ABOUT OUR PROGRAM
Thank you for partnering with us at Saint John Vianney Parish for the religious education and spiritual formation of your child(ren)! It is our privilege to assist our good parents and guardians in caring for the children who have been entrusted to them.
The aim of our Parish Religious Education Program (PREP) is to educate our children in our beautiful Catholic faith, to help them develop a lasting relationship with Jesus Christ, and to encourage their development as children of God. We are glad you will be joining us this year!
The Parish Religious Education Program (PREP) holds classes on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 4:00 PM to 5:15 PM throughout the academic year in the Parish House (i.e., the building next to the church). The classrooms in the Parish House have top-of-the-line projectors, computers, whiteboards, tables, chairs, and catechetical wall materials. The Parish Religious Education Program (PREP) is generally for those children who do not attend Catholic schools but still need religious education and the reception of their Sacraments (i.e., First Penance, First Eucharist, and Confirmation). Classes are taught by a great team of adult catechists and aides. Our programs educate children from 1st grade through 7th grade.
Registration: Kindly read the following welcome letter before clicking the link.
Dear Parents and Friends,
Thank you for partnering with us at Saint John Vianney Parish for the religious education and spiritual formation of your child(ren)!
It is our sacred privilege and special joy to assist you good parents in your wonderful and important work of the spiritual and religious education and formation of your children.
The aim of our Parish Religious Education Program (PREP) is to educate our children in our beautiful Catholic faith, to help them develop a lasting relationship with Jesus Christ, and to encourage their ongoing and wonderful development as children of God. We are glad you will be joining us this coming year!
Whether you are a new or returning family to our PREP program, we would be grateful if you could complete the following online Registration Form, which takes the place of former physical forms. We believe that it should take less than 10 minutes to complete your annual PREP registration.
Kindly note that the tuition payment, which goes towards covering some of the costs of the PREP program, is required at the time of registration and will be processed electronically at the conclusion if this Registration Form.
Only after you have completed the Registration Form and submitted payment will your family and children be considered “registered”. Then, our staff will be able to assign each student to a class.
If your family is experiencing financial difficulty at this time, and you would like to create a payment plan, please call the Parish Office (610-642-0938) for an appointment to register in person.
Please note that the tuition fees paid by the PREP families cover about one-third of the costs associated with the PREP program, and the remaining costs of the PREP program are covered from the Sunday collections. So, we are grateful to both our parents and parishioners for their supporting our wonderful Parish PREP program.
The 2023 – 2024 PREP tuition fees are as follows:
Early Registration, up to and including June 15th, 2023:
1 child - $225.00; 2 children - $275.00; 3+ children - $325.00
Regular Registration, beginning June 16th, 2023:
1 child - $250.00; 2 children - $300.00; 3+ children - $350.00
Given the growing size of the number of students in our PREP program, we also anticipate that we will be offering classes on both Tuesday afternoons and Wednesday afternoons, from 4:00 PM to 5:15 PM. The students will be assigned to either Tuesday or Wednesday. We ask in the Registration Form that you select your family preference for classes on either Tuesday or Wednesday afternoons. Our goal is to schedule families who have several children in the PREP program to be registered for the same day. In addition to taking into consideration your family preference, students will be registered for their day (Tuesday or Wednesday) on a first-come, first-serve basis, so kindly register as soon as possible.
We are grateful for your cooperation with the PREP registration process and we encourage you to complete the Registration Form as soon as possible, so that our staff can plan accordingly, by undertaking appropriate classroom assignments and securing adequate catechists and aides as well as textbooks and teaching material for the new year.
If you have any questions about the registration process, please call the parish office or email us at email@example.com
Once again, we welcome you – both new and current families – to our PREP program!
Gratefully in Our Risen Lord,
Fr. Bill Donovan, Pastor
Mary Anne Monroe, DRE
Registration Link: We believe that registering will take less than ten (10) minutes to complete.
To register your child online, please click here.
If you have any questions about the registration process, please call the parish office or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
All students are required to complete two consecutive years of religious instruction in order to receive their Sacraments of Initiation (First Communion or Confirmation). Students who are NOT registered members of St. John Vianney Parish -- but would like to receive first sacraments here -- must obtain written permission from their Pastor. The sacraments of (First) Communion and Confirmation are usually administered in May.
Baptized Catholics who have completed PREP Levels One and Two are prepared to receive First Penance and First Communion in the spring of their 2nd Grade. Children preparing to complete their Sacraments of Initiation are usually confirmed in the spring of their 7th grade. All PREP children preparing to receive their Sacraments of Initiation are required to participate in a Presentation Mass, Sacramental Retreat, Final Rehearsal, and May Procession. Parents of students preparing to receive first sacraments must attend an informational Sacramental Meeting before their children can receive first sacraments. Children receive their First Penance during the Lenten season, First Communion during Easter, and Confirmation either in Ordinary Time or on Pentecost.
