The Atlantic Catechetical Association held its 2017 Conference for
Catechists of Atlantic Canada from October 20 – 22, 2017 in Sydney, Nova
Scotia. “The Spirituality of the Catechist, Growing in Faith” was
the theme for the conference. Sr. Janet Schaeffler, O.P. was the keynote
speaker and she spoke about themes that will help catechists grow in their
spirituality and deepen their relationship with God.
The General Directory of Catechesis explains that “The definitive
aim of catechesis is to put people not only in touch, but also in communion
and intimacy, with Jesus Christ.” (General Directory of Catechesis
n.80) For catechists to fulfill this aim, they must tend their spirituality
and develop an ever deeper intimacy with Jesus Christ.
Participants discussed the four tasks of the catechist 1) Teachers of the
Good News, 2) Builders of Community, 3) Leaders of Prayer and 4) Inviters to
Service. Other topics addressed were the influences on our
spirituality, characteristics of a Catholic spirituality, characteristics of
spirituality for catechists, and prayer as the foundation of one’s
In addition to the keynote addresses, attendees participated in focus
groups sessions and enjoyed a banquet with Cape Breton hospitality and
entertainment on Saturday evening.
Bishop Grecco was in attendance for the entire conference, as was Bishop
Dunn from the Diocese of Antigonish and Bishop Hunt from the Diocese of
Corner Brook and Labrador. There were well over a hundred catechists
participating from Atlantic Canada. Thanks be to God for a wonderful
convention and for the fruit that will be borne in the hearts of those that