Volume XIII Issue VI February 12, 2024

 Dear Erin,            

Resources for Lent


Daily Reflections during Lent from Bishop Barron

Catholic Apostolate Center: incredible collection of free online videos, clips, and other resources. Available in Espanol. Some Young adult content.

Creighton University Online Ministries: bulletin flyers, free downloadable Stations of the Cross, online retreats...

CRS: How to Practice Lent: videos, recipes, corporal and spiritual works of mercy

Hallow complete Guide to Lent for Catholics fully updated for 2024

40 ideas for Lent Sr. Janet Schaeffler, O.P.

USCCB Resources for Lent 2024 (available in Spanish and English)

Youth and Families

Catholic Icing: Lenten Activities for Children

Diocese of Des Moines "Living Lent"

Loyola Press: Stations of the Cross for Children and Youthvideos, reflections, activities

Loyola Cycle B resources for Lent

40 ideas for 40 days for families (Joe Paprocki)

Sadlier Lenten Resources: All available in Spanish and English: for classrooms and for families

Deacon Matt Halbach returns to DOSA

Deacon Matt Halbach, senior catechetical consultant for Sadlier and director of deacon formation for the Diocese of Des Moines, will be in DOSA for a week in March. He will be providing a series of workshops on family catechesis.

Catechetical Leaders Gathering on March 12 at 10:00 am at the Catholic Center.

Title: Forming Eucharistic Families

The Eucharist is the “source and summit of the Christian life,” CCC, 1324). Unfortunately, recent Pew and McGrath Institute polls have shown, at least half of Catholics do not believe/understand the Church’s teaching on the Eucharist. In addition, Catholic families are struggling to make the Eucharist/Mass a priority in their lives. Therefore, this presentation will focus on how catechists and catechetical leaders can help families make meaningful connections with the Eucharist in terms of belief and devotion, and in terms of applying Eucharistic faith to daily living.  

Jotform to RSVP for Catechetical Leader Gathering

Clergy session on March 13 at Marywood in the Wisdom Center.

Continental Breakfast at 9:30 am. Presentation at 10:00 am

Title: The Art of Accompaniment: Walking With Families in Your Parish

 This presentation will introduce the “art of accompaniment” (Joy of the Gospel, no. 169) by focusing on how Jesus accompanied his disciples in the Gospels. Next, we will look at accompaniment as a way of evangelization that is rooted in the cultivation of relationships based on respect, trust, and love and mediated through the actions and attitudes we choose to adopt. Finally, we will discuss practical ways to effectively accompany families and how to mobilize the art of accompaniment in your parishes. 

Jotform to RSVP for Deacon Matt clergy session

Title: Practicing the Art of Accompaniment in Your Family

Family session on March 14 at 7:00 pm

St. Joseph Parish, Cody Center, the Glenmore Room

This presentation will introduce, what Pope Francis has referred to as the “art of accompaniment” (Joy of the Gospel, no. 169) by focusing on how Jesus accompanied his disciples in the Gospels. Next, we will look at accompaniment as a way of evangelization that is rooted in the cultivation of relationships based on respect, trust, and love and mediated through the actions and attitudes we choose to adopt. Finally, we will reflect on practical ways that family members can more intentionally accompany one another.

Jotform to Register

Dcn Matt is being sponsored by Sadlier Religion Publishers

Thank you to all of the coordinators who attended one of the two Zooms last week in order to be better prepared for the three Rites of Election.

Instructional letter to pastors and coordinators

Seating Chart February 18, 2024

Seating Chart February 24, 2024

Seating Chart February 25, 2024

Call forward order for all three celebrations The yellow bar is for those sitting in either the west or east transepts so that they know to get up and head toward the back for their turn.

Sample outline of letter requesting delegation to confirm This sample letter is for you to use if you have baptized Catholic, uncatechized people in your OCIA process.

(This is not for use if you have Catholics who have received First Communion. The Bishop confirms them himself by virtue of his office as Bishop at two Adult Confirmations per year. They are not part of an OCIA process.)

Confirmation with Youth in DOSA

Some reminders and best practices:

Administering Confirmation to Youth in DOSA

Administering Confirmation to Youth (Spanish)

Both Bishop Pohlmeier and Bishop Estévez will be confirming this year, so please make sure you are aware and preparing appropriately for each.

Letters to the confirming Bishop are expected to be in his hands 3 weeks prior. They are to be typed.

Prior to the celebration, the youth should be gathered and calmed in a space outside of the main body of the church.

Also, many members of their families are not familiar with being in church, so providing something like the Eucharistic Revival Sacred Silence pages might help these folks to more fully prepare for this sacred moment. These are below and the OCF has copies in the office.

Sacred Silence pew card (English)

Sacred Silence pew card (Spanish)

If there are to be pictures in church with either Bishop, you should have at least one person whose only role is to make this run smoothly and reverently.

Ministry Formation Program information sessions for the Class of 2027

The Diocesan Ministry Formation Program (MFP) is frequently called the best kept secret in the diocese. Now in its 32nd year, it should not be. In October 1990, Bishop John J. Snyder tasked some local leaders to create a program that would help the laity to live out their baptismal call to evangelize. He wanted this program to focus not only on theological background, but also on the development of pastoral application, leadership skills, and personal spiritual growth. One can expect from the MFP:

Three years of comprehensive growth in theological topics, human development, pastoral skills, and spiritual formation through classes, group study, skills workshops, prayer experiences, and retreats.