PREP is always looking for volunteers!
Our program of religious instruction meets only once a week, but we are always in need of Catechists, substitute Catechists and teacher's aides. No experience is necessary, although police clearances and Safe Environment training are required of all volunteers. If you are enrolling your child in PREP for the incoming school year, please consider giving of your time to help out with our weekly program. With sufficient numbers of volunteers, everyone can be placed on a rotating schedule. Our PREP would not be possible without your support and participation. For more information or to volunteer, please contact Mary Anne Monroe, DRE, at email@example.com. Thank you!
CHILDREN'S LITURGY OF THE WORD
The Children's Liturgy of the Word (or CLOW) is a liturgical program for children between the ages of 3 and 7. This program is geared towards children who have not yet received their First Communion. (Older children who have already received Eucharist must participate fully in the Mass)
The Children's Liturgy of the Word occurs during the Sunday 10:30 AM Mass, and the entire Sunday segment lasts all of about 15 minutes. Children are invited by the priest out of their pews after the Opening Prayer and are greeted by a team of adult volunteer catechists who process them to the Church Hall. There, the team of dedicated volunteers use stories and activities to teach the Sunday Gospels. Young children are given the opportunity to hear the same scripture readings that their parents hear in church, but in an easier, more child-friendly manner. The children are returned to their parents typically after the homily.
CLOW is always in need of volunteers who -- when placed on a rotating schedule -- need only attend to the program once a month.
Please consider volunteering for this worthwhile ministry, especially if you have younger children who come to mass with you on a regular basis. For more information, or to sign up as a CLOW volunteer, please contact Mary Anne Monroe, DRE, at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (610)-642-0938.
OUR PREP CURRICULUM
Since age seven is considered to be the age of reason in both civil and ecclesiastical law, children at age seven are required to begin their formal education. So, first grade marks the start of not only a child’s general education but also his or her formal religious education and faith formation.
Our Catholic parishes partner with parents and offer a PREP "beginner" courses on religious education to these young First Graders. While their parents introduce them to important Catholic customs and traditions, the US Catholic Conference of Bishops (USCCB) requires parochial schools and PREP Programs to familiarize these young children with the basic and essential foundations of the Catholic Faith.
First Graders begin by learning about God Who has created them and Who loves them. They begin to learn about their basic Catholic prayers: Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be, and the Sign of the Cross. They study Creation and learn how creation shows forth God's majesty, power, and love. First graders learn about God’s unfailing love for each of us. They learn that God reveals His love to us every day through scripture, their family, their community, and their local and universal Church. They learn that those who follow God love others by serving them, being kind to them, and forgiving those who have offended them.
First graders learn about Christ's life and love through Gospel stories about Christ's ministry and work. They are introduced to the concept of the Mass, whereby we remember and celebrate Christ’s Paschal Mystery - His suffering, death, and resurrection. Finally, first graders are introduced to the Sacraments, a source of God’s unparalleled love and saving grace.
In time, it is our hope that all young children come to know God and develop a personal and loving relationship with Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.
We invite you to register your child for grade one here
Having been introduced to the basic tenets of the Catholic Faith in their first year of religious instruction, second grade PREP students are now ready to learn more about the Liturgical Year, Catholic Prayers, Mary and the Saints, and the Parts of the Mass. They engage in a more in-depth study of the Sacraments as outward signs of God’s saving grace. The children are thoroughly prepared for a particular sacrament of healing called Penance, which is also called Reconciliation or Confession.
Children in second grade, typically between the ages of 7-8, learn all about the Ritual for Confession and how to make an effective Examination of Conscience. They also learn how to recite an Act of Contrition, which is a prayer to express their sorrow and remorse because of sin. Most importantly, the children are taught a most vital and fundamental truth: that God’s love is always unconditional and merciful. When the children speak to Jesus in the person of a priest during Confession, they come to experience God’s abundant love and mercy first-hand.
Once the children have made their First Penance, they are now ready to receive Jesus Christ in the Eucharist. As Catholics, we believe that Jesus’ Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity are all present in the Holy Eucharist. The Eucharist is a sacrament of initiation and is also known as Holy Communion. The celebration of First Holy Communion every spring is always a sacred and joyous occasion for students, their families, and the parish. In the Sacrament of Holy Communion, the children come to know and appreciate the Real Presence of Jesus Christ.
First Communicants usually receive Eucharist in May (during the liturgical season of Easter).
To register, please click here
The primary focus of the third grade PREP curriculum is the Church. Children learn that the Church is both God’s dwelling place and His people. Third graders learn about the origin and growth of Christ’s Church as well as its laws. They are introduced to the Ten Commandments, Eight Beatitudes, and Jesus Christ’s Great Commandment.
The scope of the third-grade curriculum includes a continued examination of the Sacraments of Initiation (Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist), the Sacraments of Healing (Penance and the Anointing of the Sick), and Sacraments at the Service of Communion (Matrimony and Holy Orders).
