Articles Under: Pedagogy & Methodology

Recientemente, en una conferencia para dirigentes católicos, me preguntó un joven sacerdote a qué me dedicaba. Le dije que ayudo a las parroquias a inventar estrategias para crear una cultura de discipulado en su parroquia. Me preguntó cómo hago eso. Le contesté que nos gusta enfocar principios, no balas de plata, y capacitar a un grupo de dirigentes en la parroquia para producir un cambio cultural al proyectar una visión, edificando un camino claro hacia el discipulado, movilizando a los líderes, y alineando ministerios claves con una visión orientada hacia el discipulado. Decayó su semblante. ¡Me preguntaba qué había hecho... Read more
Recently, at a conference for Catholic leaders, I was asked by a young priest what I do. I told him that I help parishes strategize around how to create a culture of discipleship in their parish. He asked me how I do that. I told him that we like to focus on principles, not silver bullets, and train a group of leaders in the parish to create culture change by casting vision, building a clear path to discipleship, mobilizing leaders, and aligning key ministries with a discipleship-oriented vision. His face fell. I wondered what I had said to offend him!... Read more
Evangelization is a primary function of Catholic schools. Although they provide quality education in a variety of subject areas, as agents of the Church, they share the larger mission of the Church: forming disciples of Jesus Christ. Catholic schools should and must be more than public schools that also happen to have religion classes. Speaking about the role of the Catholic school, the Vatican II Declaration on Christian Education, Gravissimum Educationis states, “But its proper function is to create for the school community a special atmosphere animated by the Gospel spirit of freedom and charity, to help youth grow according... Read more
At the beginning of my second year of teaching religion in a Catholic high school, I began prompting my students in each lesson with a question that helped them apply that lesson to their own life circumstances. One day, in the middle of a lesson on original sin, I asked the students to write a letter to Jesus telling him what the “forbidden fruit” was in their lives and asking his help to resist it. Because students knew I would be collecting and reading their responses, I did not anticipate anything very serious. I was surprised, therefore, when “Monica” wrote... Read more
By definition, Catholic schools are an extension of the Church’s saving mission of evangelization, with a special responsibility to provide “a privileged environment for the complete formation of her members” within that context. [1] That “complete formation” must have as its goal a lively and enlivening relationship with Christ specifically in the Eucharist, around which all apostolic work and even the other sacraments are centered (CCC 1324). Turning that belief into practice is one of the most critical activities in which a Catholic school must engage if it is to fulfill its own identity within the larger context of the... Read more
What makes a school Catholic? Is a school Catholic because it exists with the permission of the bishop of the diocese, or it is a member of the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA), or it is an extension or an outreach of a parish community, or it has a crucifix in every classroom and religious artwork throughout the building, or because its curriculum includes religious studies, or because the pattern of its practices align with the National Standards and Benchmarks of Effective Catholic Schools , or because Mass and the Sacrament of Reconciliation are celebrated for the student body during... Read more
Podemos tomar por supuesto el hecho de que la Iglesia Católica opere un gran número de escuelas alrededor del mundo. Es claro que la Iglesia debe de ofrecer educación religiosa, pero, ¿por qué la Iglesia enseña matemáticas, educación física, ciencias, literatura e historia? ¿No sería más fácil que la Iglesia enfocara más estrechamente lo sobrenatural? ¿Para qué enseña también sobre el mundo material y cómo leer y escribir? En el Gran Mandato, Jesús mandó a sus Apóstoles a que hicieran discípulos ( mathetes en griego y discipli en latín –ambas palabras se refieren a los estudiantes) y que les enseñaran... Read more
We can take for granted the fact that the Catholic Church runs a large number of schools throughout the world. It is clear that the Church must offer religious education, but why does the Church teach math, gym class, science, literature, and history? Wouldn’t it just be easier if the Church focused more narrowly on the supernatural; why also teach about the material world and how to read and write? In the Great Commission, Jesus commanded his apostles to make disciples, ( mathetes in Greek and discipli in Latin – both words for students) and to teach them (Mt 28:19-20)... Read more
La necesidad en la Iglesia El discipulado es una palabra que muchos comprenden solo parcialmente. Si la gente está familiarizada con la palabra, generalmente la definen como ser seguidor de Jesús. El problema es que muy poca percibirá que el discipulado también abarca el ser formador de discípulos. Al responder a la Gran Comisión en Mateo 28, 19-20, somos llamados no solamente a seguir a Jesús y todo lo que Él enseña, sino también a ir y hacer discípulos. Comprendido de esta forma, el discipulado resuelve muchos de los retos que tenemos en la Iglesia hoy en día. La comunidad... Read more
Con demasiada frecuencia, los responsables de la formación de la fe para adultos en sus parroquias dejan a un lado al Catecismo de la Iglesia Católica por ser demasiado difícil y, por lo tanto, demasiado abrumador para su auditorio. Quizás también lo consideren irrelevante para la experiencia de la gente, poco práctico o personal, o poco inspirador. Sin embargo, hacer caso omiso al Catecismo como recurso fundamental en la formación de la fe de los adultos sería perjudicar al Pueblo de Dios. El Catecismo es un don de la Iglesia – o más propiamente, del Espíritu Santo, obrando por medio... Read more