Formation for Catechists

Day for Catechists 

Our annual Day for Catechists will take place on the 19th October 2019, at Portsmouth Cathedral, from 10 am to 4 pm.
The day focuses on Jesus Christ, looking at how we can talk about Him in catechesis and faith formation. It includes talks, testimonies and discussion groups to equip catechists lead a session. The highlight of the day is Mass, celebrated in thanksgiving for all diocesan catechists.
This is a day for all diocesan catechists and everyone involved in Children’s Liturgy of the Word. It is also open to anyone interested in the ministry of catechesis.

Essential Training for Catechists

At the request of parishes, the Formation for Mission Team offers 5 sessions of essential training for all parish catechists: ‘We are all witnesses’.


This training is for seasoned or new catechists working with children, young people or adults, for everyone involved in Children’s liturgy of the Word, and for anyone interested in passing on the faith.The 5 sessions are run over 5 weekly evenings in the parish. The sessions cover:

1. What is catechesis? An introduction to the ministry of catechesis
2. Proclaiming the Good News : Jesus Christ at the heart of catechesis
3. The Faith of the Church : Discovering the sources of our faith
4. The Word of God : Opening the treasure of Scriptures
5. Methods and Resources : a joyful work of charity
A diocesan certificate is awarded upon completion of the 5 sessions. 

Certificate in Catechetical Studies

A one-year, part-time, distance-learning course offered in partnership with Maryvale Institute and the Diocesan Diaconate Department.


This course is open to everyone involved or interested in giving reasons for the hope they have through catechesis, philosophy and theology. The Certificate in Catechetical Studies (CCS) consists of six modules to study at home and three study days held in the diocese. The modules cover:

 - Introduction to Catechesis
- Methods of Catechesis
- RCIA Catechesis
- Introduction to Philosophy
- The Church
- Mary in the Mystery of Christ and the Church

A written assignment is submitted for each module, comprising of an essay of 1500 words and an outline plan for a catechesis session. Successful completion of the course will result in the award of a Certificate in Catechetical Studies – a Level 3 award. Cost: £675. The course begins in Autumn each year.

Maryvale Certificate in Catechesis

This is a two-year, distance-learning course leading to the Certificate in Catechesis.  It is intended for anyone seeking to learn more about their faith, as well as those looking for formation to equip them to work with children and adults in parishes, schools and families.

'Undertaking study through the Maryvale Catechesis course has been of huge value... Studying Church documents explains our faith in a way I have never experienced before, giving me a few "light bulb" moments. There are challenges too, but the course tutors are extremely patient and always keen to offer help and support. I thoroughly recommend the course as a way to learn more about our faith in fellowship with other Catholics.'



This course is authorised by the Archbishop of Birmingham and received approval from the Sacred Congregation for the Clergy in 1989.



  - Deepening knowledge of scripture, doctrine, liturgy, prayer and catechesis
  - Personal growth in faith and spirituality
  - Understanding of methods for communicating and sharing the faith effectively
  - Appreciation of the skills needed to deliver inspiring catechesis

The Value of Distance Learning

The particular method of learning and teaching which has been developed by the Maryvale Institute is based on the Open University’s distance-learning methodology, so as to enable laity, religious, and clergy to study and undertake formation in the context of their own lives, family commitments, and work. Students study each module at home, at their own pace, actively taking on the responsibility for their own learning, but with support always available.

Entry Requirements


This course in catechesis is open to any adult who would like to deepen their knowledge and understanding of their faith so that they can confidently hand it on to others, either formally as catechists or informally as parishioners. 


Commitment needed

Students need to be prepared to devote time and energy to study.  For some students this is likely to be spent in blocks of work, others spread it out throughout the week.  The value of this type of learning is that it fits into students’ busy lives.


First year (Part I): Formation in faith

                                Jesus the Christ

                                Introduction to Church history

                                The Church        

Second Year (Part II):   Sacred Scripture

                                 Liturgy and Sacraments

                                 Life in Christ - Catholic moral teaching:

                                 Ways of praying

To inquire about any of these courses or initiatives, get in touch!

Office Number: 02392 825430

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