Catechetical Programs
Christ In Us Grades K–8
Parish, K–8
School, K–8
Bilingual, K–6
We Believe: Living Your Catholic Identity Grades K–6
Full Access
We Live Our Faith, Catholic Identity Grades 7–8
Full Access
One Faith, One Lord Grades 7–Adult
Our Catholic Faith Grades 4–6
God’s Own Making
Grades 4-8
Discovering God
Ages 3–5
Between You and Your Child
Catechetical Bilingual
Cristo en nosotros
Cursos 1–6
Creemos Identidad católica
Cursos K–6
Vivimos nuestra fe
Cursos 7–8
Nuestra fe católica
Cursos 4–6
Una sola fe, un solo Señor
Cursos 7–Adulto
Entre usted y sus hijos
Cursos K–8
Sacraments Programs
Believe • Celebrate • Live | Bilingual Edition Ages 7–15
Reconciliation Primary
Eucharist Primary
Reconciliation & Eucharist Intermediate
Confirmation Restored Order
We Believe and Celebrate
Spanish Edition
Prayer Books
My Reconciliation and Prayer Book, Ages 7–9
Mi Reconciliación y libro de oración, Edades 7–9
My Mass Book, Ages 7–9
Mi libro de la Misa, Edades 7–9
We Believe and Pray, Grades 4–6
Sacraments Bilingual
Creer • Celebrar • Vivir Edades 7–15
Reconciliación Primaria
Eucaristía Primaria
Reconciliación y Eucaristía Intermedio
Confirmación Restauración del orden sacramental
Creemos y celebramos
Libros de oración
Mi Reconciliación y libro de oración, Edades 7–9
Mi libro de la Misa, Edades 7–9
Lifelong Learning
Bible Resources
The Compass Bible for Catholic Teens
My Big Book of Catholic Bible Stories
YOUCAT: Youth Catechism of the Catholic Church
YOUCAT: Catecismo Joven de la Iglesia Católica
YOUCAT: The Youth Prayer Book
La Biblia católica para jóvenes
Adult Resources
Becoming a Parish of Mercy
The Wounded Body of Christ
Missionary Discipleship
Directory for Catechesis (New Edition)
Directory for Catechesis (Spanish New Edition)
The NEW Directory for Catechesis—Highlights and Summaries
Catechism of the Catholic Church 2nd Edition
United States Catholic Catechism for Adults
General Directory for Catechesis
National Directory for Catechesis
Professional Development
Professional Development
Catechetical Learning
Theology of the Body Course
Catholic Identity Course
English | View All
Catechetical Resources
Virtual Events
Religion Blog
Catechetical Downloads
Liturgical Seasons
CHATechesis Podcast
Bilingual | ver todos
Recursos catequéticos
Eventos Virtuales
Blog de Sadlier Religion
Descargas Catequéticas
sadlierReligion Hero-1.png

August 11, 2022 REL Asset - Activity, REL PD - Leaders

Communication Tips for Parish Catechetical Leaders

Directors of Religious Education are entrusted by their parish with the task of overseeing the formation of the next generation of Catholics. Busy parish catechetical leaders have the important role of engaging the families and students in their care. Effective communication with these families is critical.


This post includes tips for parish catechetical leaders for communicating with families in simple but effective ways all year long. You can also download a Family Communication Questionnaire to distribute to families to customize your communication approach and make your efforts count.

Offer families a Family Communication Questionnaire and invite them to complete and return it to you so that you can tailor your communication efforts to your unique parish.

Communication Tips for Parish Catechetical LeadersDownload Now

Descargar ahora

Making Connections 

One of the many tasks that Directors of Religious Education oversee is communication with the families enrolled in religious education. This task includes logistical information about program offerings and session times. The details are important. But every communication with families is also an opportunity for engagement and community building. Here are six ways to make the most of each opportunity to connect with families.

Each communication is an opportunity for Directors of Religious Education and parish catechetical leaders to connect with families of children...

Connection 1: Email

This goes without saying, but electronic communication is the best way to get important information to the members of your program quickly and clearly. Email is best for sending vital information like dates and upcoming events or requests. It’s not the best way to evangelize. Save that for meetings, programs, and social media!

Connection 2: Parent Meetings

One of the most effective ways to connect with parents of students in your care is to host annual parent meetings. If you’re not hosting a yearly kick-off meeting, it’s something to consider as a way to build relationships. All of Jesus’ ministry was relational. Consider using the meeting to host a speaker who will enrich the parents’ faith lives, rather than just reading through the year’s schedule or reviewing policies. Distribute an info sheet with important housekeeping details at the end of a meeting instead of dedicating an entire meeting to logistics. If needed, consider a virtual meeting with video and audio capabilities, so feel like you’re together in the same room even if you can’t be.

Connection 3: Intergenerational Classes and Programs

Deepen the faith lives of students by first inviting their parents to a deeper faith. When the time is right and it’s safe to do so, consider including an intergenerational option in faith formation if it’s possible or include intergenerational events and classes. You might host a couple of retreats a year or promote a family service day each year, in which the entire family comes to the parish to participate together in a service project.

Connection 4: A Helpful Catechetical Program

The job of compiling information and sending individual communication and mail merges is a big one that takes time away from the other important tasks that Directors of Religious Education are responsible for. A good communication system, ideally included as a tool in your catechetical program, streamlines communication and saves you time and energy and also lets you share program information in a timely and personalized way.

Connection 5: Social Media

A social media presence brings parish programming into the 21st century, and into connection with the regular lives of those it serves. If your religious education program doesn’t already have an active account on a social media site, this is your invitation to create one. Social platforms are a great place to link videos about the faith, post important announcements, (safely) share photos from programs, or invite people to participate in events.

Connection 6: Family Mass

We know that as Catholics, the Eucharist is the source and summit of our faith lives. One of the best ways to connect with the families in our care is to meet them around the table of the Lord. When the time is right and it’s safe to do so, consider hosting a family Mass. Have the music be chosen specifically to appeal to students and involve them in the planning if you can. Be sure to end with a reception.

Letting Families Connect with You

By knowing families’ needs and particular preferences for communication, you can further strengthen your relationship with them as Director of Religious Education.

The Family Communication Questionnaire will inform you about the best times to reach your families, the types of events that they are interested in attending, and the social media platforms on which they are active and regularly find information.

Make sure that families know the way to get in touch with you in a way that is most convenient and effective for you, too!

Download the Family Communication Questionnaire and share it to learn more about the families in your program today.

In Summary

Each communication is an opportunity for Directors of Religious Education and parish catechetical leaders to connect with families of children enrolled in religious education. Make each effort count towards informing AND engaging children and families.






Sarah Shutrop currently serves as the Director of Formation for Immaculate Heart Academy in the Archdiocese of Newark. She oversees the spiritual life of the school and formation of its students. She holds an MA in Theology from the University of Notre Dame, and was recently featured as a presenter for Notre Dame & the USCCB’s pre-synodal conference, “Culture of Formation.” She resides in Northern New Jersey with her husband Kevin, her infant son Luke, and their dog Jacqueline.