August 24, 2015  
Volume IX, Number 33
Monday, August 24- St. Bartholomew 
Tuesday, August 25- St. Louis of France
Thursday, August 27-   St. Monica
Friday, August 28- St. Augustine of Hippo
Tasks Of Catechesis
"Jesus formed his disciples by making known to them the various dimensions of the Kingdom of God.  He entrusted to them 'the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven' (Mt. 13:11); he taught them how to pray (Lk. 11:2); he opened his 'meek and humble heart' to them (Mt. 11:29); and he sent them ahead of him in pairs to every town and place he intended to visit.  (Lk. 10:1)  The fundamental task of catechesis is to achieve the same objective: the formation of disciples of Jesus Christ. Jesus instructed his disciples; he prayed with them; he showed them how to live; and he gave them his mission.

Christ's method of formation was accomplished by diverse yet interrelated tasks.  His example is the most fruitful inspiration for effective catechesis today because it is integral to formation in the Christian faith.  Catechesis must attend to each of these different dimensions of faith; each becomes a distinct yet complementary task. Faith must be known, celebrated, lived, and expressed in prayer.  So catechesis comprises six fundamental tasks, each of which is related to an aspect of faith in Christ.  All efforts in evangelization and catechesis should incorporate these tasks" National Directory for Catechesis (NDC) 59-62.

As an attempt to utilize the inculturation process outlined in the NDC, CL Weekly will attempt the discovery of the tasks of catechesis in relation to the modern world's movements.  "Inculturation involves listening to the culture of the people for an echo of the word of God.  It involves the discernment of the presence of authentic Gospel values or openness to authentic Gospel values in the culture" NDC 64.  
Thousands of Migrants Seeking Refuge
Hundreds of newly-arrived immigrants walk towards a temporary shelter.  Read more of the thousands seeking refuge in Europe. 
Catechesis Promotes Knowledge of the Faith

We shall always insist upon giving a generous welcome to others which is at once a duty of human solidarity and Christian charity. . . . [They should be] welcomed with brotherly love, [with] examples of upright living in which genuine and effective Christian charity and the highest spiritual values are esteemed. Paul VI,
Populorum Progressio: On the Development of Peoples (March 26, 1967), no. 67

To be especially lamented is the condition of so many millions of refugees, and of every group of people suffering persecution sometimes in institutionalized formfor racial or ethnic origin or tribal grounds. This persecution on tribal grounds can at times take on the characteristics of genocide. Justice in the World, Statement of the World Synod of Catholic Bishops (November 30, 1971), no. 21 ( Vatican Council II: More Post-Conciliar Documents, ed. Austin Flannery, OP [Northport, N.Y.: Costello Publishing Co., 1982])

Every human being has the right to freedom of movement and of residence within the confines of his own state. When there are just reasons in favor for it, he must be permitted to migrate to other countries and to take up residence there. The fact that he is a citizen of a particular state does not deprive him of membership to the human family, nor of citizenship in the universal society, the common, world-wide fellowship of men.John Paul II, Address to the New World Congress on the Pastoral Care of Immigrants (October 17, 1985)

All people have a right to life and to secure the basic necessities of life (e.g., food, clothing, shelter, education, health care, safe environment, economic security). A Catholic Framework for Economic Life, A Statement of the U.S. Catholic Bishops
Justice will never be fully attained unless people see in the poor person, who is asking for help in order to survive, not an annoyance or a burden, but an opportunity for showing kindness and a chance for greater enrichment. John Paul II, Centesimus Annus: On the Hundredth Anniversary of Rerum Novarum, no. 58 
Catechesis Promotes a Knowledge of the Meaning of the Liturgy and the Sacraments
Bishop Gerald Kicanas of Tucson, Ariz., blesses people on the Mexican side of the border as he distributes Communion through the border fence in Nogales, Ariz. (CNS/Nancy Wiechec)
"Referring to a visit by Pope Francis last summer to the Italian island of Lampedusa where migrants from the Middle East and Africa try to enter Europe illegally, O'Malley in his homily quoted the pope's comments about the "globalization of indifference."
"We have lost a sense of responsibility for our brothers and sisters," Pope Francis said. "We have fallen into the hypocrisy of the priest and the Levite whom Jesus described in the parable of the good Samaritan."
O'Malley quoted Pope Francis further: "The culture of comfort, which makes us think only of ourselves, makes us insensitive to the cries of other people."
Read more of this event from 2014.
Catechesis Teaches the Christian How to Pray with Christ
USCCB Prayer for Migrants and Refugees
Lord Jesus, help us by your grace,
  • To banish fear from our hearts, that we may embrace each of your children as our own brother and sister;
  • To welcome migrants and refugees with joy and generosity, while responding to their many needs;
  • To realize that you call all people to your holy mountain to learn the ways of peace and justice;
  • To share of our abundance as you spread a banquet before us;
  • To give witness to your love for all people, as we celebrate the many gifts they bring.
We praise you and give you thanks for the family you have called together from so many people. We see in this human family a reflection of the divine unity of the one Most Holy Trinity in whom we make our prayer: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Amen.

