By nature I am a practical person in most aspects of my life. When it is time for parent meetings to go over the reception of sacraments I use that as an opportunity to teach the parents as well. Why waste a “captive” audience?
Our parent meeting for First Penance and First Communion is the perfect place to update parents on why everyone needs to go to confession , what the Eucharist is, and how to receive the Eucharist at Mass. The meeting lasts about an hour, so that’s quite a list to cover in that amount of time.
I use a power point presentation and have a handout with all the pertinent information in regard to prayers, dates, and what to wear for First Holy Communion. This year I also used the videos created by Busted Halo for Catholic Communication Campaign in 2011. We viewed both the Penance and Eucharist videos. Another option for Penance is I Confess, from That Catholic Show.
The videos were well-received and the combination of audio and visual made the meeting more interesting than listening to me for an hour. It also has the added benefit of letting people know that the Church is keeping up in terms of new ways to get information out.
The other thing I like to do is provide parents with more information about the faith they can pick up and look at on their own time. This year I am distributing Rediscover Catholicism by Matthew Kelly which you can order from The Dynamic Catholic website.
After each meeting I send an email to the parents with links to the power point and videos and PDFs of handout. This way they can refer back to it or if they missed the meeting they have the information.
The more we educate and inform parents the better the chance we have of keeping them in the faith, even when sacrament preparation classes are over. My goal is to help parents see the richness and beauty of our faith and make Mass a priority for their family. Small steps forward, every chance I get is what I do. And pray, because good evangelizers are formed in prayer and filled with the Holy Spirit.
Copyright © 2014, Dean</em></strong>na Bartalini