Faith Formation Volunteers

We are actively seeking volunteers for our 2022-2023 faith formation year.

St. Thomas Aquinas needs your help in fulfilling our mission to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with those in our community.  Can you give one day a month? Please consider offering your time and talents to one of our faith formation programs.  Our family catechetical program as well as youth ministry programs are looking for volunteers who are willing to walk with our children, families, and teens, as they journey toward a deeper and more intimate relationship with our Lord.

We have hundreds of young folks right here that need committed men and women. Is the God calling you to serve? Can you be one of the chosen? If so, complete this Volunteer Interest Form to get started!

Volunteer Opportunities and Catechist Training

Faith Formation Volunteer Opportunities

  • CATECHIST -Teacher, full year commitment and one training day in August. This is where we need you the most! Programs include FFD, Catechesis of the Good Shepherd, First Communion Program, Confirmation Program, YDisciple, and YAlpha.
  • SMALL GROUP FACILITATOR -A facilitator acts as a guide for small faith group by creating conditions for the group to grow in faith and is mindful that Christ is present. Programs include  FFD, Confirmation Program, YDisciple, and YAlpha.
  • OFFICE HELP/HALL MONITOR -  Assist with administrative duties and monitors the hallway during class time to take care of student and teacher needs. 
  • PROGRAM ASSISTANT/SUBSTITUTE - K through 9th grade support to staff and Catechist as needed. We will not be able to operate ANY programs without assistants.
  • TEEN MINISTRY CORE LEADER - Volunteers to lead, build out and support the network of programs that make up STA Teen Ministry. this is an exciting time to join this fun group!
  • YOUTH MINISTRY AIDE - Adult or Teen volunteer, to help during Youth Group, Sacrament Prep programs,  in small groups and/or on retreats.
  • SACRAMENT CORE LEADER - Volunteers to lead, build out and support either the First Communion program or the Confirmation program. Both Sacrament programs run sixth months prior to the date of the Sacrament.

About CGS

Good news! We have limited spots remaining for CGS on Wednesday from 5:30-6:40 pm. This includes kids three years old through 6th grade! Email or call Brenda Sevcik, [email protected] / 770-842-0253 to secure your spot and register your child.

The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd (CGS) is a common religious experience involving children and adults in which the religious values of childhood, primarily those values of contemplation and enjoyment of God, are predominant. This experience is shared in a place particularly prepared for the religious life of children called the Atrium. God and the child have a unique relationship with one another particularly before the age of six. The growth of this relationship should be assisted by the adult, but is directed by the Spirit of God within the child. Children need their own place to foster the growth of that relationship. This spiritual growth is best served through tangible but indirect means. “If we want to help the child grow near to God, we should, with patience and courage…seek to go always closer to the vital nucleus of things. This requires study and prayer. The child himself will be our teacher if we know how to observe him.” Sofia Cavalletti

Training in The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd

In Catechesis of the Good Shepherd adults are given the opportunity to embrace a method of catechesis (or religious education) that will deepen one’s relationship with God.  Catechist formation in Catechesis of the Good Shepherd is both instructive as well as experiential. It captivates both the head as well as the heart. It has a holistic approach for the adult, enriching the adult in a background of scripture and liturgy, theology, and prayer, as well as the pedagogy of the young child, helping the adult to see what face of God the young child most needs in order to enter into a relationship with God. Therefore, Catechesis of the Good Shepherd requires the adult to receive training in the method in a way that is “retreat-like,” giving time and space to absorb the richness of what it means to live one’s baptismal covenant and grow in the love and knowledge of God.

 

  • Level I catechist formation is for adults seeking to serve children who are three to six years old. This training is at least 90 hours. This is the foundational training for all succeeding levels of catechist formation. All the key themes and presentations that are essential to this method of catechesis are introduced at this level, so it is important for an adult to begin at this level. It is also valuable for the adult in understanding the child’s developmental needs and religious capacities at this level.
    • This formation course is being offered in Spanish at St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church on July 18-23, 2022 and July 12-22, 2023. Click here to Register
  • Level II catechist formation is for adults seeking to serve children who are six to nine years old (or first through third grade). This training is at least 96 hours and continues the themes first introduced in Level I catechist formation. It expands upon those themes according to the developmental needs and capacities of this age child. New themes are also introduced at this level especially around the History of the Kingdom of God, Moral Parables, and the sacrament of Holy Eucharist. Sacramental preparation is also a key component of this catechist formation.
    • This formation course is being offered in English at St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church on Aug 26-27, 2022, Sep 24, 2022, Nov 5, 2022, Dec 3, 2022, Jan 14, 2023, Feb 25, 2023, Mar 11, 2023, Apr 22, 2023 and May 20, 2023. See brochure for more information or click here to Register
  • Level III catechist formation is for those seeking to serve children who are nine to twelve years old (or fourth through sixth grades). This training is about 110-120 hours and builds upon the previous two levels of training. It continues to broaden the scope of scriptural and liturgical themes according to the child’s ability and developmental needs. In-depth Old Testament scripture studies are introduced at this level along with a broader look at God’s Plan in the History of the Kingdom of God and the Judeo-Christian roots of Christianity.

What does serving look like?

God bestowed on us unique spiritual gifts! Together these gifts provide all ministries needed by the church to fulfill its mission. We have many opportunities within all our programs starting with elementary school through high school.  Positions include but are not limited to lead catechists, group facilitators, program assistant/substitute, office help/hall monitor, Teen Ministry Core Leader, Teen Ministry aide, and Sacrament Core Leaders (First Communion or Confirmation).


I am afraid to commit to a whole year.

We understand. But don’t let that hold you back. We will work with you. Our goal is to gather first and then distribute according to need and your availability. 

 

NO WAY I’M QUALIFIED. Nope, Nah, huh.

Neither were Peter and the others. God works with you and your gifts. We have opportunities for formation, and you’ll never be alone. And just like the twelve, you’ll grow in faith and knowledge. We will offer training opportunities, planning meetings, FF volunteer retreats and even Safe Environment training at STA just for you!


What are my next steps?

Complete this Volunteer Interest Form, and we will get back to you! In addition, all our volunteers should be Safe Environment certified, this means you will have a background screen and go through a training course to create a safe environment for everyone. See here for more information.

If you have children attending the faith formation program next year and you are volunteering in one of our qualified positions, you can receive a 50% discount off the tuition fee! *Refunds will be issued in December, following volunteer participation, Virtus and Background screening completion. Sacrament and retreat fees are not discounted.


What are Volunteer Safe Environment Requirements?

The Archdiocese of Atlanta requires that all adult volunteers (18 years old or older) working with
children, youth, and/or vulnerable individuals must complete the Safe Environment training (VIRTUS)
and undergo a background screening before they start volunteering.

To register for a Virtus class CLICK HERE. STA will offer multiple Virtus classes in both English and Spanish before the start of  the year.

Volunteers who are 13 years old or older should complete the Volunteer Application for Minors with their parent’s permission, and the School Reference for Minors form.  Homeschooled minors must provide three references (non-family members).

If you have any questions, please contact Martha Zamorano in the parish office. 770-475-4501 ext: 107


Important Links:

Volunteer Interest Form
Overview of Safe Environment
Safe Environment Policies and Procedures
Overview of VIRTUS Protecting God’s Children