The Official Newspaper of the Diocese of Little Rock

Good Shepherd training draws catechists from all over

Montessori-based formation program meets needs of 3- to 12-year-olds

Published: June 30, 2023   
Courtesy Sister Mary Rose Vu, FMSR
Catechesis of the Good Shepherd teacher Angie Bielefeld (sitting on floor, right) instructs catechists from the Diocese of Little Rock during training June 11-17 at the Cathedral of St. Andrew in Little Rock.

Several catechists, a priest, sister and deacon from around the Diocese of Little Rock met at the Cathedral of St Andrew in Little Rock June 11-17 for a week of training in Catechesis of the Good Shepherd.

Participating parishes were Cathedral of St. Andrew, Little Rock; St. Joseph, Fayetteville; Christ the King, Little Rock; St. Andrew, Danville; St. Augustine, Dardanelle; St. Patrick, North Little Rock; and St. Raphael, Springdale.

Teacher Angie Bielefeld from Wichita, Kan., showed the participants how to build a faith community, not merely a program. The Montessori-based religious formation program meets the developmental needs of 3- to 12-year-old children, taking into account discoveries about the child by the educator Maria Montessori.

Instead of a traditional classroom, the catechist prepares an environment called an “atrium” that leads to prayer and an encounter with Jesus. The catechist is invited to learn with the child and from the child.

The Cathedral of St. Andrew will host the second session of the Level 1 training Nov. 18-21 and Dec. 8-10.

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