Family Faith Formation, K-5

Please click HERE to register for R.E. K-5 Family Formation and for Sacraments, Ages 7-17. !

 

Need to just make a payment for this current year’s tuition and fees? Go here.

 

 

At Our Lady of Mercy Parish, we accompany and equip parents to embrace their call to raise their children as life-long disciples of Jesus.  We do this in four life-changing ways.

We come to be transformed by Jesus in community and through the celebration of the Sacraments, where we are inspired to use our God-given gifts to serve one another as His beloved children.

In a warm and welcoming environment, Parents explore and reflect on God’s Story of Love while the children are led in their experience of faith.

Families receive a blessed, Jesus Storybook Bible, that allows everyone in the family to deepen their knowledge and personal experience of God’s saving love.  

With the blessing and the unique gifts of the families gathered, and the guidance of table leaders and classroom catechists, we encounter Jesus in each other, His Word, and our living Tradition.  These encounters empower us to witness our Catholic faith and live the Good News of Jesus, within and beyond, our households of faith.

Seek is our great story of faith. It is the Biblical texts that describe the stories of being created in love (and for love), being captured by sin, rescued by Jesus Christ, and our response to the Holy Spirit as builders of the kingdom of God. 

Both children and parents enroll in SEEK, enjoying their two separate learning experiences, culminating with a family prayer.  The series is comprised of four, on-site sessions- a journey to discover anew the good news of our faith.

What is SEEK FOR PARENTS?

Seek for Parents is a small group experience designed just for parents. Throughout the SEEK journey you are guided through discussions, activities, reflections, plus video witness talks and teachings intended to lead each participant to know and grow in relationship with our God of love. As parents, you are given a shared vocabulary to begin conversations of faith with your children at home.

What is SEEK FOR CHILDREN?

Seek for Children is a VBS style experience designed for children in grades K-5. Through songs, activities, and video teachings, your children will get to know a God who is love and be given a shared vocabulary to begin to discuss and ask questions about their faith, with you, their parents.

SEEK Schedule and Options

SEEK sessions are led in the beginning of the formation year in late September through October. EVERYONE is called to know and find meaning in our Great Story of Faith throughout our lives. We hope every family will enroll in one of the two SEEK on-site options, or alternatively, enroll in Family Alpha. 

Each of the SEEK sign up options include four dates to gather at Our Lady of Mercy in the company of other families “seeking” to know our faith story.

SEEK, Option #1                   SUNDAY, 11:15-12:30              DATES:  9/25, 10/2, 10/16, & 10/23

SEEK, Option #2                  WEDNESDAY, 6:15-7:30        DATES:  9/28, 10/5, 10/19, & 10/26

 

ROOT follows the SEEK series and begins in the month of November. ROOT is a learning experience of our foundational beliefs that we recite in the Creed at every Mass.  

Both children and parents attend each of the ROOT gatherings. Parents and children explore their faith in distinct learning experiences, culminating with a family prayer. The series is comprised of six, on-site sessions, equipping parents to lead a relatable family faith experience at home, allowing the family to discover meaning and grow deep roots in the knowledge and practice of our core beliefs.

What is ROOT FOR PARENTS?

Root for parents is designed to guide parents to know the Trinity and the essential teachings of our faith contained in the Creed. Parents are given a vocabulary of faith and empowered with the knowledge to share the faith with their families. 

What is ROOT FOR CHILDREN?

In grade level groups, children come to know the Trinity and the essential teachings of our faith contained in the Creed through the guidance of trained catechists.

ROOT Schedule and Options

There will be a sign-up option for ROOT that follows the 10:00 A.M. Mass and a Wednesday evening option that begins at 6:15 P.M.  We gather for ROOT once a month for a 75 minute gathering.

ROOT, Option #1                    SUNDAY, 11:15 – 12:30                    11/13, 12/11, 1/8, 2/5, 3/19, 4/23

ROOT, Option #2                  WEDNESDAY, 6:15 – 7:30              11/16, 12/14, 1/11. 2/8, 3/22, 4/19

ROOT On-Site Sessions, Titles and Themes

Meeting Title Theme
SESSION  1 God Meets Us God knows us by name and wants be known by us. We get to know him through the words and actions of revelation.
SESSION  2 Meet the Trinity God is light. God is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
SESSION  3 Meet the Holy Family Jesus grew up in a family just like us. He wants to be close to us everyday.
SESSION  4 Meet Jesus Jesus saves us through the power of the cross. Love equals sacrifice.
SESSION  5 Meet the Holy Spirit God gives us his Spirit to continue to be by our side. His power is given through the Sacraments.
SESSION  6 Meet Our Forever Home We are made to spend eternity with God. God helps us with the race.

