Saint John Bosco Faith Formation 2023-2024
"God freely created us so that we might know, love, and serve him in this life and be happy with him forever."
-St. Ignatius of Loyola
Our parish Faith Formation program seeks to help children and their families know God and His church in order to better love and serve Him and others in their lives. Through regular participation in the celebration of the Mass and sacraments, classes, youth ministry events, family activities, and service projects, we hope our students not only learn about their faith but about how to live out their faith in meaningful and beautiful ways.
Your family is the center of our program and your child's faith formation. Our goal is to support you as the first and foremost catechist of your child. Families with children Grades K-8 attend a 2.5 hour Faith Formation session together once a month. These sessions include both Mass and the related class session. At least one parent/guardian must attend with thier child(ren). There will be opportunities for families to learn, share, discuss, and serve together with other families in our parish community. This Family Faith Formation model is an exciting direction that parishes around the diocese and country are finding meaningful and impactful.
The Spiritual and Corporal Works of Mercy are the ways through which we are asked to serve God and love one another. We join our students and their families in seeking those in need around us and ministering to them in any way our faith teaches us to.
In the lower grades, we focus on opportunities for families to serve together; in the middle school years, the themes of Catholic Social Teachings are introduced to our students and opportunities increase for our teens to learn about the needs around them and to serve. By our Confirmation Program, students are fostering service-minded hearts by logging 2 hours of service a month throughout the year in our parish, their schools, and the community.
Opportunities for service are updated regularly at https://www.saintjohnboscobranford.org/service-opportunities and on Google Classroom.
Our parish Youth Ministry Program is an important partner to our Faith Formation Program – allowing our students the opportunities to grow in their faith, explore specific questions and interests, find support and prayer in difficult times, and enjoy a sense of community with other parish teens. See https://www.saintjohnboscobranford.org/youthministry for all youth ministry offers. Contact Kim Reinwald with any questions or just to drop by to chat (203-488-1607, ext. 120 or [email protected]).
Jenny Smith, Faith Formation Coordinator
203-488-2998, ext. 202
Regina Martindale, Faith Formation Office Admin
203-488-2998, ext. 201
Steve Schambach, Faith Formation Assistant
Faith Formation Sessions
Families with children Grades K-8 will attend a 2.5 hour Faith Formation session together once a month at St. Therese, including both Mass and the related class session. Families will have the flexibility to choose to attend any of the 4 sessions that best for their schedule month to month. Attendance will reflect class and Mass.
At least one parent/guardian must attend with their child(ren). Though at least one adult is required to attend with each child, we welcome any/all family members to our sessions, including grandparents, siblings, etc. There will be opportunities for families to learn, share, discuss, grow, and serve together with other families in our parish community. Babysitting is available for younger children. Families will register for one of the following sessions:
Session A: St. Therese, Sundays 7:30-10:00 AM (9:00AM Mass included)
Session B: St. Therese, Sundays 9:00-11:30 AM (9:00AM Mass included)
Session C: St. Therese, Sundays 2:30-5:00 PM (4:00PM Mass included)
Session D: St. Therese, Sundays 4:00-6:30 PM (4:00PM Mass included)
Make-up classes will be offered on Tuesday evenings following the monthly Sunday session from 5:00-7:00 PM at St. Therese, with a recorded attendance at one of the weekend Masses.
Any parents, adults, or teens over 18 who would be interested in helping in the program (either planning or facilitating), we would love to have you! Please reach out to Jenny Smith at [email protected].
K-8 Families are also encouraged to attend one of the Family Masses on the 1st Sunday of each month (9:00 AM at St. Therese or 10:30AM at St. Mary) as a second touch-base with their peers and catechists between monthly class sessions. The music is also performed by youth in the parish and Coffee and... is offered in the Halls after for refreshment and fellowship.
- Children in Grades K-4 are invited to attend a separate Children's Liturgy of the Word in the Hall during Mass to engage in the readings and homily at an age-appropriate level with their peers, along with a fun craft or activity to build connection. They rejoin their families in the church right after the homily.
- Children in Grades 5+ are invited to attend a Teen Bible Chat directly following the Masses during Coffee and... in the Hall to informally discuss the Mass readings and share responses and thoughts.
*Please note, children who are currently enrolled at East Shoreline Catholic Academy (ESCA) do NOT need to register for the parish Faith Formation program, even if they are making a sacrament here this year!
