Liturgy and Education, Part 10: Developing a Liturgical Culture

Posted by Timothy O'Malley on Jan 21, 2021 7:04:00 AM

A Diagnosis

One of the problems with liturgy is that it is often treated exclusively as an intramural activity of the Church. That is, liturgical education is about making sure that we ‘say the black’ (the words) and ‘do the red’ (the rubrics). Studying the liturgy, then, is basically learning to read the cookbook. Lay folk have their parts in this cookbook, and therefore, the Catholic school, family, and parish must teach these parts.

This means that liturgy becomes entirely a “churchy” thing, unrelated to the rest of life. However, this is a poor understanding of the liturgy. Liturgy has to do with culture—the way that we live our lives in the world. Liturgical culture means that liturgy “informs” what it means to be human in the context of the school, the family, and the parish.

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Topics: Catholic education, Pope Francis, liturgy and education

Confirmation and the Virtue of Fortitude

Posted by Caitlin Sica on Jan 20, 2021 10:08:51 AM

When I was 17, I had to get blood drawn. My mom went with me, and the phlebotomist happened to be an old acquaintance of hers. Making small talk, my mom asked the phlebotomist how her daughters were. She mentioned that one of her daughters was going through Confirmation, albeit reluctantly, and that she was encouraging her daughter to finish it “just in case, you know, she ever wanted to get married in the Church, it’s always a good thing to have in your back pocket.” I was so surprised at her attitude, as was my mother, who delivered some smart remark (ever so politely) about how she was pretty sure Confirmation meant a whole lot more than that. I’m not sure why this memory is so vivid, but I’ve never forgotten it. 

Though this may come as a surprise to some, Confirmation is not about becoming an adult in the Church, or deciding for yourself whether or not you want to remain Catholic, or graduation (read: freedom) from Faith Formation/CCD classes. (If you were ever under the impression that it was, you’re not alone; at one point, I was too.) And it is certainly not just “a good thing to have in your back pocket.”

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Topics: cardinal virtues, moral virtue, sacramental formation, sacraments, virtue, Confirmation

Sacred Sites of Notre Dame: The Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes

Posted by Adriana Rivera on Jan 19, 2021 2:13:05 PM

Whether as a drive-by or as your intentional destination, chances are that, if you have ever been to the University of Notre Dame, you have been captivated at one point or another by the glistening light of candles that cast their shadows upon the inside walls of the Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes. Or, perhaps your attention goes directly to the statue tucked discreetly inside a relatively small niche on the upper right side of the striking stone structure.

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Topics: Marian Shrines, Notre Dame, pilgrimage, Marian devotion

Cultivating Christian Unity and Ecumenism in the Classroom

Posted by Taylor Tovey on Jan 18, 2021 2:23:27 PM

Teaching middle school religion in Tennessee at the local K–8 Catholic school, my classroom consists of students who are majority Christian, most of whom are Catholic, with a number of students who are Methodist, Baptist, and Episcopalian. Students with different religious backgrounds, even just within the Christian traditions, increase the ability and need for fruitful ecumenical dialogue and living within our classroom. 

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Topics: Catholic education, ecumenism, Catholic schools, Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

Liturgy and Education, Part 9: The Liturgical Curriculum of the Catholic School

Posted by Timothy O'Malley on Jan 14, 2021 7:04:00 AM

The Will Transformed

Thus far in this series, we have treated the liturgical curriculum of a Catholic school as related to both memory and understanding. In this last section on curriculum, we must attend to the role of the will.

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Topics: Catholic education, liturgy and education

Living and Handing on the Faith

The McGrath Institute Blog helps Catholics live and hand on their faith in Jesus Christ, especially in the family, home and parish, and cultivates and inspires everyday leaders to live out the fullness and richness of their faith in the simple, little ways that make up Church life.

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