The objectives of the third grade curriculum include familiarity with the Liturgical Year as well as mastery of the traditional prayers of the Mass, such as the Our Father and the Apostles’ Creed.
Finally, the third-grade curriculum involves a greater understanding of basic Catholic concepts such as the Trinity and Prayer, as well as an introduction to Marian devotions, prayers, and feasts.
To register, please click here
The primary focus of the Fourth Grade PREP curriculum is God’s Law. During the first semester of the academic year, the children read the story of Adam and Eve and learn about original sin and man’s loss of original justice and innocence. The children discuss how and why we sin, how we can use our conscience as our guide against sin, and how we can atone for our sins in the Sacrament of Penance. Although Adam and Eve fell from God’s grace, the children learn that God’s grace can be restored in us by Baptism or Penance, grace increases with each fruitful reception of the Church’s seven sacraments.
The fourth graders then study salvation history from stories in the Old Testament. They learn how a loving and merciful God revealed Himself to his chosen people, Israel. These stories give the children a historical perspective on the Ten Commandments, as well as God’s expectations of His people then and now.
The second semester finds the fourth graders doing an exhaustive study of each of God’s Ten Commandments. They learn about the scriptural references to each of these commandments from both the Old and New Testament. They read about how Jesus, himself, fulfilled these commandments, and how ordinary people called saints piously observed these commandments in their own lives.
Finally, the fourth graders learn practical lessons on how they, themselves, can grow in holiness with Jesus, Mary, and the Saints as their ideal role models. The children learn that, as Christ’s Church, we are always called to holiness, discipleship, and community.
To register, please click here
Our fifth-grade curriculum focuses primarily on how Jesus Christ shares His love and life with us through the sacraments. Students learn that Baptism, Eucharist, and Confirmation are Sacraments of Initiation. In Baptism, we become children of God and are born to a new life in Christ as we are freed from original sin. And as we receive this new life in Christ at Baptism, the Eucharist provides us with the spiritual food to nourish this new life. In Confirmation, we strengthen our baptismal vows, receive the Gifts of the Holy Spirit, identify with Christ, and share in His mission and love.
The fifth grade curriculum also focuses on the Sacraments of Healing. Children learn about the sacrament of Penance, including its ritual, communal celebrations, individual confessions, and the Seal of Confession.
The children also learn more about sin: the kinds of sin, frequency of sin, and the different kinds (species) of sin. All PREP students from grades 3 to 7 receive the Sacrament of Penance at least twice a year.
When the children learn about the Anointing of the Sick, they come to understand that people need not just physical healing, but emotional, mental, and spiritual healing as well.
Finally, the 5th grade PREP curriculum includes a careful examination of the Mass. The children are introduced to the Parts of the Mass, liturgical ministers, the liturgical environment, and the books, vessels, garments, and prayers used to celebrate Mass.
To register, please click here
The sixth-grade PREP curriculum is a change from all other themes and topics discussed in previous years of faith formation. The sixth-grade curriculum focuses primarily on salvation history and the patriarchs of the Church. It teaches children about God’s covenant with His chosen people and the coming of Jesus Christ as the fulfillment of God’s promise.
Middle school children will learn how God revealed himself in the stories of Creation, as handed down through the Bible and Tradition. They learn about how God created man in His own image and likeness, and how man fell from God’s grace because of original sin.
The sixth grade curriculum gives children a historical account of God’s relationship with His chosen people, Israel, and introduces them to the Patriarchs or forefathers of the Church. God chose Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, and Moses to be our ancestors in the Faith.
The sixth grade PREP curriculum is rich in colorful and exciting stories of how God formed and built his covenant with Israel. Its objective is to inform children as to the origins of the early Church and how Jesus Christ, God’s only begotten Son, came to deliver us from sin and help us form a new covenant with His Father.
Finally, the sixth grade curriculum discusses the Bible and the Church today, and how we can live as God’s holy, faithful, and welcoming people.
To register, please click here
The 7th grade is the year for the celebration of the Sacrament of Confirmation throughout the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. In Confirmation, our young candidates receive the seven-fold spiritual Gift of the Holy Spirit, which strengthens the graces received at Baptism. Our students undertake a period of sacramental preparation, which entails selecting a Confirmation sponsor, choosing a Confirmation name, writing a report on the saint they’ve chosen to emulate, attending a retreat, and learning about all about the Sacrament of Confirmation. In order to fulfill their commitment to live in a Christ-like manner, the candidates undertake service projects, perform community service, and participate more deeply in the communal life of the Church. Sacramental preparation for Confirmation also involves representing the basic tenets of the Catholic Faith and discussing moral and societal issues. Maturing as an adult in the faith means developing an informed Catholic conscience so that you can do your part as a contributing member of the Universal Church.
To register, please click here