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Thank you for understanding!
For more information on the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd Association of Canada,
go to the CGSAC Website at: https://www.cgsac.ca
The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd is an approach to the religious formation of children that is based on the conviction that God and the Child are in relationship. Our role as adults is to protect and nurture this bond. In the Catechesis we present age-appropriate themes from the Bible and our liturgy with manipulative materials the children use to internalize and ponder the great mysteries of our faith.
The Catechesis seeks to give children the guidance and vocabulary which enable them to become aware of their relationship with God and give expression to it. With the Catechesis we help each child to continue to fall in love with God while building community among peers.
Each level of the child’s work explores the fundamental theme of covenant, God’s call and our response, as reflected in the Bible and as lived in liturgy. At Level I the 3-6 year-olds have the capacity to receive and enjoy the most essential elements of our faith: the mysteries of the Kingdom of God, the announcement of God’s love given for us in the person of Jesus, the Good Shepherd. At Level II the 6-9 year-olds focus on the image of the True Vine, deepening their relationship with God, family, friends and the larger community as they prepare for and celebrate communion, broadening their understanding of Mass.
Children need their own place to work with these essentials and many other key elements of our faith. This place is called an atrium. Montessori coined this term recalling the part of the Early Christian church building where catechumens would gather in preparation to join the church. Each atrium is specially designed with child-sized furniture including a prayer table for gathering, a model altar, as well as materials to deepen their familiarity with more parables and the Mass itself. After being presented with new material in a small group, children are free to choose work which particularly speaks to them to foster the growth of their own relationship.
A recent article in the Prairie Messenger, featuring our dedicated and engaging Ruth Ann, captures how the Christmas Story is lived within the Catechesis of the Good – Read Here
“God can do more than we can ask or imagine by the power at work within us. Eph 3:30. This scripture captures the Holy Spirit at work in Dominic. CGS has helped draw out what is happening in Dominic in his faith journey through a Montessori approach. It is unbelievable! I never could have imagined this little dude could capture his faith like this or in so many other ways. His imagination is being filled with rich incredible encounters of Jesus and of the Church. Thanks Ruth Ann McClure and the CGS team! Totally recommend this program to any parents across Canada!!!”
“Fiona has such insight for her age. When you were reflecting on the parable, she was spot on and felt very supported in the environment to voice her ideas in front of her peers.”
“I can say I have never seen the Holy Spirit move more dramatically with and through children than with those who participate in this catechesis.”
“How wonderful it is to witness the utmost reverence for the Holy in a child so young.”
“Katherine delights in what she learns and it is amazing to see her little faith bloom as part of the great care, water and sunshine that you pour over her. Thank you!”
“I am really starting to see how the practical life skills enable the children to do their work with success.”
“Although many things struck me, what left the greatest impression was what the 3-6 year old child is capable of … the care, the detail, the quality of work.” “In this busy world where we often find it difficult to carve out a few hours of quiet reflective time, catechesis was an opportunity to slow down in a beautiful environment and learn about the teachings of God.”
Endorsement of the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd by Archbishop Prendergast
CGS Summer 2020 ~ Planting a ‘Mother Mary’s Butterfly Garden’
During July and August, the CGS children and their guides gathered outdoors for faith formation on Wednesday mornings from 9 – 11 am in the parish backyard.
Ours goals were to listen to God together, reflect, pray and work. As stewards of creation, we worked to beautify Mary’s Garden and to care for the whole yard. The children learned gardening skills such as cultivating, weeding, planting, shaping, pruning and shoveling. The after picture shows Mary’s garden is running over with flora. A plant in the planter is in bloom and the stone path has been unearthed to the gazebo. What a holy place God has given us.
|Children and Guides on the last day!|
CGS Summer 2020 ~ Planting a ‘Mother Mary’s Butterfly Garden’
Parable of the Sower, Matthew 13
In the beginning …
Thoughts from our day ... We arrive, we weed Living in the kingdom of God - caring for creation Backyard to listen to God together and work in the yard We planted butterfly seeds around the Mary statue, covered them with soil, then soaked with water We squirted and blessed ourselves with Holy Water - new life, growing, blessing Ate snack in the gazebo and talked about "chewing on the word of God" Bible sharing The Sower ... wondering ....... Silence - listen for it, what do you hear out there? We can work in silence and listen for God while we work Clearing weeds and building a bridge Prayed, "Hail Mary" to our Lady before we left.
Mother Mary’s Butterfly Garden
CGS family members celebrating Easter Vigil 2020
From our home to yours … ‘Receive the Light of Christ’!
We have brand new 48 inch tall Procession Cross!
It is a prayer and Liturgy material that the children will carry ❤️ in our processions.
Jesse Tree decorated by the children on Friday, November 29, 2019
A Jesse Tree helps the children realize that Jesus has relatives too. It is also a relevant connection to the Holy Bible and the Old Testament authors that they were recently introduced to. The picture shows the children’s creative idea where they placed the Jesse Tree INSIDE the Advent wreath and Mother Mary is right there! Ruth Ann McClure
‘Candle’ Liturgical Calendars
CGS Advent Gathering of Catechists at Blessed Sacrament Parish, November 29, 2019
Our beautiful evening included lots of informal time to visit and share in the atrium, followed by a quiet time of praying the Joyful Mysteries, followed by reflections in the Church. Such a gift to be in community together!
Our Lady of the Cape, pray for us!