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St. Benedict's Parish Catechism

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Catechism Classes (using Baltimore Catechism)
Time: Between Sunday Masses (8:45 to 9:45 a.m.)
When: September thru April
Ages: 4-18 years old
Where: St. Benedict’s Parish (Forrest Hall)
St. Benedict's Catechism Program presents preparation for children from K4 through 12th grade for reception of the Sacraments and preparation for adulthood. Each student's parents must fill out a Catechism Registration Form available from the Parish Office or online.

Classes are offered from September through April, and meet from 8:45 to 9:45AM (between the Sunday Masses). Students are allowed no more that 5 absences during the year, and all students must have a completed Catechism Registration Form on file with the office. There are five classes offered: K4-5, Pre-Communion Class: Ages 6-7 will normally attend First Communion Preparation; Ages 8-10 will normally attend the Post Communion class; Ages 11-12 will normally attend the Pre-Confirmation and Confirmation Preparation Class, and Ages 13-18 will normally attend the Post-Confirmation Class. Further information on these classes is provided below.

Students who will make their First Confession and First Communion or their Confirmation must be registered members of St. Benedict's Chapel, and must have a certified copy (with embossed seal) of their Baptismal Certificate by the parish where they were baptized turned into St. Benedict's Chapel Office within 6 months prior to -- but not later than February – the Child's First Confession/First Communion, or Confirmation. The First Communicant must be at least 7 years old by January 1, 2013. First Penance and First Communion normally are scheduled for the first weekend in May. Attire for First Communion: Girls wear white dresses with veil and white shoes (a white purse will be supplied by St. Benedict's; Boys wear a dark suit (or dark blazer) with a white shirt, and a white tie is supplied by St. Benedict's. First Communicants will be inducted into the Confraternity of the Brown Scapular the same day they make their First Holy Communion, and a Brown Scapular will be provided to each Child by St. Benedict's Chapel. Students who have not yet been confirmed are welcome to participate in St. Benedict's annual Hallow's Eve celebration of All Saints Day and the children's annual Christmas Pageant in the costume of their favorite saint. Signups for these events start in mid-September. Confirmation will occur usually in May. A two-year preparation with an eight-week final preparation for receiving Confirmation remains a Diocesan requirement. Students must be at least 12 years old to receive this sacrament, and their sponsor must be a confirmed practicing Roman Catholic. Please pray for our catechists and our Catechism Program, that the Chapel members may do everything according to God's Holy Will in preparing God's greatest gift to you for sainthood. Please feel free to contact me with any questions on our Catechism program. Yours in Christ, Father Neal Nichols, FSSP
Students are normally 4, 5 years old. The objective of the yearly curriculum are to introduce the students to their basic prayers (Sign of the Cross, Glory be, Hail Mary, Our Father, and Apostles Creed), basic postures (folding hands, genuflection and when), items in the Sanctuary (Sanctuary light, Tabernacle, etc), Seven Sacraments, and the 10 Commandments. Focus of the instruction is to prepare the children for the next stage of instruction, First Communion Preparation Class. Instructor: Mrs. Mary Macera; marymac; Home phone # 757.460.2980
First Communion Class provides a minimum of 2 years preparation by studying the lessons in the “New Saint Joseph First Communion Catechism” book. Students are normally 6, 7, or 8 years old, depending upon entry to this preparation class. The objectives of the yearly curriculum are designed to increase the knowledge of each student to: (1) learn about the purpose of man’s existence; (2) learn about God and His Perfections; (3) learn about the Unity and the Trinity of God; (4) learn about original sin; (5) learn about actual sin; (6) learn about the Incarnation; (7) learn about Redemption; (8) learn about the seven Sacraments most especially Baptism, Penance, and Holy Eucharist; (9) learn the Ten Commandments; (10) learn how to make a Good Confession; and (11) learn how to pray the Holy Mass.
Requirements include the following: (a) parental assistance with student studying catechism and prayers at home plus attending the Holy Mass in the Extraordinary Form; (b) student satisfactorily completes periodic verbal and written quizzes; (c) use of Sacramentals such as rosary, prayer book, holy cards, and brown scapular.
Participants can expect the following class structure:
- Practicing: reciting prayers aloud in class (such as: Hail Mary, Glory Be, Our Father, Apostle’s Creed, Angel of God, Act of Contrition; and recitation of the Ten Commandments). Opening prayer by all students (Standing) is Apostle’s Creed.
• Individual recitations / demonstrations of sign of the cross, genuflection, prayers, etc.
