The Children’s Faith Formation program exists to provide sacramental preparation for First Reconciliation, First Eucharist, and Confirmation as well as ongoing faith formation for children of St. Matthew’s parishioners ages 6-18 who have received these sacraments. In support of parents who are the first teachers of their children, the program strives to communicate the person and message of Jesus Christ in the context of the beliefs and practices of the Roman Catholic Church. The program presents the four pillars of the Catechism of the Catholic Church – Faith, Sacraments, Morality, and Prayer – in such a way that the children of our parish begin to understand how these pillars apply to their lives.
Children's Faith Formation
The two major components of the Children’s Faith Formation program are active, regular participation in weekly classes and at weekly Sunday Mass. It is expected that parents will attend a special class for them at the same time as their children and that families will worship together at Mass before or afer class.
Classes: Classes for both children and parents meet weekly (with a few exceptions) on Sundays from 9:45am to 11am in the St. Matthew’s Education Center located at 1726 N Street NW (behind the Cathedral). Families are expected to worship at the 8:30am Mass before class or the 11:30am Mass following class. The year begins in mid-September and ends in late mid-May.
Registration: Registration for the upcoming year begins in late spring and continues through the summer. Registration closes two weeks after the first day of classes. The registration fee is $50.00 per family. Tuition assistance and a payment plan are available for consideration upon request.
Children's Sacramental Preparation
Preparation for First Reconciliation and First Eucharist occurs for children in first or second grade, depending on their age. Confirmation preparation in the Archdiocese of Washington is a two-year process that typically occurs in seventh and eighth grade.
Children eight years or older who are unbaptized or are baptized but have had no formal religious education are viable candidates for the children’s catechumenate process. Families interested in discussing this possibility should cpntact Theresa Prymuszewski, Pastoral Associate for Faith Formation, at 202-587-5139.
The success of the Children’s Faith Formation program is a result of the commitment of adult parishioners who generously give of their time and talent to help the children and youth of our parish grow in their faith. Catechists are expected to work toward catechist certification through the Faith Foundations program of the Archdiocese of Washington.
Volunteers who, in the course of their volunteer work at St. Matthew’s, have contact or will have contact with children, must comply with the Archdiocese of Washington's Child Protection Policy. All prospective volunteers for such positions at St. Matthew's are asked to download the Child Protection Policy Compliance Checklist for Volunteers from the Archdiocese of Washington, follow the instructions, and then make an appointment with Theresa Prymuszewski, St. Matthew’s Child Protection Compliance Coordinator, to complete the process. Volunteers must comply with the Archdiocesan Policy before beginning their volunteer ministry with children.
Parish Child Protection Coordinator: Theresa Prymuszewski, Pastoral Associate for Faith Formation (202-587-5139 or firstname.lastname@example.org)
Contact: For more information about children's faith formation/sacramental preparation, please contact Theresa Prymuszewski, Pastoral Associate for Faith Formation (contact info above).