Family Faith Formation

Welcome to St. Aloysius’ Family Faith Formation (Fx3) Page!

We cannot wait to share the Good News with your family!

Who should enroll?

All families with children entering grades K - 8 can participate and those families with children who do not attend Catholic school are especially expected to enroll. Those preparing to receive sacraments must be enrolled in a faith formation program or be attending a Catholic school.

Did you say families?  Don’t you mean children or students?

Thanks for being so observant. Indeed, we did say families. A family faith formation program is designed to support and enrich family life. Families—meaning at least one parent or guardian (or designated adult) and all registered religious education participants from that household—will encounter Jesus through our Catholic Faith during the faith formation monthly sessions.

The Family Faith Formation program gives parents the support they need as their children’s primary educators in Faith. The program is presented in a four-year cycle that aligns with the pillars of the Catechism instilled by Peter in Acts 2:42: Profession of Faith, Liturgy & Sacraments, Life in Christ Jesus, and Christian Prayer. Each year in the program builds stronger faith families and encouragement for children to grow in their own faith and understanding. The more encounters with faith experiences and faith models, the greater likelihood of living and participating in the life of the Church.

Here’s why we want to include parents:

  • “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. 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.” (Catechism of the Catholic Church #2226)
  • "The right and duty of parents to give education is essential... irreplaceable and incapable of being entirely delegated to others." [Familiaris Consortio, 36]
  • "Since parents have given children their life, they are bound by the most serious obligation to educate their offspring and therefore must be recognized as the primary and principal educators.” [Gravissimum Educationis, 3]
  • "The family's catechetical activity has a special character, which is in a sense irreplaceable."  [Catechesi Tradendae, 68]

When reading these assertions from the Catechism of the Catholic Church and papal exhortations, the roles of the family and parish in their partnership in the faith formation of children are evident. Parents are the primary educators while the parish community holds a supporting role in inviting, educating, mentoring, and walking with children on their journey into full membership of the Church. While PSR, CCD, RE… have always been about supporting parents, Family Faith Formation is a response to the needs of families in our time in our culture and in our world, today!

What are the fees? 

A registration fee for the first child is $60 with a fee of $30 per additional child up to the third child. There is no additional fee for families with 4+ children.  Additional sacramental preparation fees include partial payment for the multi-day Confirmation retreat to Damascus Mission Camp ($75-100) and the Dragon Slayer First Holy Communion Retreat ($30).

Registration Fee, July 1-Sept. 15: $60 for first child and $30 for each additional second or third child. No additional fee for families with four or more children.

Ex1: (Child 1) $60 + (Child 2) $30 = $90 (earlybird = $80)

Ex2: (Child 1) $60 + (Child 2) $30 + (Child 3) $30 + (Child 4) $0 = $120 (earlybird = $105)

  • Early Registration discount: $5 per child May-June 30.
  • Late Registration penalty: $5 per childif registering after  15.
  • All parish families are encouraged to register. Income based scholarships are available.
At what age should we begin?

Hopefully, you’ve been forming healthy faith habits over the past four or five years—praying with your child(ren), attending Mass, and modeling a Christian lifestyle—but, even if these aren’t all habits yet, this is a great time to start. Register by completing the registration form linked here or on our website homepage and submitting payment electronically through WeShare, mailing or bringing a check to the parish office, or sending payment in the Sunday collection basket in a marked envelope or by calling the Director of Religious Education for assistance.

How long are students in the parish faith formation program?

The Sophia Press A Family of Faith formation program is designed with students from K-8 in mind and the program begins in early September and finishes in late April/early May.

As Catholics, we are never done learning and growing in our relationship with our Heavenly Father who loved us into being. When our youth prepare for Confirmation, we ask them to continue their Catholic Faith journey as they receive the sacramental grace that fortifies them and fully initiates them into the Faith, but this is far from the end or a graduation of their faith formation. This is truly the first step in governing their personal faith journey and much guidance and accompaniment is needed in supporting their spiritual development and overall well-being.

In addition to the Family Faith Formation program for grades K-8, we have a middle grades group SAY FIAT (St. Aloysius Youth Faith In Action Team, grades 5-8) and a high school group SAY Teen (St. Aloysius YouthTeens, grades 9 -12) where faith and social activities are offered regularly on Sunday evenings twice a month on the first and third Sundays from 6:30-8:30 p.m. in Clare Hall. We are also beginning to offer family-based preschool programming opportunities, such as the Play ‘n Pray events and will be bringing back the Children’s Liturgy during the 10:15 a.m. Sunday Masses.

When do the formation sessions meet?

Families—at least one parent or guardian (or designated adult) and all registered religious education participants from that household—will meet twice a month. A calendar will be provided and posted on a Trello board.

