are invited to offer insight and wisdom.ObjectiveTo provide a safe and friendly environment for moms to gather together.Who Should/Can AttendMoms of children in first to 12 th grade.Time Frame2 hoursContact: Barb McCarthyParish: St. Ferdinand ChurchPhone: 724-776-1357Email: barb@stferd.org


Parish Pastoral Council FormationDescriptionAs part of the plan for parish leadership training, a four session “101” course on the new parish pastoralcouncil guidelines, One Body, One Mission was instituted. An enrichment program will also be offered. Itwill provide on-going formation in pastoral leadership. Content will vary for each session, includingEvenings of Recollection for pastors and pastoral council members.ObjectiveTo provide opportunities for pastors and parish pastoral council members to grow in their understanding ofparish leadership.Who Should/Can AttendPastors, pastoral staff and discerned and selected pastoral council members.Time FrameThe “101” Course will include 4 sessions that are each 3 hours in length. It will be offered in the fall andspring of each year, beginning in the fall of 2010.The enrichment program will be offered every fall and spring, beginning in the spring of 2011.Contact: Mary Anne MasonParish Diocese of PittsburghPhone: 412-456-3047Email: mmason@diopitt.org


Reflection BookletDescriptionFor two consecutive years, the parish Worship Committee members asked adult parishioners to reflect(anonymously) on some aspect of their faith journey, connecting it to our parish theme for the year. Thethemes were “2001: A Faith Odyssey” and “The Journey Home”. We created booklets of the reflections anddistributed them at all Easter Masses. The booklets included blank pages for the reader’s own reflections onthe stories.ObjectiveTo allow parishioners a forum to share deeply and honestly their struggles and triumphs in living theirCatholic faith as adults.To provide an exercise for those who wrote to think about their faith journey and put it into words.To provide an opportunity for those who read the reflections to see in what way they could identify with thestories and to know that the people who wrote them were in their midst in the parish.Who Should/Can AttendThere is nothing to attend! Adults were able to read the booklets at home, reflect on them in writing if they sodesired, and discuss them with family members or other parishioners at future gatherings.Time FrameThe worship committee solicited writers about 4-6 weeks before publication in order to give them time tocollect their thoughts and write. The committee did some minor editing of the submissions, assembled it withhelp from a graphic artist on the committee, and printed it in-house at the parish for distribution at EasterMasses.Suggestions/CommentsThis project was well received, and parishioners enjoyed reading the reflections.Contact: Barbara MateraParish: Saint John Neumann ParishPhone: 412-366-5885 Ext. 18Email: bfmatera@yahoo.com


Service Outreach to Homeless Women’s ShelterDescriptionFamilies of our Family Program volunteer to prepare a complete meal on a particular Saturday and deliver itto the Homeless Women’s shelter.ObjectiveTo invite and empower adult members of families to show the importance of service to the homeless byhaving their children assist in meal preparation and serving the meal at the shelter.Who Should/Can AttendMembers of familiesTime FrameTime needed to prepare the meal item(s) at home, to travel into the city and to serve the meal.CostFoods are donated by families preparing the meal for the homeless shelter.Contact: Barb Belski or Rose StegmanParish: Saint Mary of the Assumption, Glenshaw, PAPhone: 412-486-5521E-mail: ccdoffice@stmaryglenshaw.org


St. John Neumann NightDescriptionOn a Sunday, near or on the feast of our parish patron, St. John Neumann (January 5), we have had anevening in the church for all parishioners. Since this date falls within the Christmas season, we ask our choirs(adult, youth, children) to sing some Christmas selections. After about 20 minutes of music, a parishionerdressed as St. John Neumann comes down the aisle and talks about his life–his childhood, his voyage toAmerica, and his ministry in many places, including the North Hills of Pittsburgh where our parish is located.The talk lasts 15–20 minutes. We have had variations on this theme to keep it interesting, including a talk bySt. John Neumann’s mother telling of her son’s early life and his priesthood in America, and St. JohnNeumann speaking of different times of his life. We always serve refreshments in the hall following the talk.ObjectiveTo familiarize parishioners with our patron saint.Who Should/Can AttendAll parishionersTime FrameThis event occurred on Sunday evening at 7 p.m. and lasted about an hour, including refreshments.Suggestions/CommentsThe story of our patron is much better known by the parishioners.Contact:Barbara MateraParish:Saint John Neumann ParishPhone: 412-366-5885 Ext. 18Email:bfmatera@yahoo.com


Welcome BreakfastDescriptionThree or four times a year we have a welcome breakfast/gathering. This is organized by the WelcomeCommittee. A list of new parishioners is provided by the parish office or priest when asked by the WelcomeCommittee. Each member of the committee calls 3-4 existing parishioners to volunteer to bring food(suggestions—bagels, breads [banana, zucchini, etc.], cupcakes, donuts, fruit, muffins, cheese and crackertrays, chips and dips, cookies, brownies). If different people are called to volunteer then it gives more peoplethe chance to be involved and to contribute. The committee typically supplies coffee, tea, creamers, sugar,sweetener, juice, paper supplies and plastic ware.All new parishioners receive a letter welcoming them and inviting them to the next breakfast. A contact listof who to get in touch with to get involved in different organizations is included with the letter. The letterinforms them that a member of the Welcome Committee would be calling. New parishioners’ names aredivided among the Welcome Committee members and about 2 weeks before the breakfast, invite calls go out.A Bulletin announcement goes in 2 weeks before, one week before and then the day of the breakfast invitingall parishioners. It is helpful if the priest invites everyone after Mass the day of the breakfast.ObjectiveTo welcome new parishioners.To give them the opportunity ask questions about organizations in which they are interested.To further a sense of community with current parishioners.Who Should/Can AttendEveryoneTime FrameCommittee members have to set up prior to the breakfast. We have our receptions after the 9:00 a.m. and11:00 a.m. Masses. Usually people stay for about an hour and some stay slightly longer. The committeealso cleans up. If you have enough people on this committee, the set up crew and the clean up crew can bedifferent. Some members are there the whole time.CostWith our receptions, everything is donated. The committee members all provide something and then the foodis donated by the parishioners.Suggestions/CommentsWe usually have name tags for everyone. But we buy special name tags (with stars or balloons or somethingthat is more decorative) for the new people. When people complete their name tag, they learn the new peoplehave the special name tags so they can introduce themselves if they see a “new person” name tag.Contact: Elaine DuVallParish: Saint ScholasticaPhone: 412-781-6941Email: veduvall@comcast.net


Women Wisdom & WineDescriptionAll women of the parish were invited to attend an evening of appetizers, wine and fellowship, followed by aspeaker on a topic of interest to Catholic women. A parish volunteer arranged for the speakers and handledpublicity. Those in attendance were asked to bring crackers, cheese, or a small appetizer.ObjectiveTo offer an opportunity for women to gather informally for fellowship and stimulating discussions on currenttopics.Who Should/Can AttendWomen Wisdom & Wine was offered for women of the parish.Time FrameThis event occurred on a weekday evening. The women gathered and socialized beginning at 7 p.m. and thespeaker talked and answered questions from 7:30 – 8:30 p.m.Suggestions/CommentsThis was a well-attended event for several years, usually held four times a year.Contact: Barbara StokesParish: Saint John Neumann ParishPhone: 412-366-5885 Ext. 13Email: barbara.stokes@yahoo.com


Sixth TaskMissionary Spirit 19(GDC nos. 84, 86, 87)• Cultivate an evangelizing spirit among all the faithful.• Respond to God’s call whether as lay, ordained, or religious.• Motivate and equip the faithful to speak to others about the Scriptures, the tradition and teachings ofthe Church, and about one’s own faith journey.• Explore and promote the applications of the Church’s moral and social teaching in personal, familyprofessional, cultural, and social life.• Understand the importance of serving those in need, promoting the common good, and working for thetransformation of society through personal and social action.• Appreciate the value of interreligious dialogue and contacts.19OHWB no. 96


Sixth task of Adult Faith Formation: To promote a missionary spirit thatprepares the faithful to be present as Christians in society."The `world' thus becomes the place and the means for the lay faithful to fulfill their Christian vocation." LGCatechesis seeks to help the disciples of Christ to be present in society precisely as believing Christians whoare able and willing to bear witness to their faith in words and deeds. In fostering this spirit of evangelization,catechesis nourishes the evangelical attitudes of Jesus Christ in the faithful: to be poor in spirit, to becompassionate, to be meek, to hear the cry of injustice, to be merciful, to be pure of heart, to make peace, andto accept rejection and persecution. Mt. 5:3-11 Catechesis recognizes that other religious traditions reflect the"seeds of the Word" AG that can constitute a true "preparation for the Gospel."' LG It encourages adherents ofthe world's religions to share what they hold in common, never minimizing the real differences between andamong them. "Dialogue is not in opposition to the mission ad gentes." RMYoung AdultsNational Directory for CatechesisIn Sons and Daughters of the Light: a Pastoral Plan for Ministry with Young Adults, goal three is "ConnectingYoung Adults with the Mission of the Church in the World." Objectives are given for this invitation of youngadults to be a part of the transformation of society by the building of the kingdom of God:• forming a Christian conscience• educating and working for justice• developing leaders for the present and the future.Young adults have many opportunities to evangelize society through the home and workplace. Many have thedesire to learn more about Church teachings in order to make sound moral decisions. Some strategies include:• Offer adult religious education programs that connect contemporary life issues to the teachings andtraditions of the Church.• Provide opportunities to examine the relationship of faith to work, including ethics in the workplace.• Make use of homilies and celebrations to discuss roles of the laity as evangelizers of society.• Support scripture study groups and small groups for married couples, and• Support formation of ongoing, intergenerational small faith communities. SDLYoung adults share the desire of the larger Church to care for the least among us. This ministry includes botheducating and working for justice. Programs, homilies and retreats can help educate to the demands of theGospel toward our neighbor. Some suggestions for action include:• Motivate young adults through catechesis, homilies and music to work for peacein their relationships with others, especially in their jobs and community.• Invite young adults to be members of parish or campus social justice committeesor other social action organizations.• Identify opportunities for immersion experiences during academic breaks or vacations, and• Invite young adults individually, through the workplace or through the Church community, to donateservices to social service agencies.


Mentoring relationships are a significant way in which young adults can strengthen the values, beliefs, ideas,and learning necessary to be mature Christians. Young adults can benefit from mentoring relationshipsconnected with their career and jobs, especially ones sharing values and wisdom that spring from belief in theGospel. To develop mentoring relationships:• Connect younger and older adults in like professions.• Reinforce the leadership role that each Christian is asked to undertake as a citizen through catecheticalopportunities and homilies.• Form discussion, support or prayer groups for those in like professions and trades, and• Ask young adults to be mentors for adolescents, especially in Confirmation programs, and for those indifferent ethnic groups, especially immigrants who need help to succeed in a new and differentculture. SDLAdultsWhen Jesus told his followers to "do this" in his memory, he was telling them to do much more than simplyperform the ritual now known as the Mass. Jesus was telling his disciples throughout time not only to breakbread, but to give themselves to others as he gave himself. Mass is not something that Catholics "attend," butis something that they "do" and something that prepares them to go forth and do what Jesus asks of them. LTMThe word "liturgy" means "work of the people" and is a more appropriate description of this command ofJesus.Through Baptism, Christians make a commitment to do certain things as a follower of Jesus. Each Christian isanointed priest, prophet, and king, and is called:• As priest, to make Jesus present to others; praise and worship God through their lives; offerthemselves and their lives in sacrifice; help others gain access to God; intercede for the needs of theworld; and act as part of God's response to those needs.• As prophet, to speak on behalf of the oppressed; speak God's word, bear witness, evangelize, andcatechize; bring hope to those in despair; challenge people and institutions to be faithful; andfearlessly speak out about injustice;• As king, to serve and protect the vulnerable; provide for those unable to provide themselves; loveenemies, lay down their live for others; work for justice; live with dignity and respect others’ dignity;restore lives that are broken; and respect God’s will. LTMAdult catechesis should recognize the specific conditions of lay Catholics and consistently call them toholiness and seeking the "Kingdom of God by engaging in temporal affairs and ordering them according tothe plan of God." CL


Senior AdultsThe practical experience, wisdom, attitude, and example of many older adults make them especially valuedgifts to the life of the Church. Christ calls the elderly to proclaim the Gospel, which enhances the richness ofintergenerational catechesis. The catechesis of senior adults notes the contributions they make to thecommunity through their wisdom and witness. "Older persons have a responsibility, commensurate withhealth, abilities, and other obligations, to undertake some form of service to others." BA• Older adults are providers, not just recipients of pastoral care.• Older adults themselves should help to identify their needs and decide how they are met.• Older adults are at least as diverse as other generational groups.• Older adults need a mix of activities that connect them with each other as well as the larger faithcommunity. BA


Bereavement Support GroupDescriptionIn reaching out to the bereaved a parish can have a support group that meets monthly or a 4-6 week supportgroup once or twice a year. Another format is to have an educational speaker on grief and bereavement andinvite those from the parish and from the area to attend.ObjectiveTo reach out to those who are hurting due to loss of a loved one and give them support and education aboutwhat they are going through and will go through.To share with participants what the church teaches about life, death, suffering and pain.Who Should/Can AttendAnyone who has experienced a loss of any kind.Time FrameSee aboveCostNone unless there is a cost for the speaker. Many speakers volunteer their time.Suggestions/CommentsIt is also possible to do both the groups and speakers collaboratively with other parishes in the area. This is agood way to reach out to those who may have “fallen away” from the Church.Contact: Mimi DarraghParish: St. Valentine ParishPhone: 412-831-8312Email: mimidarragh@aol.com


