There is a focus in the Catholic Church today on adult faith formation. It may seem new, but faith formation is an ancient practice. What is new is the conscious efforts being made by parishes and dioceses to provide formation opportunities for adults. These opportunities are needed because significant changes have occurred within the Church in the last 50 years.
The term "Adult Faith Formation" may seem new, but it is used now instead of the more familiar "adult religious education". Adult religious education may bring to mind images of instruction, lectures and classrooms. Adult Faith Formation on the other hand includes instruction, interaction and many other types of opportunities for people to grow and mature in the Catholic faith and its social teachings.
We can grow in faith by learning new things about our beliefs, by becoming closer to God through them and by making them the guiding principles by which we live. Our Catholic faith is shaped by many factors. These may include our relationships with other people, how we experience God acting in our lives, the decisions we make and the consequences of those decisions.
Three factors, necessary, interrelated and intertwined that influence our faith lives greatly are:
The Catholic Church, built on the rock of St. Peter, is as much concerned about adult faith formation today as it was during Peter's time. The Church recognizes that unless it intentionally offers opportunities to help adults understand what Catholics believe and show us how Jesus taught us to live, other voices and forces within our secular pagonistic culture will influence us to believe and act outside the Catholic faith.
At St. Cecilia's Parish our ongoing AFF Program is designed so participants can choose the day, time, location and subject of topics. The sessions usually begin in September each year and end before Christmas. This year the topics were:"The Gospel of St. Luke", "Jesus of Nazareth", "St. Francis","St. Paul","The Chruch Fathers","The Circle of Mysteries" and "Getting to know the Bible".Bible Study continues throughout the year.
For information on the AFF Program, call our Parish Office at 415.664.8481.