Personal Enrichment

Introduction to CGS – A Liturgical and Kerygmatic Catechesis

Celine Mitchell forms adults to be CGS catechists

The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd (CGS) is a faith formation experience for children ages 18 months to twelve years old. It is based on the belief that young children can and do experience God. Founded on the principles of Maria Montessori and Sofia Cavalletti, the catechesis is rooted in scripture and liturgy. Central to the catechesis is the atrium, a special environment created to nurture the child’s spirituality with beautiful materials that focus the child’s attention on key scripture passages or liturgical moments.

This course explores the main message of Jesus — the Kingdom God – what is it, how do we live in it, how do we celebrate it.

  • Part 1 of the course delves into Parables of the Kingdom of God which give us clues about the characteristics of the Kingdom, examples of how to live in the Kingdom, and our response to the invitation to live in the Kingdom thru the Parousia.
  • Part 2 explores Sign Language of the Liturgy, lifting up the signs, colors, gestures, prayers and sacramental elements of our liturgy and pondering their meaning while giving a taste of each CGS level.

Course topics include:

  • Exploring the general developmental characteristics and the most vital religious needs of children
  • Meditating on the Biblical Parables of Jesus through the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd method.
  • Exploring the liturgical method of signs as we encounter it in the Holy Mass. Like the parable method found in scripture, the method of signs best conveys a truth that is too great for words.

Who should take this course?

This course is for anyone who wants to grow in their knowledge of scripture and liturgy. It is especially valuable for anyone who wants to learn more about the catechetical approach of Maria Montessori and Sofia Cavaletti.  Consisting of 25 hours of instruction it is significantly shorter than the formation to be a level 1 Catechist for CGS (90 hours) and so it provides in-depth knowledge without the full Catechist formation.  For this reason it would be a very helpful introduction to CGS for Directors of Religious Education, parents of children in CGS, clergy and staff working at a parish with CGS or anyone considering the full Level 1 formation.

When is this course offered?

Generally in the fall semester, but click here to check our upcoming courses for details.