Pathways for Parish Leaders
A child’s Baptism presents parishes with a holy opportunity to evangelize families, parents, and godparents on the joyful occasion of welcoming a little one into the Church. The Augustine Institute is blessed to offer a variety of resources for parishes to use as part of Baptismal preparation or to enrich your parishioners’ understanding of the Sacrament.
“I Can’t Say Enough . . .”
“I am at a loss for words as to how powerful Reborn is. Clearly, the Holy Spirit is at work at the Augustine Institute. I am reeling at the beauty, love, and splendor of God’s work here. This is the New Evangelization. I pray it is widespread!”
~ Daniel, WV ~
Top Recommendations for Baptism Preparation
Seizing the sacramental moments in the life of parishioners is an essential way to affirm the faithful and draw in those who are not integrated into the life of the parish. In Evangelization through Baptism: A Catechist Training, Lucas Pollice guides parish catechists and leaders through methods to use Reborn for their parish pre-Baptism preparation (46 min).
Baptism Preparation for Parents
Reborn– a three-part series created by the Augustine Institute – explores the deeply personal power of Baptism, bringing to light the spiritual reality for parents and godparents and, most importantly, the child being baptized.
Best practices for using Reborn in your parish.
Digital guides are available for free on FORMED; order full color guides for each participant at 60% off
Symbolon: The Catholic Faith Explained brings together some of the most trusted Catholic teachers in the world to guide you through the breadth and richness of the Catholic Faith. Use Symbolon in RCIA, for Baptism preparation, for catechist training, in men’s and women’s groups, in Bible study groups and more. (Baptism session is 40 min.)
Available in English and Español.
Fr. Mike Schmitz is one of the leading speakers on topics important to Catholic young people today. In Changed Forever: The Sacrament of Baptism, he explains how Christians truly become sons and daughters of God the Father for all eternity through the Sacrament of Baptism. In a bonus segment following the presentation, Fr. Mike explains the topics “Infant Baptism” and “No Salvation Outside the Church” (60 min).
Baptism Preparation for Godparents
Being a godparent is more than a cultural or symbolic role played out on the day of Baptism. In The Gift of Godparents: More than Cards and Presents, Lucas Pollice dismantles the myths with answers to practical questions. By the end, godparents will understand the necessity and responsibilities of their role in teaching, living, and protecting the faith of the baptized (38 min).
Baptism Preparation for Younger Children/Siblings
In this happy presentation, Brother Francis invites us to share in the realities of the Sacrament of Baptism and the union it provides us with God’s big family! Filled with instruction and inspiration, Born into the Kingdom: The Miracle of Baptism is a great reminder for kids of all ages of God’s wonderful grace!
Recommendations for Catechists
A New Creation: Preparing for Baptism
Throughout the month of February 2022, the Augustine Institute brought many experts of Sacramental Preparation from around the country to Denver to be interviewed by Professor Lucas Pollice about sacramental preparation in parishes and dioceses.
In this episode Professor Lucas Pollice sits down with Nathan Maurer, Senior Evangelization Associate for Our Lady of Good Voyage Shrine in Boston, MA, to talk about preparation for the sacrament of Baptism.
Dr. Ben Akers and Dr. Elizabeth Klein, professor of Theology at the Augustine Institute Graduate School, sit down to talk about baptism—particularly infant baptism. Should babies be baptized? What is the role of baptism in salvation? And, finally, why have contrary views emerged in the practice of infant baptism?
Additional Recommendations on FORMED for Parents:
- The Mission to Love: 7 Keys to Catholic Parenting: Lucas Pollice explores timeless concepts for every Catholic parent (55 min).
- How to Keep Your Kids Catholic: In a heartfelt and practical presentation, former Baptist minister Ken Hensley reveals effective strategies to help keep our kids within the fold of the Catholic Church. His insights set us on the road to effective and successful parenting (audio talk; 41 min).
- Relationships: Your Relationship with Your Young Children: Does the “Tyranny of the Urgent” keep you from spending quality time with your children and developing better bonds? Stephanie Weinert shares some wonderful tips for how to be intentional about spending time with your children in order to develop stronger relationships with them and help them grow closer to God (20 min).
