Archdiocese of Hartford
Office of Education, Evangelization and Catechesis
November 12, 2020
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    On Behalf of Anne Clubb, Director of Community Engagement:

    National Catholic Educational Association’s (NCEA) Discover Catholic Schools Week 
    Please remember to celebrate Discover Catholic Schools Week (November 8-14, 2020) by sharing the good news about your school with prospective families. This is a great time to launch the school’s year-round marketing efforts, begin to attract new students, reach out to supportive donors, and reconnect with alumni. We encourage administrators to showcase what makes the school so special and share why it is the best choice for inquiring families. To access graphics to help you promote Discover Catholic Schools Week, click here.  The NCEA website marketing pages also offer excellent “Catholic School Snaps” graphics that can be used to promote schools year-round.
     
    Finalsite Resources for Schools:
    Schools are encouraged to explore the resource library on the Finalsite website for a great deal of helpful information on fundraising, marketing, social media, communications and website design: https://www.finalsite.com/resources. This website also offers a great library of blogs on many different topics to help negotiate school enrollment management and advancement efforts: https://www.finalsite.com/blog. Finally, there is an excellent COVID-19 hub of information on the Finalsite website that offers guidance on all things virtual (communications, admissions, events, etc.): https://www.finalsite.com/resources/coronavirus-communication-strategies-for-schools. Check out these resources to discover what schools throughout the country are doing to reach prospective families and potential donors.

    On Behalf of BJ Daly Horell, Director of the Catholic Biblical School:

    Google Classroom and Thursday Tech Help
    The Catholic Biblical School (CBS) now has an online domain of its own, and all enrolled students have access to the CBS GSuite for calendars,  in-class communications, and more. CBS students and teachers who would like assistance using the new Hartford Catholic Biblical School GSuite are invited to attend open technical help sessions with Jennifer McClintock on Thursdays, November 12 and 19, 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.  In December please email Jennifer.McClintock@aohct.org  for additional sessions or individual times, as needed. 
     
    CBS Unit One Memory Exercises and Thanksgiving Break
    Unless your teacher has made different arrangements with your class, the following schedule marks the end of the first unit of CBS classes:
    • CBS Review Week: November 9-14
    • CBS Memory Exercises: November 16-21 (with intro to CBS Unit 2 Lesson 1)
    • Thanksgiving Break: November 23-28
    Catholic Biblical School (CBS) In-person Class Requirements
    All CBS faculty and students who attend class in person are required to wear face coverings while in the buildings (classrooms and common spaces alike) where classes are held. This is not optional. Anyone not wearing a face mask will be excluded from class that day. Faculty members are equipped with a limited number of masks for students who may have forgotten to bring their own. Questions about this directive should be brought to the attention of the CBS Director.
     
    Catholic Biblical School (CBS) Virtual Meetings
    Students who attend class remotely should maintain a professional atmosphere consistently during class time to allow all students and teachers to focus on the material under discussion. As much as possible, please isolate yourself from all distractions in your surroundings. Please do not engage in conversations with others during class time, or have pets visible. If, for medical reasons, eating during class is necessary, please turn off your webcam.  Thank you for complying with these directives.
     
    Catholic Biblical School (CBS) and Covid-19
    With Covid cases spiking and restrictions increasing in Connecticut, CBS classes may have to move online at any time. Please visit the CBS webpages, and/or check with your teachers and this OEEC newsletter to keep up-to-date with any changes that may be announced in the coming weeks and months.
     
    Winter Weather Considerations
    Class cancellations and other changes of venue are posted at least two hours before class time on the STSRegistrar Notifications page. To log in, follow the directions on the website page, Current Students. If you are unable to access a computer reliably, please make arrangements with a fellow student for information about these kinds of important announcements.

