Editor's Notes: Catechesis and the Fostering of Desire

Authored by Dr. Petroc Willey in Issue #34.2 of The Sower

Most catechists will have experienced the frustrating situation where those being taught are not actively disagreeing with anything being presented – and yet there is not the smallest spark of interest in what is being communicated. The presentation leaves the listener cold. No spark has been generated.

It is noteworthy, therefore, that the Catechism places a section on the desire for God and for the truths of the Faith at the very beginning of the work (CCC 27-30). At the heart of the catechetical process there must be a desire, in the one being catechised, to receive the Revelation which is being transmitted.

We find similar thoughts centuries before the preaching of the Gospel, in Plato, the Father of Western philosophy, who understood the central importance of motivation for learning. His dialogue the Meno revolves around the question of how knowledge can be gained, and in this dialogue Socrates insists that there is no way that knowledge can be imparted independently of the learner’s desiring to receive it. The learner must be motivated to learn, and must be active in the learning process. The General Directory for Catechesis echoes this idea, insisting that catechumens need to understand themselves to be ‘co-responsible’ in the learning process (GDC 167).

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

Start your subscription today!


This article is from The Sower and may be copied for catechetical purposes only. It may not be reprinted in another published work without the permission of Maryvale Institute. Contact sower@maryvale.ac.uk

Articles from the Most Recent Issue

La santidad vivida en la familia
By Michaelann Martin
¿Siquiera es posible la santidad hoy en día? Antes de que nos casáramos, mi esposo, Curtis, y yo cada uno por su parte nos habíamos encontrado con nuestro Señor a través de unas conversiones profundas y ambos ya éramos muy comprometidos con seguir a la voluntad de Dios en nuestra vida matrimonial. Dios nos invitó a vivir nuestra fe en la arena... Read more
Inspired Through Art: The Virgin of the Rocks
By Phillip Bowles
This mysterious painting by Leonardo depicts a non-biblical meeting between Our Lady, the Christ Child, and an angel with St. John the Baptist in a rocky grotto. It is the second version of a painting originally commissioned in 1483 to be the central panel of a large altarpiece for the Franciscan Confraternity of the Immaculate Conception in Milan... Read more
From the Shepherds: The Universal Call to Holiness
By Bishop Mark Davies
Free Amid the dark shadows that have at times been cast over the face of the Church, too often obscuring for our contemporaries the clear light of Christ shining from her (see Lumen Gentium n. 1), we need to focus anew on the universal call to holiness . It is very striking that, amid all the crises of the 20 th Century, the central message of the... 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