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"The definitive aim of catechesis is to put people not only in touch, but also in communion and intimacy with Jesus Christ" (General Directory for Catechesis, 80). The Church must provide people with experiences of the sacred and help them to identify the sacred in their own lives. Catechesis is accomplished by varied, interconnected tasks that are inspired by Jesus' example in forming his disciples.

The six tasks of catechesis (National Directory for Catechesis, 20)​ are to:

  • Promote knowledge of the faith

  • Promote knowledge of the meaning of the liturgy and the sacraments

  • Promote moral formation in Jesus Christ

  • Teach the Christian how to pray with Christ

  • Prepare the Christian to live in community and to participate actively in the life and mission of the church

  • Promote a missionary spirit that prepares the faithful to be present as Christians in society

These tasks are imparted through individual relationships, the community of faith, the liturgy, instruction, experiential learning, ritual, prayer, and outreach to the global community. "Continuing education in the faith is a question which concerns the whole community; catechesis, therefore is an educational activity which arises from the particular responsibilities of every member of the community, in a rich context of relationships" (General Directory for Catechesis, 220). Nothing can replace the experience of faith taught and practiced in the household. Parents/guardians are catechists precisely because they are parents/guardians. Therefore the faith development of the entire household is central to catechesis.


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