Children’s Religious Education Programs
at Holy Faith Catholic Church
- Sunday School
- Sacramental Preparation
- Youth Confirmation
- Vacation Bible School
- Catholic Education
Religious education of children begins and grows in the home, within the context of a nurturing family life. Parents are the first and primary religious educators of children. Holy Faith Catholic Church partners with parents to educate our children to love, know and serve our Lord, Jesus Christ, and grow in His compassion.
At Holy Faith, there are three primary modes of Children’s Christian Formation (CCF):
- Sunday School for grades Kindergarten through 9
- Sacramental Preparation Programs
- Vacation Bible School
All children of the Parish, whether attending Catholic or Public schools, are invited to attend our religious education classes and experiences.
These educational experiences are enhanced by a variety of community activities and family catechesis:
- Stations of the Cross
- May Crowning
- Family Picnic
- Fall Carnival
- Christmas Play & Cookie Exchange
- Holy Thursday Soup & Sandwich Supper
- Other Social Gatherings
The Sacrament of Baptism (for infants and young children), the gift of initiation into the life of Christ and the Church, is available for all children from birth through age 7*
- Parents are asked to attend a Baptismal Preparation class, and must register for these classes by contacting the Church office or register here.
- Parishioners may complete the Preparation class and request pastoral permission for the Baptism to be held at another Parish. Please contact us to prepare the necessary paperwork.
- Godparents must be at least age 16.
- Godparents are not a parent.
- The Godparent must be in good standing with the Catholic Church and have received the three Sacraments of Initiation: Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist.
- There may be only one Godparent.
- If there are two Godparents, there must be one male and one female, and one of these Godparents could be a Christian witness.
- Many children are blessed with a multitude of Godparents. Please note, only two names of Godparents will be recorded on the Baptismal certificate.
- Scheduling a Baptism is done through the office after completing the required preparation class. If completed previously Contact Us with your request to schedule the baptism.
*Baptism for children over the age of 7 is generally completed through the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults Adapted for Children, to meet the special needs of children and youth. In the Diocese of St. Augustine, the process of RCIA for children is a two-year process. Please contact the office for more information.
Sunday School – Grades KG – 9
Kindergarten through 9th grade students meet on Sundays following the 9:30am Mass, from September through April/May. Classes begin around 10:40am and ends at Noon.
Registration for CCF Sunday School. To register online click CCF Registration. Note: Your date of registration will determine the year attending. All registrations must be completed by January of the current year for attendance in this academic school year. Most registrations after January will be for the next academic school year beginning in the fall. Call the office for special circumstances.
You can download a CCF Calendar for 2018-2019 and save to your PC or print a copy. New school year paper schedules are available as of August 1 and can be found in the vestibule of the church, in the office lobby and in the Parish Life Center. The schedule can also be found on our online calendar. Be aware that the online calendar is not always current due to technical issues.
First Reconciliation and First Communion
Children in grades 2 or higher may register for our First Reconciliation and First Communion classes. Children must have completed at least one year of catechism before registering for the Sacramental Preparation program. Children enrolled in one of the Catholic schools (St. Patrick or Queen of Peace Academy) will attend only the Preparation classes. Children enrolled in the public schools will attend Sunday School and the Preparation classes.
Classes are held on Saturday mornings, one Saturday each month, from 10:00am – Noon. We ask parents and children to attend the first hour of class together for Family Catechesis. During the second hour, children meet in separate classes, while parents remain for an hour of catechism and faith sharing. The Rite of First Reconciliation is celebrated generally in January of the new year. For 2019 the date is January 12. First Communion will be celebrated on May 4, 2019 at the 5:00pm Vigil Mass. Mark your Calendar.
You can register for Sacramental Preparation classes here throughout the year: CCF Registration. Note: Your date of registration will determine the year attending. All registrations must be completed by December of this last year for the current school year. Most registrations after January will be for the next academic school year. Call the office for special circumstances.
Schedules for the First Reconciliation and First Communion class sessions are available after August 1, and can be found in the church vestibule, the office and the Parish Life Center or click on link below to save or print a copy.
The Sacrament of Confirmation is celebrated in Grades 10 and higher. Children must have completed at least one year of catechism before registering for the Confirmation Sacramental Preparation program. Confirmandi (Confirmation candidates) attend approximately eight classes. They also attend at least one class of family catechesis with their parents, and one class with their Confirmation Sponsors.*
Other requirements for Confirmation are:
- Participate in the Catholic Youth Ministry (optional)
- Select from several service project opportunities (1 required) and select from a list of Catholic Enrichment opportunities (1 required) and submit a written report of the experiences.
