Religious Education

OLS Faith Formation

Director: Loren Christie / 631-363-6394 / email at: lchristie@olsbp.com

Virtual Classroom: olsvc.blogspot.com

Our Lady of the Snow Faith Formation Program strives to bring all parishioners into a closer relationship with Jesus through Word, Worship and Service. We seek to prepare children in grades 1 through 9 for the lifetime journey towards this relationship. Included in our program is catechesis for grades 1 through 9 and preparation for the celebration of the Sacraments of Reconciliation, Eucharist and Confirmation. Registration starts in April. Lessons are compiled by the Director of Faith Formation, a New York State certified teacher, using a variety of diocesan- approved resources, and reviewed by our Faith Formation Catechetical Board. For all levels, instruction is provided through onsite classes with catechists, at home learning through our virtual classroom, (olsvc.blogspot.com), and most importantly, through encouraged participation in Mass. In the event of the extraordinary extended closing of schools, our instructional program will continue, fully virtual.

Levels 1 and 2

Our Diocese (of Rockville Centre) requires a two-year (Level 1 and Level 2) preparatory program for First Reconciliation and First Holy Communion. During the course of these two years there will be instructional and informational meetings for the parents/families, as well as instructional content provided on our virtual classroom.

Level 1 (usually first grade) is a 3 part program. The first and most important part is participation in the Mass. Children should attend and participate in the weekend Mass with their families. Which Mass they attend is the decision of the family. The second part is the catechesis or instruction. In Level 1 children are taught by their parents/families at home through the Level 1 content on our virtual classroom. The third part of the program is communal. There are monthly (October thru May) parent and child meetings held at the parish between the Sunday Masses, in order to make it more convenient to attend a Sunday Mass.

Level 2 (usually second grade) children are placed in onsite classes that meet twice per month. The classes start in October in the large church. The children will be preparing for the Sacrament of Reconciliation during the Advent season and then for First Eucharist in the spring. There will be instructional and informational parent meetings during the course of the year both onsite and through our virtual classroom.

Levels 3 thru 5

This is the ongoing catechesis (learning) to grow in relationship with God and to prepare for a life of following Jesus (discipleship). Communal prayer, Gospel readings and reflection precede each session with students learning at a grade level table with a catechist twice per month. In addition, students complete a monthly project through our virtual classroom. Emphasis is placed on being a participating member of the faith community particularly with regard to participating in the Sunday Liturgy.

Level 6, 7, 8 and 9

This is a preparation program for Confirmation and for the Catholic Christian way of life. Emphasis is placed on integrating what has been learned into daily life and practice. Catholic Social Teaching is explored in these levels, starting with the dignity of human life in Level 6, care of the environment in Level 7 (in keeping with the ideas of Pope Francis in his encyclical Laudato Si), and basic concepts from St. Pope John Paul II’s Theology of the Body in grades 8 and 9.

Levels 6, 7 and 8 meet twice per month on weekday nights for onsite catechesis. Students complete monthly online projects through our virtual classroom. Parents/families will join their students for speaker Nights, prayer and activity nights and parent meetings during the year. There will be a parent/child Confirmation Information Meeting in June of Level 8 to prepare for the Level 9 Program.

Level 9 is the immediate preparation for the Sacrament of Confirmation. Catechesis will occur once a month on assigned Wednesday evenings. Candidates for the Sacrament of Confirmation will be formally enrolled in the Program in October. Other activities will include a Sponsor/Mentor Event and a Retreat opportunity. These candidates are encouraged to participate in the events of Holy Week and the Sacred Triduum. Emphasis will be placed on stewardship and service and most importantly on participating in the Sunday Liturgy.

Volunteer Catechists

The Faith Formation office is dedicated to a constant policy of improving the program with the goal of meeting the needs of the children and families of the parish. Perspective catechists should be faithful Catholics, able to give of themselves spiritually to the children. They should have time to review and prepare for the provided onsite lesson plans with the support of the Director of Faith Formation. They should attend informational and training sessions virtually and onsite. They agree to a Background check by the Diocese and participate in the VIRTUS training session for the Protection of Children. They also receive training through diocesan provided classes. All training is designed to prepare catechists for the important ministry of sharing faith with our young people.

Fees for Faith Formation- Register online through PayPal under the “Faith Formation” tab on our parish website, or by Check payable to: Our Lady of the Snow Church.

1 Child: $110

2  Children: $160

3 Children or more: $175

**Please add a sacrament fee of $50 for Level 2 and $75 for Level 9 to the above registration amount. Hardship consideration: Financial assistance is available in cases of true need and must be renewed annually. Please bring any concerns to the Faith Formation Office.

Financial support for the program comes from fees paid by the participating families as well as from the ordinary contributions (Sunday Mass Collections) of parishioners.

We look forward to meeting parishioners who wish to become directly involved in the program as a catechist or a door monitor. You may call the Faith Formation Office at 631-363-6394 or email the Director of Faith Formation, Loren Christie, at lchristie.olsbp.com.

New to Our Parish?

New parishioners should register with the parish in the Rectory Office and then register their child(ren) at the Faith Formation Office as soon as possible. Registration must be renewed annually. Once registered in the program families will receive an invitation to renew their registration in April. Please notify the office with any name, address, phone number or email changes.

The Religious Education Office is located in the large church. There is a bell on the left side of the front door.

Office hours are Monday thru Thursday 9:30am to 4:30pm.

Classes are held bimonthly onsite on the following days and time:

Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday – Levels 2 – 6  at 4:30 or 6pm  sessions

Mondays – Level 7 and 8 at 6pm or 7:30 sessions

Wednesday – once a month – Level 9

Refer to the Level calendars for complete schedules. 

Cancellations

Weather or Emergency Cancellations will be posted on our virtual classroom, through the Remind App and Channel 12 News. If the Bayport-Blue Point School District is closed we will be closed. Please sign up for the Remind App so that the Director can stay in contact with you. Codes are located on the drop down menu on our parish website under the “Faith Formation” tab.

Individual Class Cancellations-If a catechist must cancel their class you will be notified by the catechist or the Faith Formation Office. The family is responsible for the completion of that day’s lesson, which will also be available on our virtual classroom.