Comfort Blanket MinistryDescriptionThe Comfort Blanket Ministry brings a message of love and comfort to all who are experiencing sickness orthe death of a loved one through the gift of a hand sewn blanket. The blanket consists of squares individuallydecorated by members of the parish.ObjectiveTo provide a tangible symbol of the care, love and prayers of a parish in the difficult times of the lives ofchildren and adults.Who Should/Can AttendWorkshops are held weekly to prepare the blankets that are sewn at home.Time FrameWhatever time someone has to give is invaluable.Suggestions/CommentsNo experience needed.Contact: Barb McCarthyParish: St. Ferdinand ChurchPhone: 724-776-1357Email: barb@stferd.org


Day of Reflection for Those Who are GrievingDescriptionTwice a year, on November 2 and March 19th, Feast of St. Joseph, we have a day of reflection for all dealingwith grief. It includes Mass and appropriate Scripture reflections, videos, presentations and sharing.Some of the Themes:The Stages of GriefSt. Joseph, Patron of a Happy DeathImages of GriefGrieving with Faith, Hope and LoveLife after LifeWhat Is Heaven Like?ObjectiveTo place grief in a spiritual context and allow the consolation of God to touch hearts.Who Should/Can AttendAnyone dealing with grief.Time FrameTwice a year beginning with the 9 a.m. liturgy and closing with a prayer service at 2 p.m. Lunch is usuallyincluded.CostDonationSuggestions/CommentsThe day can be shortened it to a morning.Contact: Bernice Dumitru, Pastoral AssociateParish: Church of the ResurrectionPhone: 412-563-5589Email: bernicedumitru@msn.com or bernicedumitru@verizon.net


Focus on OutreachDescriptionFor one year (during our Jubilee Year) each month an insert was included in the bulletin that focused on someaspect of the social mission of the church and how we can participate in that mission. Information was givenabout organizations which were responding to a certain issue and a parish or individual response wassuggested.ObjectiveTo use the parish bulletin as a means of faith formation and an invitation to the community to actively serve inthe social mission of the Church.Who Should/Can AttendParish AssemblyTime FrameOnce a monthSuggestions/CommentsCould combine it with a mini-catechesis on the topic after communion.Contact: Bernice Dumitru, Pastoral AssociateParish: Church of the ResurrectionPhone: 412-563-5589Email: bernicedumitru@msn.com or bernicedumitru@verizon.net


Funeral Liturgy Planning and Follow-upDescriptionAfter the death of a loved one, a member or members of the immediate family are asked to stop in the parishoffice and meet with either one of the priests or the pastoral associate to help plan the liturgy. The family isgiven a folder of information which includes a packet of suggested readings and hymns appropriate forfunerals. Family members are encouraged to look over the readings and choose an Old and New TestamentReading and also encouraged to have family members or friends read them during the Funeral Mass. Theyare also encouraged to choose five hymns from the list provided. Family members or friends are alsowelcome to carry up the Offertory gifts to the altar.A small funeral choir and an organist, usually our music minister, as well as a funeral liturgy coordinator whoassists the priest during Mass, will be in attendance during the Mass.One of the priests and/or the pastoral associate will also visit the funeral home for comfort, support andprayers.ObjectiveTo help the bereaved prepare the funeral liturgy for their loved ones and to comfort them in their time of need.Who Should/Can AttendAnyone experiencing the loss of a loved one.Time FrameAs soon as possible following the death of a loved one.Suggestions/CommentsSt. Thomas More offers a service for bereaved families following the burial in the form of a luncheon in ourFamily Life Center. The group that coordinates this is called “The Marthas”. The luncheon is hosted by agroup of volunteers and the family is charged only for the cost of the food.A few weeks after the funeral a follow-up sympathy card is sent to the family and signed by the priest whowas the celebrant at the Mass. Family members also receive a “Thinking of You” card on the deceased’sbirthday, first death anniversary and for first holidays. After about two months a member of the bereavementteam contacts the family offering support and prayers and will continue sending cards to them.Families also receive notices of support groups in the area and are invited to attend our special Mass ofRemembrance in November.Contact: Cede CatanzaroParish: St. Thomas MorePhone: 412-833-0031Email: cede@stmpgh.org


Funeral Luncheon CommitteeDescriptionIf space permits, a funeral luncheon is offered to the family of a parishioner who has died. The members ofthis committee coordinate the preparation and donation of food for a luncheon, set up, serve and clean up.This ministry is offered to the family of a deceased parishioner through the funeral director.ObjectiveTo provide a place of solace and nourishment for bereaved families.Who Should/Can AttendVolunteers are needed to make phone calls for donations of food, to prepare the hall, work in the kitchen,serve the food and clean up after luncheon as needed.Contact: St. Ferdinand Rectory OfficeParish: St. Ferdinand ChurchPhone: 724-776-2888Email: barb@stferd.org


Health Ministry Exercise ProgramDescriptionA volunteer is first trained in the exercise program developed by the Mercy Parish Nurse program and then isassigned to visit a homebound parishioner weekly to do a simple strengthening exercise program. The elderlyperson has also been evaluated by a nurse before beginning the program and his or her doctor has given theirpermission for the person to participate. The program also includes prayer and deep breathing and relaxation.This can also be done in a group.ObjectiveTo establish a bond between two people who did not know one another before.To provide an opportunity for them to pray together, to exercise together, and to see the connection betweenhealth of body mind, and spirit.To provide for the person who was once isolated, a weekly visit from her/his parish.Who Should/Can AttendThe individual sessions are designed for the frail elderly and anyone can be a volunteer. The group sessionsare open to anyone who wants to attend.Time FrameApproximately one hourCostNone to the person, the parish may purchase some therabands for the people to use. Music can also be playedduring the sessions so a radio or cassette/CD player could be purchased.Suggestions/CommentsThis is great way to get younger people involved in a parish outreach activity especially those who like toexercise. It gives the volunteer something to do and talk about while getting to know the person they arevisiting.Contact: Mimi DarraghParish: St. Valentine ParishPhone: 412-831-8312Email: mimidarragh@aol.com


H.O.P.E. – Helping Others Seek EmploymentDescriptionH.O.P.E. Ministry is a faith based, Christ-centered organization offering practical and pastoral resources tothe unemployed of the parish and community.ObjectiveTo assist those who are seeking employment.Who Should/Can AttendAdults who are seeking employment, practical help in résumé writing, interviewing, networking, careercoaching, personal and family counseling and financial advise.Time Frame2 hoursContact: Linda WellerParish: St. Ferdinand ParishPhone: 724-779-8323Email: stferd.hopeministry@gmail.com


Missions OutreachDescriptionThe Missions Outreach group identifies ways to share the love of Christ and the blessings of their time, talentand treasure with the needy. They also travel to San Luis, Mexico to construct small homes for poor families,work at an orphanage and distribute food and Bibles at a “Soup Kitchen.” All trips are coordinated withCaring Hearts Ministries, which is an interdenominational group based in Pittsburgh.ObjectiveTo gather in solidarity with the poor and marginalized.To respond to identified needs.Who Should/Can AttendHigh School children and adultsContact: Wilma ScottParish: St. Ferdinand ParishPhone: 724-776-9177Email: wilma@stferd.org


Prison MinistryDescription“For I was imprisoned and you came to visit me.” (Mt. 25:36b)The Prison Ministry involves a literacy program and/or leading Bible study and distributing HolyCommunion.Practice ObjectiveTo be the presence of Christ to those who are imprisoned.Who Should/Can AttendAny interested adultTime FrameWeeklySuggestions/CommentsAn open mind and heart are essential ingredients for this ministry.Contact: Barb McCarthyParish: St. Ferdinand ChurchPhone: 724-776-1357Email: barb@stferd.org


Adult Faith Formation for:Couples Preparing for MarriageDivorced and Separated PersonsFamiliesMarried CouplesOlder AdultsParentsSingle AdultsYoung Adults


Adult Faith Formation for:Couples Preparing for MarriageDiocesan Pre-Marriage ProgramEngaged EncounterPre-Marriage PrepSponsor Couple ProgramDivorced and SeparatedDivorceCareDivorced or Separated Support GroupProgram for Separated or DivorcedSeparated or Divorced GroupFamiliesAdvent Family EveningFamily Centered ProgramFamily ProgramLet's Make Christmas CookiesPittsburgh Catholic Newspaper in EducationMarried CouplesCovenant of Love Marriage GroupDinner & Speaker for Married CouplesFive Love LanguagesMarriage Building Assessment ToolMarriage Enrichment in the Empty NestRetrouvailleTeams of Our LadyWorldwide Marriage EncounterOlder AdultsLife Enrichment ClubMind, Body and SpiritRoyal CourtParentsHeart & SoulParent MeetingsSingle Parent Family SupportSingle Grieving AdultsBeginning Experience of PittsburghYoung AdultsFLIGHT (Friends Learning Inquiring Growing in Holiness Together)Theology on Tap


Couples Preparing for MarriageDiocesan Pre-Marriage ProgramDescriptionThe Diocesan Pre-Marriage Program is divided into 4 two and a half hour sessions. Each session has a themethat is approached theologically and how to apply the Theology to a marriage. The first session’s theme is“The Sacrament of Marriage.” A priest or a permanent deacon delivers this message about the Theology ofthe Sacrament of Marriage. After a short break, a married couple talks about living out their marriage as asacrament. They explain how they experience the grace that is received by receiving the Sacrament.The second class focuses on communication. Again, there are two speakers who present the information. Apriest or permanent deacon talks about the importance of prayer: community, individual, and within thefamily / couple. The couple presents conflict resolution. They talk about their own marriage and somedifficulties they may have faced with their communication. The couple takes romance, disillusionment andjoy and explains how marriages reflect this pattern at different times.The third class covers morality and natural family planning. Again, there is a priest or a permanent deacon tocover the morality aspect. He covers subjects such as premarital sex, cohabitation, in vitro fertilization andinfidelity, as well as contraception. The couple, who is a trained NFP promoter or teacher, gives a witnesstalk for NFP.The fourth week is termed, “Journey of Life.” There are two talks during this session that cover thevocational aspect of marriage. A priest or permanent deacon discusses the vocation of marriage. The couplespeaks of their journey and life long commitment. Interspersed among the presentations, a series of little“talks” occur on the topic of finance and other related topics.A fifth NFP class is offered to all couples who attend our program. The fee is an additional $30 for eachcouple. They can attend an informational session on how to use NFP followed up with chart reviews.ObjectiveTo help engaged couples build a sustaining relationship for their marriage, one which is rooted in their faith,God’s love, and their love for each other.Who Should/Can AttendEngaged couples.Time FrameThe classes are from 7 – 9:30 p.m.Cost$60.00 for Pre-Marriage ClassContact: Debbie AndrulonisParish: Diocese of PittsburghPhone: 412-456-3114Email: familylife@diopitt.org


Couples Preparing for MarriageEngaged EncounterDescriptionA weekend experience held in a retreat center giving couples preparing for marriage the opportunity to focusexclusively on each other for 44 hours in peaceful surroundings, free from the pressure and distractions of theoutside world. The Weekend is an in-depth, private, personal, marriage preparation experience within thecontext of Catholic faith and values.ObjectiveTo offer couples a unique opportunity to look at their commitment to each other in a deeper way as theyprepare for marriage.Who Should/Can AttendThough Catholic in origin, this experience is open to any engaged couple wanting to prepare for a deeper,more meaningful life together.Time FrameFriday evening to Sunday afternoon.Cost$215 per couple.Contact: Brian & Nancy StevensPhone: 412-861-0262Email: eeweekends@verizon.net


Couples Preparing for MarriagePre-Marriage PrepDescriptionA marriage preparation process offered to engaged couples that is based on “Evenings for Engaged Couples”from Sadlier.ObjectiveTo provide engaged couples with an opportunity to recognize areas of compatibility and differences betweenthem.To learn lasting skills that will bolster a spiritual marriage relationship.Who Should/Can AttendThose preparing for Marriage.Time FrameFriday 7:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m., Saturday 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.Cost$50.00 / couple if a member of Our Lady of Joy. Our Lady of Joy members attend for free.SCHEDULEFriday evening7:00 p.m. Opening prayer: Team couple7:15 p.m. Looking at Marriage Together8:00 p.m. Break8:15 p.m. Ways to Communicate Love9:00 p.m. Break9:15 p.m. Images of God and Married Love10:00 p.m. Closing PrayerSaturday Morning9:00 a.m. Opening Prayer9:00 a.m. Conflict Resolution and Financial Planning9:55 a.m. Break10:15 a.m. Marriage & Intimacy11:00 a.m. The Sacrament of Matrimony11:40 a.m. Building a Stronger Marriage12:15 p.m. Pre-Marriage Weekend Questionnaire12:30 p.m. Closing Prayer and Blessing of Couple (Church) PriestContact: Jane Siatkosky CRE or Greg CallaghanParish: Our Lady of JoyPhone: 422-795-4389Email: siatkosky1@yahoo.com


Couples Preparing for MarriageSponsor Couple ProgramDescriptionThis program is to prepare a couple for marriage. The engaged couple receive the books entitled For Better &For Ever by Rev. Robert Ruhnke and answer the questions in the book before meeting with the sponsorcouple to discuss their answers.Practice ObjectiveTo give the opportunity for the engaged couple to share life experiences with the sponsor couple.To give the sponsor couple the opportunity to show the engaged couple a sacramental marriage throughtheir sharing.Who Should/Can AttendAny couple preparing for marriage.Time FrameThe engaged couple and sponsor couple meet for five evenings in the sponsor couple’s home based on bothcouples’ schedules. It is recommended that the couples finish the program within 10 weeks. The meetingsare usually 1½ to 2 hours an evening.Cost$40Contact: Peg and Rich GottfriedParish: St. Athanasius ParishPhone: 412-367-7384Email: rich.peg@verizon.net


