RE/FBC--Religious Education/Family-Based Catechesis
What is Family-Based Catechesis (FBC)? The goal of Family-Based Catechesis is to enrich our parish’s faith life by offering Catholic-based catechesis (teaching) for both our community’s youth and adults alike. FBC is a particular model or method of offering Religious Education (RE) to the entire parish. Many know Religious Education (RE) by one of its former terms “CCD,” although the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine (CCD) was dissolved almost five decades ago.
At St. Matthew's parish, we are offering FBC in lieu of the traditional Wednesday night RE/”CCD” program. Although FBC will be the primary means of catechesis for the traditional Wednesday night RE program, all youth and adult parishioners are encouraged to participate in FBC. It is an opportunity to get to better know and understand our Catholic faith as well as provide opportunities for faith-sharing as families and as a community.
There are three primary components to FBC—Wednesday night catechesis, home-based family “lessons,” and Community Events. The nine monthly, September through May, Wednesday night catechesis sessions occur on the St. Matthew’s campus. It’s important to note, there are not weekly Wednesday night RE/CCD sessions as there has been in the past. Unless the youth is preparing to celebrate a sacrament that year (more on that below), there is only one Wednesday night meeting per month. The parents/adults will meet in the main worship area while the youth will simultaneously meet with grade-specific catechists in the school’s classrooms. Based on this Wednesday night instruction, families are sent forth with FBC “lessons” that give the families the opportunity to pray, do activities, and have discussions on the subject material from the Wednesday night session. Families can do these activities at the times and place that is convenient for their family’s schedule. The third part of FBC, Community Events, will occur throughout the year. As the name implies, the intent is for families to have the opportunity participate in community events in the parish. These Community Events will be scheduled in conjunction with a Saturday evening Vigil Mass or the second Sunday morning Mass. The family will be able to attend Mass together and then participate in an event, such as a movie or game, that is fun and based on Catholic teaching.
Does FBC effect Sacrament Formation? Yes, but in a good way. Teaching on the Church's sacraments is built into the FBC program. So, adults and all youth will get more familiar with our Church’s sacraments. Additionally for youth preparing for the Sacraments of First Reconciliation and First Holy Eucharist (typically 2nd grade) as well as the Sacrament of Confirmation (7th and 8th grade), there will be specific sacrament formation in the Wednesday night sessions. As well, there will be some additional sessions (ex., retreat, informational meetings, rehearsal, etc.) required. These additional sessions are listed on the FBC schedule as referenced below.
What is the FBC Schedule? Adult and youth formation will typically occur on the nine, first Wednesdays of the month--September through May. As mentioned above, there will also be Community Events offered throughout the year. Please see the detailed schedule for any exceptions (due to Holy Days, secular holidays, etc.) to the “first Wednesday” rule of thumb as well as the dates and times for the Community Events. Click here for the most recent version (Version 2, 8/16/17) of the schedule.
How Can I Register for FBC? Please fill out the registration form found here . Once filled out, you can return the completed form and registration fee either by 1) mailing, 2) dropping off at the Parish or School Office, or 3) putting in the collection basket at Mass. Please put "Attn: Religious Education" on the envelope. Please make sure that you complete the emergency medical authorization form as well. Registration fees are $85 per youth or $100 if youth is an 8th Grade Confirmation Candidate. There is a $200 maximum fee per family. Homeschool families are welcomed and encouraged to participate in FBC as well! If you are a St. Matthew's School family who wishes to participate in FBC, please fill out a registration form and contact Deacon White for fee information. There is no registration form or charge for adult parishioners who want to attend the Wednesday night catechesis sessions.
Questions or inputs? Please see the attached for answers to some frequently asked questions. Also, please always feel free to contact Deacon Mark White at firstname.lastname@example.org or 402 292-7928.