February 5, 2014


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Learning about L.I.F.E.

Parishes are required to implement the Learning about L.I.F.E. program in the family-format on an annual basis in order to be in compliance with the mandates established by the USCCB Charter for the Protection of Young People and Vulnerable Adults. This is not a new initiative and is part of our commitment to provide the safest environment for ministry possible. This important initiative is primarily managed under the Human Resources department because they oversee the annual audit and other aspects of our overall safe environment program. However, the Secretariat for Evangelization and Family Life team will assist you with whatever formation support you need. Recently, many of you attended the training hosted by my staff and I. Our goal was to clarify the program implementation and management protocols. Next week we will begin following-up to personally ensure that you have plans in place and the help you need to offer this program in your parish prior to the end of the current fiscal year. Attached is the Powerpoint Presentation we used at the recent training event. Please contact me, djohnsonjr@orlandodiocese.org or 407.246.4913 if you have any questions or concerns. For many parishes, the results of this program have been overwhelmingly positive as several attested to during the training. Parents and participants find the content helpful and the pedagogy enables better communication between parents and their children on very sensitive subject matter. Click HERE for the Powerpoint.

Thank You Retreat Attendees

Kudos to those who were able to attend this year’s retreat for Parish Ministry Professionals. Although it rained, the time together was over the rainbow (sorry!). Making time for retreat is essential and spending it with colleagues builds community. Special thanks to Father Ben Berinti, CSSP for being our retreat master. We will never look at the “Oz” the same way again. Many commented that it would help to get the retreat off Wednesday because it is such a busy night in parishes (what night isn’t?). We will explore our options for next year keeping in mind that our goal is to provide a chance for parish ministry professionals to “get away (at least as far as the beach)” without pricing the opportunity out of reach. I was encouraged this year by those pastors who “gifted” this retreat to staff members and also by the broader representation of ministry genres (parish catechetical leaders, parish youth and young adult ministry leaders, business managers, catechumenate directors, etcetera – and, of course spouses) who were present.

A Week Behind, A Week Ahead – Small Christian Communities and Buena Nueva FM

Last weekend was the annual gathering of the Space Coast Alliance for Small Christian Communities in Melbourne. It was a great event and the perfect motivator for enhancing SCC’s among our parishes. There are many resources available for SCC use and for lots of other adult faith formation opportunities, too. Valeta Orlando is ready to assist you in this arena – give her a call and put her to the test! Looking ahead, the Space Coast Alliance has asked for some training opportunities in the area of small-group facilitation techniques. Valeta will be responding to this need and will be happy to expand the purview beyond the Southern Deanery. This weekend marks the gathering of our diocesan radio subcarrier community. Buena Nueva FM involves numerous radio programs and personalities; it has tremendous potential beyond its shortwave broadcast as programming can be web-streamed or podcast. It can be a great service to parishes if one thinks creatively about expanding formation opportunities (and formats) with streaming/podcast enhancements. Could Buena Nueva FM help your parish create customized broadcast programming for your parish? YES!!! Could Buena Nueva FM be a tool for broadening parish outreach and presence? YES!!! Could Buena Nueva involve more people in your parish – IN YOUR PARISH? YES!!! Should you contact Marjorie Durante to forge new opportunities for your ministries (especially youth and young adults who are already living a predominately web-based existence)? YES!!! Here’s her email: mdurante@orlandodiocese.org.

Anniversary Mass in Celebration of Marriage (especially Silver, Golden, and Post-Golden)

Saturday, February 15, 2014 marks the annual celebration of the Mass for Marriage Anniversaries (presided by Bishop Noonan at the Cathedral of Saint James). There are many challenges facing marriage and family today and this event offers a great opportunity to highlight those who have answered the vocational call of marriage with reverence and commitment for many years. Please encourage couples to attend from your parish. The event is free but reservation is required. Space may be limited so register early. Click here to register or contact Gigi Santiago for more information: gsantiago@orlandodiocese.org



The Florida Catholic is looking for a Catechumen to profile.

The Florida Catholic newspaper is developing a story about Lent and conversions. They would like to profile a Catechumen who will be initiated at the Easter Vigil this year. If you have someone in your process with a compelling story and who would be willing to share it, contact Linda Caldwell:lcaldwell@orlandodiocese.org (407) 246-4924.

Webinar: Best Practices in Parish Leadership

The Loyola Institute for Ministry is offering an online webinar on Best Practices in Parish Leadership Tuesday, February 11 at 7:00pm. The speaker is Michael Brough, Director of Strategic Engagement, National Leadership Roundtable on Church Management.

Go to www.lim.loyno.edu/webinars for instructions for signing in. Webinars are free and open to the public, but attendance is limited to 100 participants and available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Reminder: LIMEX Information Night February 20

Come hear about Loyola’s new certificate program in theology and ministry conducted entirely in Spanish. The two year program consists of six courses of ten classes each (held at an Orlando-area location). Come to St. John Vianney Parish in Orlando at 7:00pm on Thursday, February 20. Tell your amigos.