- Attend a Youth Ministry Retreat
- Participate in the Good Friday Liturgy of the Veneration of the Cross
- *Confirmation Sponsors must be at least age 16, not a parent, in good standing with the Catholic Church, and have received the three Sacraments of Initiation: Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist.
Confirmation Classes begin with an Orientation Session for Parents and Students. The Orientation Session for the Confirmation Class of 2019 is scheduled for Sunday, September 23, 2019 at 10:40am Class is held in the Parish Life Center Section C. Youth Confirmation will be conferred by Bishop Felipe Estévez at Holy Faith Parish on Saturday, June 1, 2019 at the 5:00pm Vigil Mass. Mark your calendar.
10th graders are expected to participate in community service project opportunities presented to them during the year, as well as participate in the CYM (Catholic Youth Ministry) group before and during their Confirmation Preparation year. CYM meetings are scheduled on selected Sundays from 4:00pm to 5:30pm in the Parish Life Center youth room (see the weekly bulletin for scheduled CYM events.) Sign up for CYM here to receive information on the updated schedule and upcoming events.
Register for Confirmation Classes (Confirmation Class Registration). In the section where you add the student’s information, you will be asked what school they are attending. Please specify which public school or Catholic School your child is attending. All registered students for this Sacrament must attend all scheduled Confirmation classes and required events. Note: All registrations must be completed by December of this year for the current school year of 2018-2019. Most registrations after January will be for the next academic school year. Call the office for special circumstances.
The Confirmation Class Schedule is posted in the weekly bulletin and on our online calendar. Paper copies of the current academic school year schedule are available in the office after September 1 and online. Click on links below for copies of the Confirmation handouts.
Holy Faith asks families to pay the following fees; however, please know that we will never exclude a child or family for inability to pay program fees. The fees are used to pay for textbooks, craft supplies, and related materials. Fee for 1 child is $25.00 total Fee for 2 children is $40.00 total Fee for 3 or more children is $60.00 total
Vacation Bible School
At Holy Faith, we schedule a five-day Vacation Bible School (VBS) every year for mid-June or July. This past year’s theme was “SHIPWRECKED” RESCUED BY JESUS! VBS 2018 was held from Saturday, June 23 to Wednesday, June 27th. Every year we offerVBS Pre-School for children ages 3 and 4 and our VBS crews consist of children, grades K thru 5, and Middle School, High School and Adult Volunteer Helpers.
All VOLUNTEERS must register.
2019 VBS Schedule
- We typically run VBS from a Saturday thru Wednesday and include a Family VBS FUN day on Sunday after the 9:30am Mass. The 2019 VBS schedule will be posted as soon as plans are finalized.
Registeration will begin sometime in late April of 2019 Register early to be sure to receive your FREE T-Shirt and all the craft materials (we hate to run out of supplies and have unhappy kidos). Registration form will be posted here.
Vacation Bible School began over 115 years ago as a method of religious education for children during their summer vacations. While it has been very popular in many of our Protestant churches, the Catholic Church has only more recently become actively involved in promoting VBS experiences. Holy Faith uses Catholic versions of VBS that has an official Imprimatur from our Bishops. We use the New Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition of the Bible.
It takes a community to create this experience of religious education. It takes a community to have fun and create memories. VBS is never simply a “children’s activity.” VBS is a church-wide outreach event. Holy Faith is blessed by volunteers that give hours of time to prepare lessons, set-up, present activities, and teach song and dance. Then, they take time to clean up and put it all away until next year. We have now included a FAMILY Vacation Bible School Session on day 2 of VBS. We are very grateful for our wonderful volunteers! Consider joining the Holy Faith VBS Community next year. You will gain more than you give. Watch for the dates, times and registration information in our weekly bulletin and E-Newsletter.
The VBS 2017 camp theme was “Getting S’more of Jesus” at “Camp-Out” Holy Faith VBS. (see album below). We will add the 2018 VBS “Shipwrecked” pics in the near future.
Comment from a parent after VBS 2017:
Thank you for putting on such a wonderful VBS program. Our son in a Cub Scout, so the camping theme was perfect…he came home excited everyday and couldn’t stop talking about what they did. The family picnic was very generous and was the first time we’ve been invited to participate in a VBS he was attending. We can’t wait for next year!
“CAMP-OUT” Holy Faith VBS 2017 Memories
Enjoy this brief VBS 2017 video. VBS Holy Faith!
Catholic Education in Gainesville
St. Patrick’s InterParish School (Pre-Kg through 8th Grade) Website: St. Patrick Interparish School Queen of Peace Academy (Pre-Kg through 8th Grade) Website: Queen of Peace Academy St. Francis Catholic High School (9th through 12th Grades) Website: St. Francis Catholic Academy