 

M E N D is a FIRST RECONCILIATION PREPARATION journey for Families.  It is an experience shared with Parish Families enrolled in Sacramental Preparation with some very special at-home, family faith components.

M E N D is a First Reconciliation family learning experience. Families will encounter Jesus and discover the beauty of Reconciliation as it connects to daily life through innovative faith activities such as forming clay, making field goals, reading Scripture, engaging in meaningful conversation, and much more.

M E N D is designed to equip parents to teach, share faith, and pray with their children through both on-site participation in community with other families as well as taking the lead with a few at-home MEND meetings. This combination of on-site and at-home gatherings provide a life-giving partnership between the parish community and each household of faith.

M E N D Schedule & On-Site Gathering Options

Families enrolled in sacramental preparation participate in a series of 3 onsite sessions that gather on Saturdays or Sundays conveniently following our Saturday 4:00 P.M. Mass or scheduled prior to our Sunday 10:00 A.M. Mass. Light healthy snacks are offered that respect the hour fast before Holy Communion.

MEND, Option 1       

DAY & TIME:  Saturday, 5:15-6:30 (This time follows the 4 P.M. Saturday Mass)       

DATES:  11/5, 12/3, 1/21

MEND, Option 2       

DAY & TIME:  Sunday, 8:30-9:45 (This time leads to the 10 A.M. Sunday Mass)         

DATES:  11/6, 12/4, 1/22         

M E N D  RETREAT            

DATE:  Saturday, February 4, 2023   

TIME:  2:00 – 3:45 P.M.             

(This MEND First Reconciliation Retreat is for both Saturday & Sunday MEND Groups!)

Our Lady of Mercy First Reconciliation Celebrations:

Saturday, February 25, 2023

M E N D Families will Sign up for either the 11:00 A.M. –OR- 12:30 P.M. Rite of Reconciliation 

M E N D Scope and Sequence

Available as a bi-lingual resource. English and Spanish.

 

On-site &  At-Home Meetings

 

 TITLE

 

THEME

 

 ACTIVITY

 

 

 Faith Concepts & Values

 

 

 

On-site Session, 1 & 2

 

Handmade

Learn that we are all created in love for love by God, each handmade and unique. Mold the Creation Dough, or clay, into your own shape. Creation, Dignity of the Person
 

The Fruit

Learn about how God created human beings with free will, ​or the ability to make decisions for themselves. Color the paper apples and use them to talk about free will, and the hope of Jesus and the cross. Original Sin, Making Good Choices
 

At-Home Meeting #3

 

Lost and Found

Learn about Jesus as the Good Shepherd. He will always seek each one of us. Play a game of hide-and-go-seek with the wood sheep. God’s Loving Pursuit of Us
 

On-Site Session, #4

 

Washed Clean

Learn about the cross, the pouring out of grace, and the sacrament of Baptism. Have each family member write their name on the wood cross. Renew your Baptismal promises as a family. Grace, Baptism, New Life

Share catechesis on Baptismal Font

 

At-Home Meeting #5

 

The Goal

Learn how sin is “missing the mark” and the guidelines God gave us in the 10 Commandments and Beatitudes. Play a field goal game with a mini football. Engage the 10 Commandments and Beatitudes. Sin, The Consequence of Choices, Laws of Goodness
 

On-site Session 6

 

Hearts & Stones

Learn about conscience and choices and how to evaluate your day. Participate in an examination of conscience and pray the Act of Contrition. Partake in the Examen prayer by using your Examen bag filled with hearts and stones. Examination of Conscience. Conscience, Examen Tool
 

At-Home Meeting #7

 

Healed

Learn how our decisions affect others. Learn what penance is and the outline of how to make a good confession. Celebrate God’s desire to “find” us. Make a string web together as a family. Penance, Forgiveness, Healing

 

 

 

N O U R I S H  is a FIRST COMMUNION PREPARATION Journey for Families. It is an experience shared with Parish Families enrolled in Sacramental Preparation with some very special at-home, family faith components

N O U R I S H is a First Communion family experience designed to equip parents to teach, share faith, and pray with their children as they participate on-site and lead at-home family meetings through a variety of hands-on and innovative activities. A total of ten themes of family life connected to the prayer of the Mass will be experienced deepening a family’s awareness of God’s real presence of love at home in the celebration of the Eucharist at every Mass.

Families will encounter Jesus and experience the beauty of the Mass as it connects to daily family life by building puzzles, baking, reading Scripture, engaging in meaningful conversation, and much more. Sacramental preparation is enhanced by parent and family participation.

