Volunteer catechists




Religious Education


S. Cecilia Cyford, SSJ
Director of
Religious Education

Jeff Ment
Religious Ed. Assistant





Volunteer catechists





Common Reasons Why People Hesitate to Become Catechists


"I'm hesitant to become a catechist because..."

  • I don't know if I can handle a group of kids.

  • I'm not sure that I have anything to share.

  • I'm not sure that I know just what the Church teaches.

  • I'm afraid I'll say something wrong.

  • I don't know if I'll be able to answer kids' questions.

  • I'm not that holy... I'm just a regular person.

  • I don't know if I have the time.

  • I don't have any formal training to teach.

  • I don't know if kids will like me.

  • I've never taught before.






Volunteer catechists






Important note about church volunteers and STAND

For the safety of our children, all volunteers (age 14 and older) who work with children must have an archdiocesan STAND card. For STAND information, please click here or contact Mary Lee McCusker (Youth Ministry office) at 410-833-7639 or mmccusker@shgparish.org.

Thank you!

Volunteers Needed to Spread the Good News!

"We give thanks to God always for all of you, remembering you in our prayers, unceasingly calling to mind
your work of faith and labor of love and endurance in hope of our Lord Jesus Christ."  1 Thessalonians 1:2-3


What Is a Catechist?

The word catechist comes from a Greek word meaning "to echo". Catechists echo the Word of God to our parish children. They come from all walks of life and all ages: women, men, confirmed teenagers, parents, grandparents, singles, and religious. Catechists are not expert teachers or brilliant theologians. They are ordinary people, just like you, who generously volunteer their time to share our Catholic faith, values, and traditions with our youngest generation of Christians. They are positive role models who help children grow in faith and spirituality. What an important ministry! Their gift has tremendous value... because through their words and actions, the message of Christ continues to spread throughout the world.

Religious Education volunteers

A catechist is faith, hope, and love attached to arms and legs, aches and pains, family duties, and not enough time.
A catechist is an ordinary person who is extraordinary because he or she teaches as Jesus did.
A catechist is faithful to the past, open to the future, and is especially dedicated
to deepening the faith of the present.

From the poem "A Catechist Is", by Monsignor John Francis Murphy


Is God Calling You to Be a Catechist?

Do you:

  • Love God and want to know him better?
  • Love children and enjoy working with them?
  • Want to share God's love with others?
  • Want to be good role model for children?
  • Want to share your faith more and help others grow in faith?
  • Want to help children develop a relationship with God?


Your "yes" answers may mean that God is calling you to be a catechist! The Religious Education office is always in need of volunteer children's catechists and classroom assistants to help spread the Good News and share the Catholic faith with our parish children. For class times and other details about our weekly Religious Education classes, please click here, and explore the information on our home page. As a bonus, parent volunteers receive a significant discount on Religious Education fees for their children. A nursery service is available on Sunday mornings for volunteers with children under 3 years old, and student volunteer hours may be eligible for school service requirements.


Top Reasons to Become a Catechist!

  • You will grow in your own faith, learn the teachings of the Church, and deepen your relationship with Jesus.

  • Your baptism calls you to share in Jesus' ministry.

  • Children, teens, and adults in today's world, more than ever, need to hear the Good News of Jesus.

  • Children, teens, and adults in today's world, more than ever, need to encounter good role models of faith.

  • You have much to share with those you'll teach.. and you will have opportunities to share your faith with other catechists.

  • Today's catechetical textbooks and resources offer outstanding support.

  • You will be challenged, you'll have fun, and you'll make new friends.

  • You will be helping people deepen their relationship with Jesus. You'll be evangelizing!

  • You will be handing on a 2000-year-old Tradition that changes lives.

  • It's our job: Jesus sent us to "go and teach all nations".


Not Confident Enough?

Still hesitating? Not quite sure if you're cut out for this very rewarding ministry? Please call Sister Cecilia at 410-833-8515 for questions, answers, discussion, and encouragement about being a children's catechist. We are always here to help, support, and guide you along the way.

The Holy Spirit can and will work through you!

Our children need you!

Can you step forward in faith?

Thank you for considering the possibility of volunteering with us... and if you know others who would make good catechists, please encourage them to do the same!






More Excellent Reasons to Become a Catechist

  • Help Nourish the Faith of Children...
    "The most important reason is to help nourish the faith in children. If we don't get involved, who will teach them and prepare them to be active members in the parish as they grow?"

  • Meet Wonderful People...
    "I have met many wonderful people."
    "If all I did was come to Mass, I would only know faces in the crowd."
    "Even if you don't have children in the program, it is a great way to meet other spiritual people and become more involved in the activities and community of the parish."

  • Grow In Faith and Learn...
    "The time spent preparing the lesson is time spent reflecting on your own faith and knowledge."
    "Since I did not grow up Catholic, I think it is important that I know what my girls are learning."
    "It is very faith-enriching for us to look at the weekly readings from a child's point of view. Sometimes even adults can understand it better when it is given simplistically."

  • It is a Rewarding Experience...
    "At first I thought that I shouldn't be teaching because I felt I didn’t know 'all of the answers'. But it really is a learning experience for me as well as them. And it's okay not to know some answers - you praise them for a good question and say you'll return next week with an answer."
    "It's a blessing getting to know each child and his/her special gifts; how much they teach me!"

  • Help Improve Your Catholic Parenting...
    "Teaching our parish children lets us learn how they perceive the world and the Catholic faith... and it provides an opportunity to share the values and beliefs that our faith teaches us."
    "I have learned a lot about parenting and raising my own children in the Catholic faith through becoming a better catechist."

  • Be Good at Something...
    "I started teaching because I had to drop off the kids anyway, so I thought I might as well help out. Then I realized that not only did I enjoy teaching, but I was actually good at it!"

  • Be Involved...
    "I wanted to stay involved in my child's education, and teaching was a great way to do it."
    "Teaching in the religious education program helps me to be more involved not only in my children's education, but also in the church in general."
    "A church cannot survive without its parishioners working together for its success."

  • Have a Say...
    "Involvement in the religious education program enables us, as parents, to have a say in the way our children are brought up in the faith."
    "I want to participate in motivating people to work on their friendship with God at an early age."

  • Do Something You Enjoy...
    "I enjoy working with kids and being with my son."
    "It was an excellent way to get involved, and it was fun!"

  • Be Surprised...
    "I was skeptical about what four and five-year-olds could take from religious education. I was surprised! It's so important to start them out as friends, and hopefully they will continue through the years in the religion program together."