In establishing lifelong faith formation as a fundamental priority within our catechetical vision of evangelization, my staff and I have been working to realign structures, to make operations more collaborative, to offer more user-friendly services, and to be more responsive to your needs. Although our labor is not complete, I am pleased that we are moving in the right direction, and you are already seeing the fruits of our efforts in significant ways.
We integrated our interrelated ministries (adult, young adult, youth, children, and catechist formation) into a single-department. We are discerning ways to broaden our lay ministry formation programming (especially in Spanish), to grow our campus ministry outreach, and to improve the effectiveness of catechist certification. Regarding the latter, we undertook new efforts to make Diocesan Catechist Certification Program (DCCP) more locally-driven and your response has noticeably increased the number of upcoming courses – THANK YOU!
We are joining more than forty-five arch/dioceses in offering online learning to catechists, leaders, and adult faithful through our recently announced partnership with the University of Dayton Virtual Learning Community for Faith Formation (UD-VLCFF). The official rollout of this major initiative will be April 25, 2012 – YOU ARE INVITED!
04.25.2012 – 01:00pm-03:00pm – Saint James Cathedral
04.26.2012 – 10:00am-12:00pm – Saint James Cathedral
Our inaugural Publishers Fair exceeded expectations and established a new annual benefit for parishes and Catholic schools; our plans to reshape the religious education Wet ‘N Wild and youth ministry Disney events as “Catholic Days” will make them more appealing to a larger number of participants.
I look forward to announcing our Soy Catequista event once details are finalized. The reinstituting of our annual Faith Formation Day is scheduled for September 15, 2012 (Bishop Noonan will keynote). Both will reflect our commitment to cross-cultural ministry and will be worthwhile formation opportunities for catechists and catechetical professionals.
The coming fiscal-year promises other unique programming opportunities, too. We hope to commence deanery-based best practice networking meetings that will enable us to identify common challenges, share successful efforts, and improve the quality of lifelong faith formation frameworks throughout our local church. Our pre-existing tradition of offering professional days will continue with a greater emphasis on joint-participation across ministry-genres. With this renewed focus on collaboration, it makes sense to eliminate parish audits as they were previously conducted. Instead, we will develop different methods for gathering more encompassing vital information from you. Next week, we will unveil a new Office of Faith Formation eBulletin which will become our office’s weekly centerpiece communication and your one-stop information-guide. We look forward to your feedback and are committed to making ongoing improvements.
Every year the resurrection-season ushers in feelings of newness, refreshment, and renewal. I pray we will stand-together in our ongoing commitment to animate leadership, foster mature discipleship, and promote vibrant communities of faith. May you experience the saving grace of the resurrection this paschal season and passionately witness it to others. THANK YOU FOR YOUR MINISTRY!
Dennis Johnson, Jr., Senior Director
Office of Faith Formation