What is a Catechist?

A catechist is more than just a CCD teacher.  The root of the words "catechesis" and "catechist" means to echo, and so the task of a catechist is to re-echo the teachings of Jesus Christ, which come to us through the official teaching of his Church.  Catechists participate in the divine calling to teach as Jesus did and to witness to the truth of the faith.  In addition to teaching the Diocesan curriculum, the National Directory for Catechesis lists the following as characteristics of a catechist (pg. 229):

  • A love of God--Father, Son, and Holy Spirit--and of Christ's Church, our Holy Father, and God's holy people

  • A coherence and authenticity of life that is characterized by their faithful practice of the faith in a spirit of faith, charity, hope, courage, and joy
  • Personal prayer and dedication to the evangelizing mission of the Church
  • A missionary zeal by which they are fully convinced of the truth of the Catholic faith and enthusiastically proclaim it
  • Active participation in their local parish community, especially by attendance at Sunday Eucharist
  • A devotion to Mary, the first disciple and the model of catechists, and to the Most Holy Eucharist, the source of nourishment for catechists

Formation and Resources for Catechists

All Catechists receive a subscription to "Catechist," a monthly publication for catechists with educational articles, lessons, crafts and activities, and other helpful information.  We hole four Catechist In-Services during the course of the Catechetical Year (August, October, February, and May).  During the course of these In-Services, all catechists will receive on-going formation on the Catholic faith and catechetical practices.  First-time catechists and new catechists will meet with the DRE prior to the start of the Catechetical Year for initial training and resourcing.  Additionally, throughout the year, the DRE serves as a resource to all catechists in whatever capacity is needed.  If you are interested in becoming a Catechist of a Catechist's Aide, please fill out the Catechetical Ministry Application

Below is a list of extremely helpful websites for creating exciting catechetical lessons:

E-Spirituality for Catechists

Forms and Paperwork for Catechists

Required Clearances for all Volunteers

  1. Attend a "Treasured Gifts from God" child protection in-service and fill out the certificate of attendance (contact DRE for a listing of upcoming in-services)
  2. Read the Diocese of Youngstown's Child Protection Policy and sign the Authorization and Verification Form and Acknowledgement Form
  3. Obtain a Webcheck fingerprinting background check through the Ohio BCI (click here for locations)--If you have lived in Ohio for less than 5 years, you will need the federal webcheck and not just the Ohio webcheck)

All signed and completed forms and background checks should be returned to Holy Family Parish (attn: DRE) and will be placed in your secure personnel file.