Archive

Archive for the ‘Ministerial Methods’ Category

CCD @ St Catherine of Siena

St Catherine of Siena Catholic Church in Miami, FLSince we’ll be assigned “apostalic work” next year, we’re observing other fellow seminarians in different current assignments for the last few Mondays of the semester.  Today, I observed an 8th grade CCD Confirmation class at St Catherine of Siena Catholic Church in Miami, not too far from the seminary.

We were greeted by Pastor Fr Sosa and served an awesome dinner.  (Patricio’s Monday meatloaf will have to wait.)  His dog was also very friendly.  — the class went great!

A week before Easter, the parish church building was set on fire by a couple local teenagers.  About one million dollars in damage.  While repairs are being done, Mass is done outside under the overhang area of the church entrance.  — We’ll definitely keep them all in our prayers.

St Catherine of Siena Catholic Church overhang St Catherine of Siena Catholic Church overhang St Catherine of Siena Catholic Church dog St Catherine of Siena Catholic Church dinner St Catherine of Siena Catholic Church dinner

ping pong + Jericho back

February 12, 2008 Leave a comment

canolli @ St John Vianney College Seminary, Miami, FLMINISTERIAL PRACTICUM — (yesterday)  Multiple choice mid-term.  [aces] 

NEW TESTAMENTmid-term exam.  Multiple choice.

DOTS — dinner canolli — Medieval Philosophy study group — Jericho returns (finally!)

PING PONG — tonight was the last semi-final round for our Ping-Pong Olympic Tournament.  Great match-up and awesome game, even with the “unruly crowd.”  🙂
ping pong tournament @ St John Vianney College Seminary, Miami, FL unruly crowd @ ping pong tournament @ St John Vianney College Seminary, Miami, FL unruly crowd @ ping pong tournament @ St John Vianney College Seminary, Miami, FL

soldier charity + Catholic teacher + A River Runs Through It

February 8, 2008 Leave a comment

Lenten Mass @ St John Vianney College Seminary, Miami, FLMASS – (Fr Alvarez) — today is the feast day of St Jerome Emiliani.  He was a soldier who left the military life to pursue great acts of charity, especially in caring for the sick in hospitals, the poor and children in orphanages.  — his life resonates with me, especially with my past interest in the military (in which health concerns removed)

Immaculate Conception School observationFIELD TRIP — for our Ministerial Practicum class, in the afternoon, we went to a local Catholic school to observe the teaching styles and techniques in order to prepare our own lesson plans.  I was in a 7th grade English class at Immaculate Conception Catholic School and, embarassingly, couldn’t answer some of the questions my self.  — when do you use who or whom?

A River Runs Through It (film)MOVIE NIGHT — after dinner, the Humanities Department sponsored a movie night featuring A River Runs Through It with great discussion afterwards. — I didn’t get that deep into the movie, but after discussion, I have a greater appreciation for its subtle lessons and observation on life’s journey.

CCD + catechesis crisis

January 28, 2008 1 comment

Ministry Class @ St John Vianney College Seminary, Miami, FLMINISTERIAL PRACTICUM – (Fr Michael) — since the weather was so nice, we had class outside in the grass and discussed the current state of catechesis in the Catholic Church.  Whether you call it CCD or Religious Education or Christian Formation, it’s essentially teaching the Catholic faith to adults or children (either in private Catholic Schools or weekly evening for public schoolers).  We started by sharing, comparing & contrasting our own experiences in CCD verses private Catholic Schools.  We highlighted the good and bad areas that need work, including better textbooks, better catechist training, more challenging truth (and less warm & fuzzy emotion-only faith), and other issues.

I can identify with many of these issues, especially since I’ve been a Pre-Confirmation catechist for (mostly) 7th graders for about the last 15 years.  Even when a catechist commits lots of time, effort & prayer to present catechist attractively, relevantly and challengingly, frustration stiffle your efforts that perpetuates generation to generation producing ignorant Catholics with a childish knowledge of their Catholic faith.  Improvements are coming … through the Church … through a committed laity … through our perseverence … to share the Gospel message of Christ in words and lessons and, most importantly, a living witness in “me”, in order to fullfill my role and awaken all I encounter.