The purpose of the Confirmation Program is to inspire our teens to be courageous and intentional Catholics in today’s world. Classes will meet one Sunday a month for a 2.5 hour in-person lesson, including time for learning, fellowship, and devotion. The goal is for students to apply what they learn into the everyday practice of living out their Catholic faith. Service projects and participation in parish youth ministry throughout the year, as well as a youth retreat, are key components of our Confirmation Program.
Teens in Grade 9 (or any teen entering the Confirmation Program) will attend a 2.5-hour Confirmation Prep session the first Sunday of every month at St. Mary, complete 10 Service/Ministry hours, and submit monthly Mass reflections.
Teens in Grade 10 or above, who have met all of the requirements of the Year 1 Confirmation Prep Program, will be invited to the Year 2 Confirmation Program in order to receive the sacrament of Confirmation in the spring. Students will attend a 2.5-hour session the first Sunday of every month, complete 8 Service/Ministry hours and an independent project, submit monthly Mass reflections, and participate in a retreat and an individual meeting with Father before Confirmation.
*Note - Incoming Year 2 students for the 2023-2024 year will be admitted once they have submitted their Faith Checks, Sponsor Interviews, and Saint Paragraphs on Google Classroom before the first class.
YEAR 1/Generally GRADE 9
Sundays, St. Mary Church, 4:30-7:00 PM (6:00 p.m. Devotion Hour included)
YEAR 2/Generally GRADE 10
Sundays, St. Mary Church, 6:00-8:30 PM (6:00 p.m. Devotion Hour included)
FAITH FORMATION REGISTRATION
*Please note, children who are currently enrolled at East Shoreline Catholic Academy (ESCA) do NOT need to register for the parish Faith Formation program!
(if not already registered with St. John Bosco Parish -
The registration fee may be submitted by cash or check to the Faith Formation Office, or you may pay online at https://www.osvhub.com/saintjohnboscobranford/giving/funds/faith-formation.
For Grades K-1, the fee is $75 per child
There is a $225 family maximum, and NO FEE for children of Catechists/Aides/Volunteers
If the fee presents legitimate hardship for your family, please write a brief letter to the Coordinator to request scholarship assistance and return to the Faith Formation Office.
Additional catechists, volunteers, and Confirmation Team members will help us better support our students through these various programs, classes, and activities. If you have any interest, please see the “Catechist and Adult Volunteers” page and share your information on the registration form and/or contact Faith Formation Program Coordinator Jenny Smith at 203-488-2998, ext. 202 or [email protected]. The role only requires a passion for children and your faith, and compliance with the Safe Environment requirements (a brief online VIRUS training session and background check).
Confirmed teens and those enrolled in our Confirmation Prep programs (Grades 9-10) are highly encouraged to join us in facilitating and supporting these classes. There are many different needs - from helping lead the classes to helping adults with technology to meeting with kids, etc. Participating teens will be recognized as part of our Student Leadership Team.
Our in-person classes are supplemented by Google Classroom where families can access additional resources, ministry/service opportunities, lesson make-up material, and regular communication with catechists and coordinators. Parish and Faith Formation Program news will also be posted regularly.
Google Meets will be reserved for weather cancellations or impromptu meetings and/or conferences. All other class sessions will be held in-person.
Note: Even if you are currently in Google Classroom for your school, you need to go through your account at our domain (@sjbfaithformation.com) in order to access our faith formation classroom)
Newly Registered Students: you will be emailed an invite with your new username and password during the month of September.
Returning Students: Follow the directions below to access/sign into your current Gmail account and SJB Faith Formation Google Classroom:
- Go to google.com and sign in using your username and password (Your username is your full name, no punctuation @sjbfaithformation.com and your temporary password is sjbff2022)
- You will sign in, accept terms of service, and create your own password. (please write this down and don’t forget it. Share it with your parents so they can access Classroom for information).
- You can then join Google Classroom. Be sure you are in your new google account (check circle at top right for account ending in @sjbfaithformation.com) and click on “Classroom” from your list of apps (the square of dots beside the circle) or go to classroom.google.com.
- Once in Classroom, you will be invited to join from Classroom and in a welcome email in your inbox.
If you have any issues signing it, please reach out to the administrator at [email protected].
EVANGELUS TEXT/EMAIL SYSTEM
By registering for the program, you will automatically be enrolled in the Evangelus text message/email notification system through the parish (This is NOT SPAM). This is how we will get important Faith Formation & Youth Ministry updates and notifications to you! You can opt out at any time.
If you would like to manually sign up, visit eva.us/johnbosco
St. John Bosco Parish Faith Formation Office
105 Leetes Island Rd, Branford, CT 06405
203-488-2998 | [email protected]