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What is Growing in Faith Together?
- Growing in Faith Together (G.I.F.T.) is a systematic Religious Education program that embraces the faith formation needs of the the entire family. Parents are the first and most influential teachers for children. G.I.F.T. embraces and builds upon the fact that the family dynamic is the strongest influence a child will have in their Religious Education by giving them the tools they need to truly live as a Catholic family at home, within the parish community, and throughout the worldwide community.
- Students and parents attend faith formation classes together once a month. Children will attend with a minimum of one adult (parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle, older adult sibling, godparent, etc….). Both parents and other family members are encouraged to attend, but only one adult is required.
- Families will have an option of which day of the week they attend their classes. See the schedule below for days & times. Families choose which day works best for the family upon registration; they attend on those days.
- The session each month is one hour and thirty minutes. Parents will continue the lessons at home, using the book and an online component that is user friendly.
- Families are instructed and given religious education in a whole group setting and in break-out sessions that put children into age appropriate groups . Catechists facilitate the religious education sessions but parents help their children (and other families) with the activities.
- Click here to read more about our frequently asked questions on the G.I.F.T. FAQ’s
How does G.I.F.T. work for First Communion children?
- Children preparing for First Communion attend the G.I.F.T. sessions with their parents monthly. Additionally, one Sunday a month is dedicated to First Communion prep for students only.
- There are two special retreats for First Communion children and a parent that are two hours each. One is in the fall to prepare for First Reconciliation and one is in the spring to prepare for First Communion.
How does G.I.F.T. work for Confirmation children?
- Children typically begin their Religious Education to prepare for Confirmation in the 9th grade. It is a two year preparation.
- Students in 9th grade attend the G.I.F.T. sessions with their parents monthly. Additionally, one Sunday evening a month (6:30-8pm) is dedicated to 9th grade Confirmation prep for students only. 9th grade students also attend one retreat (TBA).
- 9th grade students will continue this model throughout 9th and and the beginning of 10th grade.
- Service hours/projects will be part of the students’ Faith Formation.
- Students in 10th grade (fall of 2018) are preparing to receive Confirmation November 5th at St. Francis Church. Students will attend classes Sunday evenings (at St. Vincent Ferrer) according to the schedule given at the orientation meeting. Additionally, 10th graders will attend a Retreat at St. Paul High School in Bristol, September 30th, from 10 am to 5:30 pm. There will be a Reconciliation Service/Confession October 13th, after the 4:00 Mass.
- Students will be required to research a Saint and hand in a report.
- Service Project – Students will participate in at least 1 service project before Confirmation. One option is helping cook a meal for St. Vincent de Paul. Our first opportunity is August 19th.
What days & times is G.I.F.T. offered?
Please note that due to space limitations, each session will accommodate 40 students (with their parents). Once a session is full, it will be closed to future registrants. The sessions will be filled on a first come-first served basis. Register early to ensure you get the session you want! Once a session is filled, the session day will indicate “Registration Closed.”
Click here to download the G.I.F.T. Calendar
Click here to download the Communion and Confirmation Class Dates
You can also sync our Google Calendar with yours below:
What is the registration fee for G.I.F.T.?
- The cost for G.I.F.T. is $85 per child. This covers the cost of the materials you will need for the year.
The registration form for G.I.F.T. can be found by clicking the link: Registration Form
Annette Whidden, Director of Religious Education