Started on August of 2010 the Sunday School Catechesis is a catechesis for children held every Sunday in our barangays. When it started there were 36 volunteers, some were old (veterans at that), some were middle aged, and at least 4 were young people (I am really amazed and inspired by what these young people can do). This catechesis is not your usual catechesis because, for one, we could not duplicate what is already given in the schools in our parish. This catechesis is geared towards establishing the Basic Ecclesial Community Culture in the young (MKK’s), from 7 to 12 years old. It is to establish in them a way of looking at the church as a community – a communion of communities by forming them into small groups, praying together, relating with one another, helping each other, learning the faith together and living the faith together under the guidance of their volunteer catechist. This is the main purpose of our weekend catechism, that at a very young age we could have established in them, in their hearts and in their minds and manners the “new” way of being church. Thus, we could already begin planting in them the seeds of the BEC-MKK “way of life” and the Filipino Catholic Culture.
This is not your usual catechism, as I said, like the “pila ang Dios” catechism of old. Yes they will learn the faith but they will learn by doing it, not by memorizing it solely. So they will learn the value of praying together by praying together. They will be taught the Sacrament of Anointing by visiting the sick and praying with the priest, laying their hands on the sick person and experience what it feels like. They will learn the importance of gathering as the family of God on a Sunday by going to the cathedral together, touching the altar, having a close look at the tabernacle, having the feel of the baptismal font from where they were reborn, going up the shrine to greet the Mother of Jareños. They will learn to appreciate God’s creation by caring for the earth and become stewards of creation by picking up garbage in their barangay. They will learn about mission by coaxing their parents to go to mass with them on Sunday and inviting along their peers with them. They will learn the fourth commandment of honoring their parents by making them birthday and anniversary greeting cards. They will celebrate not just their and their peers’ birthday but above all the anniversary of their baptism.
These are the little things that these 36 volunteers shall teach the kids under their care. That is the reason why they can only accommodate 10 to 15 children per catechist in their own locale, and if they grow to be more than that number, we have to recruit another volunteer and divide the group. And no, you will not find them in the chapel. They will be gathered in the homes, in a garage, in a large enough place to accommodate them so as to give them the feel of what it is to be a small community, a family of God. Hopefully we can also imbibe in them the idea that learning catechisis can be fun again.
This program is still open for more volunteers.