​​​Practical Considerations

How feasible is the Good Shepherd Catechesis for a parish? Experience indicates that the following are key practicalities involved in establishing this catechesis in a parish.

Pastor

The single most positive factor is the encouraging leadership of a supportive pastor.

 

Community

Parents who experience the impact of this catechesis on children have proven to be the mainstay of this programme. In order to provide this opportunity for their children, parents become catechists, establish atriums, make catechetical materials, and remain actively involved for several years. The extended parish community also helps sustain this work by its nurturing and welcoming response, prayer, fund raising and sharing of their gifts (e.g. carpentry skills) to meet the needs of the programme.

Space

Some parishes have been able to provide the ideal space –​ a room set-aside exclusively for the children. Other parishes have been able to implement this programme by the creative use of shared space. For example, one parish uses part of their sacristy; another uses a choir loft. Catechetical Materials: One of the chief features of this catechesis is the use of specially designed biblical and liturgical materials to help the children's prayer and meditation. These are usually handmade by the catechists, with the hel​p of the parish community; this is a way of involving others in the ministry of catechesis. For example, in one parish the senior citizens volunteered to produce the materials; in another, the shop teacher and class provided the woodworking; in yet another, the Knights of Columbus helped to prepare the atrium space.

Cost

This catechesis is financially feasible for any parish. The cost varies from parish to parish depending on the above factors, as well as the parish's resources. Minimum costs relate to:​

 

    1. ​Preparation of the atrium space; Making of the catechetical materials;
    2. Supporting the training/formation of catechists