Divorced or SeparatedDivorceCareDescriptionDivorceCare is for divorced and separated individuals. It is part seminar and part support group. The seminarconsists of a short video each week. Each week a new topic is used covering many of the problemsencountered by separation and divorce. Example: Why am I feeling this way, anger, finance, depression,healing, recovery. The support group garners understanding and fosters healing from people who have agenuine concern for each individual’s personal situation.ObjectiveTo offer support, understanding, healing and recovery through the difficult times incurred by separationand/or divorce using Christian principles.Who Should/Can AttendSeparated and divorced individuals.Time FrameFourteen WeeksCost$10.00 for the work book. Scholarships are availableSuggestions/CommentsThe group is an open group—it is recommended that one commits to meeting once a week for the entirefourteen weeks.Contact: Mary Jo AuthParish: St. Philip ParishPhone: 412-279-0299


Divorced and SeparatedDivorced or Separated Support GroupDescriptionThis group provides support and healing to folks who are either divorced or separated. They useDVDs and small group discussion, which couples find beneficial. The DVDs that are used are theDivorceCare series. DivorceCare is a 13-week Christian, biblically-based program which coverstopics such as Anger, Loneliness, Depression, KidCare, Financial Survival, New Relationships,Forgiveness and Reconciliation. We supplement the DVD series with a DVD presentation of Fr.Brian Welding’s discussion of annulments, along with questions and answers.ObjectiveTo heal from divorce and/or separation and to develop a deeper relationship with Our Lord.Who Should/Can AttendAnyone who is either divorced (currently or in the process) or separated from their spouse.Time Frame14 weeks: 13 weeks of meetings followed by a Potluck dinner celebration.CostA one-time fee of $10 is charged which covers most of the cost of the participant’s workbook.Contact: Ralph JoyParish: Sts. John and PaulPhone: 724-933-6226Email: rjoy@consolidated.net


Divorced or SeparatedProgram for the Separated or DivorcedDescriptionMembers named this program “Raphael’s Group.” This is a theme centered group that meets on the 4 th Fridayof each month from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. A strengths-based resiliency model of social support is used. Inaddition, a strong community-based emphasis is maintained. In other words, this group serves as a communityfor those who are separated or divorced. In addition to the monthly meetings, at least one community-basedsocial event is organized in between each meeting (e.g., attending a parish or community festival or picnic,trips to Phipps Conservatory, the Aviary, The Science Center, zoos, museums, meals out, pot-luck meals,tailgate parties at community events, hikes and/or bike rides, Steelers game get-togethers, etc.)A series of rotating themes from a DVD on the topic is used for those who are newly separated and divorcedor new to the group. Part of the time each month is also devoted to new themes initiated by the wants andneeds of those members who have been in the group long-term and have already completed the themes fromthe DVD.(See next page for further information.)ObjectivesTo provide social and emotional support for those who are going through the crisis of marital separation ordivorce.To provide mental health, wellness, and parenting information that is consistent with Catholic values andbeliefs for those who are separated or divorced.To reduce isolation by providing a community of those who are separated or divorced for group-based socialnetworking.Who Should/Can AttendAnyone who is already separated or divorced is welcome. Family members of those who are separated ordivorced sometimes attend the community-based social events.Time FrameThis group is open-ended and on-going. New members can join at any time.Suggestions/CommentsIt would be helpful to have a DVD player hooked up and ready for use at each meeting so that a computerdoesn’t have to be carried in each month.Contact: Peg Christopher or Diane FurchakParish: St. Bernadette Parish - MonroevillePhone: 724-733-2928Email: deerwoodswcs@aol.com


Raphael’s Group: St. Bernadette ParishGroup for those who are Separated or DivorcedSt. Bernadette Parish Group for Those who are Separated and/or Divorced (also known as “Raphael’sGroup”) will continue to meet on the fourth Friday of each month from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. on the first floor ofSt. Bernadette Elementary School. When the fourth Friday falls on a holiday weekend, the group meets at thehome of one of the group facilitators, or at a local restaurant, instead. Call Peg Christopher (724) 733-2928 orDiane Furchak (412) 445-0913 for directions or for detailed information about the group’s theme-centeredmeeting topic each month and for a list of social activities sponsored by the group. Information about thegroup can also be found on the following website: www.deerwoodswcs.com.New member themes for September through May are (1) Coping with Rejection and Stigma; (2) Loss andTransformation of the Post-Separation/Divorce Relationship; (3) Managing Loneliness and CreatingConstructive Social Support Systems; (4) Managing Anger Associated with the Trauma of Separation andDivorce; (5) Transforming Other Negative Emotions into Constructive Actions; (6) The Grief Process: WhatCan Help; (7) Forgiveness; (8) Taking Responsibility for Mediating Family Conflict and Co-Parenting; and(9) Integrating and Letting Go of the Past To Fully Engage in the Present and to Plan for the Future.Additional themes are chosen by those who have been separated and/or divorced for a longer period of time.Refreshments are also provided.Divorce in a Catholic marriage is frequently associated with some type of abuse or trauma. In every marriage,differences are inevitable. People who manage differences by excluding or divorcing those they have vowedto love until death draws them apart, inflict one of the cruelest forms of emotional and financial trauma theycould possibly inflict on a spouse. If you are separated or divorced, and have been exposed to this type ofpain, this group is the place to be. Co-parenting and conflict resolution after separation or divorce is alsoaddressed. And if you are ready for some great fellowship and fun, the in-between meeting social events (tailgateget-togethers, games, picnics, pot-luck dinners, hikes, bike-rides, community-events, etc.), are somethingthat you won’t want to miss. Raphael’s Group social events are opened to non-group members, whethersingle, widowed, separated/divorced or still married.The Divorce Recovery material presented through this group comes from materials provided by the PittsburghDiocese and from research that is consistent with Catholic theology. Part of the meeting time is set aside forthose who have moved beyond the crisis stage and are working to maintain a constructive, healthy, morallyresponsible, separated and divorced community. This group uses an open-model, meaning that members canjoin and/or reenter the group at any time. This group is linked with other Catholic divorce recovery groupsthroughout the Diocese. Using the model of a village or community, each member’s strengths and resiliencycharacteristics are identified and used to make this group the very best that it can be. Although people fromother religions are welcome to participate and an atmosphere of mutual respect is maintained, this group doesreinforce Catholic beliefs and values.


Divorced or SeparatedSeparated or Divorced Care GroupDescriptionA program providing support and healing for separated or divorced.ObjectiveTo provide an opportunity to talk about what is currently transpiring in your life in the company of thosetraveling the same road and who understand how you might feel.Who Should/Can AttendAnyone experiencing hurt or anger from a separation or divorceTime Frame13 sessions starting in October from 7:30 to 9:00 pm.Contact: Marianne Uffelman, L.C.S.W.Parish: St. Bernard ChurchPhone: 412-341-3058Email: mmuffelman@gmail.com


FamiliesAdvent Family EveningDescriptionFamilies are invited to an evening activity session, usually the week before Advent begins.The format consists of an initial greeting and instructions regarding the evening’s activities. Children fromage 3 thru grade 6 are divided into groups for an age level presentation, activity and prayer – i.e. storytelling,coloring page, and simple prayer. At the same time, a speaker addresses the Advent theme for parents/adultsand teens (middle school and high school).All family members gather (as families) in the parish hall for a family craft activity – Advent wreath, JesseTree, crèche preparation, etc. The evening concludes with a brief prayer service in the parish hall followed byan ice cream sundae bar.ObjectiveTo foster family spirituality by introducing a family prayer activity that will last thru the Advent season.Who Should/Can AttendAll families of the parish (single and/or widowed parishioners were invited and paired with families if theyresponded).Time FrameSunday before 1 st Sunday of Advent from 6:00-7:00 p.m.Cost$5.00 per family to cover craft supplies and refreshments.Suggestions/CommentsWe tried to match families for the family craft activity so they would support one another thru the activity andthe follow-up in their homes.Contact:Parish:Phone:Email:Andrew JamesSt. John Neumann Parish, Franklin Park412-366-5885 x11ajames@stjohnneumannpgh.org


FamiliesFamily Centered ProgramDescriptionThe Family-Centered model is a family faith formation program held monthly. Under the guidance ofthe director of the program, the parents teach their children at home the rest of the month.ObjectiveTo provide material, education and prayer to enhance the religious education of children by parents intheir home.Who Should/Can AttendAny interested familyTime Frame1½ hours monthlyContact: Sue ShafferParish: St. Ferdinand ChurchPhone: 724-776-9177 Ext. 302Email: susan@stferd.org


FamiliesFamily ProgramDescriptionSaint Mary of the Assumption Family Program gathers each month, and focus on the scriptures of the Sundayliturgies to provide the source for reflection, understanding and formation. Parents meet with their childrenand a catechist with the children's age group at the September session. At subsequent sessions once a monththe children meet with their age group companions while parents gather for adult faith sharing and discussionof topics flowing from the Sunday scriptures. Each month the families join in some practical donation tosupport a specific needy outreach project. Each month one of the children's classes assists in ministry roles atthe 9:00a.m. Liturgy, and another class prepares and leads the closing prayer with the adult assembly. At thefinal session for each season, the closing assembly for all families is an opportunity for members to share in atalent show. The giftedness of youngest to eldest is enjoyed and acknowledged.ObjectiveTo provide a unique expression to our parish vision which reads:We, the growing family of St. Mary of the Assumption, bound together by our Roman Catholic Faith,welcome and unify as people of God, one family in Christ Jesus,enable and deepen the spirituality of each individual,nurture and share our talents for the enrichment of the parish and the community, andstrengthen and increase participation through meaningful liturgy.Who Should/Can AttendAll interested families willing to commit to the process.Time Frame3 hours per month (first hour at parish liturgy)2 hours of catechetical instruction, discussion and activities.CostPrice of consumable booklets and Gospel weeklies for each child.Cost of handouts and refreshments prepared for adult session.Suggestions/CommentsSeek to have each family committed to assist at least at one month in some aspect of the workings of theprogram. Owning the process makes for a sense of pride on the part of the participants.Contact: Deacon Francis DadowskiParish: Saint Mary of the Assumption, Glenshaw, PAPhone: 412-782-6336Email: francis_dadowski@hotmail.com


FamiliesLet’s Make Christmas CookiesDescriptionChristmas cookies are made during Advent from molds of angels, Bethlehem, the Three Kings or otherreligious Christmas symbols. These cookies are saved and eaten on Christmas Eve and Christmas day.ObjectiveTo remind families during Advent of the true meaning of Christmas.To learn to wait and look forward to, with anticipation, the birth of Christ.Who Should/Can AttendFamiliesTime Frame2-3 hoursSuggestions/CommentsRecipes, molds, and a large kitchen in which to work.Contact: Barb McCarthyParish: St. Ferdinand ChurchPhone: 724-776-1357Email: barb@stferd.org


FamiliesPittsburgh Catholic Newspaper in EducationDescriptionEvery student in grades 4-9 receives a Pittsburgh Catholic Newspaper each week and is given an assignmentfor the family to work on together.ObjectiveTo help the students and the family become more knowledgeable with the current events of our Catholic faith.It is very informative and much fun!Who Should/Can AttendThese activities can be for the entire family.Time Frame2-3 hoursSuggestions/CommentsSome possibilities include:• Conduct a word-find by having students in lower grades to locate specific words or phrases (suppliedby you) in the Pittsburgh Catholic.• Have students in middle/high school pretend they are a reporter covering an important religious storyfor the front page of the Pittsburgh Catholic. They would include people and places where the eventoccurred. Create a catchy headline and illustration to explain their article.• Families could discuss the values of courage, loyalty, justice, respect, hope, love. Choose articles fromthe Pittsburgh Catholic that reflect these values.• Families could make a Lenten booklet “To Calvary with Jesus,” using the Pittsburgh Catholic to findpicture and articles that illustrate each stop along the way.• Run a contest in your school or parish religious education program and give a prize for the best article,picture, portrayal etc. of something they read in the Pittsburgh Catholic. Encourage students/familiesto be creative.• Have students/families design their version of the Pittsburgh Catholic in the time of Jesus, creating thename of the newspaper, front page, headlines, pictures, artwork etc.Contact: Sr. Jean Spatola, SDRPhone: 412-751-8600


Married CouplesCovenant of Love Marriage GroupDescriptionThis program is an eight session program based on segments of the EWTN series “Marriage Works inChrist” featuring Fr. James Dean along with Greg and Julie Alexander of The Alexander House,creators of the Covenant of Love Program. These 30 minute DVD-based presentations aresupplemented by scripture, references to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, and discussionquestions.ObjectiveTo enable participants to better understand and respond to God’s plan for Marriage.Who Should/Can AttendThe program is for couples at all “ages and stages” of marriage.Time Frame8 weeks, although a loner program format is possible.CostThe Alexander House requires parishes who want to present the program to become “partners” at acost of $800 for one year. Partners receive a set of DVDs and access to the Covenant of Love websitearea that contains the discussion guides. Discussion guides can be copied and distributed toparticipants. The cost also includes direct support by the Alexander House, as well as monthlyconference calls regarding the program. Setting a cost for participants is optional.Suggestions/CommentsThe program is best suited for a parish setting. The Alexander House suggests building a core team of 6-8couples to help launch and facilitate the program in the parish. It is suggested that other activities for marriedcouples be interspersed after two DVD-based sessions. Suggestions in this area include a Holy Hour forCouples, Stations of the Cross for Married Couples, Not-So-Newlywed Game, or Married Couple PanelDiscussion.Contact: Shawna and Warren HuntParish: St. KilianPhone: 724-687-0575Email: smhunt@zoominternet.net


Married CouplesDinner & Speaker for Married CouplesDescriptionAn evening spent with married couples enjoying dinner, conversation, community and the wisdom of aguest speaker.ObjectiveTo refresh participants in their vocation of marriage and to meet other couples.Who Should/Can AttendAll married couples.Time Frame3 – 4 hours.Suggestions/CommentsThe evening could be divided into different stages of marriage; examples: 1-5 years, 6-15 years, etc.Contact: Barb McCarthyParish: St. Ferdinand ChurchPhone: 724-776-1357Email: barb@stferd.org


