Helping children draw nearer to God

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Sister Bibiana Akpana Ikwun

Nun of the Congregation of the Handmaids of the Holy Child Jesus (HHCJ) and the superior of Canada Mission. She is the Religious Coordinator in Holy Cross Parish Winnipeg, and serves as CGS catechist in all 3 Levels. Through her Sisters, the CGS is being used with the First Nation Communities in St. Boniface Archdiocese. Sister Bibiana is an Entry Level 1 Formation Facilitator and has assisted in Level I Formation courses for over nine years.

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Heather Skublics Lampman

Elementary music teacher and a recognized CGSAC formation leader. She spent seven years on the CGSAC board, completing her term as chair.  She incorporates Catechesis of the Good Shepherd and Montessori methodology in her classroom and in sacramental preparation, and works in both Roman Catholic and Anglican atrium contexts.  Part of the Winnipeg formation team since 2011, Heather introduced CGSAC to Calgary and is still able to say she has been involved in every training there!

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Carolyne-Marie Petch

Certified catechist and Formation Facilitator for levels 1-3. As one of the founders and past board members of CGSAC, she serves a key role on the formation team. 


Carolyne-Marie continues to “listen to God with children” as a catechist in all 3 levels in her parish atrium in Toronto. She received her initial formation from  Sofia Cavalletti, Gianna Gobbi, and Patricia Coulter.

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Nancy Wood 

Established the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd in Winnipeg and has been
working in this method for over 25 years. She is Montessori trained and has an  MA in pastoral ministry from St. John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota. 


She is a spiritual director and member of the Chemin Neuf Community, a community rooted in the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius.

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Murita Chua

Сoordinator for the Ministries and Outreach Office in Roman Catholic  Archdiocese of Vancouver (RCAV) since 2004 where she is a catechist trainer, workshop presenter, mentor, CGS catechist and archdiocesan consultant. She is an Entry Level 1 Formation Facilitator.

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Marty O'Bryan

Marty O’Bryan began her formation in the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd in 1983 with Sofia Cavalletti, receiving Level II formation from her in 1985. That same year, she opened the first atrium in the Southwest U.S., at Holy Family Catechetical Center in Phoenix, AZ; which became the prototype for atria in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix. Maria Christlieb from Mexico City and Rebekah Rojcewicz from the U.S. were also instrumental in her formation as a catechist. Marty continues to work with children in the Toddler, Level 1, 2 and 3 atria and has been facilitating adult formation in Levels I, II and III throughout the United States since 1991. A retired speech and language pathologist, she holds a Master of Arts degree from Aquinas Institute of Theology in Pastoral Studies with an emphasis on the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd. Marty is a life-long Roman Catholic. She and her husband Bert have four grown sons.

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Paula Rush

Went uncertainly to catechesis training in 2006 only to fall in love during the first presentation. Now she is a certified level 1-3 catechist and an Entry Level 1 Formation Facilitator. She helped establish and serves at the atrium at St. Francis of Assisi parish in Kitchener, ON. Paula writes a weekly blog for level 1, level 2 and level 3 children, reflecting on the Sunday Gospel readings. She and her husband, Jim, have five children and live in Waterloo, ON.

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Deb Zeni

CGSAC certified Level 1-3 catechist and  formation facilitator who has facilitated courses across Canada as well as  in Nairobi and Huruma, Kenya, and Fort Portal, Uganda. She received her MPS-CGS in May 2012 and is currently working on a DMin. at Aquinas Institute. Deb served on the CGSAC board for 10 years and now enjoys being a catechist and formation facilitator, a family physician and a grandmother. Deb is a founding member of CGSAC.

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Linda Funk 

Entry Level 1 Formation Facilitator and certified catechist at St. Vincent of Lerins Orthodox Church in Saskatoon, SK. Her atrium, which opened in 2010, was the first CGS atrium in Saskatoon and the first Orthodox atrium in Canada. She has been active  in  helping  establish  several other atria in the Saskatoon area and in the province of Saskatchewan.

A retired piano teacher, she now serves on the Saskatoon CGS committee, helps develop Orthodox adaptations to CGS, is a priest's wife (presvytera), a mother and grandmother.

Susan Perna

Founding member of CGSAC. She began her journey with The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd over 40 years ago and has been trained by its founders. She opened and directed the atrium at St Benedict Parish, Toronto for 20 years, serving hundreds of children and has been instrumental in opening several atria. She delights in training adults to become catechists knowing that each adult trained means that even more children will have the chance to experience this work.

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Annette Witte

Began her journey in the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd in 1996. She is recognised by CGS-USA as a Formation Facilitator for both Levels 1 and 2. She serves as a catechist in all 3 levels in her local parish and schools.  Annette holds a Masters of Pastoral Studies from Aquinas Institute of Theology in St. Louis, MO.  She and her husband, Joe, have five children and three grandchildren and live in Grand Rapids, MI.

Interested in becoming a Formation Facilitator? 


Catechists holding a Level 3 certificate are invited to contact formation@cgsac.ca for more information.