The Archdiocese of Detroit Office of Evangelization and Catechesis serves as a resource to help parishes to build strong faith formation programs that support the work of evangelization at all levels and stages, from infancy through adulthood. As we embark on our mission of preaching the Good News of the Gospel we remember the words of Christ: “Behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20) Therefore, as servants to the Message of Christ, let our hearts and minds be open to the guidance of the Holy Spirit so that we may we go forth with renewed zeal in the hope that all may be able to “confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of the Father.” (Philippians 2:11)
We have but one Teacher, Jesus Christ
“The definitive aim of catechesis is to put people not only in touch but in communion, in intimacy, with Jesus Christ: only He can lead us to the love of the Father in the Spirit and make us share in the life of the Holy Trinity.” (Catechesi Tradendae, 5)
Evangelization and Catechesis
Evangelization and catechesis are two sides of the same coin. Evangelization precedes catechesis by providing the opportunity for individuals to experience the profound love of Jesus Christ, commit their lives to Him, and continue to grow in knowledge of and relationship with Christ through ongoing faith formation, celebration of the sacraments, and the support of the Catholic Christian Community.
“Catechesis is an indispensable stage in the rich, complex, and dynamic reality of evangelization. It is a remarkable moment ‘in the whole process of evangelization.’” (National Directory for Catechesis, 15)
“The specific character of catechesis, as distinct from the initial conversion-bringing proclamation of the Gospel, has the twofold objective of maturing the initial faith and of educating the true disciple of Christ by means of a deeper and more systematic knowledge of the person and the message of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Catechesis Tradendae, 19)
Catechesis is the Church’s “sacred duty and inalienable right.” (Catechesi Tradendae, 14) “The specific aim of catechesis is to develop, with God’s help, an as yet initial faith, and to advance in fullness and to nourish day by day the Christian life of the faithful, young and old.” (Catechesi Tradendae, 20) “Catechesis is that particular form of ministry of the word which matures initial conversion to make it into a living, explicit and fruitful confession of faith.” (General Directory for Catechesis, 82)