Married CouplesThe Five Love LanguagesDescriptionA presentation on the book by Dr. Gary Chapman entitled The Five Love Languages.ObjectiveTo familiarize people with Dr. Chapman’s theory of communication for all couples.To enable the couples to put the theory to work in their own relationship.Who Should/Can AttendAny couple interested in improving their relationship.Time FrameApproximately 1 ½ hours followed by time for refreshments and socializing.CostDonationSuggestions/CommentsThere is also a DVD presentation that can be used done by Dr. Gary Chapman. This format would beabout a 2 to 2½ hour evening and includes 2 presentations with a break in between. This program includesworkbooks to be used by those in attendance. If this program is used, an amount to cover the costs of thebooks would be suggested.Contact: Lou and Mary LocanteParish: St. Athanasius ParishPhone: 412-367-2642Email: locante@aol.com


Married CouplesMarriage Building Assessment ToolDescriptionThis tool, consisting of eight building blocks or key areas of a marriage- building parish, is designed to assistthe parish staff and pastoral council to assess your parish’s current efforts.ObjectiveTo assess the parish’s current efforts in each of the eight areas.To establish areas of priority.To consider resources and make a “building plan.”Who Should/Can AttendThis resource offers the parish staff, pastoral council, and marriage committee an opportunity to worktogether.Time FrameSet by those involved.CostThis will vary dependent upon decisions that are made.Suggestions/CommentsParishes may want to take one area at a time and develop a plan rather than try to accomplish too much atonce.Contact: Maureen WoodPhone: 412-456-3160Email: mwood@diopitt.org


Marriage Building Parishes Assessment ToolProduced by the National Association of Catholic Family Life Ministers for Implementing the U.S. Bishops’ PastoralInitiative for MarriageThe purpose of this Assessment Tool is to generate creative ideas, discussion and resources to helpimprove the way a parish intentionally views and strengthens marriage throughout the life cycle. Within eachparticular Building Block is a list of statements to help assess a given parishes current efforts, leading a Parishto selecting and prioritizing future steps to becoming more of a Marriage-Building Parish. Each containnumerous ideas and choices, and you may add ones that are not included.1. ASSESS PARISH’S CURRENT EFFORTS. Have the pastor, deacons, staff and marriage ministryteam complete the assessment for each Building Block independently and list their three top prioritiesfor each Building Block.2. ESTABLISH AREAS OF PRIORITY. If you are working with a committee, gather the committeeand compare priorities listed under each Building Block. Individually, or as a group select whichBuilding Block(s) will be your first priorities to develop. While each is important, it might be toooverwhelming to tackle all eight Building Blocks at one time. Once selected, invite members tocompare answers and share why they chose the answers they did. Second, have each individual givetheir top three priorities and why. After each person has had an opportunity to discuss, findcommonalities in the priorities chosen and come to a consensus on which three take precedence.3. CONSIDER RESOURCES AND MAKE BUILDING PLANS. Following each Building Blockthere is information on many of the Resources and Programs available to assist you in your BuildingPlans. Be certain to check out the USCCB website www.foryourmarriage.org for further ideas andwww. NACFLM.org for a sample scoring sheet to be used with this assessment, helpful worksheetsfor Building Plans and other information that will be available in the coming year.4. BUILD A “MARRIAGE-BUILDING” PARISH. Don’t forget to assign responsibilities(individuals/couples, committees, movements, etc); establish timelines, budgets, resource and materialneeds and your desired outcomes for each priority.* A copy of “Marriage Building Parishes Assessment and Resource Guide” has been sent to each parish.Many resources to assist parish staff with marriage ministry can be found in the guide.* See next eight pages for the Building Blocks: Building Leadership, Forming Youth and Young Adults,Preparing for Sacramental Marriage, Creating a Culture of Life, Strengthening the Married, PastoralCaring for those in Need, Divorce Healing for Spouses and Children, Worshipping and Prayer.


BUILDS and forms a team whominister to those called to thevocation of marriage and family.R A T E T H E F O L L O W I N G :3 = Yes! We do that 2 = We do it, but it needs improvement 1 = No, we don’t do that1. Healthy marriage is a stated priorityin our parish.2. Our parish provides ongoingcatechesis, education andformation, in light of the authenticteaching of the Church, on whymarriage is the union of one manand one woman and why thisinstitution needs to be promotedand protected in society.3. We seek to build a culture ofconfidence and courage thatbears witness, in all areas of life andsociety, to the truth and beauty ofmarriage.4. We have an active Marriage MinistryTeam or similar parish committeeand provide them with effectiveformation and training.5. We actively seek participation of thenewly married in our parish.6. Our parish allocates money andother resources to the best of itsability to promote healthy marriage.7. Our parish supports marriage in thelarger community.8. Our parish is able to recruitvolunteers who are faithful witnessesto the Church’s teaching onmarriage and family.9. Our volunteers are given regularmarriage-oriented educational/formational opportunities.10. Our pastoral leadership looks at allparish ministries to make sure theyare marriage friendly.11. We seek opportunities tocollaborate with other parishes toeffectively minister to marriage.12. We are able to access our DiocesanFamily Life Office, NationalAssociation of Catholic Family LifeMinisters (www.NACFLM.org), andweb-sites such as United StatesConference of Catholic Bishop’s(www.ForYourMarriage.org13. We provide access to resourcesdealing with various cultures andethnic groups particularly thoseaffecting marriage.14. Make available the study guide theUS Bishop’s Pastoral Letter, Marriage:Love and Life in the Divine Plan.15. Parish includes marriage prayers,rituals, events and bulletin insertsthrough the year.16. Parishioners are encouraged towrite to legislators about marriageissues.17. Leadership training is provided forsupport group facilitators.“We are grateful, too, for allthose who work with youngpeople and engaged couplesto establish good marriages,who help married couplesto grow in love andstrengthen their union, andwho help those in crisis toresolve their problems andbring healing to their lives.From Marriage: Love and Life inthe Divine PlanBUILDING LeadershipTop three priorities for BUILDING Leadership:Total ScoreItem No.Action (Improve/Begin)1.2.3.Copyright © 2010, National Association of Catholic Family Life Ministersout of possible 51


FORMS young people in the beliefsand virtues necessary for healthyrelationships, including marriageR A T E T H E F O L L O W I N G :3 = Yes! We do that 2 = We do it, but it needs improvement 1 = No, we don’t do thatFORMING Youth1. Our parish provides programs andeffective catechesis that help youthand young adults discuss, understandand defend the unique meaning ofmarriage in the face ofcontemporary challenges.2. Faith formation programs andcatechetical curriculum includecomponents at every level thataddress healthy relationships and thevocation of marriage.3. The beauty of sexuality and theCatholic Church’s teachings onmarriage are taughteffectively to our youth.4. Youth activities include efforts tohonor married couples in our parish,i.e., hosting a “Senior Prom” forcouples married 40 years or more,etc.5. Post-confirmation program for highschool seniors about the Sacramentof Marriage is offered.6. Our parish has a strong emphasis onremote preparation to help parentsproperly form their children and teensfor marriage.7. Married couples are sought out ascatechists.8. Couples witness the joys andstruggles of the Sacrament ofMarriage to the youth.9. Theology of the Body is taught toyouth and young adults.10. Fertility awareness/appreciation istaught.FORMING Young Adults11. Our parish provides young adults withpositive opportunities for growth inRelationships and Vocation.12. Young adults have activities andcatechesis available.13. Parish utilizes opportunities tocatechize adolescents and youngadults on the meaning of covenant,sacrifice, faithfulness and opennessto life.“Proximate preparationbegins around pubertyand involves a morespecific preparation for thesacraments, including anunderstanding of healthyrelationships, sexuality,the virtue of chastity, andresponsible parenthood.”From Marriage: Love and Lifein the Divine PlanFORMING Youth and Young AdultsTop three priorities for FORMING Youth and Young Adults:Total ScoreItem No.Action (Improve/Begin)1.2.3.Copyright © 2010, National Association of Catholic Family Life Ministersout of possible 39


PREPARES couples tocelebrate and live a Christiansacramental marriageR A T E T H E F O L L O W I N G :3 = Yes! We do that 2 = We do it, but it needs improvement 1 = No, we don’t do thatPREPARING for Sacramental Marriage1. A pre-marital inventory is utilized byall couples preparing for sacramentalmarriage.2. A parish or diocesan preparationprogram is utilized for couples seekingmarriage the Church.3. A parish or diocesan preparationprogram is utilized for couples whenone or both have had a previousmarriage(s) which addresses theirspecial areas of concern, i.e.,closure of the first marriage, blendedfamilies, etc.4. A parish or diocesan preparationprogram is utilized for couples seekingconvalidation.5. If parish based, all Ministers to theEngaged are up to date with thecurrent diocesan and parish policies.6. Ministers to the Engaged gather atleast annually to enrich their ministryand to clarify questions.7. Newly married couples are mentoredafter the wedding.8. Church teaching and instruction ina natural family planning method isprovided for all couples preparing formarriage.CELEBRATING Sacramental Marriage9. Our parish assumes a posture ofwelcome to all couples seeking to bemarried in the Church.10. Engaged couples are broughtforward for a blessing during the timeof marriage preparation.11. Wedding planning assistance isprovided for couples planning awedding celebration in our parish.“By the time of immediatepreparation, the couplehas developed a convictionthat God is calling them tomarriage with a particularperson. Prayer, especiallyfor the guidance of theHoly Spirit, and the helpof wise mentors are crucialin this discernment process.Discernment also involves anhonest assessment of qualitiesthat are foundational forthe marriage. These includean ability to make andkeep a commitment, thedesire for a lifelong, faithfulrelationship, and openness tochildren. The couple will alsowant to reflect on the valuesthey share, their ability tocommunicate, and agreementon significant issues.”From Marriage: Love and Lifein the Divine PlanPREPARING for Sacramental MarriageTop three priorities for PREPARING for Sacramental Marriage:Total ScoreItem No.1.2.3.Action (Improve/Begin)Copyright © 2010, National Association of Catholic Family Life Ministersout of possible 33


AFFIRMS the gift of Children, the vocationof Parenthood, and helps build a Cultureof Life SUPPORTS parents and families intheir role as a domestic church.R A T E T H E F O L L O W I N G :3 = Yes! We do that 2 = We do it, but it needs improvement 1 = No, we don’t do thatCREATING A Culture of Life1. Our parish fosters awareness ofmarriage between one man andone woman as the fundamentalinstitution for life, including effectivecatechesis and education on thegift of children, the unique andindispensable place of mothers andfathers, and the inseparability of theunitive and procreative meanings ofmarried love.2. Baptisms are periodically conductedduring the weekend liturgy to affirmthe gift of children.3. In all aspects if ministry, our parishconsiders the role of family and thegift of children.4. Opportunities are available formothers, fathers and children tolearn about fertility awareness andappreciation together.5. Our parish sponsors opportunities topray for mothers and their unbornchildren.6. Our parish fosters awareness of theneed to restore legal protectionto the lives of unborn children andto safeguard in law the lives ofthose who are chronically ill,disabled, or dying.7. A Spiritual Adoption program is inplace that encourages families topray for the unborn.8. Natural Family Planning Instruction isavailable and promoted to parents,especially at times of transitions, i.e.baptismal preparation.9. Parents are publicly honored for theirdedication and commitment to theirchildren, especially in conjunctionwith Mother’s Day, Father’s Day,First Communion, Confirmation,Graduation, Catechetical Sunday,etc.10. Faith formation programs andcatechetical curriculum includecomponents that address thedignity of the human person fromconception to a natural death.PARENTING in the Domestic Church11. Mothers and fathers are givenresources and encouragement tomodel healthyrelations for their children.12. Parenting classes are periodicallyoffered.13. Contact information is published formothers and father who are temptedto abuse their child(ren).14. Sacramental Preparation is utilizedas a time to teach parentingskills and the understanding oftheir role as primary educators ofchildren. (Baptism, First Communion,Confirmation)15. Mothers and fathers are invited to beactively involved in their children’sreligious education.16. Non-Catholic and/or non-custodialmothers and fathers are included inparent mailings and invitations.17. Our parish provides opportunities forparents to properly form their childrenand teens for marriage.18. Parish has bulletin inserts that offerhelp and ideas for evangelization inthe family.19. A family perspective has beenadopted by the parish consideringthe needs of the family whenevernew programs are initiated.“Children are a gift ina myriad of ways. Theybring joy even in themidst of heartaches; theygive added direction tothe lives of their parents.Children, who are the fruitof love and meaningfulcommitment, are a cause oflove and meaning.“The procreative meaningof marriage involves notonly the conception ofchildren, but also theirupbringing and education,including spiritualformation in the life oflove. This formation cantake place only withina human communityformed in love. The lovingcommunion of the spousesis the primary context inwhich children are bothconceived and brought upin love.”From Marriage: Love and Lifein the Divine PlanCREATING a Culture of LifeTop three priorities for CREATING a Culture of Life :Total ScoreItem No.1.2.3.Action (Improve/Begin)Copyright © 2010, National Association of Catholic Family Life Ministersout of possible 57


