Catechetical Sunday is two days away. That means parish life throughout the Diocese of Phoenix is kicking into high gear with religious education for the young, teenagers, converts and those completing the sacraments of initiation as adults starting soon, if not already a week or so underway.



A Catechist’s Prayer

Catechetical year kickoffs: active kids at St. Clare of Assisi in  junior high and high school youth at St. Charles Borromeo in Peoria plus Life Teen at St. Patrick in Scottsdale


Many parishes will give them a special blessing at Masses this weekend and formally commission them for their work. It’s also a time to invite the entire church community to think about its responsibility to share the faith with others and remind parents of their primary role as catechists for their children.

Some religious education teachers and ministry leaders are returning. Others, like the youth minister at St. Rose Parish in Anthem, are new. Peter Alexander and his wife, Jessica, are establishing roots at the 11-year-old parish. Meet them via this video and (re)discover why, even though going to another class on the evenings or weekends might sometimes be a drag, the value of being formed in the faith and experiencing true relational ministry cannot be replaced.

Catechetical Sunday is a Vatican initiative that goes back exactly 80 years when it published a document asking each country to acknowledge the importance of the Church’s teaching ministry. This year’s nationwide theme, coming from the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Evangelization and Catechesis, is “Safeguarding the Dignity of Every Human Person.” It reminds us that we the baptized may need to actively support and protect others from all sorts of harm, cherishing human life from the moment of conception to a natural death, the U.S. bishops said.