• Catechism lesson (20 minutes); Holy Mass lesson (10 minutes); Activity commensurate with catechism lesson may be scheduled; Occasional and Instructor supervised visit to Chapel / Blessed Sacrament; Closing prayer recited by all (Select a Class Leader); Dismissal with Holy Card
• Parent(s) or responsible sibling must come to the classroom to escort your child’s safe departure. Notify instructor with any changes. All children must be properly attended. Designated Instructor: Mrs. Rowanne Stephenson; Home phone # 757.353.0670
The Confirmation preparation catechism class (junior level) is appropriate for children who received their first Holy Communion and are in grades 3 to 5. Baltimore Catechism book Number one is the primary textbook for the course. Its objective is to take the main point of each lesson and to show how it is illustrated or exemplified in some event of Sacred Scripture. The concrete picture language of the Bible will be a big help to the child to understand better the main truths presented in the more abstract language of the question and answers of the official Baltimore catechism. This textbook presents the class material in three major parts (1) basic Catholic doctrine as summarized in the Apostles' Creed, (2) the ten commandments of God and the six commandments of the Church, and (3) sacraments and prayers. Since the class incorporates reading and writing assignments, the children are expected to have these basic skills. St. Benedict's Chapel Catechism Program 2012-2013 Designated Instructor: Mrs. Elaine Franco elainefranco; Home phone # 757.548.2380
The Pre-Confirmation Class is a two-year course teaching the content of the Baltimore Catechism book number two. Approximately one lesson is taught each week. Students are expected to complete and turn in the answers to questions contained at the end of each lesson. During the class, in addition to learning new material, students are expected to answer a variety of questions based on the material already covered. The last eight weeks of each year are devoted to the study of the "Preparation for Confirmation" book. All students study this book, not just those being confirmed that year. This book is based on the Baltimore Catechism, and focused exclusively on the Sacrament of Confirmation. Occasionally, a student may join the class who already has a good grasp of the Baltimore Catechism and, with the consent of his/her parents, may feel that the two-year preparation time may not be necessary. In that case, the parents may ask Father Nichols to administer a written test, as confirmation that the student knows the material. The test is based on the content of the Baltimore Catechism number two, and has approximately fifty questions. Designated Instructor: Mr. Mark Srodulski marsro; Home phone # 757.582.6978
The Post-Confirmation Class is designed to prepare young adults for their college and adult years. Students will learn how the Church is not based on the Bible, but how the Bible is based on the Church, and has always been an integral part of the Catholic Church. They will learn how, “ignorance of Scripture is ignorance of Christ.” – St. Jerome. They will learn how they are, as St. Paul states, “an epistle of Christ,
ministered by us, and written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in the fleshly tables of the heart” (2Cor3:3) Students will learn how to, “Evangelize all the time, and sometimes use words” (St. Francis Assissi). Students will learn to, “...reverence the Lord Christ in their hearts, and always have an answer ready for people who ask them for the reason for the hope that is within them. But, to give the defense with courtesy and respect and with a clear conscience, so that those who slander them when they are living a good life in Christ may be proved wrong in the accusations that they bring.” (1Pt 3:15). They will learn how their prior catechism instruction that required them to, “learn their catechism by heart,” instead of, “memorize it,” was designed to tune their heart and ear to the Shepherd’s voice, for He said, “My sheep hear my voice: and I know them, and they follow me” (Jn 10:27).
This year’s class will use the famous catechetical and apologetic book “Faith of Our Fathers” By James Cardinal Gibbons. It is an "incredibly popular and successful book explaining the basic tenets of the Catholic faith and (more importantly) why we hold them. It delves into the historical background of virtually everything people find hard to understand about our religion, such as priestly celibacy, sacred images, the Church and the Bible, the Primacy of Peter, communion under one kind, invocation of the saints, etc.” The class will also refer to a variety of books in electronic format that will help your child build a solid library that is indispensable at college and handy throughout their life.

Prep time needed: 1 hour/week. Students will be expected to complete the assignments and be prepared to discuss the assigned reading in class.

Prerequisites: Students should have received the Sacrament of Confirmation.
Instructor: Mr. Jeff Leporte; jeflep; Phone: (757) 651-2798.

St. Benedict’s Parish

521 McCosh Drive, Chesapeake, Virginia 23320 | 757.543.0561 (Office) | 757.543.3510 (Fax) | frdam