STRENGTHENS couples to renew their commitment &grow in the skills for a happy & holy marriageEDUCATES all members about the nature & purposes ofmarriage as a natural institution & a Christian sacramentR A T E T H E F O L L O W I N G :3 = Yes! We do that 2 = We do it, but it needs improvement 1 = No, we don’t do thatSTRENGTHENING the Married“As a couple grows in virtue,they grow in holiness. Inother words, the coupleacquires, by prayer anddiscipline, those interiorqualities that open them toGod’s love and allow themto share in his love moredeeply. Couples instinctivelyunderstand this when theyspeak about their marriagebeing a means of leadingeach other to heaven…“Communication andrelationship skills are crucialto building such intimacy.As spouses learn to improvetheir communication,they can better respondto each other’s need forlove, acceptance, andappreciation. They deepenmarital intimacy andstrengthen their practice ofchastity.”From Marriage: Love and Lifein the Divine PlanEDUCATING in Skills1. Topics related to the promotion andprotection of marriage in society areincluded in our programs.2. Adult faith formation programs (RCIA)include the Church’s teachings onmarriage.3. Parish library includes books and mediaoffering support and help for marriage.4. Baptismal preparation program includesthe adjustments in marriage when anew baby is born and the importanceof their role as primary educators of theirchildren.5. Education opportunities regardinghealthy relationships, communicationskills, financial planning are offeredfor singles, engaged couples, marriedcouples, parents, divorced, widowed,hurting families, stepfamilies, and elders.6. Theology of the Body is taught to youth,young adults and the married.7. Natural Family Planning instruction isavailable and promoted regularly.8. Bulletin inserts on marriage relatedtopics and links to web-sites supportingmarriage are included on a regularbasis.RENEWING & Enriching the Married9. Monthly “Marriage-Building Sunday” isestablished.10. Names are submitted for diocesananniversary celebration.11. Married couples are publicly honoredfor milestone years at Mass, in thebulletin, with anniversary card, onMonthly “Marriage-Building Sunday,”etc.12. Prayers for married couples are in thepews or pamphlet racks.13. Signage in the parish is displayed onbeing a “Marriage-Building” parish &What Have You Done For Your MarriageToday?14. Parish retreats for married couples areoffered at least annually.15. Practical bulletin inserts promotingmarriage include prayers, customs,rituals and traditions throughout theyear.16. Military couples are intentionally invitedto marriage enrichment opportunities,particularly when reintegrating afterdeployment.17. Marriage enrichment programs includecomponents that are relevant to allcultures.18. Follow-up contact is made with newlymarried couples.19. The Catholic newsletter, Foundations,is provided for couples duringtheir first year of marriage (www.foundationnewsletter.net)20. Make available the study guide of theUS Bishop’s Pastoral Letter, Marriage:Love and Life in the Divine Plan.21. Marriage enrichment opportunities areprovided/promoted monthly, quarterly,and annually.22. Child care/activities are provided orlist of potential babysitters is offeredfor marriage enrichment and otherprograms opportunities.23. Newly married couples are invited to beactively involved in the parish, invitedto parish functions and to volunteer forspecific functions.24. Groups of married couples meet forsupport.25. Couple Prayer Series is available to assistcouples to pray together daily.26. Opportunities exist for married couplesto be in small Christian communities.Total ScoreTop three priorities for STRENGTHENING the Married:Item No.Action (Improve/Begin)out of possible 781.2.3.Copyright © 2010, National Association of Catholic Family Life Ministers


PROVIDES CARE to couplesand families in times ofdifficulty and lossR A T E T H E F O L L O W I N G :3 = Yes! We do that 2 = We do it, but it needs improvement 1 = No, we don’t do thatPastoral CARING for those in Need“...We bishops urgecouples in crisis to turn tothe Lord for help. We alsoencourage them to makeuse of the many resources,including programs andministries offered by theChurch, that can help tosave marriages, even thosein serious difficulty.”From MarriageLife in the Divine PlanPastoral CARING for times ofDifficulties1. Priests and deacons haveintervention skills to help in initial carefor struggling marriages.2. A pastoral plan or “Marriage Care” isin place for couples who come to uswith problems.3. Someone on staff is knowledgeableto make good counseling referrals topro-marriage counselors, Retrouvaille,etc.4. Couples are supported through theadjustments of pregnancy and newparenting.5. Couples struggling with infertility aresupported and given guidance thatconforms with Catholic teaching.6. Couples are supported through theadoption process and beyond.7. Support for those in 2nd marriages/blended families is available.8. Education and support is availablefor pornography and substanceabuse addictions and financialdifficulties.9. Partnerships exist with other parishes/cluster for assisting hurting marriages.10. Copies of USCCB’s When I call forHelp pamphlet are available.11. Domestic violence hot-line number ispublished in bulletin. 1-800-799-SAFE(7233)12. Post-abortion healing resources areadvertised. www.hopeafterabortion.org13. Support is given to familiesexperiencing military deploymentand assisted through thereintegration process.14. A pastoral plan is developed toassist those couples and familiesexperiencing concern aboutimmigration issues.Pastoral CARING for times of Loss15. Bereavement care is available forthose who have lost a spouse.16. Couples are supported through lossof pregnancy, miscarriage, stillbirth.17. Couples are supported through theloss of child.18. Parents are supported when a childsays they are struggling with same sexattraction.Total ScoreTop three priorities for Pastoral CARING for those in need:Item No.Action (Improve/Begin)out of possible 541.2.3.Copyright © 2010, National Association of Catholic Family Life Ministers


OFFERS HEALING toseparated and divorcedspouses and their familiesR A T E T H E F O L L O W I N G :3 = Yes! We do that 2 = We do it, but it needs improvement 1 = No, we don’t do thatDivorce-Healing for Spouses1. A support ministry for personsgoing through the initial trauma ofseparation and divorce is providedor one available elsewhere isadvertised.2. Divorce support programs continueafter the initial trauma withcatechesis for persons movingthrough the grief process.3. Child care is provided free duringtraining and programs.4. A retreat program is availableperiodically for the divorced.5. Annulment education is providedperiodically to inform divorcedpersons how to proceed with thehealing process of an annulment.6. Annulment support ministers areavailable to assist those goingthrough theannulment process.7. Annual healing Mass and healingritual is sponsored for the separatedand divorced.8. Divorced and single parents areincluded in prayers of the faithful.9. Support for single parents is provided.10. Leadership training is provided forsupport group facilitators.11. The Pastoral Team includes divorcedpersons who have journeyedthe path and can encouragereconciliation and support throughappropriate programs.12. Bulletin announcements includeprograms for divorced personsavailable in the community.13. Parish packets explaining availableresources for divorce programs areprovided to the office staff to answerinquiries.14. Parish website is linked to www.nacsdc.org.Divorce-Healing for Children15. Support groups are available forchildren of divorce.16. Retreat program for teens of divorceare provided.“We understand thepain of those for whomdivorce seemed the onlyrecourse...We also offerencouragement to thosewho have divorced andremarried civilly… Weencourage divorced personswho wish to marry in theCatholic Church to seekcounsel about the optionsthat exist to remedy theirsituation, including thesuitability of a declarationof nullity.”From Marriage: Love and Lifein the Divine PlanDivorce HEALING for Spouses and ChildrenTop three priorities for Divorce HEALING for Spouses and Children:Total ScoreItem No.Action (Improve/Begin)1.2.3.Copyright © 2010, National Association of Catholic Family Life Ministersout of possible 48


CELEBRATES the vocationof marriage in worship andcommunity lifeR A T E T H E F O L L O W I N G :3 = Yes! We do that 2 = We do it, but it needs improvement 1 = No, we don’t do thatWORSHIPPING & Prayer“Pope Benedict XVIexplains how, in theEucharist, the verymeaning of marriageis transfigured: “theimagery of marriagebetween God and Israelis now realized in a waypreviously inconceivable:it had meant standing inGod’s presence, but now itbecomes union with Godthrough sharing in Jesus’self-gift, sharing in hisbody and blood.”From MarriageLife in the Divine Plan1. Our parish regularly prays thatmarriage, as the permanent andexclusive union of one man and onewoman, be protected and promotedin our society and culture.2. Monthly “Marriage-Building”Sunday is established to celebrateanniversaries, renew marriagevows, bless the engaged and newlymarried, and pray for those withdifficulties, etc.3. Homilies are regularly given aboutthe joys and importance of marriageas well as the threat to marriagewhen appropriate readings lendthemselves to marriage.4. Petitions at Mass regularly includemarriage.5. Our parish regularly prays for couplespreparing for marriage, those whoare married, and are celebratinganniversaries.6. Our parish regularly prays for thosewhose marriages that have faceddifficulties such as separation,divorce, widowhood and distance.7. Couples are encouraged to receivethe Sacrament of Eucharist side byside as a couple.8. Newly married couples comeforward at Mass for a parish blessing.9. Couples are used for the variousministries in the parish, i.e. greeters,lectors, Eucharistic Ministers.10. Homilies often connect Scripture withMarriage and the Church’s Theologyof covenantal relationship.11. In–home resources are available tohelp families pray at home.Total ScoreTop three priorities for WORSHIPING and Prayer:Item No.Action (Improve/Begin)out of possible 331.2.3.Copyright © 2010, National Association of Catholic Family Life Ministers


Married CouplesMarriage Enrichment in the Empty NestDescriptionTransitions can be challenging for marriages. Entering the second half of marriage, which often isassociated with becoming “empty nesters”, is a period where many marriages feel stress, as evidencedby an increase in divorce rates for couples in this phase.This program provides support to couples preparing to enter or in the early stages of the empty nestphase. The concept uses a curriculum developed by David and Claudia Arp called “The Second Halfof Marriage” for an instructional, yet fun program. It utilizes a DVD and discussion based curriculumbuilt around eight challenges of the empty nest years.ObjectiveTo identify the issues that typically confronts couples in the empty nest years.To provide a framework for learning and discussion on the impact of each couple’s personal situation.Who Should/Can AttendCouples preparing to enter or already in the empty nest phase of their marriage.Time Frame8 week program. Presented ideally on an every other Friday evening basis in the parish.Cost$20 for the Arp’s book and start-up snacks.Suggestions/CommentsThe program is best offered in a parish setting to build local community. A side benefit is the social aspect ofcouples meeting others who are in a similar state of life and building relationships with them. The experienceprovides an opportunity for one-on-one couple dialogue during each session couples are asked to sign up eachweek to provide a simple snack. This worked well for both variety and financial means of providing snacks.Contact: Shawna and Warren HuntParish: St. KilianPhone: 724-687-0575Email: smhunt@zoominternet.net


Married CouplesRetrouvailleProgram for Troubled MarriagesDescriptionThe program consists of a weekend and seven follow-up sessions. The weekends are held at the GilmaryCenter near the Greater Pitt Airport. The follow-up sessions are held on Sunday afternoons from 1:30-5:30starting with the first Sunday after the weekend and usually every Sunday or every other Sunday, dependingon the schedule, for seven sessions. The follow-up sessions are held at SS. Simon & Jude Parish in GreenTree. The weekend begins at 7:30 Friday night and finishes up by 5:00 on Sunday. It consists of a series ofpresentations, one to two hours in length. The presentations are given by three team couples and a priest. Acommunication technique called Dialogue is used in which each participant is able to discuss maritalsituations on a feeling level. Each presentation deals with a different topic that frequently causes problems ina marriage such as trust, listening, forgiveness, etc. The couple will have the opportunity to go back to theprivacy of their own room and talk about what they heard in the presentation and how it applies to theirrelationship. Then, they come back for the next presentation and it follows that same pattern for the entireweekend.Gilmary is a retreat center that is a dormitory style setting. Each room has two twin beds, a sink, dresser anddesk. There are community men’s and woman’s bathrooms and showers at each end of the hall. Couples stayat the facility all weekend. All meals are provided.ObjectiveTo restore communication and love to troubled marriages.Who Should/Can AttendCouples in troubled marriages.Time FrameFour (4) weekends are held each year - January, April, July and September.CostThere is a $100 registration fee to reserve a spot on the weekend and then a blank envelope donation isrequested on the weekend. The fees cover both the weekend and post session phases of the Program.Contact: Bill & Pat McGranePhone: 412-327-2434Email: 3041@retrouvaille.org


Married CouplesTeams of Our LadyDescriptionA team is a group of 5-7 married couples who have freely decided to join together to find support in theirefforts to lead Gospel lives. Each group has a priest chaplain that meets with them as well.ObjectiveTo meet monthly in each other’s homes for a simple meal and in the spirit of friendship share experiences ofthe previous month.To reflect on Scripture and to pray.To discuss study material on married life and faith.Who Should/Can AttendMarried couples who want to deepen their faith life.Time Frame3 hrs/month, 9 months/year. Recommitment yearly.CostA free will offering to the international office yearly, cost of materials (less than $20/yr. often free materials,)and bring part of meal to each meeting.Suggestions/CommentsLocal Teams of Our Lady couples conduct meetings to provide information, answer questions and placeinterested couples in a team.Contact: Dan and Mary DonnellyParish: Madonna del CastelloPhone: 412-371-1547Email: mrothdon@yahoo.com


Married CouplesWorldwide Marriage EncounterDescriptionThe weekend is presented by a team consisting of three married couples and a priest. On the weekend, theteam shares their life experience with the couples and teaches a communication skill called dialogue, which isa form of communicating on the level of feelings rather than knowledge or opinions.ObjectiveTo offer married couples the opportunity to gain a better understanding of themselves and their spouse.To instill a desire to work at the communication skills that is introduced on the weekend.Who Should/Can AttendThe weekend is open to all couples. It is suggested that they be in a good marriage with a desire to deepentheir relationship with each other.Time FrameThe Marriage Encounter weekend begins on a Friday evening at 8:00 p.m. and ends on Sunday about 5:00p.m. The weekend is offered in this area about four times a year.CostCouples are asked to give a free-will donation (the cost of the weekend, $400 per couple, is suggested).Suggestions/CommentsCouples who have experienced serious problems in their marriage should not attend the Marriage Encounterweekend. They should be directed to attend a Retrouvaille weekend which is for troubled marriages.Contact: Jay and Judy ShockPhone: 412-635-7775Email: JudyShock@aol.com


