The Church's catechetical mission aims to help the faithful of all ages to grow in both human and Christian maturity, enriching the whole of life with the leaven of the Gospel.
When children begin school, they enter a world wider than the family. The school environment provides greater opportunities for children's intellectual, affective, and behavioral development. This means that our parents, clergy, catechists, and teachers need to cooperate closely to ensure that the catechesis offered children is truly an ecclesial catechesis that is consistent with Christian values lived in the family. The clergy at St. Benilde has a serious obligation to assist parents and educators in their mission to hand on the faith to future generations.
School-age children at St. Benilde receive formal and systematic catechesis in a parish-based catechetical program (CCD), our Catholic School (SBS), or a program of home-based catechesis in which the content of the faith and the experience of Christian life is presented authentically and completely.
Having introduced them to the person of Jesus Christ within the family, catechesis for school-age children presents His teachings, His ministry, and the major events of His life. Children can begin to appreciate the parables of Jesus and capture glimpses of the Kingdom of God; they can learn more formal prayers; and they can commit brief passages of Sacred Scripture to memory. Catechesis for the Sacraments of Penance and Reconciliation and of the Eucharist is provided in these early years of schooling.
Our adult faith formation ministry must engage the particular needs and interests of the adults within our parish family. To be faithful and effective St. Benilde will offer, over time, a comprehensive and systematic presentation and exploration of the core elements of Catholic faith and practice—a complete initiation into a Catholic way of life. We will do so in a way that is accessible to adults and relates to their life experiences, helping them to form a Christian conscience and to live their lives in the world as faithful disciples of Jesus.
This integration of actual life experience, diverse adult learning needs, the study of Scripture, and the teaching of the Church's tradition will create a vibrant learning environment. It will also challenge the creativity of those who establish the direction, plan the content, and provide programs of adult faith formation. Meeting the challenge is both demanding and rewarding.
Young people of the third millennium must be a source of energy and leadership in our Church and our nation. Therefore, we must provide young people with an academically rigorous and doctrinally sound program of education and faith formation designed to strengthen their union with Christ and his Church. Catholic schools collaborate with parents and guardians in raising and forming their children as families struggle with the changing and challenging cultural and moral contexts in which they find themselves. Catholic schools provide young people with sound Church teaching through a broad-based curriculum, where faith and culture are intertwined in all areas of a school's life. By equipping our young people with a sound education, rooted in the Gospel message, the Person of Jesus Christ, and rich in the cherished traditions and liturgical practices of our faith, we ensure that they have the foundation to live morally and uprightly in our complex modern world. This unique Catholic identity makes our Catholic elementary and secondary schools "Schools for the human person" and allows them to fill a critical role in the future life of our Church, our country, and our world (Catholic Schools on the Threshold, no.9).