NOURISH Schedule and Options

Families enrolled in sacramental preparation participate in a series of 3 on-site sessions that gather on Saturdays or Sundays with the Saturday gathering starting after the Saturday 4:00 P.M. Mass and the Sunday gathering following the Sunday 10:00 A.M. Mass. Please take note of these important dates, including the NOURISH First Communion Retreat!

Nourish, Option #1:  Saturday, March 18, April 15, April 29, Time: 5:15 – 6:30 P.M. 

Nourish, Option #2: Sunday, March 12, April 16, April 30, Time: 8:30 – 9:45 A.M.              

NOURISH  Retreat 

DATE: MAY 6, 2023

TIME: SATURDAY, 2:00 – 3:45 P.M.              

(Date & Time of Nourish Retreat IS FOR BOTH Nourish Groups!)

Our Lady of Mercy First Communion Mass Celebrations

Saturday, May 20, 2023, at 11:00 A.M.    

Rehearsal for 11:00 A.M. Mass is Friday, May 20, 4:30 P.M., OLM Church

 -OR-

 Sunday, May 21, 2023, at 2:30 P.M.   

Rehearsal for 2:30 P.M. Mass is Friday, May 20, 6:30 P.M., OLM Church

N O U R I S H Scope and Sequence

Available as a bi-lingual resource. English and Spanish.

 

MEET

 

Title

 

Theme

 

Activity

 

Values Taught

On-Site Meetings 1 and 2 Families Gather Learn the importance of gathering as a family in your home and as a community at Church. Your family is unique, special and holy, and set apart for a purpose. Set up your family gathering space. Create a family handshake. Draw a picture of your family. Find something around your home that reminds you of Jesus.  

Community, Uniqueness, Family Bonding

Families Forgive Learn about the importance of your daily actions and your opportunity to seek forgiveness when you make mistakes. Forgiveness analogy using a tube of lotion  

Forgiveness, Mercy, Reconciliation

 

At-Home Faith Mtg. #3

 

Families Listen

Learn how reading, listening, pondering, and re-telling Scripture stories helps you to know and share your faith. Lectio Divina using a set of Story Tokens. Contemplation, Reflection, Find Deeper Meaning
 

 

On-Site Meetings 4 and 5

 

Families Respond

 

Learn how to follow Jesus by making good choices.

 

Play a game of Pick-up Sticks. Fill out a postcard for your priest.

 

Care, Preparation, Participation

 

Families Prepare

Learn the connection between preparing for a meal in your home and preparing the altar to celebrate Jesus’ sacrifice. Set your table in a special way. Share a snack together.  

Good Decision Making, Free Will

 

On-site Meetings 6 and 7

 

 

 

 

 

 

Families Transform

Learn how bread and wine transform into the Body and Blood of Jesus. Bake a loaf of bread together. Love, Sacrifice, Transubstantiation
Families Share Peace Learn how the world God created to beautifully fit together was broken apart by sin. We each are called to help put it back together by being peacemakers. Color and put together a puzzle. Peace, Care, and Creation
 

 

On-site Meetings 8 and 9

 

Families Receive

Learn how receiving Jesus is a gift given to you each time you receive Communion. Decorate a door hanger for the first communicant. Giving and Receiving
Families on a Mission Learn how you are called to take your faith outside the church by loving and serving others. Family foot washing experience. Service, Kindness
At-Home Faith Meeting #10 Families Celebrate Learn how to celebrate faith milestones with those you love. An intentional activity for your first Communion celebration. Evangelization, Affirmation, and Encouragement

In addition to our exciting pathways of family faith formation this year, we are also hosting a number of social Family Faith Events focused on themes of our Church Year and Catholic Tradition. 

Calendar of Family Faith Events will be here very soon!

BECOME A FAMILY CATECHIST

Are you a passionate disciple who enjoys gathering families with a heart of hospitality?

Do you enjoy engaging others in faith discussions and prayer?

Would you like to discover how to offer life-changing encounters of Jesus and grow disciples?

See our Contact Information below and Inquire about Becoming a Family Catechist today!

Contact Us

Mary Jo Trapani, Director of Parish Family Evangelization & Catechesis, Kindergarten- Grade 5 | RCIC

maryjot@olmercy.com or (331)707-5378

Karen Schwartz, Administrative Assistant, Family Faith Formation, Grades K-12 | RCIC

karens@olmercy.com or (331)707-5369

Links & Documents

Safe Environment for Our Children

Need to just make a payment for this current year’s tuition and fees? Go here.