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 Synod Initiative III:

Ongoing Education and Formation: Adults, Young Adults and Youth 

Understanding the Catholic tradition; passing it on to the next generation. All the baptized are to be “well-formed in faith, enthusiastic, capable of leadership in the Church and in society, filled with compassion and working for justice” (United States Bishops’ pastoral plan for adult faith formation, Our Hearts Were Burning within Us, 1999, 30). In order to be more effective in the Church’s mission, both now and in the decades ahead, clearer focus and more concerted effort must be given to ongoing education and formation throughout each stage of life. Christians who have come to know Jesus the Christ have always sought ways of explaining their experience of him to others and of manifesting this experience through faith-filled action. In doing so, they have endowed us with a rich tradition.

We are now challenged to appreciate this heritage, to pass it on to a new generation, and to make it vital in an ever-changing world. But only those who are first evangelized themselves, those who experience the presence and power of the Spirit of Christ, can truly grasp this tradition and then hand it on to others. What is needed in our own time and place are enthusiastic leaders who can motivate the whole Church, especially youth and young adults, to be and to build the Body of Christ in the world.

Pastoral Priority

Effective religious education and faith formation programs are to be offered throughout the Archdiocese on all levels: children, youth, young adults, and adults.

Pastoral Strategies

The plan for the ongoing education and formation of adult Catholics is to include scripture study, social justice education, opportunities for theological understanding, and personal appreciation of all the sacraments, respect for diversity, spirituality, and spiritual direction.

Within each pastoral region, a sufficient number of young adult programs are to be established on an inter-parochial basis through the mutual cooperation of parishes, including the sharing of resources and personnel, to provide for the faith formation needs of young adults. 

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