  • There will be an opening Mass and orientation to meet catechists and pick up materials.
  • The first session is on a Sunday morning from 9:05 a.m.-10:05 a.m., conveniently situated between the 8 a.m. and 10:15 a.m. Masses. The focus of this first session is to present content and discussion opportunities for parents/guardians while the children pray and learn together with a catechist and their school-age peers. Presenters for the Adult Gathering will vary to enhance the content being shared.
  • The second session is a Community Gathering and these will typically also be on a Sunday morning from 9:05 a.m.-10:05 a.m., with some exceptions, given the particular experience being sought and liturgical season. These Community Gatherings will also often include whole families meeting with other families in small groups rather than children meeting separately. These are designed to build relationships.
What are some of the other program details?
  • Each family will be provided a Parent’s Guide and a Student Activity Book. These are not grade level, individual workbooks rather are more of a content guide and a collection of activities for families to choose from for each lesson.
  • Instead of monthly assessments, families will create and maintain a culminating board or booklet of their activities that will be shared in April/May. Basic materials will be provided.
  • Communications will be maintained through Flocknote emails (bottom left corner of our website), a Trello resource board, and our parish Facebook site- St. Aloysius Catholic Church and the Fx3 Community- St. Al’s RE Family Faith Formation.
  • Sacrament Prep: There will be additional meeting requirements for sacrament preparation which will be shared with those registered. These will include meetings for sacramental instruction, prayer, faith experiences, activities, and logistics regarding the sacrament(s) that will be received.
  • Quinceaňeras: We are beginning a “Gathering of Women” preparation program for those interested in a quinceaňera liturgical celebration. The preparation includes an initial and final session with the Director of Religious Education with two interior sessions that explore the cultural, historical, and symbolic aspects of the celebration and then a final ceremony planning session prior to rehersal. For more information, click on the link herein or email:
What is the curriculum?

For Fx3: We are using A Family of Faith by the Sophia Institute for the family faith formation sessions. All the content required for the two monthly lessons is contained in the Parent Guides with supplementary content provided on the Trello board.

Protecting Youth and Those That Serve: Those entrusted to work with youth must complete the Protecting God's Children® for Adults training and all youth enrolled in the parish school and religious formation programs are requested to have Teaching Safety - Empowering God's Children™ training. Parents will receive information about the training and when it is scheduled with the calendar review.

For Sacrament preparation: All youth preparing to receive a sacrament must concurrently be enrolled in either a Catholic school or parish faith formation program.

Second graders will be utilizing a series of booklets published by Pflaum Publishers titled: What I See in Mass, God’s Gift of Forgiveness, Praying the Mass, Receive the Lord, and Learning About the Sacraments. Along with a parent, each child preparing for First Reconciliation will attend the Dragon Slayer Retreat presented by Extraordinary Mission and will attend the First Communion Practice within the week prior to the celebratory Masses. There will be a parent meeting for Reconciliation in early Fall and one for First Communion in early February.

Seventh and Eighth graders will prepare for Confirmation over a two-year period. Seventh graders will utilize the Confirmed in the Joy of the Spirit Confirmation journal while the Eighth graders will also use this journal and the Gifted with the Spirit Junior High edition both presented by Pflaum Publishing Group. Both 7th & 8th graders will complete works of spiritual and corporal mercy during this preparation and will be asked to attend two important retreats. The Seventh graders will attend the NET Retreat in the Fall along with the Eighth graders who will also attend an offsite retreat to Damascus Mission Camp in Spring, just prior to receiving the Sacrament of Confirmation. Specifics will be provided at a parent meeting.

Other Sacrament Prep: Good News! It’s never too late to be baptized or to join the Catholic Church! If your child or other family members has not received sacraments and wants to prepare to do so, let’s begin a conversation and then make a plan. Faith Formation outside of these traditional age groups is always ongoing and we’re happy to discuss your needs. Additionally, we are fortunate as a diocese to have been gifted a wonderful treasury of faith resources through the FORMED app. Much like Netflix, Hulu, or other streaming services, FORMED offers a variety of exciting and informative Catholic programming options for the entire family. There are truly some binge-worthy options to enjoy and some of the programs will be used to enhance the learning sessions and sacrament preparation. Please sign-up to take full advantage of this gift.

How is God calling you to share your faith with others?

Please consider volunteering as a catechist, hospitality, childcare, or catechist aide. The more people helping out, the better the experiences, the more faith witnesses to share, the stronger the relationship building with Jesus and each other. There are many ways to get involved, including one-time events, prepping for sessions, childcare, sharing a faith story/personal witness, serving as a mentor family for other families who are just coming back to the Church, etc...

We are called to be missionary disciples and what better way to evangelize than to share your faith life with others? If you can share your time and/or gifts with us, please contact the Director of Religious Formation to begin a discussion or express interest.

Contact the Director of Religious Education and Youth Formation, if you ...
  • Have questions or concerns,
  • Need help registering your family with the parish or Faith Formation program,
  • Have, or know of, older children who should be attending classes but are hesitant to start for fear of being behind,
  • Have a child(ren) who wants to receive the sacraments of Baptism, Holy Eucharist, Reconciliation, or Confirmation and need preparation,
  • Want to plan a Quinceaňera celebration, or
  • Would like to help with the religious formation of our parish children including youth, middle grade students, or adolescents.

Catechists are not experts or theologians. They love God, love their Faith, and want to share the Good News with our youth. They want to help parents, not supplant them. That may well describe you!

For more information, contact:
Denise Brennan, Director of Religious Education
419-352-4195 ext. 110