For children ages 3* - 6th grade
Catechesis of the Good Shepherd
The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd (CGS) is our version of Sunday School for children ages 3*– 6th grade. It is based on the belief that young children can - and do - experience God. This approach to the religious formation of children is rooted in the Holy Bible, the liturgy of the church, and the educational principles of Maria Montessori.
Children meet in one of three atria, which are rooms created to nurture children’s spirituality and encourage a quiet, prayerful experience, and receive lessons from adult "Catechists", who are CGS trained and certified. Hands-on materials are used to help children and Catechists reflect on the great mysteries of the Christian faith. They ponder biblical passages or prayers from the liturgy by using the materials created for that text and working with them—placing wood figures of sheep in the sheepfold of the Good Shepherd, setting sculpted apostles around a Last Supper table, or preparing a small altar with the furnishings used for the Eucharist. Older children often copy parables from the Bible, place written prayers in order from the Rite of Baptism, or label a long timeline showing the history of the kingdom of God.
The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd is a sensorially rich experience for children ages 3* - 6th grade which illuminates and nourishes the child in his/her most vital religious needs.
*Children must have turned three years of age and be potty-trained by August 13, 2017 to begin.
Catechesis Level I - 3 years - 5KTime: 8:30 or 10:00 a.m.
Location: Level I atria in Hulsey Hall
The first level in Catechesis is for children ages 3 years – 5 K. To begin Catechesis of the Good Shepherd, children must have turned three years old by August 13, 2017 and be potty-trained. We offer two atrium times for each age group on Sunday mornings: 8:30 and 10:00 a.m.
Children's Liturgy of the Word8:30 - 12:30
Children 3-6 years of age are invited to come to Room 109 (the Sunshine Room) for supervised play. Trained nursery workers supervise the class. This classroom is open primarily for children who are not old enough to attend an atrium session (didn’t turn three before August 13, 2017) or arrived too late to attend an atrium session (after 8:45 AM or 10:15 AM). When: This Class is open for play on Sundays from 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Children’s Liturgy of the Word takes place at 11:00 am. It concludes when children process into church prior to Holy Communion and join their parents.
3rd Grade Solemn Communion
The Solemn Holy Communion experience is designed to help children more fully explore and enjoy the mystery of Christ’s gift of himself in the Sacrament of Holy Communion. This series of Meditation Classes, Retreat, and Solemn Communion Celebration is an integral part of the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd. For information please email Children's Formation Director Kathleen Busbee.
Other Opportunities for Children
Each Christmas Eve, Children’s Formation organizes two Christmas Pageants. The first, held at 10:30 a.m., is a pageant with Morning Prayer. The second pageant, held at 4:00 p.m., is followed by Holy Eucharist. The main cast of both pageants attend two practices the week prior to the pageants. There is no rehearsal for the rest of the participants. Children arrive 30 minutes before the pageants to receive their costumes and practice songs.
Level III Outreach Projects
The 4th, 5th, and 6th graders in level III atrium participate in monthly outreach and service projects. These projects include preparing and serving meals to the Family Promise participants, serving at the local soup kitchen, spending time with the elderly residents at the Episcopal Place, collecting items for overseas service men and women, visiting a local Mosque and Temple, participating in the Maundy Thursday Prayer Vigil, and cooking bread for the Eucharist.
6th Grade Community Activities
The 6th graders participate in monthly social activities in the fall semester and are invited to join EYC evening events in the spring semester. In May, the 6th graders are celebrated by a special recognition ceremony in church and a dinner party to honor their completion of atrium.
WEDNESDAY NIGHT - oasisWednesday nights during the school year: 6:00-7:30 p.m.
Atria in Hulsey Hall
Wednesday nights during the school year: 6:00-7:30 p.m. Atria in Hulsey Hall The atria are open from 6:00-7:30 PM each Wednesday when Oasis takes place. Level I: 3 years – 5K Levels II & III: 1st – 6th grade – in Level II atrium Children are welcome to join after dinner/choir.
VACATION BIBLE SCHOOL
Save-the-Date for 2018 Vacation Bible School (VBS). Mark your calendars for 2018 Vacation Bible School, June 24-27, when we will travel back to the ancient time of Jesus in the Land of Israel. Online registration will begin on April 15th. Look for more details this Spring! June 24-27, 2018: Sunday (6:30 pm - 8:00 pm) & Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday (9:00 am - 12:00 pm)
Become a Catechist
Become an Adult Catechist
Interested in becoming a catechist (trained adult volunteer)? All Saints’ is always looking for adults to serve as catechists in the atria. The CGS training course is designed to attune participants to the religious life of the child and to provide specific methods and materials to foster the child’s spiritual life. The course not only gives participants a chance to explore the general philosophy and methodology of the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd but also provides time of valuable scriptural reflection.