    On Behalf of Laura McCaffrey, Advisor to the Vicar for Finance & Technology:

    Digital Resource Page: Remote Learning
    The OEEC invites you to explore the new and improved Remote Learning Resources section of our website. This section will include resources on Technology, Remote Learning for Coding and Computer Science, Teaching in a Remote Environment, Marketing During Covid-19 and more!  Please be sure to check back often as these pages are updated with new information, webinars, videos and other helpful resources.
     
    New this week:
    Educator Learning Hub - Connecticut  State Department of Education (CSDE)
    November 2020 has been proclaimed as Career Development Month nationally, as well as in Connecticut. To support the ongoing efforts to design career development and guidance opportunities for learners, the CSDE Academic Office has created Career PD On Demand Playlists of curated resources. 
     
    Resources include:
    • Blended Learning Environments
    • Apple Education Resources for Educators
    • Khan Academy Professional Learning
    Upcoming SMART Learning Suite Online - Webinar
    Maximizing your Smart Learning Suite Online Investment – Interactive Learning Even at a Distance
    Discover how the easy-to-use, integrated SMART Learning Suite Online software offers tools to support teaching and learning in a variety of environments, including Google Chrome, Microsoft® and Learning Management Systems. Teachers will learn how to create active learning environments anywhere! The next session will be held on December 8, 2020 at 11:00 a.m.  To register, click here
     
    Attention all Archdiocesan Catholic Schools
    Thank you for helping to update the school directory page of the OEEC website by sending any updated pictures and descriptions to Laura McCaffrey or Kelsey Meczywor.  Access your school’s current page by clicking here.  Many thanks for your assistance.
     
    VEX IQ Archdiocesan School Robotic League
    We are planning to kick-off another successful Robotics & Code Experience for all of the Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Hartford, but this year it will be held virtually.  Please click here to watch a video on the coding and robotic software that the VEX IQ Archdiocesan School Robotic League will be using this year!  More information will follow. 
     
    Attention All Middle School and High School Teachers!  Two Opportunities to Participate in FREE Online Workshops for Computer Science Teachers
    These two grant-funded computer science online workshops are funded by CTNext and New Haven Innovation Collaborative and are free for teachers in middle and high schools.  Below find the workshop flyers, times and dates.  Please share this invite with your colleagues.  The meeting link will be sent to registrants two days prior to the workshop date.  
    • November 14, Saturday, 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.  – Fundamental Programming using MATLAB.  Download a flyer and click here to register. 

    On Behalf of Kelly Henderschedt, Archdiocesan Director of Catechesis:

    GOOD NEWS!
    The New Directory for Catechesis states, “Catechesis, a privileged stage in the process of evangelization, is generally directed toward persons who have already received the first proclamation.”  The first proclamation is the Kerygma. So how do we go about exploring the Kerygma with those we serve in ways that will help convert hearts towards Jesus?  Use this Digital Kerygma Toolkit to help you get started.  The Toolkit will be updated as new resources become available, so check back often! 
     
    Dear Catechetical Leaders and Catholic School Educators:
    Children’s literature is a very powerful and effective way to teach children about the love of God and to help them experience a personal relationship with Jesus.  During the pandemic, parishes offered “Virtual Story Time” for children where pastors and catechetical leaders would read stories that would teach a message connected to the Catholic faith.  With this in mind, a bibliography of books is being assembled and we are requesting suggestions of children’s books that you have used to help them explore themes of our faith. These books can be religious or secular. Please email any titles you have used with success to Kelly.Henderschedt@aohct.org.  It would also be helpful to include the theme of the book, for example “gratitude” or “forgiveness” or “care of creation” so that the titles can be categorized.
     
    Attention Catechetical Directors:
    If you are utilizing digital playlists of curated content as your faith formation program, or as a supplement to your program, and are interested in collaborating with other catechetical leaders on this process, please consider joining this virtual work-sessions on November 12 at 10:00 a.m. and December 10 at 10:00 a.m. 
     
