O Lord, Hear Our Prayer
|To truly be a welcoming parish, it is important for all areas of a parish community to be open to newcomers as well as to long-time parishioners. These newcomers may include those with different cultural or ethnic backgrounds. Their needs may well be different from those already a part of the parish. Expanding the parish’s horizons to allow for greater welcoming will nurture your growth as catechetical leaders as well as those within your care.
LITURGY AND CATECHESIS
In prayers of intercession, include responses in different languages. The above prayer response in different languages is one way to connect the unfamiliar with the familiar in liturgy. The phrase is familiar, so as participants learn the new pronunciations, they are assured of what it is they are saying.Music is another user-friendly way to introduce another language. “We are the Body of Christ/ Somos El Cuerpo De Cristo” is a beautiful bilingual song that is becoming quite familiar to many. Within your parish there are probably people who could help guide religious education participants in learning a new ethnic or cultural song. This encourages unity among generations as well as culturally.
Ordinarily, the Christian family is the first experience for children of a Christian community and remains the primary environment for growth in faith (National Directory for Catechesis #29D). Our goal as catechists is to help parents and children see family life as a means toward holiness. We need to affirm the family as the primary influence on children. It is important that they participate in the religious education of their children and are offered guidance in appreciating the diversity among God’s children.