Older AdultsLife Enrichment ClubDescriptionSt. Joan of Arc Parish reaches out to enrich the lives of all those willing to set aside time each month to learn,grow, pray and play in a spirit of community. Through our gatherings we will share prayer, share meals, hearspeakers on topics of interest and share new experiences never dreamed of. Each meeting will leave youwanting to come back—guaranteed.ObjectiveTo learn: Each Month different topics will be addressed, such as:Finding happiness as we grow in wisdom, age and graceHolistic LivingHandling GriefJourney through AdventJourney through LentArt TherapyDreams and DreamingTo pray: every meeting begins with an experience of prayer, sharing faith together and experiencing God’slove.To grow: sharing lunch together will create new friendships, new recipes, and new topics of conversation.To play: gatherings are fun, uplifting and wholesome. Laughter is a precious gift and a blessing to share.Time FrameSeptember-May - First Wednesday, 11:00 a.m.-1:30 p.m.CostDonationsContact: Sr. Kathleen HoersterParish: St. Joan of Arc ParishPhone: 412-833-2400Email: hoerstercpd@gmail.com


Older AdultsMind, Body and SpiritDescriptionThis program presents some aspect of faith formation that parallel the educational session being presented.Examples:A seminar on Exercise for Health given by a physical therapist was followed by a presentation onSpiritual Exercises, briefly introducing them to the Ignatius program and the exercise of praying for agrace, learning by heart and meditating on Scripture using one’s senses.A seminar on a healthy heart was followed by a brief presentation on devotion to the Heart of Jesus andthe Great Commandments.ObjectiveTo form the spirits and hearts of older adults, as well as, their minds.Who Should/Can AttendSeniorsTime FrameThe whole seminar lasted about 2½ hours and included lunch.CostDonationContact: Bernice Dumitru, Pastoral AssociateParish: Church of the ResurrectionPhone: 412-563-5589Email: bernicedumitru@msn.com or bernicedumitru@verizon.net


Older AdultsRoyal CourtDescriptionThe Royal Court is our friendly organization for Senior Citizens (50+.) We meet for lunch twice a month.There is a small fee for the buffet lunch which is prepared by the members on a rotating basis. Theatmosphere is jovial and welcoming. An activity, such as bingo is offered after lunch.ObjectiveTo provide a place for seniors to gather and be with friendsWho Should/Can AttendAdults 50 years of age and overTime Frame2-3 hoursContact: Barb McCarthyParish: St. Ferdinand ChurchPhone: 724-776-1357Email: barb@stferd.org


ParentsHeart & Soul (parent evening)DescriptionWe offered an evening for parents with two speakers. The first was a parishioner who, as a father andwell-respected local school principal, was able to speak of the challenges faced by families today. Thesecond was a diocesan priest who had followed a winding path to the priesthood and, as a priest, hadworked with youth in different settings.ObjectiveTo offer an evening for parents that would both affirm them in their work of raising Catholic childrenand provide them with strategies for staying focused on Christ in a world with many conflictingmessages.Who Should/Can AttendWe promoted this event (heavily!) to parents of children in all age groups. We were able to attractover 100 participants on a Sunday afternoon.Time FrameParish staff came up with a list of possible speakers a few weeks in advance and invited them. Wethen sent flyers to all children in all religious education programs, followed by an e-mail and personalphone calls to parents. The talk was on a Sunday afternoon from 4 – 5:30, during a gathering formiddle school students (in a separate part of the building) scheduled at the same time.Suggestions/CommentsParents were appreciative of the talks. Having a parishioner who is a community leader was particularly wellreceived.Contact: Barbara StokesParish: Saint John Neumann ParishPhone: 412-366-5885 Ext. 13Email: barbara.stokes@yahoo.com


ParentsParent MeetingsDescriptionWe utilize parent meetings to stress the domestic church and the parents’ role as the primary educator andsource of formation for their children. The formation staff meets with parents at the start of formation classesin September, for sacramental prep –Baptism, First Reconciliation, First Eucharist, and Confirmation, and onFamily Formation days.ObjectiveTo support the parents and to help them better understand their role in the faith formation of their children.Who Should/Can AttendAll parents with children who will receive those sacraments.Time FrameOne to one and a half hoursSuggestions/CommentsIt is required that the parents attend—a captive audience. Most parents are very attentive to the presenters andwe use we use a team of presenters. We feel the more they hear about the “domestic” church, the better.Contact: Jay SpecaParish: St Benedict the Abbot ChurchPhone: 724-941-9406 Ext 114Email: Speca@stbenedicttheabbot.org


ParentsSingle Parent Family SupportDescriptionThe Single Parent Group meets monthly on the 4 th Tuesday of the month from 7:00-8:30 p.m. in theUpper Room. Sr. Janice Marie Blados, professional counselor, conducts these hour and a half meetings.Discussion centers on topics important to the single parent family including spirituality, parenting skillsand many others.ObjectiveTo offer support and guidance to single parents.Who Should/Can AttendAny single parentsTime Frame1 ½ hoursContact: Barb McCarthyParish: St. Ferdinand ChurchPhone: 724-776-1357Email: barb@stferd.org


Single Grieving AdultsBeginning Experience of PittsburghDescriptionThis is a peer-to-peer lay ministry offering support and help for people who have lost a spouse throughdeath, divorce or separation. The Beginning Experience weekend and follow-up program helpsgrieving single-again persons travel through the darkness of grief toward the future with renewedhope. The program helps deal with the natural grief process and offers an opportunity, through God,for growth. Founded by a Catholic nun and rooted in the Catholic tradition, the ministry’s open, andecumenical spirit serves those of all faiths. A sense of community develops in an atmosphere of careand concern that is the hallmark of each Beginning Experience weekend. The Sacrament of Penanceand the Eucharistic liturgy are offered during the weekend. Support programs include a six week preweekendexperience (Coping with Your Loss) as an initial pathway to dealing with the loss of aspouse, and a six-week follow-up experience (Continued Beginnings).ObjectiveTo provide opportunities for ecumenical peer-to-peer ministry to those who have lost a spouse.Who Should/Can AttendWhile this program has a Catholic focus, anyone who has lost a spouse is welcome and encouraged to attend.Time FrameThe weekend is a 44-hour residential retreat held at Gilmary Center 2 or 3 times per year, usually in thespring and fall.Cost$160 per participant with financial scholarship help available, since this period is often a difficult financialtime for the participants.Suggestions/CommentsA team of 12 trained lay persons use facilitated small group discussions as the primary process of theweekend. These men and women are still traveling on their own grief journey. Through this ministry, theyinvite those struggling with the loss of a spouse to confront and engage in their own grief journey.Contact: Steve SmithParish: St. John NeumannPhone: 412-367-4948Email: mbhdassoc@comcast.net


Young AdultsFLIGHT(Friends Learning Inquiring Growing in Holiness Together)DescriptionThese gatherings are the foundation of our Young Adult Community. FLIGHT consists of short programs offour to six sessions. We meet at a local coffee shop. FLIGHT is a group that comes together to learn, askquestions, and just talk about "Catholic stuff" together.Meeting Topics:FLIGHT includes but is not limited to:Scripture studyExploration of SacramentsSocial Justice IssuesMoralityTraditionsDoctrineObjectiveTo catechize young adults on the basics of the Catholic faith.To encourage faith-sharing.To build community.Who Should/Can AttendYoung adults in their 20s and 30s, married and single.Time Frame60-90 minutes, followed by social time.Meeting Schedule7:30p.m.-7:40p.m. Meet and greet/announcements7:40p.m.-8:30p.m. Topic presentation and discussion8:30p.m.- ? Food and drinks at a different location each month.CostBy holding the event at a coffee shop and having the social time at a restaurant, the participants can purchaserefreshments if they desire.Suggestions/CommentsHaving the sessions off of the parish campus especially encourages young adults who are in the “fringe” toparticipate. It provides a neutral location. Meet young adults where they feel comfortable. When hosting aspeaker, move the session to the church.Contact: Erica GamerroParish: St. Bernard, Mt. LebanonPhone: 412-561-0570Email: egamerro2@stbpgh.org or in.terra.pax@gmail.com


Young AdultsTheology on TapDescriptionThis is one of the most popular and successful programs offered to the young adults of the Diocese ofPittsburgh. In dioceses across the country, Theology on Tap programs have enjoyed similar success. As aresult, RENEW International copyrighted the name.RENEW Theology on Tap is a process of evangelization, a strategy to meet young adults where they are andinvite them into the life of the Church. Topics address the needs of a “seeker” audience, those Catholics whoare interested in and curious about the Catholic Faith.ObjectiveTheology on Tap is a speaker series offering young adults the opportunity to socialize, pray, and discuss theirpersonal, professional, and faith experiences with fellow Catholics in a welcoming and convivial atmosphere.Who Should/Can AttendYoung adults—people in their 20s and 30s, married and single, with and without children.Time FrameVariesCostCost of food and drinkContact: Erica GamerroParish: St. Bernard, Mt. LebanonPhone: 412-561-0570Email: egamerro2@stbpgh.org or in.terra.pax@gmail.com


Secretariat for EducationDepartment for Youth and Young Adult MinistryGuidelines for Hosting RENEW Theology on TapFor the past several years, Theology on Tap has been one of the most popular and successful programsoffered to the young adults of the Diocese of Pittsburgh. This speaker series offers young adults theopportunity to socialize, pray, and discuss their personal, professional, and faith experiences with fellowCatholics in a welcoming and convivial atmosphere.In dioceses across the country, Theology on Tap programs have enjoyed similar success. As a result, RENEWInternational copyrighted the name. The Department for Youth and Young Adult Ministry in the Secretariatfor Education has obtained a license for our diocese and to ensure those who sponsor a Theology on Tapprogram remain mindful of the purpose of this ministry, building on the guidelines suggested by RENEWInternational, the Secretariat for Education asks that the following set of guidelines be observed:• All Theology on Tap programs and speakers must be approved at the diocesan level.• RENEW Theology on Tap is to be geared exclusively toward “young adults”—people in their 20s and30s, married and single, with and without children.• Primarily, efforts should be made to create inviting and hospitable environment.Coordinators should use personal invitation as the method of publicity, and a key objective for anyTheology on Tap event is a comfortable and socially agreeable setting.• RENEW Theology on Tap is a process of evangelization, a strategy to meet young adults where theyare and invite them into the life of the Church. Topics therefore must address the needs of a “seeker”audience, those Catholics who are interested in and curious about the Catholic faith.• The speakers must be well informed in their field and personally respectful of Catholic teaching, butalso possess a keen sense of the issues of ministering to young adults. They should address relevantconcerns in practical ways.• Speakers should be compensated for their time and expertise.• All publicity must use the official RENEW Theology on Tap logo, which is a registered trademark andmay only be used to publicize official RENEW Theology on Tap events. Under normal circumstancesthis logo may not be changed.• All publicity must contain the following, in some appropriate way, so that others can contact RENEWInternational for further information:RENEW Theology on Tap, a pastoral outreach for RENEW International,1232 George Street, Plainfield, NJ 07062-171Tel: 908-769-5400 x159 Web: www.theologyontap.com• A copy of all publicity must be sent electronically to the Young Adult Ministry Leadership Team byemailing yam@diopitt.org. If you wish, this information will then be shared with young adult andyoung adult leaders across the diocese.• Any non-compliance with these guidelines may result in the revocation of permission to use theTheology on Tap name and any of its derivatives (e.g., Spirituality on Tap, or something similar.)


RESOURCESLearning Media CenterChurch Documents For the minister CatechismsAdult Faith FormationScriptureLectionary - Based ResourcesLiturgy and Liturgical CatechesisPrayerRCIACatholic PublishersPeriodic ResourcesCatholic PeriodicalOnline Resources Official Sites Other SitesHouses of PrayerRetreat Centers


Learning Media CenterThe Learning Media Center of the Diocese of Pittsburgh, Located on the first floor of St. Paul Seminary,Crafton, has provided media resources for Total Catholic Education to the catechetical leaders, catechists,teachers, and families of the Church of Pittsburgh for over forty years. The center maintains and makesavailable a collection of catechetical materials that range in format from books, binders, and periodicals, toCDs, VHS and DVD videos, and Internet-related resources.The Learning media Center is open to the public Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.Each parish and Catholic School in the Diocese of Pittsburgh has a copy of the video catalog on CD forreview of the video resources available for borrow.Contact: Mr. Jeffrey HirstAddress: 2900 Noblestown Road, Pittsburgh, PA 15205Phone: (412) 456-3120Email:lmc@diopitt.orgThe following is a limited listing of resources that might be helpful for people working in adult faithformation. We hope that the users of this resource will contribute additional resources that they have foundhelpful.


