A Family of Faith collection of parish-based family curriculum

Questions? Email us or call (800) 888-9344

A Family of Faith promo

A New Way to Think About Religious Education

We created A Family of Faith to help develop strong Catholic families in which children learn the joys of following Jesus Christ and the truths of our Faith through the witness of Christian life given by their parents. Although individual families can easily use A Family of Faith independent of the parish, we designed this program to be used by parishes as an alternative or complement to CCD classes.

Studies tell us that parental involvement in the faith-life of their child is by far the most important element in ensuring that a child develops into a practicing Christian. A Family of Faith provides both the parish catechist and the parent with an easy-to-use, turnkey solution to catechizing the whole family and helping parents lead their children to heaven.

Scott Hahn photo
"A Family of Faith is inspiring yet practical. This series has the potential to strengthen and renew the Catholic family as well as every parish that uses it."
Scott Hahn
Father, Catholic author, speaker

Why family faith formation is important

  • Children won't simply learn the faith, they'll live it in the home as parents learn how to develop a vibrant Catholic family life.
  • Mass attendance is strengthened as parents deepen their commitment to the Faith.
  • Builds parish community as adult friendships are formed.
  • More flexible than CCD for parents and catechists alike.
  • Children witness their parents engaging with the Faith as they collaborate on monthly lessons.
Patrick Madrid photo
A Family of Faith is a proven program that will instill in entire families not only a knowledge of our Faith, but a great love for Jesus Christ and His Church, the family of God.
Patrick Madrid
Father and Catholic apologist
Questions?
Email us or call (800) 888-9344.
"I'm so happy that we're now treating our faith as a central part of our family life and not as something we just drop the kids off to do once a week."
Family of Faith Parent

How It Works

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A Family of Faith follows a four-year cycle: one pillar of the Catechism is covered per year from September through May. Parents are given a detailed picture of authentic and vibrant Catholic family life, the tools to implement this life in their home, and age-appropriate readings, games, crafts, and other activities to help them deepen among their children a love for Christ and His Church.

Each year is self-contained, and so families may join at any time in the cycle. After four years, families will have been guided through the entirety of the Catechism and will have developed a broad understanding of the Church's teachings. Families then cycle through the program again in order to deepen their knowledge and develop the habits needed for life-long spiritual growth.

Although the program is flexible and can be tailored to your parish, we recommend:

  1. Your parish catechist gather parents once per month to catechize them through insightful teachings and discussions. This meeting is meant to help parents assume their role as the primary educator and catechist of their children.
  2. Two weeks later, the entire family gathers after a Sunday Mass for a short "community meeting" with activities ranging from picnics and feast day celebrations to prayer groups and adoration.
  3. Over the course of the month, parents teach two lessons to their children at home with the easy-to-use A Family of Faith parent guide and student activity books.

The Parent's Guide

  • Background essays covering each month's content
  • Notes for conveying this content to children in age-appropriate ways
  • Instructions for activities and craft projects
  • Stories of the saints and other notable Catholics
  • Suggestions for living the faith at home, such as…
    • Guidance for creating and decorating a prayer space
    • Prayers for special occasions
    • Tips for talking about tough subjects
    • Ways to bring the liturgical year to life in the home
Parent Family of Faith materials

The Children's Activity Book

The Children's Activity Book is designed to help children come to know the Catholic Faith through fun games and activities. The Parent's Guide offers talking points for how to use each activity in the children's book as a teachable moment, leading the child to a deeper relationship with Christ.

Activities in the Children's Activity Book include…

  • Age-appropriate readings and activities
  • Scripture memorization and copy work
  • Prayer memorization
  • Saints biographies
  • Games and crafts
  • Drawings and coloring pages
  • Journal pages
  • Prompts for original prayers and reflections
Student Family of Faith materials

The Leader's Guide

We have also developed a leader's guide so the parish catechist can make the most of each meeting with families. The leader's guide includes:

  • Start-up guide for organizing and leading the program
  • Trivia games and other ice breakers for adult meetings
  • Lecture notes and PowerPoint slides
  • Detailed plans with games and activities for community meetings
  • Instructions for integrating A Family of Faith into the life of the parish
  • Suggestions for ensuring accountability

We created this project to meet the demand among parishes who recognize that families are disengaging from the Faith. Even many parents who send their children to CCD struggle to create an authentic Catholic family in their home.

Studies tell us that parental involvement in the faith life of their child is by far the most important element in ensuring that a child develops into a practicing Christian. A Family of Faith provides both the parish and the parent with an easy-to-use, turn-key solution to catechizing the whole family, restoring parents to their role as primary educator.

