Religious Education consists of two distinct but complementary dimensions, namely an educational dimension and a faith formation dimension. The first dimension, most commonly referred to as the classroom teaching and learning of religion, is focused on Religious Education as an educational activity. It utilises a range of teaching and learning processes and resources. The second dimension, faith formation, is reflected in the religious life of the school, family and parish. The Guidelines acknowledge that the educational dimension and the faith formation dimension are inextricably linked. The classroom teaching of religion is one element in a complex web of experiences that have the potential to nurture the faith life of young people.
Religious Education aims to ‘develop students’ religious literacy in the light of the Catholic tradition, so that they may participate critically and effectively in the life of their faith communities and wider society.” (A Syllabus for Religious Education for Catholic Schools, p 18) This aim promotes the development of knowledge, skills and values which students need to participate as active lifelong learners within church and community contexts. Students are actively involved in constructing understandings of the Catholic tradition as well as acknowledging other religious traditions, the nature of religion and its place in life and Australian society. This key learning area has been organised into four strands: Scripture; Beliefs; Celebration and Prayer; Morality. Through these strands students engage with outcomes that describe understandings of the knowledge, skills, technologies and processes specific to Religious Education.
Teaching people to be religious, the second dimension referred to above, is identified with the religious life of the school and is a faith development activity focused on nurturing the religious, spiritual and faith growth of students. These Guidelines provide four Components for the faith development of students in the religious life of a school: Religious Identity and Culture, Evangelisation and Faith Formation, Prayer and Worship and Social Action and Justice. Beyond the school, the family, parish and local community also nourish and develop the faith of students.
Faith is primarily nurtured in the family. The parish community desires to assist parents with their children’s faith development. The parish has a particular role in providing resources, support and encouragement for families in the immediate preparation of children for the sacraments.
Parents participate actively in their child’s sacramental preparation. Parents are intimately involved in their children’s lives and it is in the home where they live love, forgiveness, faith and hope. These experiences form the basis for all sacramental preparation. The immediate preparation in the months before the celebration is an opportunity for faith to be shared in the family. In previous times the school took care of this preparation. The church recognises that parents are best qualified to decide their child’s readiness and participate in the process of preparation.
The sacramental preparation is co-ordinated through the parish office by the Sacramental Co-ordinator. A team of parents assists this co-ordinator with planning, at the parent meetings and arranging the celebrations which are held in the parish. Resources and assistance are provided for parents of children from both parish schools and all the other schools in the geographical area.
Commencement of sacramental preparation programs will be advertised in school and parish newsletters.
Please consider carefully the seriousness and commitment involved in the preparation of your child to live as a fully initiated member of the church.
Sacramental Policy.pdfSacramental Policy
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