Religious Education

Religious Education

Catechetical Work in the Diocese of Harrisburg

The goal of religious education is to guide and to serve the catechetical work in the Diocese of Harrisburg, under the direction of its Bishop, the chief teacher of the Diocese.

This fosters and supports the formation of the people of the Diocese in the ways of Christ Jesus and in their on-going conversion to Him.

Through the teaching of the Catholic Faith in all of its fullness, the people will come to know the Lord Jesus more deeply, so that they might have communion with Him and with one another in the Holy Spirit, so as to glorify God the Father and come to the love that never ends.


Mr James Gontis

Office: 717-657-4804 227

“The eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had ordered them. When they saw him, they worshiped, but they doubted. Then Jesus approached and said to them, “All power in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe al that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.”

– Matthew 28:16-20

Catechesis is an education in the faith of children, young people, and adults which includes especially the teaching of Christian doctrine imparted, generally speaking, in an organic and systematic way, with a view to initiating the hearers into the fullness of Christian life.

– Catechism of the Catholic Church 5, Catechesi Tradendae 18

“…the definitive aim of catechesis is to put people not only in touch but in communion, in intimacy, with Jesus Christ: only he can lead us to the love of the Father in the Spirit and make us share in the life of the Holy Trinity.”

– Catechesi Tradendae #5

It is required in the Diocese of Harrisburg that all Religion textbooks that are used in parish religious education programs and Catholic schools must have been found by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Ad Hoc Committee to Oversee the Use of the Catechism to be in conformity with the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

These Religion textbooks include:

  • elementary series (whether parish or school)
  • high school text/series (whether parish or school)
  • sacramental preparation textbooks (whether parish or school)
  • supplemental textbooks that are used in Religion classes in our Catholic Schools or in our Parish Religious Education Programs

To access the USCCB listing of textbooks which have been found in conformity with the Catechism, click here.

2014-15 Textbook Memorandum

Ascension Press – All things Catholic

Augustine Institute – All kinds of Catholic resources

Belonging: Baptism in the Family of God

Blessed: First Reconciliation & First Communion

Catechists: Teachers As Witnesses to the Faith

Catholic Answers – Catholic apologetics

CatholiCity – Plethora of Catholic Apologetics sites

Catholic Education Resource Center (CERC) – Tons of great articles by outstanding catholic speakers, authors, teachers, and scholars

Catholic Mom – Catholic Spirituality site for women, especially wives and mothers

Catholic Teaching on Angels

Catholics Come Home – To Come Back/Come Home to the Catholic Church

Christ Life – Parish evangelization program

Diocesan Council of Catholic Women

Diocesan Religion Curriculum – PreK – 8 Diocesan Religion Curriculum – Schools and Parishes

Diocese of Harrisburg Catholic Charismatic Renewal

Diocese of Harrisburg Cursillo

Divine Mercy Chaplet and Rosary Lessons – courtesy Saint John Neumann Parish

Divine Mercy Devotions

Divine Renovation – Parish evangelization program

Dynamic Catholic: Decision Point – Catholic Confirmation preparation

Focus – Catholic renewal and evangelization on campuses across the country

Holy Name Society

Ignatius Press – Catholic resource for Catholic Books, Films, and Music

Ignatius Press: Faith and Life – Site for Ignatius Press Faith and Life textbook series

International Knights of Columbus

Landings International – Welcoming program for inactive Catholics

Legion of Mary

LifeTeen – Dynamic youth ministry resource


Midwest Theological Forum – Didache textbook series and other resources for Catholic high school administrators and Catholic school teachers, and for pastors, parish catechetical leaders, and religious education catechists

My Catholic Faith Delivered

National Council of Catholic Women

National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministry – free youth ministry resources

NET Ministries – youth ministry/youth evangelization apostolate

Newman Society – For orthodox Catholic identity in Catholic colleges and schools


Prayer: The Fuel for our Spiritual Engines

Renewal Ministries – Catholic renewal and evangelization

Rosarium Virginis Mariae Outline


Saint Paul Center – Scott Hahn resources galore and more

Saint Paul Street Evangelization – Bring people into and back to the Catholic faith

Saint Vincent de Paul Society

Sophia Institute – Great Catholic books

Sophia Institute for Teachers – Site for Sophia Institute resources for teachers and catechists

Sports Ministry – Virtue based evangelization through sports

Symbolon: The Catholic Faith Explained (RCIA program)

That Man is You (TMIY) – Catholic men’s spirituality and fellowship

The 15 Promises of Mary to Christians Who Recite the Rosary

The Catholic Company – Multitude of good Catholic scripture resources

The Great Adventure: Your Journey Through the Bible – Great Bible study by Jeff Cavins

The Importance of Parents Bringing Children to Holy Mass

The Key Points: The Most Holy Trinity

The Last Things

Twelve Promises of the Sacred Heart – A Catechetical Explanation

USCCB Youth Ministry

Word on Fire – Bishop Robert Barron’s evangelization website

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