Children's Catechesis: Catechizing Kids from Hard Places

Authored by Alison Blanchet in Issue #7.1 of The Catechetical Review

They are not my “glory stories.” They are the children that I think about at 3:17 a.m. The faces of children that, to the best of my knowledge, I failed to reach. In the middle of the night things I said and did—sometimes with the best of intentions and sometimes from a place of absolute frustration and desperation—replay in my head.  What had I done that seemed to completely close a child off to the message of Christ that I desperately wanted to share with them?

Hope and the Sacrament of Confession mercifully keeps me from dwelling on these moments too frequently, but over the years, I continued to wonder if there was anything I could have done to prevent a child from acting out or shutting down when I was instructing them.

Yes, I’ve learned. There were.

A few years ago, my husband and I became licensed foster parents. Between trainings on discipline and the importance of regular visits to the dentist was a lesson I wish I had learned before I ever began to work with children.

I learned how trauma affects the brain.

While I had read the occasional article and attended a few workshops, my understanding of how a child’s experience of trauma affects their behavior remained rudimentary. However, this training included in-depth explanations of the brain and behavior. As I began to work with specific behaviors of children in our own home, I realized how essential this knowledge was within a catechetical environment as well.

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: Kerygmatic Catechesis and the New Directory
By Dr. James Pauley
Free The much-anticipated Directory for Catechesis is finally here! So many of us involved in the work of catechetical renewal have eagerly awaited its publication. This directory is the third of its kind, following 1971 and 1997 directories that each proposed a vision for catechesis intended to prepare Catholics to live in the modern world as well-... Read more
An Invitation to a Faithful, Dynamic Renewal of Catechesis
By Jem Sullivan
Free This article explores c hapters 1-2 of the new Directory for Catechesis. The publication of a Directory for Catechesis by the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the New Evangelization could not have arrived at a more providential moment as the universal Church seeks a renewal of Christian faith in local churches struggling through the effects... Read more
Becoming Windows for the Light of the Living God
By Brad Bursa
This article explores chapters 3-4 of the Directory for Catechesis. O ne could liken c hapters t hree (The Catechist) and f our (The Formation of Catechists) of the new Directory for Catechesis to a meditation on windows and how they are made. Identity and Vocation of the Catechist In the early Church, those who followed the Way were often called... 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