Welcome to All Saints CGS: a blog detailing the happenings and fruits of our Catechesis of the Good Shepherd program and some musings (some theological, some humorous, some both) of the catechists in our program. If you've ever wondered about the impact of Good Shepherd on the life of the adult, the atrium (the CGS classroom), or the "work" your child is doing, you've come to the right place!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Stumbled Upon a Goldmine

A guest reflection by parishioner Melissa Hill

“What are they doing?”

This was one of the first thoughts I had when I was led into the atrium, the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd classroom, for the first time. The room was unlike anything I had seen before, and I have to admit that this style of Religious Education seemed a bit odd.

Having just registered at All Saints, I was determined to get my kids involved. So I decided to stay around and watch what they were doing. By the end of the session, I was very interested in what was happening there. I thought I needed to learn more about it, and honestly, it would have been hard for me to leave my children in an environment I didn’t understand. When invited to become an assistant in the room, I agreed without hesitation.

Within only a few weeks, I knew I had stumbled upon a goldmine. This "weird" form of education was producing a profound result with the children. Not only did they know terminology I didn’t know as an adult, they had a reverence for the liturgy and scripture that I hadn’t seen before.

Later that year, I enthusiastically entered into the formation course for Catechesis of the Good Shepherd, but I had no idea the impact my formation would have on my personal relationship with God and Church. I thought this would be a class on how to be a catechist in this new style of classroom. Sure, that was part of my journey, but equally as significant was my own formation, my own experience.

During the extensive training sessions, I became like the child myself and learned about liturgy, scripture and relationship in a way I never had. I came out of the educational experience with a certificate of completion and ready to lead an atrium. I also came out with a new excitement for Catholicism and a readiness to make changes in my own life. I am convinced that the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd program has made me a better mother and wife, and has been the catalyst for so many other growth opportunities for me.

I am so grateful that instead of turning around and going the other way, I was willing to go inside that strange looking classroom and find out for myself what was going on in there!

May God bless your families and your week! ~Mandie DeVries, Director of Religious Education