It was a warm, sunny day at the end of spring. Instead of spending the beautiful Saturday according to their own wishes, our students were reluctantly settling into their seats in a classroom. I saw looks of boredom on the faces of the youth and noted the variety of ages among those present. I glanced over at the two other members of our team: a young, enthusiastic priest and a very energetic woman who taught children much younger than those gathered before us. We had been recruited to deliver a day-long Confirmation retreat for a Native American community. On our three-hour drive to reach the reservation, Father had emphasized the fact that the culture from which these participants would be coming might present different challenges from those to which we were accustomed. Looking around the room, I began to understand what he had been describing. The ages of the confirmandi ranged from 5th to 11th graders; and some parents or family members also requested to attend the retreat. The sisters who ran the catechetical side of the mission church located on the reservation had already informed us that many of these students failed to attend any kind of courses regularly, and thus their level of catechesis was inconsistent.
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