What is Catechesis of the Good Shepherd?
The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd (CGS) is a program designed to help children fall in love with the Good Shepherd. Presentations are based on scripture, liturgy, and the educational philosophy of Maria Montessori. It is based on the conviction that God and the child are already in a relationship; the task before us is to help the child deepen that relationship.
- Sundays 9-10:20am- Levels 1, 2, and 3
- Tuesdays 10-11:30am- Level 1
- Wednesdays 4-5:30pm- Levels 1, 2, and 3
- Thursdays 4:15-5:45pm- Levels 1, 2, and 3
Catechesis of the Good Shepherd Sacramental Preparation– We offer a sacramental preparation that offers the same quiet , meditative atmosphere experience as in the atrium. It consists of 5 mediation sessions followed by the Sacraments Retreat. This preparation takes the place of other parish sacrament preparations for children and their families who choose it. Any child enrolled in a Level 2 CGS session is eligible to participate.
Registration for the 2023-2024 school year is open at https://www.churchofsaintmary.com/re/.
Level 1 (ages 3-6 by September 1st, PK- Kindergarten)
Children spend time enjoying and nurturing a relationship with the Good Shepherd. The children are deeply affected by the boundless love of the shepherd for His sheep as described in the Scriptures. They learn that He knows His sheep, calls them by name, searched for a lost sheep, and celebrated the found sheep. Materials presentations of the life of Christ and His teachings help make the great mystery of who God is more understandable for the child. Through geography, the words of the prophets, and infancy narratives, Jesus is established as a real person. The Paschal narratives are treated similarly, using model cities of Jerusalem, empty tombs, and cenacles for the Last Supper. Selected parables further the child’s wonder and curiosity about the great mystery of the Kingdom of God. Children become familiar with the articles of the Eucharist and Baptism by arranging them on a miniature altar and font. The children also become acquainted with the gesture of the liturgy and their meaning of the Paschal Mystery. Christ has died, Christ is risen, and Christ will come again. A prayer corner located in each atrium reflects the liturgical time for the year by means of appropriate colors, prayer, songs, artwork, and readings. (source: Catechesis of the Good Shepherd website cgsusa.org )
Level 2 (ages 6-9 by September 1st, 1st-3rd grade)
Children come to know that God is working from Creation through redemption, toward Parousia when God’s love will be all in all. God calls us to participate in this plan. Jesus shows us the way to live together in peace and joy as we abide in him though the Eucharist and Baptism. (source: Catechesis of the Good Shepherd website cgsusa.org)
Level 3 (ages 9-12 by September 1st, 4th-6th grade)
Children have the opportunity to explore more deeply the covenants with God revealed in Hebrew Scripture. Looking at the more detailed history of humankind, they discover how God draws all creation towards Parousia. They see in a more challenging way how God calls us to use our gifts to write the blank page toward Parousia, and to be held in covenant with God and each other through the Eucharist and Baptism (Catechesis of the Good Shepherd website cgsusa.org)
Want to join the CGS Ministry Team?
CGS catechists receive a lot of training before leading a CGS class. Catechists find their own spiritual life grows as well as the spiritual lives of the children they serve. Volunteers can assist the Catechist as well; this is a great way to be introduced to CGS.
For more information about Catechesis of the Good Shepherd at the Church of Saint Mary, please contact Christine Hassink at email@example.com.