Children's Faith Formation

 

Online Registration for 2019-2020
Faith Formation Classes

 

Si necesita asistencia con este formulario, por favor contactar a Denice (denice@stthomascamas.org).

 


 It’s not easy keeping Holy Days holy in quarantine but we have some suggestions.

Here are a few animated online videos about the Faith to watch and discuss with your child. Links will access the videos on YouTube and are also on the parish webpage under Children’s FF and the Engaging Your Faith pages:
 

·  ShareFaith Kids: The Empty Tomb (5 min)  

·  My Time with Jesus: Divine Mercy Chaplet for Kids (13 min)

·  My Catholic Family: St. Faustina (23 min)

·  The Storykeepers: Easter (69 min)

·  My Time with Jesus: The Priesthood (25 min)

·  Formed.org: The Brother Francis Collection (various)

 

CLICK HERE to see a one-page summary on Celebrating Sunday as a Domestic Church
This one is for Easter Sunday:  Apr. 19, 2020 (more info in the bulletin this week)

Here are some resources about the Triduum in case you might still wish to explore this topic:

     - Formed.org has a new :30 video Triduum: A Spritual Pilgrimage. This is a contemplative 
       documentary, beautifully shot on-location in the Holy Land so viewers can better understand
       the most important days in human history.

     - Benziger's Triduum Reflections offers discussion points for you and your children.

     - Formed.org is showing the animated Stations of the Cross with Brother Francis
 


Faith Formation Classes Suspended until further notice

As of Thursday, Mar. 28, 2020, following the decision of the Archbishop of Seattle on Mar. 11 to suspend public Masses in order to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus, St. Thomas Aquinas has suspended parish faith formation classes until further notice.

During this period, as mentioned by Fr. Raja in his letter linked to this website's homepage, the parish is eager to continue to support individuals and families in their prayer life, their lenten experience, their sacramental preparation, and their ongoing formation as missionary disciples.  Accordingly, a number of resources will be shared via this website for your consideration.  I'm sure you have your own favorite devotionals and resources (whether books, blogs, radio, TV, or other online content) and you are encouraged to use them and share them with family, friends, and classmates.

While in-person classes are suspended, we will continue to engage with three groups preparing to receive sacraments later this spring.  These groups will continue any remaining lessons via self-study with parents of books and related videos as directed by their catechists. 

As of May 5, 2020, all public parish events are suspended or cancelled through at least May 31, 2020. At St. Thomas Aquinas Parish, this impacts the following sacramental preparation efforts:

  • RCIA:  we have three children preparing for Baptism, Confirmation, and First Eucharist but these Sacraments of Initiation will not be celebrated at the Easter Vigil this year (previously scheduled for Apr. 11). These will be deferred to a later date and a new date cannot be determined at this time. The Archbishop will designate a date for the Sacraments of Initiation in the Archdiocese of Seattle as soon as it is possible to do so. In this way, we can celebrate these important rites together. 
     
  • Confirmation:  we have 35 youth preparing for Confirmation. The original date of Apr. 28 at St. Thomas needed to be rescheduled because the suspension on public Masses was extended, initially through May 4, and then through May 31. Accordingly, the Confirmation Mass at St. Thomas Aquinas Church has been rescheduled to 6pm on Monday, Sep. 21, 2020. 
     
  • First Eucharist:  we have 21 children preparing for their First Holy Communion but the original date of May 2 at St. Thomas now needs to be rescheduled because the suspension on public Masses has been extended through May 31. On Apr. 6, Gov. Inslee announced that all public schools will remain closed through the end of the school year (typically mid-June). As a result, it is now unlikely that public Masses will be authorized to resume before that time. A new date for our rescheduled FHC Mass (as well as the retreat and rehearsal) will be set soon after we receive authorization to resume public Masses. 

Recommended online resources

Visit our Engaging Your Faith Page


Calendar for 2019-2020                    Suspended as of Mar. 12, 2020
- All dates are Sundays unless another day is indicated
- Classes meet between the Sunday Masses (9:45am - 10:45am)
- Monthly Parent Faith Formation ("Parent FF") sessions meet in the parish hall at the same time


Children’s Faith Formation Opportunities
 

Where: Elementary Faith Formation takes place in the Aquinas Center classrooms across the south parking lot from the Church. Please walk your child all the way to and from the classroom (1) so that they can safely navigate the busy parking lot and (2) so that you can be sure the class is meeting that day.

When: Classes meet between the Sunday morning Masses, from 9:45am to 10:45am. We hope you find this convenient for your family to attend Mass either immediately before or after class. Of course, class is no substitute for Mass. Sacramental Preparation for First Reconciliation and First Holy Communion includes additional mid-week evening sessions per sacrament in addition to the grade-specific Sunday morning classes as detailed below. 

