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Catechesis of the Good Shepherd

The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd (CGS) is a way of presenting Sacred Scripture and Liturgy to children in a prepared environment where the children are invited to work with materials and respond to Jesus Christ's message in their own way. Our prepared environment called the atrium is where the children and catechists work together to further their understanding of God's message. There are three atrium: Level I prepared for children ages 3-6, Level II prepared for ages 6-9 and Level III prepared for children ages 9-12. Our hope is that through the child's work, whether it is music, art, reading of the scripture, prayer, care of the atrium or just resting, the child comes closer to the true teacher in Jesus Christ, our Good Shepherd. The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd is intended to be a time to slow down and to take time to explore the riches of our faith which lead us closer to God. In this way, the CGS is like a weekly retreat. The catechists at Saint William are prepared in many facets: 1. The doctrinal content of each presentation 2. The spirituality of the child and their need for relationship with God 3. How we as adults can guide them in their own discovery so that they may recognize that God calls each of them in a personal relationship and journey that they should seek to grow throughout their lives. Catechists work with small groups (3-5 children) and present the Scripture or Liturgical lesson along with its material, ask questions to help the children begin their exploration and do their best to maintain an environment that is peaceful and meets the needs of the children as they seek God.

The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd in the Austin Diocese is not considered comprehensive Religious Education & Formation (RE) and on its own does not meet the requirements for sacrament preparation within the Austin Diocese. A comprehensive RE program is a K-12th grade program that the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has reviewed and approved their textbooks. For sacrament preparation, the diocese recommends that children from the age of 6 should be taking part in a comprehensive RE program. The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd can be a way to enrich the older child's RE (ages 6-12). Saint William does have a parish religious education program that is from Kinder thru 12th grade. For more information on Saint William parish RE please see this website to have the most current registration information as well as information about receiving the Sacraments.

The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd at Saint William is a ministry that is supported by a completely volunteer staff. Therefore, each year in the atrium begins with a call for volunteers to serve as catechists, atrium assistants, atrium/emergency coordinators, hall monitors, setup and packup staff.

All volunteers who will have a position where they will be around the children must be EIM certified. If you have not become EIM certified then please begin the process today. Here is the diocesan website for the application and more information.

Contact Information

 

News and Important Events

Parent Information for 2017-2018 - Friday June 16 7PM
 
The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd at St. William has been serving 3-6 year old children for the past 11 years and older children more recently. If you have never been a part of our atrium here at St. William and would like to learn more about this ministry please come to this meeting.
 
Que si quieres informacion en espanol, puedes escribir a cgs@saintwilliams.org
 
Nursery is available with reservation. To reserve nursery Please email nursery@saintwilliams.org or call (512) 600-8202.  Please provide the following information when registering:
  • Event Name, Date and Time: CGS June 16th 6:45pm-8:00pm
  • Parent Name, Email and Phone Number
  • Childs Name, Age, Date of Birth
  • Any Allergies, Special Needs or Instructions for Nursery Staff
  • Anyone authorized to pick up child: Name, Email, Phone

Parents will receive a confirmation email or phone call once registration is accepted.

NOTE: If you need to cancel your registration, please contact the nursery at least one hour prior to the event.

Parent and Volunteer email Information for 2017-2018

If you are interested in receiving email updates about registering and/or volunteering in an atrium at Saint William this Fall, please signup below.
Por favor, registrarse aquí si le gustaría tener alertas de planificación y registro de las Catequesis del Buen Pastor en San Guillermo para el 2016-2017 año.
 
Catechist Formation
 
Level I Catechist Formation -  Formacion de Catequista Nivel I
 
If you are interested in forming as a catechist in English or Spanish please signup at the link below. This link will help us to know how great the need is for this formation.
Desde el pasado año hemos puesto en contacto con otras personas que quieren entrar en la formación como catequista en el CGS. También hemos tenido interés de tener un curso de español. Si está interesado en la formación como catequista en Inglés o Español por favor registrarse en el siguiente enlace.
 

Volunteer Staff Descriptions

  • Catechists arrive at least 15 minutes early to prepare the atrium to be a place of encounter with the True Teacher. They also prepare themselves to proclaim the Scriptures to the children and to ask questions that invite the children to ponder what they just heard. Catechists have received formation through CGS catechist formation course. A CGS Catechist Formation Course has begun at Saint William. If you are interested in forming as a catechist please contact us immediately at cgs@saintwilliams.org.
  • Assistants arrive 10-15 minutes early to help prepare the atrium and be there to assist the children with the practical life work. After the atrium session, the assistant and catechists meet for a few minutes to take notes on the session to help them prepare for the next session. Assistant training will be provided at Saint William.
  • Nursery Assistants arrive 15 minutes early to care for children of volunteers who are not yet old enough to attend the atrium. Nursery assistants will have the Saint William nursery to use which is supplied with its own bathroom and toys and there are always be at least two nursery assistants.
  • Emergency Coordinators will be on hand to help in case of an emergency and help ensure that we meet our EIM requirements by being properly staffed and following EIM procedures. All training for this position is provided.
  • Hall Monitors make sure that the multi-stall bathrooms are reserved for only the children to use. They also make sure that the children get to and from their atrium safely when they leave the atrium for bathroom or water breaks.
  • Setup Assistants move the furniture into the LII and LIII atrium and arrange the work prior to the atrium start time. It takes about 1-2 hours to set everything up but as long as its done by 15min till the start of the atrium, you can setup according to your own scheduling.
  • Materials Coordinators The materials coordinator coordinates the maintenance of all the materials the children use. This is a critical job but it is not as overwhelming as it may seem. The catechists and other parents are there to help with the actual maintenance. Most of it is making sure that pencils are sharpened which the children help with and paper is cut and replenished. Sometimes things have to be replaced so this may also mean a bit of shopping which will be reimbursed.
  • Garden Coordinators We have a very very small garden just outside the Administrative Offices which is a gift from and to our parish and it is meant to be a place of reflection on the gifts of God to his children and a place of response to His love and grace which He bestows upon us. The Garden Coordinator organizes the maintenance required and makes and purchases needed for the garden. Purchases will be reimbursed.
  • Adult Formation Coordinators Our Good Shepherd calls all of us to Him and the experience of being a part of the CGS is just as much for us as adults as it is for the children. The Adult Formation coordinator will help with the Catechist Formation Course, as well as other opportunities for adults to come to the atrium to receive, reflect and respond to The Proclamation.
  • First Holy Communion Retreat Coordinators Each year we hope to provide for the First Holy Communicants a set of reflections and a retreat for them as they prepare for the Sacraments of First Reconcilliation and First Holy Communion. The Retreat Coordinator will help make arrangements for volunteers, food, and materials as well as help with communication with parents.