    Please note there is a new link for these virtual meetings.  Click here to join this meeting: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83071285485?pwd=SmwxbEYxeWVVYUJubzZCUkFsdVpaUT09, or dial in using your phone: 1-646-558-8656; Meeting ID: 830 7128 5485; Passcode: 137945. 
     
    Upcoming Virtual Deanery Meetings for Faith Formation Leaders
    Wednesday, November 18 at 7:00 p.m.
    Please join this meeting from your computer, tablet or smartphone by clicking this link: https://global.gotomeeting.com/join/783847677, or dial in using your phone, +1 (872) 240-3311; please use access code: 783-847-677.
     
    Attention Catechetical Leaders and Catholic School Educators:
    Looking for resources to help children and families celebrate upcoming holidays and feast days?  Bookmark this page to find links for videos, articles, and family activities that focus on upcoming seasonal days of celebration.  Return often, as these resources will change throughout the year.
     
    Women’s Conference Update
    Wednesdays with Women - the Virtual Women’s Conference Continues on December 2!  
    Join us on December 2, 2020 for the next gathering of our virtual Women’s Conference events, “Wednesdays with Women”! Come as you are at 7:00 p.m. on the first Wednesday of every month for a taste of the Women’s Conference experience.  Click here to register and be a part of this taste of the Women’s Conference. 
     
    Workshop: Mary's YES (presented by Sheri Dursin) 
    “I am the Lord’s Servant.  May it be to me as you have said.” (Luke 1:38) Mary’s response to God’s invitation brought Christ into the world and changed our lives forever  What courage and faith it must have taken to say “yes”—an act of complete surrender to God’s will.  In doing so, Mary shows us what our response to God’s call should be. During this Advent season, reflect on the ways in which God is inviting you into an intimate relationship with your Creator.  By responding with our own “yes” we are bringing Christ into the world every day.
     
    Prayer Experience: Visio Divina 
    Visio divina invites the viewer into "divine seeing." Visio divina shares roots with the ancient practice of lectio divina. Similarly, visio divina invites one to encounter the divine through images. A prayerful consideration of and interaction with a photograph in the magazine, icon, piece of art, or other visual representation allows the viewer to experience the divine in a unique and powerful way. Visio divina can be practiced individually or in a small group or worship setting by using a piece of art as a focal point for prayer.  Scripture can also be paired with the image in order for the viewer to reflect on the scripture through the art. (Description courtesy of The Upper Room Ministries)
     
    Please feel free to share this event with anyone who would benefit from participating.  All women of faith, of every age and stage, are welcome! 
     
    Recordings of past “Wednesdays with Women,” as well as more information about upcoming speakers and sessions, are available on the Women's Conference webpage

    Virtual Conversations on the RCIA This Fall/Winter

    Thanks to our friends and collaborators at Liturgy Training Publications (LTP), there are a number of virtual opportunities to discuss a variety of topics around RCIA and sacramental preparation this fall and winter.
     
    Whether involved in the rites, catechesis, or discernment process, the pastor has a great responsibility in Christian initiation ministry. This conversation will allow participants to share best practices and reflect on the obstacles they face when co-laboring with the pastor of their parish.
     
    Before celebrating the Rite of Election, the catechumens are to enter into a process of discernment and discussion with the pastor and other catechumenal leaders.  What are the questions to ask?  What should we be observing?  How do we know people are ready to move forward in the process?
     
    Art and music has always been an important part of our Christian faith. The Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy states that art has the ability to turn our "minds devoutly toward God" and that music "is a treasure of inestimable value, greater even than that of any other art." (122, 112)  In this conversation, we will discuss how we can practically use the arts to echo our faith and enhance our celebration of God's Word.
     
    LTP is also hosting ongoing virtual conversations specific to The RCIA Adapted for Children.  Please consider being a part of those conversations to be better prepared to welcome children to the Sacraments of Initiation outside of the "usual" ages and times: 
    RICA - Formación y Actualización. Diálogos Virtuales en Español
    Jueves 12 noviembre a las 8:00 p.m.: Guía de entrenamiento para el RICA: por un mejor uso de recursos y talento humano (2/3) Aprenda cómo usar de la manera más provechosa el material gratuito de LTP para coordinadores del RICA entrenando a su equipo de voluntarios y catequistas.
     
