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Catechetical Methodology: Teaching Prayerfully
How can we ensure a prayerful approach in our catechesis? The principles of the pedagogy of God have recently been explained in the form of twelve ‘keys’ discerned from the Catechism of the Catholic Church and elucidated in the book the Catechism of the Catholic Church and the Craft of Catechesis.[i] This series suggests concrete ways of incarnating these in catechetical methods and practice. The first key we explored in this series was that of ‘gracefulness’—that is, ensuring the primacy of grace in one’s catechesis. The second key was ‘wholeness’, or a catechesis that addresses all ‘four dimensions of the Christian life’.[ii] The third key, that we explore here, is that of prayerfulness. This article concerns ways in which we can create prayerful catechetical sessions. For this, one of the first things we need is the prayer of others. We need to ask others to pray for us and for our work. Catechists can seek the prayers of different parish groups - and, for example, of the sick and housebound, for the work of the handing on of the faith of the Church. The parish community as a whole is helped when different people and groups are asked to support each other. Different types of prayer groups recognised by the Church are all valuable - from the charismatic prayer group to the Rosary or Divine Mercy prayer group. The sick and housebound and those living on their own can also be asked to pray for catechetical work, for we know that the prayer of those suffering can be especially powerful.