Parish School of Religion

(PSR)

About our Program

Our Parish School of Relgion is a ministry of Good Shepherd Parish, and as such, our goal is to help nurture the faith development of our children as they grow in their love of God and Catholic identity. This ministry extends not only to the children enrolled in the PSR, but to their families as well. It is in the family (the Domestic Church) that children come to experience faith as a lived response to the presence of God in their lives. It is their experience of everyday family life where children come to see and emulate a relationship with God, with Mary and the other Saints, and with the Church.

PSR F.A.Q.s

  • Who is PSR for?

    • PSR is open to all children in Grades K-8 in the parish (and non-parishioners on a case-by-case basis). For children seeking sacraments (2nd grade for 1st Penance and Eucharist, 9th grade for Confirmation), we ask that they have attended at least 50% of the PSR classes the year before, either in our program or in a different program if they are new to the parish. We also honor Catholic school religious education as meeting the PSR requirement. Even if your child is in a Catholic school or engages in Catholic curriculum through home schooling, we still encourage families to consider being involved in PSR.

  • How do I get my children signed up?

    • During the months of August-September, PSR registration can be found here online. We also offer 2 weekends to sign up in person at church before classes begin. If you are not finding the registration form online, please visit with the DRE.

  • How much is the program?

    • Our current PSR fee is: 1 child: $60, 2 children: $75, 3+children: $90. There are additional sacrament fees.

  • What do they do in class?

    • We utilize the Loyola Press Finding God 2013 series in our classes. The teachers lead them through the lessons over a 25-28 week span, and engage in discussions and activities to relate to the lesson material. The children also have opportunities for music lessons, celebrating the sacrament of reconciliation, and snacks!

  • When are the classes held?

    • We have our Sunday Morning PSR time at 9am, and this year we had to discontinue the Wednesday Evening PSR time. We are still willing to work with you to insure that every child has the opportunity to be involved a Catholic religious education program!

  • Where do I bring my children for PSR?

    • When you walk in the main doors of church, take a left and walk down the stairs into our parish hall. The first hallway past the desk has Kindergarten, 1st, 2nd, 6th, and a combined 7th/8th grade classroom. If you walk into the big parish hall room, you will find the 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade classrooms against the far wall (and the Confirmation class meets in the curtained-off alcove).

  • Whom should I contact with questions?

    • You can always email or call the DRE if you have any questions. All this information and more can also be found in your PSR Handbook that you receive upon registration.

First Penance/Eucharist F.A.Q.s

  • When will my child receive First Eucharist?

    • Children baptized in the Catholic Church receive First Penance and Eucharist in 2nd grade (the age of reason). Typically First Penance occurs in the winter, and First Eucharist occurs in the late spring. This schedule may differ from other dioceses.

  • What if my child is baptized Christian, but not in the Catholic Church?

    • All Trinitarian baptisms (with water and with the words "in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit") are recognized as valid in the Catholic Church, and does not require "rebaptism." However, if the baptism happens outside the Catholic Church, there is still the need for an entrance into the Church, which occurs in a rite called “Reception of Baptized Christians into the Full Communion of the Catholic Church.” Think of it as a welcoming into the Church! This rite would need to take place before the child can continue on to First Penance and Eucharist. This also applies to children older than 2nd grade.

  • What if my child is not baptized?

    • If the child is younger than 2nd grade, then the child can be baptized and receive sacraments on a "normal" schedule (2nd for Penance/Eucharist, 9th for Confirmation). However, in and after 2nd grade, an unbaptized child would follow the same sacrament schedule as Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (for kids it has been called RCIC, or Rite of Christian Initiation of Children). On this schedule, the 2nd grader would continue their religious education for the school year, as well as some special rites in conjunction with the RCIA. Then, on Easter Vigil, the 2nd grade child would receive all three sacraments of initiation (Baptism, Eucharist, and Confirmation). To read more on why this occurs, please check out this article!

  • How do they prepare for First Eucharist?

    • For baptized children in 2nd Grade, we utilize the Sadlier Believe, Celebrate, and Live texts. This comes in a paperback workbook with everything you need. For unbaptized children in 2nd Grade, we utilize handouts from Benziger texts that are adapted to the RCIA process of receiving all three sacraments at Easter. Both programs are at-home programs, for we believe that, as the "first catechists" of children, parents/guardians should be the source of learning and joy of the sacraments in the home. Additional lesson planning support is offered as needed, and we check in with families throughout each segment of preparation (after completion of First Penance materials and after completion of First Eucharist materials).

  • When will my child receive Confirmation?

    • In our diocese, Confirmation typically occurs in high school. In our parish, currently the youth prepare in 9th grade and receive at the beginning of 10th grade. Of course this process will be different if an unbaptized child needs to receive Confirmation in accord with RCIA.

  • How do I sign my child up for First Penance/Eucharist Preparation?

    • Signing up is congruent with PSR registration.

  • What is the cost of First Penance/Eucharist Preparation?

    • Currently it is $50 overall; $25 for First Penance materials and $25 for First Eucharist materials.

  • Whom should I contact with questions?

    • You can always email or call the DRE if you have any questions.