    Jueves 19 noviembre a las 8:00 p.m.: Guía de entrenamiento para el RICA: por un mejor uso de recursos y talento humano (3/3) Aprenda cómo usar de la manera más provechosa el material gratuito de LTP para coordinadores del RICA entrenando a su equipo de voluntarios y catequistas.
     
    Martes 9 febrero, 2021 a las 8:00 p.m.: Iniciación cristiana para niños y niñas: preparación y celebración de los ritos Veamos los ritos de la iniciación cristiana con los niños. Cuáles son y cómo prepararlos para celebrarlos con alegría y entusiasmo.
     
    Talleres Virtuales Sobre el Nuevo Directorio para la Catequesis
    USCCB, Sadlier y La Asociación Católica Nacional de Directores Diocesanos del Ministerio Hispano (NCADDHM) presentan seis talleres pastorales gratuitos sobre el nuevo Directorio para la Catequesis. Se recomienda que tomen TODOS los talleres para tener una visión completa del nuevo directorio.
     
    Dirigido a Ministros y Agentes Pastorales | DREs/CREs | Líderes Catequéticos | Líderes Diocesanos de Ministerio Hispano | Superintendentes | Coordinadores de RICA | Directores y Maestros de Escuelas Católicas |Catequistas | Predicadores | Párrocos/Sacerdotes/Diáconos | Ministro de Jóvenes | Padres de Familia. 
     
    Regístrese en: www.nuevodirectorio.com
    • Noviembre 24 - 8:00 p.m.: Obispo Oscar Cantú y Kathia Arango, M.A. (Introducción y capítulos 1-2)
    • Diciembre 1 - 8:00 p.m.: Sr. Rosalia Meza, Ph.D. (Capítulos 3-4)
    • Diciembre 8 - 8:00 p.m.: Dr. F. Javier Orozco (Capítulos 5-6)
    • Enero 5 - 8:00 p.m.: Miriam Hidalgo González, M.A. (Capítulos 7-8)
    • Enero 12 - 8:00 p.m.: José Amaya, M.A. (Capítulos 9-10)
    • Enero 19 - 8:00 p.m.: Obispo Daniel Flores (Capítulos 11-12)

    Formation Opportunity for Parish, Catechetical and All Who Serve Young Adults:
    Young Adult Ministry At This Moment In Our Church:  Trends, Insights, Best Practices 
    This virtual session is geared toward those passionate about serving young adults in the here and now.  Our colleagues in the Diocese of Manchester, NH have invited Fr. Michael Hennessy, CSP to lead the session and talk about young adults today, their relationship with the Church, best practices for communicating with young adults, and event and programming ideas.  This session will take place on Tuesday, November 17 at 1:00 p.m. Click here to register by November 15.
     
    Christus Vivit Virtual Study Group - Open to All Who Serve Young People!
    The OEEC will be breaking open Christus Vivit, the apostolic exhortation of Pope Francis to young people and to the entire people of God, but unfortunately the first session had to be postponed, more updates to follow. 
     
    Advent Evening of Reflection - Open to All Parish and School Ministers!
    Save the date for an Advent Evening of Reflection on December 15, 2020 from 7:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. in conjunction with the New England Faith Forum.  This evening of reflection will be facilitated by Colleen Moore, director of formation for the McGrath Institute for Church Life and program director for ECHO (a two-year graduate service learning program that partners with dioceses across the country to train the next generation of leaders in faith formation and theological education in Catholic parishes and schools).  Stay tuned for more details, but save the date!

    Please feel free to share this newsletter with your constitutes. All past newsletters can be found on our website catholicEdaohct.org.

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