Friday, December 02, 2011

Adult Education

Adult formation in the faith is a big part of life in my parish which has the unusual characteristic of being very young. Our average age is only 27! The reason it is so low is that we have lots of families with very young children. Over the years we have run a variety of courses for parents to help them grow in knowledge and understanding of their faith. In that way we hope to better equip them to pass it on to their children. Of course all this is possible because we have Hannah, our full-time coordinator of catechesis. Hannah has her own blog which you can check out here.
In January she has been invited to run Fr Robert Barron's "Catholicism" course at the new Centre for Catholic Formation which is in our diary. Sessions take place on Thursday evenings from 7.30pm until 9.00pm. Anyone interested in signing up should email me before Christmas and I will pass your details on to her.
This is the trailer for the course:

Here are some testimonies from three of our parishioners:

"I am a cradle Catholic, baptised and brought by Catholic parents, educated at a Catholic school until the age of 11.  However, that is pretty much where my Catholic education ended, although I continued to attend weekly Mass until going to University at which point, I attended an Anglican church.  For the last seven years, I have attended weekly Mass at Holy Ghost Church, with my husband (also a Catholic) and our young family. [The] course made me realise how much I myself have to learn about the Catholic faith – and that I was taking my faith for granted, by simply attending weekly Mass as a formality.  I have since helped out with both the Pre-catechumenate course and the RCIA course, supporting the candidates, but also gaining hugely from the weekly discussions, enabling me (and therefore my family) to understand our faith more deeply."  (Mother of 3)

"I had spent many years comfortable in my faith without really challenging myself.  I believed that I was doing "enough" in my relationship with God by going to Mass and making the time to talk to God and to pray.  It wasn't until I was a sponsor for someone else's Confirmation and attended several of the RCIA classes which featured short extracts from the teachings of Father Robert Barron that I realised there was so much more.  It made me understand that formation is a critical pillar of my relationship with God as how can you really love someone without knowing them?  There is so much to learn and be amazed by." (Mother of 2)

"To discover that someone loves you unconditionally; that you have a purpose in life and that you can achieve peace and happiness through prayer and sanctification, is a path I started on as a result of Faith in the Family Programme 4 years ago.  I am truly grateful that a few people thought I was worth it and thank God daily that we have people that perform such vital apostolate especially in today's ever secular society." (Mother of 3)

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