Church DocumentsFor the ministerThe Church Alive, Pastoral Letter to the Church of Pittsburgh, 2008 Bishop David A. Zubik, M.S. Ed., D.D.The Church Sharing, Pastoral Letter to the Church of Pittsburgh, 2009 Bishop David A. Zubik, M.S. Ed.,D.D.The Church Living, Pastoral Letter to the Church of Pittsburgh, 2009 Bishop David A. Zubik, M.S. Ed., D.D.Our Hearts Were Burning within Us: a Pastoral Plan for Adult Faith Formation in the United States (1999),which is available online at: www.usccb.org/education/ourhearts.htm or in book form from the United StatesConference of Catholic Bishops (hereafter USCCB), ISBN: 978-1-57455-299-7National Directory for Catechesis (hereafter NDC) published by the USCCB in 2005 ISBN 1-57455-443-3.For an outline of adult faith formation themes in the NDC, see Appendix X.CatechismsThese books can be obtained through a bookstore or online at USCCB Publishing atwww.usccbpublishing.org/index.cfmCatechism of the Catholic Church. (Second Edition) (1997)ISBN 978-1-57455-110-5 (paperback)This is the universal catechism of the Church, intended as a resource for bishops writing nationalcatechisms and as a “full, complete exposition of Catholic doctrine, enabling everyone to know what theChurch professes, celebrates, lives, and prays in her daily life.”Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. (2006)ISBN 1-57455-720-6 (paperback)An official summary of the universal catechism in question-and-answer form.United States Catholic Catechism for Adults. (2006)ISBN 1-57455-450-2 paperback)This catechism was prepared by the U.S. bishops based on the universal catechism, adapting thepresentation to the culture and circumstances of the Church in the U.S.Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church. (2005)ISBN 978-1-57455-692-6 (paperback)Prepared by the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace


Adult Faith FormationAdult Faith Formation Strategies, Tom Zanzig & Shirley Kelter (Metanoia Resources, 2006) Availablethrough Zanzig’s website at www.tomzanzig.com/Site/AFFS_Product_page.htmlTopics covered in the manual: Jesus & Discipleship, Spirituality, Scripture, Catholic Life & Practice,Sacraments & Liturgy, Morality and Peace and Social JusticeA Concise Guide to Adult Faith Formation, Neil A. Parent (Ave Maria Press, 2009) ISBN 978-1594712081A Handbook of Adult Religious Education, ed. Nancy T. Foltz (Religious Education Press)Essays from an interdenominational Christian perspective.A Practical Guide for Starting an Adult Faith Formation Program, Richard C. Brown (Resource Publications,2003) ISBN 978-0893905729Toward An Adult Church: A Vision of Faith Formation, Jane E. Regan (Loyola Press, 2002) ISBN 978-0829418064


ScriptureThere are many different translations (versions) of the Bible, and each may be published by differentcompanies in a multitude of editions.The New American Bible (hereafter NAB) was commissioned by the U.S. bishops, and is the translationthat we hear at Sunday Masses. One fine study Bible is:The Catholic Study Bible, Second Edition. Oxford University Press. (New American Bible)978-0195282788 (paperback) 978-0195282801 (hardcover)The text of the New American Bible is also available online at the U.S. bishops' website:www.usccb.org/nab/bibleThere are many introductions to the Bible. Here are a few:The Seeker’s Guide to Reading the Bible: A Catholic View, Steve Mueller (Loyola, 1999) ISBN 978-0829413458People of the Covenant: An Invitation to the Old Testament, Diane Bergant, CSA. (Sheed & Ward, 2001)ISBN 978-1580510905Who Is Jesus? Why Is He Important?: An Introduction to the New Testament, Daniel J. Harrington, SJ.(Sheed & Ward, 1999) ISBN 978-1580510530The Bible Companion: A Handbook for Beginners, Ronald D. Witherup (Crossroad, 1998) ISBN 0-8245-1746-6On how fundamentalism differs from a Catholic approach to the Bible: Biblical Fundamentalism: WhatEvery Catholic Should Know, Ronald D. Witherup, S.S. (Liturgical Press, 2001) ISBN 978-0814627228The Collegeville Bible Commentary offers 35 small paperback volumes, each featuring the NAB text of abiblical book or books, along with a commentary. They are used by the Little Rock Scripture Study. Twoclassic and detailed commentaries that can be used for reference are:Raymond E. Brown, S. S. et. al., eds. The New Jerome Biblical Commentary. Prentice Hall, 1990.Raymond E. Brown, S. S. An Introduction to the New Testament. Doubleday.For more information on Catholic Scripture Studies, see Task 1 Section B-1 above for:Little Rock Scripture Study www.littlerockscripture.orgJourney Through Scripture, St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology, 2006. Series incorporates live presentation,multimedia, small group discussion and some outside reading. It’s a way for ordinary Catholics to grow intheir knowledge of the Scriptures while deepening their understanding of the riches of the Catholic faith. It iscomprised of four different studies: Genesis to Jesus, The Bible and the Mass, The Bible and the Sacraments,and The Bible and the Virgin Mary.One helpful resource for orienting people to the Bible is the July 2004 edition of Catholic Update, “Choosingand Using a Bible: What Catholics Should Know” by Ronald D. Witherup. It includes information ondifferent translations and tips on reading, praying, and studying the Bible.


Lectionary-Based ResourcesOne common way of studying or reflecting on the Scriptures is through attending to the Sunday readings (theLectionary). Many Catholic publishers offer resources based on the lectionary. Sometimes an edition ispublished for each cycle of the Sunday readings (A, B, or C). Other resources are published annually. A few:At Home With the Word (Liturgy Training Publications)Published each year, this resource includes the texts of Scriptures for each Sunday (including the psalm), asuggested practice, and a reflection accompanied by questions.Celebrating the Lectionary (Liturgy Training Publications)Includes specific adult directed activities and format for adults to easily follow a step by step process inutilizing the materials. With this adult guide are summaries and commentaries on the Sunday Scripturesfor each cycle.Faith Connection newsletter (RCL Benziger)A weekly newsletter which can be presented as email, regular mail or bulletin insert. Includes reflections,prayers, information and questions on the themes of the Sunday and daily readings.The Word into Life, a Redemptorist Pastoral Publication (Liguori)Sunday readings (but not the psalms) and reflections, with one volume for each cycle. Cross-referencedwith the Journey of Faith handouts (see Sect. III. E. RCIA below) for a lectionary-based approach to CIAinstruction.God’sHolyWord


Liturgy and Liturgical CatechesisDays of the Lord (Liturgical Press)Seven volumes covering the liturgical year, solemnities and feasts. www.litpress.org/Series.aspx?ID=7Introducing Liturgical Catechesis: Formation Sessions for the Parish, Nick Wagner (Resource Publications,May 2002) ISBN 0-89390-669-7 Available as an e-book from the publisher in pdf format:www.rpinet.com/products/ilc.htmlLiving Liturgy, Joyce Ann Zimmerman, CPPS, Thomas A. Greisen, Kathleen Harmon, SNDdeN, and ThomasL. Leclerc, MS“An annual resource for parish ministers, liturgists, pastors, and planning committees, Living Liturgyoffers a practical means for reflection on and celebration of the Sunday Mass” (Liturgical Press website)designed to integrate spirituality, celebration and catechesis for Sundays.


PrayerAny major Catholic publisher will have many titles relating to prayer and spiritual growth. (See the list ofpublishers below.)One author who writes clear and practical works on prayer is William A. Barry, a Jesuit priest and spiritualdirector. His books are written primarily from the spiritual tradition of St. Ignatius Loyola.God and You: Prayer as a Personal Relationship (Paulist, 1987) ISBN 0-8091-2935-3Paying Attention to God: Discernment in Prayer (Ave Maria Press, 1990)ISBN 0877934134With An Everlasting Love: Developing an Intimate Relationship with God(Paulist, 1999) ISBN 0-8091-3892-1A Friendship Like No Other (Loyola Books, 2008) ISBN 978-0829427028Many Christians have become interested in the ancient tradition of meditation that in its modern form isknown as Centering Prayer. Two of the most prominent people working to spread this prayer have been BasilPennington and Thomas Keating. They have published many works on the topic.An Invitation to Centering Prayer, M. Basil Pennington, O.C.S.O. (Liguori, 2001)ISBN 0-7648-0762-X [This book also contains an introduction to Iectio divina (the ancient practice ofsacred reading) by Luke Dysinger, O.S.B.]Contemplative Outreach is an organization formed “to renew the Christian contemplative heritage throughsharing the method of Centering Prayer with all who wish to learn.” (From the site)www.contemplativeoutreach.orgFor family or household use, Catholic Household Blessings and Prayers is available from the UnitedStates Conference of Catholic Bishops, Publication No. 5-645 ISBN 978-1-57455-645-2. Order it onlineat www.usccbpublishing.orgFor reflections and prayers on themes related to justice, see Living God’s Justice compiled by theRoundtable Association of Diocesan Social Action Directors (St. Anthony Messenger Press, 2006) ISBN978-0-86716-742-9There must be an enormous number of online aids to prayer. Here are two:Creighton University’s Online Ministries feature daily readings and reflections, guides for prayer duringAdvent and Lent, and a 39-week Online Retreat, all in the tradition of St. Ignatius Loyola (founder of theJesuit religious order):www.creighton.edu/CollaborativeMinistry/online.htmlThe Irish Jesuits have a site called “Sacred Space—Daily Prayer Online,” that features a form of lectiodivina: www.sacredspace.ie


RCIABreaking Open the Word of God, Karen Hinman Powell and Joseph Sinwell (Paulist, 1988).Resources for using the Lectionary for catechesis in the RCIA - one book per cycle.Catholic Q & A: Answers to the Most Common Questions About Catholicism, Fr. John J. Dietzen (Crossroad,2002) ISBN 0-8245-2309-1Compendium of Catechism of the Catholic Church, (USCCB, 2006) ISBN10-1-5745720-3Foundations in Faith is RCL Benziger’s collection of RCIA resources. It includes a Director’s Guide,leader’s guides for each period of the RCIA, participant’s books and other resources:rclweb.com/html/foundations.html.Journey of Faith, published by Liguori, is a series of 44 four-page handouts that cover topics for all fourstages of the RCIA. They are inexpensive, and a brief leader’s guide is available. The series is alsoavailable in versions for children and teens. All are available at the Liguori website, www.liguori.org.Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults, Study Edition (Liturgical Press, 1988)ISBN 978-0-8146-1593-5United States Catholic Catechism for Adults, (USCCB, 2006) ISBN10-1-57455-450-6What Catholics Believe, Fr. Kris D. Stubna and Mike Aquilina (Our Sunday Visitor Publishing Division,1999) ISBN 0-87973-574-0


Catholic PublishersAscension PressPO Box 1990West Chester, PA 193801-800-375-0520www.ascensionpress.comAve Maria PressPO Box 428Notre Dame, IN 46556800-282-1865, x-1www.avemariapress.comIgnatius PressPO Box 1339Ft. Collins, CO 805221-800-651-1531www.ignatius.comLiguori PublicationsOne Liguori DriveLiguori, MO 63057-9999800-325-9521www.liguori.orgLiturgical PressSt. John’s AbbeyPO Box 7500Collegeville, MN 56321-7500800-858-5450www.litpress.orgLiturgy Training Publications3949 South Racine AvenueChicago, Illinois 60609-25231-800-933-1800www.ltp.orgLoyola Press3441 North Ashland Ave.Chicago, IL 60657800-621-1008www.loyolapress.comOur Sunday Visitor200 Noll PlazaHuntington, IN 467501-800-348-2440www.osv.comPaulist Press997 Macarthur Blvd.Mahwah, NJ 07340800-218-1903www.paulistpress.comRCL Benziger206 East Bethany DriveAllen, Texas 75002-38041-877-275-4725www.RCLBenziger.comSt. Anthony Messenger Press28 W. Liberty St.Cincinnati, OH 45202-6498513-241-5615800-488-0488www.americancatholic.orgTwenty-Third Publications1 Montauk Ave #200New London, CT 06320860-437-3012www.pastoralplanning.com


Periodic ResourcesCatholic Update provides readable four-page pamphlets on a variety of topics concerning Catholic life. It ispublished by St. Anthony Messenger Press. Subscriptions or particular issues may be ordered at 1-800-488-0488, or visit www.AmericanCatholic.orgEvery Day Catholic published by St. Anthony Messenger PressA monthly publication on various topics that relate to faith. The publishers provide a group process ontheir website that makes it easy to lead a group.www.catalog.americancatholic.org/category.aspx?pcat=167At Home with our Faith: Nurturing the spirituality of your family, Annemarie Scobey, published by theClaretians www.homefaith.wordpress.about


Catholic PeriodicalsMany of these have websites with online editions. Use them for your own growth and to recommend toparishioners.The Pittsburgh Catholic (weekly diocesan newspaper)www.pittsburghcatholic.orgOrigins CNS (Catholic News Service) Documentary ServiceOur Sunday Visitor (a weekly newspaper published by a Catholic non-profit organization)www.osv.comAmerica (a magazine published 39 times a year by the Jesuits)www.americamagazine.orgCommonweal (an independent journal of opinion published 22 times a year by Lay Catholics)www.commonwealmagazine.orgThe Liguorian (a magazine published 10 times a year by the Redemptorists) www.liguori.orgSt. Anthony Messenger (published 12 times a year by the Franciscans)www.americancatholic.orgThe Catholic World Report (published 12 times a year by Ignatius Press) www.catholicworldreport.comThe Sower (published 4 times a year by Catechetical Publications) www.thesowerreview.orgLay Witness (published 6 times a year by Catholics United for the Faith) www.laywitness@cuf.org


Online ResourcesThe Diocese of Pittsburgh: www.diopitt.orgOfficial SitesThe Pennsylvania Catholic Conference: www.pacatholic.orgThe Conference is the “public affairs arm of Pennsylvania’s Catholic bishops and the Catholic dioceses ofPennsylvania.”The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops: www.usccb.orgThe USCCB is the official organization of the Catholic bishops in the United States. The USCCB alsosponsors a website called "For Your Marriage": www.foryourmarriage.orgThe Holy See: www.vatican.vaThe Vatican website.Other SitesBusted Halo: www.bustedhalo.comAn online magazine for young adult spiritual seekers, sponsored by the Paulist Fathers.The Catholic Men’s Fellowship of Pittsburgh: www.cmfpitt.org“CMF is a private association of the laity operating and functioning in accordance with the Code of CanonLaw and the blessings of the Church in Pittsburgh (A ‘lay apostolate’). The mission of the CMF is aresponse to the call made by Pope John Paul II, for a new evangelization, particularly the reinvigoration offaith among Catholics.”National Conference for Catechetical Leadership: www.nccl.org“The only independent national organization exclusively dedicated to serving the church's catecheticalmission in the United States. More than 90% of all dioceses are members of NCCL, along with 30 parishDRE Associations and 26 publishing houses.” The site includes an extensive bibliography of adult faithformation resources.


Houses of PrayerMount Saint Macrina House of Prayer724-438-7149Fax: 724-438-3048E-mail: hpmsm@verizon.net510 W. Main St, PO Box 878, Uniontown, PA 15401-0878Director: Sister Carol Petrasovich, OSBMContact: Kim ShowDays and evenings of prayer.Retreats—private, directed, and weekend. Programs designed to accommodate needs.Follows Byzantine tradition but open to all Christian groups.Tabor House of Prayer412-821-1149E-mail: TaborHouse@sosf.org146 Hawthorne Rd, Pittsburgh, PA 15209-1900Director: Sister Jane Schmitt, OSFIndividual or group needs for prayer; guided, private, or directed retreats; Scripture Study; a “gathering place”for centering prayer; introduction to centering prayer; writing of Icons.