- Best Parenting Advice I’ve Ever Received: Guardian Angels: As the father of a “difficult, strong-willed son” and a Scripture scholar himself, Mike Aquilina makes a compelling case that angels surround you and are sent by God to help you and your family (19 min).
- Protecting Innocence: Parenting, Your Kids, and the Internet: Matt Fradd, a best-selling Catholic author, presents new data to show how the changes in the types and accessibility of pornography today make it far more dangerous and harmful than ever before (1 hr., 8 min).
- Daily Reflections: Encourage all parents and Baptism catechists to subscribe to the FORMED Daily Reflections and start their day with a short and inspiring reflection on the gospel reading. To sign up, go to formed.org/daily and enter your name and email address.
- Parent Handout: Use this handout to invite parents to build a holy habit and continue growing in faith every week by reading, watching, or listening to something on FORMED.
Reborn Best Practices:
Use any of these formats below with Reborn as your video and discussion component.
- One-Session Parent Meeting: Use all three sessions of Reborn in a two-hour parent meeting that includes group discussion between sessions.
- Two-Session Parent Meeting: Study Session 1 and Session 2 of Reborn in a 90-minute parent meeting, followed by Session 3 and the Bonus Session for Parents in a second 90-minute parent meeting.
- Three-Session Parent Meeting: Devote a 60-minute parent meeting to each of Reborn’s three sessions.
- Reverse Classroom: Ask parents to watch Session 1 at home and answer the questions in the study guide; encourage them to come to your meeting reach to discuss!
- Large-Group/Parish-Wide Study: Offer REBORN as a large-group session and open it up to the entire parish. Use the promotional materials for Reborn found at www.leaders.FORMED.org under Resources. Break into small-group discussions after the videos to discuss.
- Invite parents/godparents to subscribe to FORMED before their first meeting: After the parents register for the Baptism class, ask a volunteer to call to congratulate them and also to help the parents subscribe to FORMED before the first session. This will give them a warm welcome and ensure that they are set up on FORMED both online and with the FORMED App.
- Participant Guides: Order full color guides for each participant here at 60% off for FORMED parishes.
REBORN Case Study: “At Our Lady of Guadalupe parish in St. Joseph, Missouri, most parents used to bring their children in for Baptism, and then they’d all but vanish until it was time for their First Communion. The parish leadership realized they needed a way to engage parents and help them feel like they belonged in their community. They developed a new model based around the Reborn study on formed.org. It starts with volunteer couples in the parish inviting parents preparing for Baptism over for dinner, where they watch the first half of the first session. Then they schedule a time to watch the rest of the videos and discuss them at the parish.”
Baptism Catechist Feedback:
“I loved the catechist episode for giving the do’s and don’ts of planning how to use Reborn in Baptism preparation. As a teacher and as someone on a parish Baptism prep committee, hearing the structure options for how to do the work with excited new parents was very helpful.”
We have been using the first two sessions in our Baptism preparation classes. We regularly receive positive feedback from the parents attending class.
This brought tears to my eyes. God is great! Thank you for breaking it all down and showing us how blessed we are.
Wonderful and informative series. Everyone should watch this! I absolutely loved the meaning and description of our role as priest, prophet, king, and how we should guide our children. I have a greater understanding of the process of Baptism and the meaning behind the rituals.
I wish my husband and I had seen this video while we were raising our eight children. God is so good to have brought it to us now to give us insight and training for being better grandparents to our seventeen grandchildren and to our godchildren.
I wish I had heard this when my first child was born! I had just come out of RCIA and still didn’t understand the importance of Baptism!
I loved this! They should be shown to all parents for Baptism prep. It’s as engaging as it is informative. Well done, Augustine Institute!
I love how the sessions relate the idea of Baptism to the many stories that led up to the era of Christ himself. I’m becoming a godparent soon, and watching these videos brought great enlightenment to me!
This is such a powerful example of teaching in modern times! As a three-time godparent, this is the first time I took the class in the video format and I loved it. So moving and full of rich and inspiring information.
What’s Your Story?
Tell us your experience with using FORMED resources for RCIA