It is a glorious time to be a Catholic parent. We have countless resources and curricula at our fingertips designed to help us pass the faith on to our children. Lots of people have put a lot of effort into creating quality content for our children; where do we even start?
Personally, we found the abundance of resources to be a bit intimidating. We didn’t want a lot of books, videos, and worksheets. We didn’t want a lengthy parent guide to train us. We wanted something we could immediately plug in to, no preparation required. But, we also wanted something with substance. In short, we wanted low-preparation and high-impact. Something that would awaken our sense of wonder, foster our relationship with Jesus and the Church, and keep our sanity intact. So, we turned to our Mother for help.
Lectionary-based catechesis takes the readings from the day’s Mass and
expands on their themes and teachings. We like this method for a number of reasons.
1) For starters, it’s simple.
Holy Mother Church has already done the work of organizing the faith for us. Over three years of Sundays and two years of Daily Masses, Mass-goers can expect to hear at least something from nearly every book of the Bible. The lectionary cycle doesn’t cover 100 percent of Scripture, and it’s important to read and study the Bible outside of Mass as well. However, most of us don’t have the brain-space to organize an individualized reading plan for each of our children during these intense early years of parenting, and frankly you probably wouldn’t want to read every single verse of the Bible to a child anyways. Why not follow our wise Mother’s lead? While praying with the Scripture in the order she lays out, we not only take the guesswork out of structuring it ourselves, we also connect more deeply to the Body of Christ.
2) Lectionary-based catechesis connects us to the universal church
We believe the mysteries of God are revealed in and through the liturgical and sacramental life of the Church. Our prayer lives are personal, but are not exactly private. We can (and should) develop robust personal prayer lives, but authentic spirituality should always lead us back to the public life of the Church. When we use the Mass readings to teach a new concept, we send the message that corporate worship is important.
3) It’s Instructive
Constantly drawing from and referencing the liturgy sends a clear message to our children that the Mass is important. A curriculum can feel one more class in school, but family activities that arise from the Mass like fruit from a vine convey the centrality of our public worship to the life of faith. We don’t just study this; we live this, and we live it together.
For more information on the lectionary, click here.
To buy our lectionary-based book for Advent, click here
Comments or thoughts? We'd love to hear them!