Learning About L.I.F.E. Documentation

Recent enquiries by parish catechetical leaders indicates a little clarification is in order. The Safe and Sacred Site, on the Mandate page says:

  • Every parish and mission shall keep onsite records of the following:
    • A list of the dates and times that L.I.F.E. sessions were offered for each grade-level K-12
    • Attendance lists for each L.I.F.E. session offered
    • Signed Parental Opt-Out Forms for each child registered in parish-based catechetical programming for grades K-12
    • A list of those registered in parish-based catechetical programming for grade-levels K-12 who did not participate in the L.I.F.E. sessions nor have parental opt-out, along with an explanation of the extenuating circumstances for their non-participation, should be kept.

In simple terms, we are documenting three counts of minors:

  1. Those that attend the L.I.F.E. Family version training with at least one parent
  2. Those minors whose attendance has been opted-out by a parent
  3. Those minors who did neither of the above.

The total count of minors in a, b, and c should equal the total registration count in the parish catechetical program(s). Enrollment in the Home verson of the L.I.F.E. training does not place the minor in the attended category. Referral to or participation in the home version does not require documentation. Nor is there a diocesan form or letter for referral to the home version of the L.I.F.E. training. There is a diocesan form for the Opt-out. It is found as the last link on the Mandate page of the Safe and Sacred site.

Safeguard your annotated records. The reporting window for the 2013-2014 year will not open on the Safe and Sacred site until March 2014.






Anniversary Mass

Each year near or on World Marriage Day, the Diocese of Orlando celebrates a Mass to commemorate wedding anniversaries for married couples.

WHO: Open to all married couples
WHERE: St. James Cathedral, Orlando FL
WHEN: February 15, 2014
TIME: 10:00a.m.

For more information please CLICK HERE




Loyola Information Night (Bilingual)

WHAT: An opportunity for graduate level study for those in ministry. A new two year certificate program in Spanish is beginning along with the traditional 4 year degree program. Come hear all about it!
WHEN: Thursday, February 20, 2014 at 7:00pm
WHERE: St. John Vianney Parish:6200 S. Orange Blossom Trail, Orlando 32809
FOR: Those in ministry with a high school diploma or equivalent able to study at a post-secondary level. Programs available in English and Spanish.

For a flyer on the Spanish certificate program CLICK HERE.


02•21 – 23•2014

Experiencia Cristo Retreat For High School Age

Experiencia Cristo uses lectures, meditations, group work and prayer as methods of learning to grow in the Catholic faith. Young people are the church of the present and future. The opportunity to know Christ and be an active member in the community begins today! This retreat gives youth the opportunity to meet new friends while having fun with dynamics, games, music and activities. Sponsored by: Secretariat for Evangelization and Family Life and St. Isaac Jogues Church


WHEN: February 21-23, 2014, starts Friday at 6:30pm.
WHERE: Central Florida Bible Camp, 23813 County Road 44A, Eustis, FL 32736.
COST: $75.00 per person (includes accommodation, meals and materials)
REGISTER: Online at: https://www.smartsheet.com/b/publish?EQBCT=aa06198857d34665a1752d0866070ed6

If you are interested in registering or want more information, please contact your parish or the Secretariat for Evangelization and Family Life: sefl@orlandodiocese.org or 407.246.4910.


02•21- 22•2014

Revelation in a Day Seminar

WHEN: Friday, February 21, 2014 and Saturday, February 22, 2014
WHERE: Divine Mercy Parish, Merrit Island, FL
SPEAKER: Jeff Cavins
For details and to view a video introduction go to www.divinemercychurch.org/revelation.cfm
For a registration flyer click here.



Focus-11-for-Youth Ministry-2

WHAT: A Focus 11 Event: Come, Follow Me (click HERE for flyer)
WHO: 11th and 12th grade students and their parents
WHERE: Holy Family Catholic Church (Orlando)
WHEN:   Sunday, February 23, 2014 1:30-7:30pm


WHAT: Called to Holiness: An evening with Young Adults who seek to respond to the call to holiness (Click HERE for flyer)
WHO: Young Adults 18-39
WHERE: Holy Family Catholic Church (Orlando)
WHEN: Sunday, February 23, 2014 6:00pm-9:30pm




Cycle 2 – University of Dayton (UD-VLCFF) Online Courses

Registration opens Jan 15, 2014 and closes Feb 26, 2014 for courses in Cycle 2, which runs Mar 02 – Apr 05, 2014. The online program supports adult faith, catechist and lay ecclesial leadership formation – anytime and anywhere via the internet.