Questions? Email us or call (800) 888-9344

Donna O'Boyle photo
A Family of Faith is perfect for any family looking to catechize their children in an effective and structured way.
Donna-Marie Cooper O'Boyle
Mother, EWTN host, and author

Content Overview

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Year One: The Creed

  • September: Man's capacity for God
  • October: God comes to meet man
  • November: Man's response to God
  • December: God the Father
  • January: Jesus Christ, Part I
  • February: Jesus Christ, Part II
  • March: The Holy Spirit
  • April: The Holy Catholic Church
  • May: Life Everlasting

Year Two: The Sacraments

Released Spring 2017

  • September: The Holy Trinity and Paschal Mystery
  • October: What Is a Sacrament?
  • November: Baptism
  • December: Confirmation & Gifts of the Holy Spirit
  • January: The Most Holy Eucharist
  • February: Penance and Reconciliation
  • March: Anointing of the Sick
  • April: Holy Orders & Holy Matrimony
  • May: Other Liturgical Celebrations

Year Three: Life in Christ

Released Spring 2018

  • September: Man's Vocation to Beatitude
  • October: Man's Freedom
  • November: Morality, Sin and Virtue
  • December: The Person and Society
  • January: God's Salvation: Law and Grace
  • February: The 1st, 2nd, & 3rd Commandments
  • March: The 4th, 5th, & 6th Commandments
  • April: The 7th & 8th Commandments
  • May: The 9th & 10th Commandments

Year Four: Christian Prayer

Released Spring 2018

  • September: The Revelation of Prayer
  • October: Prayer in the Age of the Church
  • November: The Tradition of Prayer
  • December: The Life of Prayer
  • January: The Battle of Prayer
  • February: The Lord's Prayer
  • March: Our Father, Who Art in Heaven
  • April: The Seven Petitions
  • May: The Final Doxology

Questions? Email us or call (800) 888-9344

What People Are Saying about A Family of Faith

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Tim Staples photo
Children learn and retain the Faith best when their parents are models of Christian life. A Family of Faith provides parents with the knowledge, tools, and advice they need to fulfill this role — even if they weren’t catechized well themselves.
Tim Staples, Father and Catholic apologist at Catholic Answers
Johanna Paruch photo
A Family of Faith is a must for every parish: a solid and engaging alternative to CCD that spiritual forms parents and prepares them to be their children’s primary catechists.
Sr. M. Johanna Paruch, FSGM, Ph.D., Franciscan University
Mike Aquilina photo
These books are stuffed full of great material: beautiful Catholic art, a truly manageable reading plan, Sacred Scriptures, and stories from the lives of the saints.
Mike Aquilina, Father and Catholic author and speaker
Johnnette Benkovic photo
A Family of Faith provides families with the resources they need to understand the beauty of Catholic teaching as well as the tools to integrate it into every aspect of family life.
Johnnette S. Benkovic, Mother, author, and EWTN host
My husband is not Catholic and he is learning a lot!
Parent using A Family of Faith
My children are very eager to complete the activities in their books.
Parent using A Family of Faith
We benefited from this project because it made learning for our children fun, so they are eager and engaged to learn about the Catholic Faith.
Parent using A Family of Faith
This really got a lot of discussion about creation and prayer going with our kids. They have started using their Bibles more. We never did that with them.
Parent using A Family of Faith
I'm so happy that we're now treating our faith as a central part of our family life and not as something we just drop the kids off to do once a week.
Parent using A Family of Faith
I love that this program is not just about our kids doing worksheets. It's about making our life together authentically Catholic.
Parent using A Family of Faith

Questions? Email us or call (800) 888-9344

Products and Samples

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Family of Faith Vol. I Leader’s Guide  Cover Image

Family of Faith Vol. I Leader’s Guide

Family of Faith Vol. 1 Parent’s Guide Cover Image

Family of Faith Vol. 1 Parent’s Guide

Family of Faith Vol. 1 Children’s Book Cover Image

Family of Faith Vol. 1 Children’s Book

Family of Faith v2 Leader Guide Cover Image

Family of Faith v2 Leader Guide

Family of Faith v2 Parent Guide Cover Image

Family of Faith v2 Parent Guide

Family of Faith v2 Children Guide Cover Image

Family of Faith v2 Children Guide

Available Spring 2018

  • Children's Activity Book: Volume Three - Life in Christ
  • Parent's Guide: Volume Three - Life in Christ
  • Leader's Guide: Volume Three - Life in Christ
  • Children's Activity Book: Volume Four - Christian Prayer
  • Parent's Guide: Volume Four - Christian Prayer
  • Leader's Guide: Volume Four - Christian Prayer

Frequently Asked Questions


Does A Family of Faith replace CCD or religious education classes?

