The SFX Religious Education Advisory Board began over twenty five years ago to help support the families registered for Religious Education, the volunteer catechists and the RE Coordinator. Today, SFX has 565+ families in ten towns. There are 100+ catechists and several aides. The Religious Education Program is fortunate to have two secretaries and an extremely resourceful Religious Education Coordinator. During school hours for the Religious Education students, SFX parent volunteers staff the safety enforcement posts.
The Advisory Board meets the first Monday of the month during the school year at 9:00 a.m. in the Rectory Courtyard Room.
For more information about the program or the Advisory Board, please contact Terri Simeoni, RE Coordinator, at 708-352-4555.
RE Advisory Board Goals
The SFX Religious Education Advisory Board works to:
Provide support to the catechists and RE Coordinator in an advisory capacity
Encourage and support parents to participate in the religious education program as well as to grow in the role of their child’s “primary catechist”
Build community through sponsorship and participation in parish-wide events
The Board assists the catechists through a program called Catechist Outreach (CO). CO encourages catechists to informally involve parents in the Religious Education classroom and grade-level activities. One goal of this involvement is for catechists to receive more wide-spread volunteer help, hopefully easing the catechists’ responsibilities. Another goal is to encourage parents to become more fully invested in their child’s religious education, thus fostering a strong religious education community.
A Religious Education Library provides resources for the catechists.
At the start of the year, several elements provide the RE parents with the fundamentals of the program, including an Opening Parent Meeting for new families and comprehensive Important Dates Information. New families are sponsored, and a formal welcome is extended to them for the first year.
Throughout the year, the Catechist Outreach component encourages parents to work with their children in and out of the classroom. By volunteering in their child’s classroom, assisting outside of class, or at special liturgies, parents make a wonderful contribution to the children and the catechists in the program. They also strengthen their role as the primary catechist for their child.
The Religious Education Coordinator sends a weekly News Bulletin to encourage parent participation and knowledge of program activities and events in the parish.
The SFX Religious Education Program depends upon parent volunteers, so the Board works to instill a community spirit within the various volunteer opportunities.
The Board further builds community through participation in parish-wide service projects such as the Toy Shower and the Franciscan Soup Kitchens. The Day School and Religious Education Program sponsor speakers together to provide adult education. The Board hosts a welcoming Pizza Party, inviting over 1,000 people.
The Board is represented on the Education Commission of the Parish Pastoral Council and is encouraged to attend a wide-range of parish events.