Despite the obstacles and frustrations, I recall a quote from Pope John Paul II about teaching the faith to young people that illustrated my approach to catechesis and youth ministry through the years.  [I’m still looking for the exact quote and will post here … check back]  

[related resource: CATECHESI TRADENDAE (On Catechesis In Our Time) 1979 by Pope John Paul II]

beast of burden + men are right + Unknown God + body theology

January 14, 2008 1 comment

Pope Benedict XVI coat of armsMASS – (Fr Michael) — today’s Mass intention was for Pope Benedict XVI, very appropriately with the Gospel reading of Jesus telling Peter to “Feed My Sheep.”  The story behind the significance of the Corbinian Bear on the Pope’s coat of arms (upper right) was told.  According to the background on Saint Corbinian (a Frankish bishop), a bear killed his pack horse on his way to Rome so the saint commanded the bear to carry his load.  Pope Benedict XVI first adopted the symbol when, still known as Joseph Ratzinger, he was appointed Archbishop of Freising-Munich in March of 1977.  He retained the bear in his revised coat of arms when becoming Cardinal in the same year and when elected to Pope in 2005.  In addition to the obvious reference back to St. Corbinian, the founder of the diocese where Benedict was bishop, the bear represents Benedict himself being “tamed by God” as a “beast of burden” to bear the spiritual burdens of Benedict’s own ministries first as bishop, then as cardinal, and now as pope.

AQUINAS – (Fr Vallee) — more on Modernity and the extremes of Rationalism (reason) & Fideism (faith).  Nature + supernature.  Grace + nature.  Samuel Taylor Coleridge quote: “Most men are right in what they affirm, and wrong in what they deny.”

CONTEMPORARY PHIL – (Fr Santos) — opening quiz on reading of Kierkegaard‘s “Equilibrium between the Aesthetic & the Ethical” in his book Either/Or.  Introduced “inauthentic existence,” “radical subjectivity,” “disolving into a mutitude,” and self as “task” & “a dynamic process.”

St Paul in Athens & the Unknown GodMEDIEVAL PHIL – (Fr Vallee) — reviewed Stoicism and reflected on St Paul in Athens (Acts 17), especially his approach to preaching the gospel message among the Greeks of his time about their statue to the “Unknown God.”

MINISTERIAL METHODS – (Fr Michael) — “Classroom Management.” 

RECTOR’s CONFERENCE – (Fr Michael) — usually on Thursday, this was an exceptional day since this Thursday we’re hosting the seminarians from the St Vincent’s Major Seminary in Boyton Beach, FL.  Today’s topic was (part 2 of 3) on the Pope John Paul II’s Theology of the Body.

DOTS — night walk — Superman Returns — busy day

  

semester begins + Aquinas + Contemporary Philosophy + Medieval + Ministry + Amber Spyglass

January 7, 2008 1 comment

MASS – (Fr Michael) — God is the same yesterday as today, on vacation, on retreat, back in the daily routine.  Do you believe in Jesus?  How is your life different because of your belief?

AQUINAS in the 20th CENTURY – (Fr Vallee) — this is a senior level course that focuses on the rediscovery of St Thomas Aquinas thought in the 19th & 20th centuries, in the areas of epistemology, metaphysics and anthropology.  Readings will be from Gilson, Maritain, Marechal, Rousselot and John Paul II’s Fides et ratio.  No term paper.  Tests are open notes & open book — (translation: It’s hard!).  Large class.

CONTEMPORARY PHILOSOPHY – (Fr Santos) — started reviewing Modern Philosophy era.  LOTS of readingMartin BuberI and ThouHans-Georg GadamerTruth and MethodMartin Heidegger Introduction to MetaphysicsEdmund Husserl – Phenomenology and the Crisis of PhilosophySoren Kierkegaard Either/Or (our first reading assignment) … Karl Marx Communist Manifesto Friedrich Nietzsche The Anti-ChristPaul RicoeurOneself as AnotherJohn Robinson Honest to GodAdam Smith The Wealth of NationsAlfred North Whitehead Religion in the Making.  — I should probably be reading right now! 

MEDIEVAL PHILOSOPHY – (Fr Vallee) — reviewed a timeline of philosphy periods.  This class will focus on Augustine (Confessions), Anselm, and Thomas Aquinas (Summa Theologica, On Being and Essence, The Thought of Thomas Aquinas).  Our main test is Frederick Copleston’s A History of Philosophy, vol II.  2 papers.  — finally some Augustine & Aquinas!

MINISTERIAL PRACTICUM – (Fr Michael) — reviewed the basic about ministry (from last semester).  This course will be about the practical skills need for ministry.  Next year, we’ll be assigned Monday night “Apostalic Work” in the areas of CCD catechesis or Homebound Visitation.  We’ll be going out to visit other seminarians in their work assignments throughout the semester.  Today, we also learned “How to Create a Lesson Plan” for CCD class.  — finally some hands-on!

DOTS — “Kr” Lauds blessing — listened to first half of The Amber Spyglass (His Dark Materials trilogy) on audio

1st sem grades

December 18, 2007 Leave a comment

Stephen King's The MistToday I received my grades for my first semester in St John Vianney College Seminary:

Arts & Ideas – (Fr Vallee) — B
Ancient Philosophy – (Fr Santos) — B+
Modern Philosophy – (Fr Santos) — B
Ministerial Methods – (Fr Michael) — A
Intermediate Spanish – (Dr Jimenez) — B
Intro to Old Testament – (Fr Michael) — A

DOTS — Stephen King’s The Mist [PF]