St. Thomas à Becket Parish
4320 Ste. Anne, Pierrefonds, Quebec H9H 4Y7Office: 514-626-4111Email:
SACRAMENTS, FAITH FORMATION, AND CATECHESIS OF CHILDREN AT BECKETAt the baptism of their children, parents accept the responsibility to train their children in the practice of the faith, and to bring them up to keep God’s commandments as Christ taught us. They are even asked, “Do you clearly understand what you are undertaking?” Celebrating the other Sacraments of Initiation is more meaningful if the candidate is old enough to both understand and want the Sacraments.
Now that there are no more public Catholic schools in Quebec, the English-speaking sector of the Archdiocese of Montreal offers a special preparation program called “Faith First”. This program is meant to be a gift to the parents, who sometimes do not feel capable of training their children in the practice of our faith on their own. Parents have the responsibility before God to show their children how to live in accord with the Gospel, as Jesus taught us, but now the burden is shared and hope is restored to parents as they discover they are not alone, and as they see their children grow in the faith and love of God.
Faith First is a highly understandable, inspiring, interesting, and interactive program of catechesis, very effective in drawing children into first-hand knowledge of and faith in God. In order for them to learn that faith connects with everyday life, Faith First provides material and programming for children in Kindergarten until Secondary 5 and beyond. Faith First dovetails with first-hand experience of how God connects with his people every Sunday through the Liturgy, and daily through family rituals as simple as grace at mealtime, bedside prayers, and a simple blessing for those going to school or work.
This Faith First program is offered here at St. Thomas à Becket Parish from Kindergarten through Grade 7-8 (Secondary 1-2 or Junior High in American terms). We will also help parents of older youth organize a program from additional materials available for Senior High School (Secondary 3-5+). The process accompanies daily life and incorporates the seasons of the year, harmonizing home and church, God and his creation – our world.
At St. Thomas à Becket Parish, our children typically come forward to complete Christian Initiation by receiving a combination of First Reconciliation and Communion in Grade 2, followed by Confirmation in grade 6, but some children or adolescents come for sacraments at a later time. In practical terms, this means that before a child or youth becomes eligible to receive a sacrament at St. Thomas à Becket Parish, both the parent(s) and that young person need an enriching experience. Each of our children and youth need 2 years of enrolment in Faith First: the preparatory year and the sacramental year – this would normally be Levels 1 & 2 for First Penance and Communion, and Levels 5 & 6 for Confirmation – exceptions being possible, as mentioned above. During these years, children are expected to attend the Sunday Liturgy and Worship with their family. They are also encouraged to participate in one of: Children’s Liturgy, one of the choirs, Altar Servers.
Faith First Coordinator: Elsa Rivera (514)626-4111 ext. 224 or .