General

The Religious Education Program at Notre Dame provides instruction from September through June.Classes meet at 9:30 in the Merton Center in the rectory and end at 11:15. There is a short break and a snack provided.Students often are taken to the church during this time.

Parents are the first, and most important, educators of their children.All religious instruction is a combined effort of the parish (through the Catechist), the child, and the parents.

Role of the Student

Outside of class, we ask the students to commit to:
  • Attending Mass regularly (Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation)
  • § Participating in the Rite of Reconciliation.
  • § Living a life that reflects values and teachings of Jesus Christ.
  • § Leading a sacramental life, and frequently receiving the Eucharist.
  • § Attempting to follow Catholic laws, norms and guidelines especially:
    • o The command to love God and neighbor:
    • o The Ten Commandments
    • o The Corporal Works of Mercy
    • o The Spiritual Works of Mercy
    • o To live out the Beatitudes
    • o To conform to all laws of the Church

Students enrolled in the program should:


  • § Attend religious education classes weekly
  • § Be prepared and attentive for class instruction
  • § Arrive punctually
  • § Have materials available for each class
  • § Participate in class discussions and activities
  • § Be courteous to one another
  • § Do the very best work possible.

Five absences will be permitted (four for sacramental programs); opportunity formakeup sessions will depend upon the availability of the Coordinator or Catechists.Recurrent lateness or frequent early dismissal may count as absences because the child misses class time.Please be respectful of everyone’s time and commitment.Let the Catechist or Coordinator know if the child will miss class.

Role of Parents

The parent has the primary and sacred responsibility to educate their child in the faith.We assume that parents live the life of faith at home.We urge you to pray with your children, talk about your experience in faith, and most importantly, bring your child to weekly mass. We teach the child that celebrating the Eucharist on Sunday in the local parish as a community of faith is essential to being a Catholic.

The values of parents become the values of the child.We are certain that you do model Christian values, since you have chosen to enroll your child in our program.Please also remember that we have hard-working volunteers, and respect their time, their decisions and commitment.In the event of any conflict, the Pastor will be the final arbiter.

If you have questions about the Catholic faith, or Catholic teachings on any subject, feel free to ask the Coordinator or the Catechist.If we cannot answer the questions, we can direct you to sources for more information.

Also, since the program is responsible for your child, you must let us know of any deviation in the pickup procedures.If we do not know the person picking up your child, please make sure we have a note; legally we are required not to release a child without authorization.If a child may leave unattended, please indicate that permission in writing.

Attendance at workshops, Safe Environment programs, and lunches is recommended. Attendance at family workshops is required for families enrolled in sacramental programs.Some of these may be scheduled outside of class time.Every effort will be made to provide these at convenient times.

Role of the Coordinator

The Coordinator of the Religious Education Program of Notre Dame is delegated by the Pastor to be responsible for the development, implementation and administration of the parish catechetical program, in accordance with the Guidelines of the Archdiocese of New York. The Coordinator is also required to provide Catechesis/Religious Education for all students of the parish including those who have physical, emotional, mental or learning disabilities.

Please feel free to contact the coordinator with any questions or concerns you have.

Role of the Catechist

A Catechist is a person who shares the good news of Jesus Christ with others in a systematic way.This is accomplished through message, community, worship and service.The tasks of the Catechist are as follows:
  • § To help others grow in their personal faith and spirituality.
  • § To initiate others into the faith community and its life, worship, symbols and practices
  • § To impart a set of Catholic and Christian shared meanings and values.
  • §
All Catechists undergo background checks in accordance with Safe Environment guidelines.

Instructional Guidelines


The Archdiocese has prepared and published Guidelines for Catechesis for Grades 1-6 and Grades 7 and 8 to ensure a clear and uniform presentation of the faith for each grade level.Our curriculum reflects these guidelines. We use materials approved by the Archdiocese to guide our curriculum, including textbooks.