What: Faith formation at St. Thomas Aquinas parish offers opportunities for children to complement what they are learning about the Catholic Faith from their parents who are the primary educators of their children. The lessons offered through the parish Sunday School supplement the family's ongoing efforts to introduce the children to the Good News of what God has done for them in Jesus Christ and how they are called to be formed as his disciples, eventually to be sent as missionaries to share this message with others.

These are some of the core habits for disciples of all ages to develop. They serve as the focus of our efforts at coaching our young parishioners to grow as disciples of Jesus. Notice how the first four are habits primarily developed at home, in the Domestic Church. The final habit is what we can focus on during our Sunday morning faith formation sessions in an effort to help develop some vocabulary and concepts to better understand and articulate the relationship with Jesus at the root of the first four habits:

  • Prayer:  develop the habit of daily personal and family conversation with God.
  • Mass:  develop the habit of actively participating in weekly Sunday Mass.
  • Bible:  develop the habit of reading (or listening to) Bible stories.
  • Love:  develop the habit of being generous in your love for God and neighbor.
  • Study:  develop the habit of learning what God has done for us in Jesus and how we are called to follow him.

Since all parish efforts at children's faith formation support the ongoing formation within each family as a whole, it is necessary that parents (or legal guardians) participate in faith formation as well. Special Parent faith formation (or "Parent FF" or "PFF") sessions will be offered each month as indicated on the below calendar. Parent FF sessions will be held in the parish hall at the same time as the children's classes. At least one parent from each family needs to attend each of the monthly Parent FF sessions. Additional adult faith formation sessions will be offered on most of the other Sunday mornings and all parents are encouraged to participate. 

Children in Pre-K4 through 8th grade can be a part of the traditional classroom model offered on Sunday mornings, 9:45am - 10:45am. They will learn about the Faith from their team of volunteers catechists by exploring the Alive in Christ series, published by Our Sunday Visitor.
 

  • Sacramental Preparation prepares children and teens to deepen their relationship with Jesus and to experience his love, mercy, and presence through the Sacraments.

     - Baptism: For infant baptism preparation (up through 6 years old), contact the parish office. For youths 7 - 17 years, contact Ted Meany (ted@stthomascamas.org) to begin the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) adapted for children. Meeting times dependent upon the number of participants.

     - First Reconciliation: There will be several Thursday evening sessions in addition to grade-specific Sunday classes. We will meet on four Thursday evenings (6:30pm - 7:45pm) beginning early-October; class dates are Oct. 10, 24, Nov. 7, & 21. An initial parent orientation interview will be held with each family to review all aspects of the program and a brief parent meeting will be held on Sunday, Sep 15, at 10:15am in the parish hall to distribute books. Eligibility will be confirmed after the interview. The norm is for candidates to be at least 7 years old (typically 2nd Grade) and have completed one year of prior parish faith formation. We will use the Blessed curriculum by Dynamic Catholic.

     - First Holy Communion: There will be four Thursday evening sessions in addition to grade-specific Sunday classes and a Saturday retreat. We will meet on four Thursday evenings (6:30pm - 7:45pm) beginning in February; class dates are Feb. 6, 20, Mar. 5, & 26. Students and parents will also participate in a special Instructional Mass on Jan. 23 at 6:00pm and a First Holy Communion Retreat on Saturday, April 18, from 8:30am to 12:30pm. First Holy Communion Mass will be celebrated during the weekend of May 2-3; date of the rehearsal and group photo will be Thursday, Apr. 30, at 6:30pm. An initial parent orientation interview will be held with each family to review all aspects of the program and a brief parent meeting will be held on Sunday, Sep 15, at 10:15am in the parish hall to distribute books. Eligibility will be confirmed after the interview. The norm is for candidates to be at least 7 years old (typically 2nd Grade) and have completed one year of prior parish faith formation. We will use the Blessed curriculum by Dynamic Catholic.

     - Confirmation: Sundays, 9:45 - 10:45am. We will use the Decision Point curriculum by Dynamic Catholic. A weekend retreat will be held Nov. 8-10, 2019. Anticipate Confirmation Mass in late-April or early May 2019. An initial parent orientation interview will be held with each family to review all aspects of the program. Eligibility will be confirmed after the interview.  For 2019-2020, candidates are to be at least in the 9th Grade and have completed one year of prior parish faith formation.
 

 

       

After you have registered for faith formation classes via the link near the top of the main panel on this page, click on the above green button for the option to pay online.  You may also contact the parish office for other options:  office@stthomascamas.org.