Children’s Catechesis: Educating in Christ – A Classroom Adaptation of the Work of Sofia Cavalletti

Authored by Dr. Gerard O'Shea in Issue #7.4 of The Catechetical Review

In September, 2018, I received a bemusing phone call from Anthony Gordon, the director of Catholic schools in a rural Australian Diocese. He asked me whether I would consider applying for the position of Diocesan Director of Religious Education and Mission. At the time, I was working in my “dream job” as a professor of religious education at the University of Notre Dame in Sydney, Australia. I had just completed the book that, I thought, summed up everything I had learned as a parent, teacher, catechist, and college professor through forty years of professional life, and I was ready to retire. The suggestion that I should change course at that stage of life was preposterous! The diocese in question, Wilcannia-Forbes, was the size of Texas and its eighteen schools, for the most part, could only be reached by long and lonely driving. I thanked the director for his confidence in me and then told him that it was not really what I wanted to do at this point in my life.

Yet, almost from that moment, I could not think of anything else. Was this a call from God? Was I being asked to put what I had learned into practice in this very challenging environment? I pondered it for a couple of weeks, and then decided to visit and pray at the grave of Australia’s (so far) only saint. St. Mary Mackillop had founded an order of religious sisters whose purpose was to bring the Gospel to the people of isolated communities. After this, with complete serenity, I knew what I had to do. With one day to go, I applied for and was appointed to the position.

The rest of this online article is available for current subscribers.

Start your subscription today!


This article is from The Catechetical Review (Online Edition ISSN 2379-6324) and may be copied for catechetical purposes only. It may not be reprinted in another published work without the permission of The Catechetical Review by contacting editor@catechetics.com

Articles from the Most Recent Issue

Editor’s Reflections: On Incarnational Coherence
By Dr. James Pauley
Free Beneath the Basilica of the Annunciation in Nazareth is the place where tradition tells us the Angel appeared to the Blessed Virgin Mary. An altar stands in this grotto, inscribed with these words: “verbum caro hic factum est” (the Word became flesh here ). The Incarnation of God’s Son into human flesh is not a myth or fairy tale. It is an... Read more
Finding God in an Unexpected Place
By Sr. Carino Hodder, OP
Free When John Everett Millais’ Christ in the House of His Parents was first displayed at the Royal Academy, the public response was near-universal revulsion. At that time it bore no title but Zechariah 13:6: “And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds in thine hands? Then shall he answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my... Read more
Antiquum Ministerium: Instituting the Ministry of Catechist
By Monsignor John Pollard
On May 10, 2021, Pope Francis formally instituted the ministry of catechist with the apostolic letter Antiquum Ministerium , which he issued motu proprio , or on his own initiative and under his personal signature. An initial reaction to the formal institution of the role of catechist might be to wonder, “So what’s new?” The role of catechist has... Read more

Pages

Watch Tutorial Videos

We've put together several quick and easy tutorial videos to show you how to use this website.

Watch Now