Helping children draw nearer to God
Like the work of Maria Montessori, the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd is carefully structured around the developmental needs of children at different stages. Each atrium has mixed-age groups of children within the same level, engaging in activities specially designed to meet their deepest needs and capacities.
Ages 3 to 6
In the Level 1 Atrium, children discover that
God is love,
Jesus is Risen,
and We are His sheep
They enjoy biblical accounts of events such as the birth of Jesus and the Last Supper, to proclaim that Jesus was a real person who lived in a specific place in time.
They encounter elements of the liturgy, to encourage understanding and thoughtful participation
They contemplate parables that allow them to ponder the mystery of Kingdom of God, especially the call to joyful relationship with Jesus, the Good Shepherd
They partake of prayer opportunities, alone and in community, for enjoyment of God's gifts
Ages 6 to 9
As children move into Level 2, firm in their relationship with God, they wonder ...
What is God’s plan?
What is my role in God’s plan?
They hear about God’s Plan of Salvation as shown to us in the Bible
They contemplate the gifts that human beings have received from God through time.
They develop their moral intelligence by considering the parables Jesus told of mercy and justice, as well as his moral guidelines
They discover their role in God’s plan and their own place in the community of believers - the church
They acquire the tools to enable them to access the Word of God (Bible) and the prayers of the church in the rites of Eucharist, Baptism and Reconciliation.
Many atriums offer the children a special retreat in preparation for celebrating 1st Reconciliation and Eucharist.
Ages 9 to 12
Children in this stage of development have a wider perspective. They want to know more about God's plan of salvation, so they ask ...
What is God calling me to do as his co-worker in the kingdom?
What gifts have I been given to use in this work?
timelines of God’s Plan of Salvation;
great figures and events in the scriptures: Creation, The Flood, Abraham, Moses, the prophets, miracles
the gifts that we are given to help us on our spiritual journey, including the rites of Eucharist, Baptism, Reconciliation and Healing.