Catholic Religious Ed… Whose Job Is It? A Shocking Catechism Reveal

Making sure that our kids get a good Catholic religious education is important. You may decide to accomplish this by taking your kids to CCD each Wednesday night, or by dropping them at Catholic school each morning. Whatever your system is, today I want to share with you just what the Catechism says about educating our children, because I consider it actually shocking.

But first, a question. Have you ever read the Catechism? I mean, just picked it up and read it? It is an amazing book, and it actually offers a lot of guidance that makes a lot of since. For anyone unfamiliar, you easily reference the Catechism. Each paragraph is numbered, and when you reference the Catechism, you say “CCC” (which stands for “Catechism of the Catholic Church”) and then the number of the paragraph.

If your home does not already contain a Catechism, I would highly suggest rectifying that. You can get a Catechism here from Amazon and virtually have it there before you can say “Super-Catholic-evangelistic-expialidocious”

Ok. So what shocking information does the Catechism hold about religious education for our children?

CCC 2221 “The role of parents in education is of such importance that it is almost impossible to provide an adequate substitute. The right and the duty of parents to educate their children are primordial and inalienable.”

Is that just mind blowing to you?! Because it is to me. We as parents are so important to the education of our children that it would be almost impossible to find someone else that can fill that role?! Wow! That responsibility feels so big that it’s almost intimidating and overwhelming. Aaaah. But we have to read on.

CCC 2225 “Through the grace of the sacrament of marriage, parents receive the responsibility and privilege of evangelizing their children. Parents should initiate their children at an early age into the mysteries of the faith of which they are the ‘first heralds’ for their children. A wholesome family life can foster interior dispositions that are genuine preparation for a living faith and remain a support for it throughout one’s life.”

So we don’t take on this daunting responsibility alone, but with the grace of God. Also, it is not only our responsibility to evangelize our children, but it’s also our privilege. A privilege by definition is a special right that is granted to someone specific, and that is something to rejoice about, my friends! You are privileged to do this job through the amazing blessing of co-creating an immortal soul!

So… what are some of the ways as Catholic mothers that we can evangelize our children?

CCC 2223 “Parents have the first responsibility for the education of their children. They bear witness to this responsibility first by creating a home where tenderness, forgiveness, respect, fidelity, and disinterested service are the rule. The home is well suited for education in the virtues.”

So right here, we are talking about setting up our domestic church, which is our home. And the Catechism is placing great importance on this.

CCC 2224 “The home is the natural environment for initiating a human being into solidarity and communal responsibilities.”

So again, the children are learning in the home. And when should we begin?

CCC 2226 “Education in the faith by the parents should begin in the child’s earliest years. This already happens when family members help one another to grow in faith by the witness of a Christian life in keeping with the Gospel.”

The Catechism says to begin in the child’s earliest years. Amazing! So if you have ever wondered if bringing babies to mass, keeping your toddler beside you during the rosary, or doing Catholic ABC’s with your preschooler was in vain… nope!

CCC 2226 “Family catechesis precedes, accompanies, and enriches other forms of instruction in the faith. Parents have the mission of teaching their children to pray and to discover their vocation as children of God. The parish is the Eucharistic community and the heart of the liturgical life of Christian families; it is a privileged place for the catechesis of children and parents.”

So what you are doing at home with the family goes hand in hand with the resources available to you through your parish.

So what does this all mean for parents of Catholic children?

Here is your take away. The religious education program that is offered at your parish should just be one tool in your toolbox. But you must also utilize other tools, and ultimately make sure that the job is getting done, regardless of which tools are needed. It’s great if your parish offers tools for your kids such as CCD class, Vacation Bible School, Youth Group, etc, but it’s important that as parents, those are tools in our toolbox, and not the whole shebang.

Children need more than 1 hour of Religious instruction per week. Even if your child goes to a Catholic school, they still need more than 1 class per day. They need a home that is abundant in virtues and teachings, and parents that are rejoicing in their privilege to evangelize their children!

It is my vocation to help you create your own domestic church where the liturgical year can thrive abundantly in your home! This website offers tool after tool to arm you for the task of evangelizing your children, and I would like to help you organize and apply a plan to incorporate these things into your own home and family.

If you don’t want to miss what’s ahead in this series this month, I suggest you subscribe to Catholic Icing here so you can receive my email updates on my “Passing On The Faith” series for Catholic moms.

You can subscribe by clicking here or by putting your email address here:

There are also going to be printables available throughout this “Passing On The Faith” series to organize your religious education plans for your kids, and they will be available through the subscriber bonus page. You will have full access to all of the free printables here at Catholic Icing if you subscribe by email now!

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Comments

  1. Thank you! This is great info. Our principal always reminds us that the teachers are acting in loco parentis, but the parent is the true formator of the child. And thank goodness, at our Catholic school, religion is woven in to all subjects, instead of just one religion class.

  2. Teresa Frederick says

    Lacy,
    Thank you for the wonderful work you do passing on the faith! I would like permission to share your article “Who’s Job is it?……” at a faith gathering i am holding with faith formation parents who home school their children. I would like to share it via power point, using the pictures that reference the CCC. I look forward to hearing from you.
    God Bless,
    Teresa

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