Saturday, June 14, 2008
First Holy Communion Weekend
A packed Church this morning for the first of three First Holy Communion Masses. The children have been preparing all year - and were all considerably better behaved than the charming young lady pictured above! We are very fortunate in the parish in that the parish school is right next door to the Church. This means it is possible for the children to join us for Mass before school. During the lunch break each class has a chance throughout the year to come into the Church for some prayer before the Blessed Sacrament during Friday Exposition. They also have lots of opportunities to go to confession - including of course during the Sunday Mass.
Next year we will have a new class starting the First Communion programme but these children will not lose out. We run post-Communion classes for two years and then have a programme called 'Keep the Faith' to takes them through the transition to secondary school. When they complete this they join the Confirmation class.
Of course catechesis is only one aspect of the formation we try to offer in the parish. It is important that, in addition to Faith, the other two theological virtues are also addressed. Growth in Charity and in Hope - expressed in prayer - are also necesary for there to be a true Christian life.
The role of parents in passing on the faith is one which is often stressed. Here we offer a twenty-week programme called "Faith in the Family". It has proved very popular and has certainly helped many parents develop a much deeper appreciation of their Catholic faith.