CGS in the Parish

Parish Life

” The Bible finds its fullness in the listening of the community that lives in justice and builds itself in the Eu­charistic celebration. Therefore, the child who comes to know the Good Shepherd should be initiated into the greatest action in which we meet Him: the Mass.”    Sofia Cavalletti

The parish is, without doubt, the most important locus in which the Christian community is formed and expressed. This is called to be a fraternal and welcoming family where Christians become aware of being the people of God. In the parish, all human differences melt away and are absorbed into the universality of the Church. The parish is also the usual place in which the faith is born and in which it grows. It constitutes, therefore, a very adequate community space for the realization of the ministry of the word at once as teaching, education, and life experience. Today, the parish is undergoing profound transformation… Social changes are having repercussions on the parish … Despite this, “the parish is still a major point of reference for the Christian people, even for the non-practicing.” It must however, continue ” to be the prime mover and pre-eminent place for catechesis.” GDC 257

The Faith Formation of Children – Are We Asking the Right Questions? by Fr. Chris Aridas

A Place Prepared

In the early Church, the faithful were prepared for initiation into the life of the Church in a place prepared for the spiritual life. They called this place the “atrium.” Just so, when children are prepared for the participation in the church community the place should prepared to help children pray. If our aim is to help children enjoy relationship with God we must ask, “What kind of environment can we create that will respect and cultivate the child’s needs and capacities at their particular level of their development, especially in terms of their spiritual development?” In a traditional classroom, primary relationship thought to be between teacher and child. There is however, a third important, but often silent partner in education: the environment. This environment does not have to remain invisible partner, but rather can be intentionally shaped. This proper environment for religious formation is not a classroom, not a place of religious instruction, but of conversion. Upon entering the environment, one should see child-sized furniture, fine religious art hung at child eye-level, and representations of Scripture that can be seen, touched, and moved around. It should be a place of spiritual retreat for children. A place of work, study, and prayer, where work and study become contemplation of God, and prayer. Many parishes find themselves using rooms for varied purposes so every attempt is to be made to create a proper space for the religious formation of their children with careful consideration, creative ingenuity, and good stewardship.

Getting Started

The Religious Potential of the Child

by Sofia Cavalletti


Listening to God With Children

by Gianna Gobbi, Translated by Rebekah Rojcewicz

Mustard Seed Preaching

by Ann M. Garrido
Resources for Families CGS Method Begin CGS Register An Atrium