August 1, 2020
Dear Parents and Guardians:
I hope all is well! In my June letter I stated that our Sunday Religious Education program would look different for the upcoming school year 2020-2021. It is now August and September is right around the corner. Each day I review the impact and future impact of COVID-19 on our school systems. Each day I wonder how the Shrine Church of St. Jude can offer a Religious Education program to our children to educate them in our Faith in a safe manner.
Given the uncertainty of the times, a blended learning model for religious education has been approved by the Diocese of Brooklyn. This model allows religious education to be done in both an in-class or at-home setting depending on the circumstances. As we move with precautions and based on authoritative data from the state and recommending guidelines from the diocese, the Shrine Church of St. Jude Religious education program will begin with the at-home model. This model addresses the fact that parents/guardians are the primary educator and formator of their children in the Faith and the parish is here to assist, aid and guide.
You might have wondered why I have chosen to go this route. My primary concern is the safety of all. The church building is open for Masses at 25% which allows a total of 50 people. A little more if we have a large family. Currently, our Masses are almost up to capacity. Also, the school hall is set-up for overflow. The school hall holds 63. The enrollment of a typical Sunday for religious education is about 75 students. Therefore, I hope you realize I would not be able to bring the children to Mass in a group. That is one issue. Another is the bathrooms. Bathrooms are not available. Finally classrooms, children need to be 6 feet apart at all times and classrooms would need to be sanitized at the end of the lessons.
So, at least for the first half of the school year the children will be participating in on-line instruction. We will be using Pflaum Gospel Weeklies (both on-line and hard copies). Pflaum Gospel Weeklies Faith Formation Program combines a complete doctrinal catechesis with the liturgical life of the Church. To complete the on-line process I am looking into Microsoft Teams, GoogleMeet and Fipgrid.
Religious Education is ongoing. It may look different this year but the requirements are the same. Catholic children who do not attend a Catholic school are still obligated to attend Religious Education. For any child to receive the sacraments of Penance, First Holy Communion or Confirmation he/she must attend class two years prior to the reception. Skipping a year is not acceptable.
Registration will be a little easier this year. If your child was in Shrine Church of St. Jude Religious Education program last year and you have a active email address you will be receiving an email by August 8th. If you do not have an active email address or are new, please click above for "Registration" and complete the form. The cost of registration this year will be $50 for each child in our program. Registration fee will be due in September when supplies are handed out. It is important that you verify ASAP.
Remember! This pandemic will not last forever. We are here to help you educate and form your children in the beautiful faith, so that they may know God’s grace and comfort during these stressful times. We are trying out a new way to learn and there will be challenges along the way. We ask for your patience and prayers and look forward to a time when we can safely gather once more!
Sunday Gospel Reading for Children
Our Religious Education Program - 1st through 8th Grade
Any questions please e-mail MsTeiferSJoAMSJu@aol.com
Info About Formal Religious Education
Catholic parents who wish to have their children receive the sacraments are required to send their children to formal religious education yearly starting with the first grade.
Two complete years are required before the reception of the sacrament of First Holy Communion.
Shrine Church of St. Jude Religious Education for Levels 1 - 8 for the beginning of 2020/2021 school year will be meeting on-line.
Confirmation - Students must be in at least 8th Grade and have had 2 years of formal Religious Education (Catholic school or Religious Ed) to be eligible to receive this sacrament. Confirmation Class for 2020/2021 school year will begin in October. (Date and how will be determined at a later date.)
WEB SOURCES(need to copy and paste)
**** The Real Presence Of Jesus Christ In The Sacrament Of The Eucharist: Basic Questions And Answers
**** Sacraments 201: Eucharist (what we believe) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TMSiHGTBdGk
****The Making of Communion Bread for Holy Communion https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ryL3xLPAPqk
You may contact our Religious Education Administrator, Ms. Helen Teifer, with any question at MsTeiferSJoAMSJu@aol.com