We are hosting 5 information sessions across the diocese to share more information and practical steps:

Sunday, March 3 Queen of Peace Parish following 10:00 am Mass

Monday, March 11 St. Catherine of Siena Parish 6:30 -8:00 pm

Monday, March 18 St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish  6:30 – 8:00 pm

An RSVP is nice, but not a requirement: Lauren's Email

Updated Certification Policy for DOSA

Bishop Pohlmeier has approved updates to the certification policy for the diocese. These are effective on February 1, 2024. Most of the changes are updates based on what has been provided for us in the Directory for Catechesis. Other updates are further clarifications on what is expected for people to teach in the name of the Church. Each department head will discuss these updates at their respective next gathering of their leaders.

Certification Policy

Updated Basic Certification Record Form

We are pleased to announce the time and location for the annual "Catholic School Special. Registration has opened. (early, but to get people thinking about their new hires)

June 10 -13, 2024

San Juan de Rio Parish Hall, upstairs meeting room hosted by San Juan del Rio School

Monday, June 10, 2024 Faith Development and Catechetical/Legal

Tuesday, June 11, 2024 Role of the Catechist and Practical Skills

Wednesday, June 12, 2024 Scripture and Church

Thursday, June 13, 2024 Liturgy/Sacraments and Basic Beliefs

Jotform to register

We will be offering a few "pop up sessions" during the spring. If you have a teacher/catechist who needs one or two classes to finish, please email me at Erin's Email

Continuing Formation

(Level III Opportunities)

16th Annual Summer School of Theology

June 17-21, 2024

Dr. Joshua McManaway

McGrath Institute for Church Life

He has Spoken to Us through a Son:

Christology, Salvation, Revelation

Registration is now open for the Summer School with the usual early bird special. The School meets daily, Monday through Friday from 9:00 am - 3:00 pm in the Wisdom Center at Marywood.

Summer School of Theology Brochure

jotform with more info and to register

Conversations that Matter: The Eucharist and Catholic Social Teaching

The Eucharist and Catholic Social Teaching

Webinar discussion on Tuesday, February 13, 2024 | 3 - 4:15 p.m.

In 2022, the USCCB announced plans for the Eucharistic Revival, which will culminate in a pilgrimage later this summer when Catholics from around the country will gather in Indianapolis for a Eucharistic Congress. In light of the upcoming Congress, the effects or fruits of the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist call for deeper discussion. In the words of Pope Benedict, “A Eucharist which does not pass over into the concrete practice of love is intrinsically fragmented” (Deus Caritas Est, §14), and the Catechism of the Catholic Church states “the Eucharist commits us to the poor” (CCC, n. 1397). Our speakers will explore this intrinsic connection between the Eucharist and Catholic Social Teaching, especially as it concerns the poor. Join us as we ask how, why, and in what ways does the Eucharist commit us to the poor.


Jennifer Newsome Martin, Ph.D., is a Catholic systematic theologian with expertise in the thought of Hans Urs von Balthasar. Holding a joint appointment in the Program of Liberal Studies and the Department of Theology at the University of Notre Dame, she will begin in July 2024 as the Director of the de Nicola Center for Ethics and Culture.

William T. Cavanaugh, Ph.D., is Professor of Catholic Studies and Director of the Center for World Catholicism and Intercultural Theology at DePaul University. His degrees are from the universities of Notre Dame, Cambridge, and Duke. He is editor of eight books and author of nine more, including, most recently,

Emmanuel Katongole, Ph.D., earned a Ph.D. in philosophy from the Catholic University of Louvain, undergraduate degrees in philosophy and in theology (Urbaniana, Rome) and a diploma in theology and religious studies from Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda. Katongole, a Catholic priest ordained by the Archdiocese of Kampala, is a professor in the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies with a joint appointment in Theology & Peace Studies.

Link to register

Teaching Young People How to Pray

Fr. Tim Anastos

February 27th 3:30 pm

Young people today are constantly bombarded with more noise, more screens, and more anxiety. Would you believe that the result of this is that they desire more silence, prayer, and intimacy? Fr. Tim Anastos— a priest of the Archdiocese of Chicago and the assistant chaplain at the St. John Paul II Newman Center at the University of Illinois–Chicago—has personally experienced this among the young people to whom he ministers. In this webinar, Fr. Tim will share practical insights on guiding young people to develop a personal prayer life and deepen their faith. He will address common roadblocks and lies in the spiritual development of young people while concentrating on the fruits of Lectio Divina, spiritual journaling, and Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament as a font of life for high schoolers, college students, and young adults.

Go to this webinarSIG

These are all being taped, so you can register and watch later.

Catechesis on Prayer &

Prayer Practices

John Michael Reyes

Tuesdays February 6 & 13


Leadership Skills & Practices

for Catechetical Leaders

Dr. Dan Ebener

Thursdays March 7 & March14


Building Intercultural Competence in Catechetical Ministry

Sr. Ruth Bolarte, D.Min.

Thursdays April 11 & 18 


Inviting, Forming, and Supporting Parish Catechists

Jayne Mondoy

Tuesdays May 7 & May 14


Tuition for each course is $50. Link to register for these: NCCL Courses

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