It can, but doesn't have to. Some parishes offer A Family of Faith as an alternative to traditional CCD classes, and some use it in place of these classes. Parents are also free to purchase and use the program on their own.

What if the parent doesn't know the Faith well, or know how to teach?

A Family of Faith is completely turn-key for the parents, giving them the easy-to-understand content and step-by-step instructions for each activity, helping them to gain knowledge of the Faith and confidence as they teach it. Various tools are also available to help parents turn potentially problematic situations into successes, such as what to do when a child asks a question you do not know.

Shouldn't the religious education of children be left to the parish?

Since the current CCD and religious education model is struggling to transform family life, and since many young people who go through CCD are leaving the faith, we are proposing a new model (which is actually an ancient model) where the parish focuses on catechizing the parents in order to strengthen parent/child engagement in the Faith. This increases the likelihood that a child will receive an authentic education in the Faith and develop into a knowledgeable and practicing Catholic. Countless studies have shown that parental engagement with the child is the single most effective way to develop young people into disciples of Christ.

But what if parents don't want to be bothered and remove their child from religious instruction altogether? Wouldn't we be better off just maintaining the status quo?

This did not prove to be the case in the pilot tests we conducted among nine parishes nationwide. While it is true that some parents will likely decide to offer no instruction than to participate in this program, the vast majority of families are finding A Family of Faith to be far more flexible, enabling them to transform the family activities they already do into encounters with God. Parents are able to enter into those “teachable moments” of everyday life. A Family of Faith leads parents into a conversion to Jesus Christ, which is beneficial to the parish, but most of all to the children they are raising.

Is there a lot of work involved for families? How much time will this program take?

No. There are two lessons to teach each month, along with a variety of family and child activities. Each lesson should take no more than 30-45 minutes to complete, and requires minimal preparation on the part of the parent. For the parish catechists, our leader’s guide provides them with ice breakers, presentation notes, discussion questions and answers, and step-by-step instructions for activities, freeing the catechist from the burden of developing all of this on his or her own.

For what age children has this program been developed?

Because this program focuses on teaching the faith to parents and helping them make it an organic part of family life, it is perfect for parents with children of all ages. For example, a monthly feature called “Your Catholic Home” gives specific advice for ways to make the Faith a regular part of each day. The Children’s Activity Books are recommended for children in grades K-8, and features engaging activities at various grade levels. Parents can skip the activities they believe are too elementary or too advanced for their child.

Does my child have to be a strong reader?

No. Although readings and written activities are offered, the Children’s Activity Book and Parent Guide offer a wide variety of activities using numerous strategies to impart and assess knowledge that do not rely on reading or writing.

How many meetings are required per month?

We recommend and provide everything you need for two meetings per month: one 90-minute session early in the month with parents only, and a second 90-minute community meeting after Sunday Mass near the end of the month. The 90-minute session catechizes parents and helps them to deepen their knowledge of the Faith. Entire families attend the 90-minute community meeting, which is meant to help ensure accountability and build community through games and other family activities.

What tools does the program offer to ensure accountability?

The program offers several options, along with a planning worksheet for parish teams to determine how they will build in accountability. For example: Families are given a year-long project that they will add to each month; catechists may require parents to bring these projects in occasionally to check progress. Each community meeting begins with a question and answer session with children, which gives the catechist a chance to assess the knowledge of individual children. Finally, the last session of each year features a fun and interactive game with dozens of questions covering content from the whole year. This game could be used as a final written assessment if desired.

How does the program handle sacramental preparation?

A Family of Faith does not treat the Sacraments as isolated events and is not designed to serve as preparation for receiving the Sacraments. Students grow in their spiritual journey through regular activities with their parents, prayer, Mass attendance, and participation in parish life. Because this program moves away from grade-based cohorts and focuses on transmitting the faith as a whole, preparation to receive the Sacraments occurs as the child naturally matures and shows evidence of understanding. Each child’s readiness to receive the Sacraments of Reconciliation, Eucharist, and Confirmation should be assessed on an individual basis. If a parish has a sacramental preparation program assessment, it may be offered in addition to the content presented in A Family of Faith.

How will I know my children are learning?

You will undoubtedly see your children learn as they memorize Scripture verses and are able to define key words of our Catholic Faith. Children will demonstrate in conversations their understanding of concepts of the Faith, and you’ll see them begin to live their Faith through service projects, an enriched prayer life, and a deepening relationship with Jesus Christ. The child’s desire to know, love, and serve Jesus is proof that they are learning and becoming a disciple of Christ.

Does the program offer help for getting families involved?

Yes. We offer tools for planning, tips for developing an “elevator pitch” and getting the word out, strategies for recruiting and retaining families, a sample bulletin announcement, and much more.

Questions? Email us or call (800) 888-9344