Retreat HousesBishop William G. Connare Center724-834-7350Fax: 724-834-7351Web Site: www.bishopconnarecenter.orgE-mail: jbertig@dioceseofgreensburg.org OR akuhns@dioceseofgreensburg.org2900 Seminary Dr, Route 30 East, Greensburg, PA 15601-3796Contact: Gerald R. Bertig, DirectorAmy Kuhns, Office & Events CoordinatorCindy Tierno, Administrative Services SpecialistHosts group retreats, conferences, seminars, camps. Overnight accommodations for 104 people in private,double, or triple occupancy rooms. Conference spaces include two large rooms that can accommodate up to170 and 200 persons, two rooms with capacities of 50 and 80, and a parlor for socials and small meetings.Meeting tables and equipment, including a “Smart Board,” are available; setup styles arranged according toneed. Dining room seats up to 240; in-house food service with reputation for excellent cuisine. Chapelaccommodates 322. Recreational facilities available, including gymnasium. Nestled atop 170 sylvan acres inthe foothills of the beautiful Laurel Highlands in Westmoreland County.Saint Emma Monastic Guest House724-834-3060Fax: 724-834-5772Web Site: www.stemma.orgE-mail: benedictinenuns@stemma.org1001 Harvey Ave, Greensburg, PA 15601-1494Contact: Mother Mary Anne Noll, OSBOffers the opportunity to “come aside and rest awhile” in a God-centered atmosphere, surrounded by treesand meadows, a two-minute walk from Saint Emma Monastery (and Retreat House). The time is yours tostructure: to think, to pray, to be, to let God recharge your batteries, to experience peace and quiet, and tospend time with God in silence and prayer. Welcome to join our Benedictine monastic community for TheLiturgy of the Hours which is sung (in English) six times a day plus daily Eucharist. This facility is alsoavailable for small groups. The Monastic Guest House consists of nine private rooms (each with bath),oratory, living room/dining room, kitchen, laundry facilities, and air conditioning throughout. Meals andlinens are provided. Retreatants are welcome to enjoy beautifully landscaped grounds with shrines and lovelyflower gardens, overlooking rolling farmlands. Outdoor Stations of the Cross wind through apple orchard.Walking path as well as nature trail with meditation benches. Rosary walk (all 20 mysteries of the Rosary)winds around walking path and extends up nature trail. Very large Catholic gift and book shop.


Saint Emma Retreat House724-834-3060Fax: 724-834-5772Web Site: www.stemma.orgE-mail: benedictinenuns@stemma.org1001 Harvey Ave., Greensburg, PA 15601-1494Contact: Mother Mary Anne Noll, OSBAvailable for: weekend retreats; days and evenings of recollection; pastoral councils; youth; church groups;church meetings. Facilities include 50 private rooms, each with single bed, ceiling fan and sink(restrooms/showers at end of hall); lounge (for 50) with fireplace; small conference rooms; Fatima Chapel(for 100). Newly expanded and renovated facilities include: total handicapped accessibility with four-storyelevator; conference room for 90 with fireplace; conference room for 45; conference room for 12; renovateddining room (seats 100); handicapped showers/restrooms. Situated on beautifully landscaped grounds withlovely flower gardens, overlooking 100 acres of rolling farmlands. Outdoor Stations of the Cross windthrough apple orchard. Walking path as well as nature trail with meditation benches. Rosary walk (all 20mysteries of the Rosary) winds around walking path and extends up nature trail. Very large Catholic gift andbook shop. Individuals are welcome to come for their own personal retreats. Groups/individuals are welcometo join us for The Liturgy of the Hours which is sung (in English) six times a day plus daily Eucharist.Epiphany Association/Epiphany Academy412-341-74941-877-324-6873 (Toll Free)Fax: 412-341-7495Web site: www.epiphanyassociation.orgE-mail: info@epiphanyassociation.org820 Crane Ave., Pittsburgh, PA 15216-3050Contact: Susan Muto, Executive DirectorAn organization dedicated to providing the formational and educational resources needed for the in-depth,ongoing spiritual renewal of life and world in the light of the Judeo-Christian faith and formation tradition.The Epiphany Academy of Formative Spirituality, which sprang from the Epiphany Association and itsprograms, offers an oasis for quiet reflection and religious education from classes on the Christian mysticsand spiritual masters to many opportunities for personal and spiritual enrichment. The academy features amodern facility with a multipurpose room, classrooms, kitchen and dining area, the Epiphany Chapel of theTrinity, a video conference room, and lush gardens and landscaping.


Franciscan Spirit and Life Center412-881-9207Website: www.osfprov.org/fslc.aspE-mail: fslc@osfprov.org3605 McRoberts Rd, Pittsburgh, PA 15234-2340Contact: Mimi DiGregoryOffice and Dietary Service Coordinator: Mimi DiGregoryA ministry of the Sisters of Saint Francis of the Providence of God. Available for retreats, meetings, seminars,and workshops. Day and evening programs and overnight facilities available. Three hermitages in woodedarea available for days/weekends/week of prayer or retreat. “Programs on the Road”– staff available forprograms at your site.Gilmary Center412-264-8400Fax: 412-264-8415Web Site: www.gilmarycenter.orgE-mail: info@gilmarycenter.org601 Flaugherty Run Rd, Coraopolis, PA 15108-3899Regis Flaherty, Director, x202Lilli Wolfe, Administration and Scheduling, x201Gilmary Center, located 5 minutes from the Greater Pittsburgh Airport, is a nonprofit retreat center owned andoperated by Maronda Foundation. Our name, Gilmary, can be translated “belonging of Mary.” It is to herthat our center and our work are dedicated. Gilmary’s primary goal is to promote the spiritual, moral,intellectual, and physical development of Catholic youth and to support Catholic families. Gilmary also seeksto help individuals to better know, love and serve God in the heart of the Church. To that end Gilmary hostsretreats and events that support Catholic youth, families and individuals. We provide the following: MaryHall (air conditioned) with 46 semi-private bedrooms and 2 private bedrooms; dining room with seating for150; air conditioned meeting rooms; an auditorium/gym with seating for 325; Chapel that accommodates 220;two dorm buildings with a total of 24 rooms sleeping 120; 4 private bedrooms, and 1 handicap accessiblebedroom; beautiful and peaceful grounds; outdoor Stations of the Cross; and areas for sports and recreation.We look forward to serving you!


Saint Joseph Spirituality Center724-869-6585Fax: 724-869-3336Web Site: www.stjoseph-baden.org1020 W State St, Baden, PA 15005-1338Sponsored by the Sisters of Saint JosephStaffed by Sister Marguerite Kropinak, CSJ / Sister Donna Marie Tahaney, CSJContact: Sister Marguerite Kropinak, CSJSaint Joseph Spirituality Center welcomes all people seeking a deeper and more profound love of God andneighbor by providing an environment of prayer, community, and hospitality. Located 30 minutes fromdowntown Pittsburgh at the Motherhouse of the Sisters of Saint Joseph in Baden, PA, the Center provides awelcoming environment and a prayerful atmosphere with extensive space for walking, reflection, andrenewal. The Center is available for days and evenings of reflection; directed and guided retreats; individualspiritual direction; private, non-directed retreats; group retreats; and in-service days. Saint Joseph SpiritualityCenter provides three meeting rooms (accommodating groups from 10-120). Some overnightaccommodations are available. The facilities at the Motherhouse include an air-conditioned chapel, a maindining room, a book and gift shop, a small library, a labyrinth, and an outdoor station path. An elevator allowsfor easy accessibility. The Center also provides spirituality, faith formation, and ministry support programs inparishes.Kearns Spirituality Center412-366-1124Fax: 412-635-6318Web site: www.DivineProvidenceWeb.orgE-mail: kearnssc1@pghcdp.org9000 Babcock Blvd, Allison Park, PA 15101-2713Sponsored by the Sisters of Divine ProvidenceContact: Sister Agnes Raible, CDP/Sister Mary Joan Coultas, CDPKearns shares in the mission of the congregation: “to make God’s Providence more visible in our world.” It isa smoke free facility, accessible to the physically challenged, where people of all faiths are invited to searchfor a deeper meaning in their lives, and to experience a peaceful, healing environment. Programs focusing onholistic spirituality are offered from September to June. The retreat center is completely air conditioned, andhas overnight accommodations for 60 people. The air conditioned conference center seats 200 at round tablesand 250 auditorium style. Food service is available. Individuals as well as groups are welcome for privateprayer, retreats, workshops, planning sessions, and religious conferences. Spiritual direction and labyrinthexperience are available.


Martina Spiritual Renewal Center412-931-9766Fax: 412-931-1823Web site: www.sistersoftheholyspirit.comE-mail: martinaspiritual@verizon.net5244 Clarwin Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15229-2208Staffed by the Sisters of the Holy SpiritContact: Sister Donna Smith, SHS/Sister Mary Lou Witkowski, SHS, Co-DirectorsMartina Spiritual Renewal Center is a ministry of the Sisters of the Holy Spirit, providing gospel hospitalitythrough a welcoming presence of our staff, offering Christian programming, and hosting Christian ecumenicalgroups desiring growth and renewal in their spiritual life. We offer weekend and week-long retreats, days andevenings of spiritual enrichment, group spiritual direction gatherings, adult faith formation programs,women/men religious community retreats, private days of prayer, private retreats. We host spiritual formationand renewal programs: confirmation programs, staff and planning meetings, marriage preparation, in-servicedays of recollection, staff retreats, parish council retreats, seminary retreats, college break retreats, vocationretreats, days of reflection. Chapel, meditative garden, outdoor Stations of the Cross, quiet, lovely grounds, 32single rooms, two semiprivate rooms, air-conditioning, food service, library, gift shop, four meeting rooms(10-40 people), dining room/meeting room (200 people), all-purpose auditorium/gym (300 people), smokefreeenvironment. Come and be at peace.Mount Saint Macrina Retreat Center(See Mount Saint Macrina House of Prayer)


Saint Paul of the Cross Retreat Center412-381-7676Fax: 412-431-3044Website: www.catholic-church.org/stpaulsretreatcenter/E-mail: stpaulrcpa@cpprov.org148 Monastery Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15203-1498Staffed by Very Rev. Gerald Laba, CP/Rev. Patrick Geinzer, CPDirector: Very Rev. Gerald Laba, CPAssociate Director: Rev. Patrick Geinzer, CPBusiness Administrator: John ColaizziAuxiliary Retreat Staff: Rev. Timothy Fitzgerald, CP,Rev. Paul Vaeth, CP and Rev. Don Ware, CPContact: John ColaizziAdult weekend retreat program. Mid-week adult program of spiritual development. Mid-week youth programfor confirmation and graduation. Recovery programs and weekend retreats for those in twelve-step recovery.Hosting facility for diocesan, ecumenical, and other nonprofit organizations. Facilities include: 135 beds forovernight guests, 5 conference areas, chapel, and full dining room service.Providence Villa724-444-8055Fax: 724-444-8058Web Site: www.divineprovidenceweb.orgE-mail: providencevilla@yahoo.com10745 Babcock Blvd, Gibsonia, PA 15044-6094Sponsored by the Sisters of Divine ProvidenceContact: Sister Marilyn Seidel, CDP, Director; or Sister Leona Ulewicz, CDP.Providence Villa provides a reflective environment conducive to spiritual pursuits. As an expression of theProvidence of God, Providence Villa welcomes individuals and small groups through a ministry ofcompassionate hospitality. Amenities include: comfortable accommodations, food service, meeting rooms,audio-visual equipment, conference phone system, wireless Internet, 15 bedrooms, quiet chapel, woodburning fireplaces, spacious lawn, screened-in gazebo and wooded trails.


The Spiritan Center - Formation, Retreat, Renewal412-835-3510Fax: 412-835-3541Web Site: www.spiritans.orgE-mail: spiritancenter@juno.com6230 Brush Run Rd, Bethel Park, PA 15102-2214Staffed by the Congregation of the Holy SpiritDirector and Contact: Mary Ann Nicholls, MLS, MDivThe Spiritan Center, located south of the city of Pittsburgh in Bethel Park, is a ministry of the Congregation ofthe Holy Spirit. The Center offers a wide variety of retreats, days of renewal, programs in faith formation, andongoing spiritual direction. Our 40 acres in a pastoral setting invite the retreatant to come away and restawhile.Villa Maria Education and Spirituality Center724-964-8886Web Site: www.villaprograms.org2105 Evergreen Rd, PO Box 424, Villa Maria, PA 16155-0424President: Jim MerhautStaffed by 6 Sisters of the Humility of Mary and 9 Lay StaffContact: Cathy Cawley or Matt AbramowskiVilla Maria Education & Spirituality Center (VMESC) provides and promotes educational and spiritualexperiences in a unique setting in Lawrence County for people of all ages. Come to our 726 acre sacredsetting where God’s grace is nurtured and abundant life unfolds. We seek to inspire lifelong learning andgrowth through relationships with God, others, self, and earth. We design retreats and educational programs tofit the needs of your parish or school. We are also happy to offer hospitality to your group with your ownfacilitators and programs. Our facilities include two chapels, multiple meeting rooms, overnightaccommodations, indoor swimming pool, three dining rooms with professional food service, state of the artA.V. equipment, gymnasium, walking trails, pond, picnic areas and more.


Saint Vincent Archabbey724-805-2139Website: www.saintvincentretreats.org/E-mail: hugh.lester@email.stvincent.edu300 Fraser Purchase Rd , Latrobe, PA 15650-2690Staffed by the Benedictine monks of Saint Vincent ArchabbeyContact: Brother Hugh Lester, OSBPreached group retreats conducted during the summer only.

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