WHO: All in ministry
WHEN: Jan 15, 2014 – Feb 26, 2014 enrollment period
COST: $40 per 5-week course
REGISTER: go to vlc.udayton.edu to become a new student and register for a course.
CONTACT: Mike Becker at (407)246-4912 or mbecker@orlandodiocese.org for questions.



Day of Reflection for the Elect

WHEN: Saturday, April 12, 2014
WHERE: Most Precious Blood Catholic Church, Oviedo FL
LEADER: Rev. Ben Berinti, CPpS
FOR: Adults over the age of 18 who celebrated the Rite of Election and will be baptized at the Easter Vigil




Cycle 3 – University of Dayton (UD-VLCFF) Online Courses

Registration opens Mar 03, 2014 and closes Apr 23, 2014 for courses in Cycle 3, which runs Apr 27 – May 17, 2014. The online program supports adult faith, catechist and lay ecclesial leadership formation – anytime and anywhere via the internet.

WHO: All in ministry
WHEN: Mar 02, 2014 – Apr 23, 2014 enrollment period
COST: $40 per 5-week course
REGISTER: go to vlc.udayton.edu to become a new student and register for a course.
CONTACT: Mike Becker at (407)246-4912 or mbecker@orlandodiocese.org for questions.



2014 Diocesan Youth for Life Rally – SAVE THE DATE

WHEN: All Saints Day – Saturday, November 1, 2014
WHERE: Bishop Moore Catholic High School, 3901 Edgewater Dr., Orlando, FL
TIME: Registration 4pm – 5pm; Event: 5:00pm – 8:30pm; Closing Liturgy – 8:45pm
PRESENTER: Nationally recognized Speaker and Musician: Steve Angrizano

For more information, contact the Office of Advocacy and Justice, Diocese of Orlando at 407-246-4820 or email: advocacyjustice@orlandodiocese.org.





Catechist Formation



Scheduled Classes through the end of the academic year shown below.

Who: Catechists, Catholic School Teachers, and catechetical leaders
Cost: $15 / person for all classes.
Registration: ten days before the class meets. All registrations go through your parish or school.
Class Times: classes are 9:00am – 4:30pm except where posted.
Contact:      mbecker@orlandodiocese.org or (407) 246-4912


02•06 & 07•2014

Celebrating the Eucharist: The Source and Summit of Our Faith   Catechist Class 205-E12

Father Lopez Catholic High School, Daytona Beach
Class Times: 2:30pm-6:00pm
Enrolled: 15


Celebramos nuestra fe: Catequesis y Liturgia   Catechist Class 106-S09-SP
Our Lady of Lourdes, Melbourne
Enrolled: Class cancelled due to low enrollment


Leading People to Sacraments: Sacramental Catechesis   Catechist Class 104-S07

Holy Spirit, Mims
Enrolled: 13

Ecclesiology: The Mystery of the Church   Catechist Class 206-C18
Annunciation, Altamonte Springs
Enrolled: 24

Catechesis and Human Sexuality   Catechist Class 211-W10
Resurrection, Lakeland
Enrolled: 22


Creemos: La vida y la fe Católica   Catechist Class 102-S03-SP
Our Lady of Lourdes, Melbourne
Enrolled: 3

Introduction to Scripture   Catechist Class 103-C25
St. James Cathedral, Orlando
Enrolled: 12

Leading People to Sacraments: Sacramental Catechesis   Catechist Class 104-N04
St. Mary of the Lakes, Eustis
Enrolled: 5

We Live Our Faith: Catholic Moral Teaching   Catechist Class 105-E07
St. Peter, Deland
Enrolled: 29

We Celebrate Our Faith: Catechesis and Liturgy   Catechist Class 106-N06
Immaculate Heart of Mary, Candler
Enrolled: 11

A Journey Through the New Testament   Catechist Class 202-W07
Holy Spirit, Lake Wales
Enrolled: 11

Catechesis and Social Ministry   Catechist Class 208-C19
St. Francis of Assisi, Apopka
Enrolled: 16

A Journey Through the Old Testament   Catechist Class 201-S10
St. Joseph, Palm Bay
Enrolled: 19

“Who Do You Say I Am?”: The Person of Jesus Christ   Catechist Class 203-E11
Our Lady of Hope, Port Orange
Enrolled: 10

A Journey Through the Old Testament   Catechist Class 201-E08
St. Peter, Deland
Enrolled: 12


Religiones del mundo   Catechist Class 215-S14-SP
Our Lady of Lourdes, Melbourne
Enrolled: 1


Celebrating the Eucharist: The Source and Summit of Our Faith   Catechist Class 205-C17
All Souls, Sanford
Enrolled: 16


A Journey Through the New Testament   Catechist Class 202-E09
St. Peter, Deland
Enrolled: 9


* * * * * * * *Academic Year ends * * * * * * * *

Schedule for June classes TBD. Planning guidance for parishes/schools will be issued in February.