Catechesis of the Good Shepherd is a Montessori based approach to faith formation for children ages 3-12 years of age. At St. Teresa of Avila we have three designated rooms filled with lovely hands-on materials that the catechists present to the children. The children then have the opportunity to work with the materials once they have been presented to them. These rooms are called ‘atriums’, a place where children are invited to wonder and contemplate both Scripture and Liturgy.
We are very blessed to be able to offer this approach in it’s entirety as it takes many, many years to make and acquire all of the materials needed to provide a full curriculum- preschool through sixth grade. It also takes many years to train enough catechists, as the training they receive is quite extensive.
The children thoroughly enjoy this approach, as it was developed by two experts in catechesis, Sofia Cavelletti and Gianna Gobi, through close observation of children and by studying the religious potential of the child over sixty years.
The sessions are offered once a week from September to May for a total of 24 sessions. The sessions are offered Sunday 10:30-11:45am, Monday 4-5:30pm, or Tuesday 4-5:30pm. Preparation for First Communion and First Reconciliation also uses the CGS approach and includes a few extra sessions with the children and their parents on the year that they receive these sacraments.
We currently have about 100 children in CGS and continue to attract more children and families every year. As CGS grows we will likely expand to offering it more times during the week.