"Lord, no one is a stranger to you
and no one is ever far from you loving care.
In your kindness watch over refugees and exiles,
those separated from their loved ones,
young people who are lost,
and those who have left or run away from home.
Bring them back safely to the place where they long to be
and help us always to show your kindness
to strangers and those in need."  
New St. Joseph People's Prayer Book, #331, Catholic Book Publishing Co. (1980).

Catechesis Promotes Moral Formation in Jesus Christ
Three Basic Principles of Catholic Social Teaching on Immigration
First Principle: People have the right to migrate to sustain their lives and the lives of their families.

Every person has an equal right to receive from the earth what is necessary for life-food, clothing, shelter. Moreover, every person has the right to education, medical care, religion, and the expression of one's culture. In many places people live in fear, danger, or dehumanizing poverty. Clearly, it is not God's will that some of his children live in luxury while others have nothing. In Luke's Gospel, the rich man was condemned for living well while the poor man starved at his doorstep (Lk 16:19-31).

The native does not have superior rights over the immigrant. Before God all are equal; the earth was given by God to all. When a person cannot achieve a meaningful life in his or her own land, that person has the right to move.

Second Principle: A country has the right to regulate its borders and to control immigration.

Because there seems to be no end to poverty, war, and misery in the world, developed nations will continue to experience pressure from many peoples who desire to resettle in their lands. Catholic social teaching is realistic: While people have the right to move, no country has the duty to receive so many immigrants that its social and economic life are jeopardized.

For this reason, Catholics should not view the work of the federal government and its immigration control as negative or evil. Those who work to enforce our nation's immigration laws often do so out of a sense of loyalty to the common good and compassion for poor people seeking a better life. In an ideal world, there would be no need for immigration control. The Church recognizes that this ideal world has not yet been achieved.

Third Principle: A country must regulate its borders with justice and mercy.

A country's regulation of borders and control of immigration must be governed by concern for all people and by mercy and justice. A nation may not simply decide that it wants to provide for its own people and no others. A sincere commitment to the needs of all must prevail.
Catechesis Prepares the Christian to Live in Community and to Participate in the Life and Mission of the Church

Catholic Social Teaching on Immigration and the Movement of Peoples

Various practical resources are provided on the USCCB website. A few are listed below.
Discussions Questions And Activities for Parishes:

Suggested activities for recognizing that the United States is a nation of immigrants
  • Have participants tell the stories of their own families' immigration to the United States. Compare the stories of those who have recently immigrated with those who immigrated many years ago to demonstrate that the reasons for immigration have not changed.
  • Ask participants to reflect on the changing ethnic composition of the parish and the neighborhood over its history.
What should our attitude toward undocumented immigrants be?
  • How should the United States regard and treat undocumented immigrants?
  • How can we protect the rights of such people when they are treated unfairly by their employers?
Consider the following situations and offer ideas about how you and your parish can respond. For each item offer ideas about how to shape attitudes and to advocate for human rights.
  • Immigration policy that favors highly skilled professionals over family reunification and movement of poor people seeking a better life
  • The reluctance of neighborhoods, parishes, and individuals to accept different cultures, languages, and customs
  • The imprisonment of undocumented immigrants while they seek to have their legal rights resolved
  • Undocumented immigrants seeking to enroll their children in Catholic schools
Other suggested activities
  • Attend Mass with an immigrant community and reflect on the experience.
  • Learn a few words of the native languages of immigrants who worship in your parish.
  • Visit immigrants held in prison while waiting for their cases to be resolved.
  • Ask to meet with representatives of the Immigration and Naturalization Service to learn about their work and suggest ways they can better enforce the nation's laws while respecting the rights and needs of immigrants.
  • Identify immigrants in the parish still waiting for family members to be permitted to enter the United States. Learn about the process of sponsoring family members, and write to those still waiting overseas to promise friendship and welcome when they finally arrive.
  • Meet with local hospital and public health personnel to ask about how undocumented persons are able to receive medical care.


Catechetical Sunday Reflection Booklet and Pin  

Now Available To Order!
The  National Conference for Catechetical Leadership has a reflection booklet on the Sunday readings, with a corresponding pin, available for purchase. The reflections begin on Catechetical Sunda y and continue throughout the whole year.  A great spiritual tool, and wonderful gift, for all catechists.  Based on the Catechetical Sunday theme, " Safeguarding the Dignity of Every Person," each catechist will be inspired to echo the faith in their daily living.

To order: Please download and send in the Order Form.  Members receive 10% off their entire order.  Those seeking to become members, will receive 10% their order total, if they sign up for membership during the order.  This 10% will also apply to their membership dues total.  So, don't miss this opportunity!  More information available on the NCCL website.

A partnered initiative with NCCL and RCL Benziger.
Learn more about how to purchase Echoes 3.0 through this Quick Start Purchasing Guide.

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