Catechists Formation Course

Catechists Formation Course, Part 2: June 2-8


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The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd is a Christian formation program for children 3-12 years old in which a trained adult helps awaken children to their personal response to God. It seeks to create and facilitate a sacred, “hands-on” space for children called an atrium in which both the child and the adult can hear, ponder, and celebrate the most essential mysteries of the Christian faith as revealed in the Scriptures and Liturgy.

This approach to Christian formation began in 1954 when Sofia Cavalletti, a scripture scholar, and Gianna Gobbi, a Montessori educator, founded the Good Shepherd Atrium in Rome, Italy. For 60 years the program has spread through parishes and schools of different denominations around the world.

This year’s course will deepen both the participant’s spiritual experience with God’s grace and his /her understanding of scripture and liturgy while also concretely preparing the participant to develop and facilitate an atrium for 3-6 year old children.


† To offer meditation on scripture and education in church liturgy correlated to the Catechism

† To deepen personal relationship with Christ.

† To offer guidelines and assistance for creating a prayer space for 3-6 year olds, preparing an album of presentations, and making materials which introduce children to God and the church.

† To explore the religious nature, the most vital religious needs and the developmental characteristics of the 3-6 year old child.

† To broaden the adult’s ability to observe the children, to listen with children to scripture, and to deepen our enjoyment of God’s presence.


The formation retreat will be led by Kay Brizzolara, a certified CGS formation leader. Ms. Brizzolara is the religious education director for St. Andrew’s Episcopal School in Amarillo, Texas where she offers catechesis to children ages 3 – 13. She holds a BA from Yale University, an M.A. from Cambridge Uni- versity, a certificate in Theology from The University of the South (Sewanee), and a Certificate in Youth Ministry from the Episcopal Theological Seminary of the Southwest. She has over twenty-three years of experience as a catechist in CGS programs in church and school settings.


Upon completion of the ninety hour retreat, participants will receive certification through the National Association of the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd.


A nursery may be available for the children of participants. Participants are asked to please pay $2.00 per hour per child to the nursery worker for the childcare which they use. Please note your childcare needs on the registration form.


The retreat course fee is $175 for non-members and $50 for members of the Church of the Good Shepherd. Fees may be paid at the beginning of each session. Fees and registration forms as well as questions about the course should be addressed to:

Fr. Brian Chase
Church of the Good Shepherd
1007 Burnett Street
Wichita Falls, Texas 76301

A Registration Brochure may be downloaded here.