Supporting Catholic Principles

Today, young people face many challenges as they grow up in a culture that is not always supportive of Catholic principles. It is essential that they have a solid formation in the faith, including a basis in the virtue of chastity. This virtue is an essential key to living joyfully the Catholic faith, to a happy marriage, the commitments required for a priestly or religious vocation, and serves as a sure witness to Christ our Lord.

The program, Formation in Christian Chastity, relies heavily on parents as the primary teachers of their children. The program seeks to support and guide parents as they hand on to their children the perennial teaching of the Church on matters of human love and sexuality. The efforts of parents are further supported by classroom work to provide the moral principles we live by, and a spiritual life to sustain our young people as they mature.

Formation in Christian Chastity + Grade 1

What could parents teach to First Graders?

The basic theme is creation. It starts with simple concepts and moves to the creation of the human person, why we were created and finally the family of Jesus. A listing of the teaching points follows, and concludes with some ideas of how you might present these concepts.

Formation in Christian Chastity + Grade 2

What can parents teach to Second Graders?

The basic theme is the human person as a child of God. It starts with simple concepts and moves to the gift of the Lord to us in the sacramental life, and how we reverence these gifts of God by care for the body we have been given. A listing of the teaching points follows, and concludes with some ideas of how you might present these concepts.

Formation in Christian Chastity + Grade 3

What can parents teach to Third Graders?

The basic theme is the mystery of the triune God. It starts with the basic teachings of God as the Trinity of Persons, and moves to the mystery of the human family. A listing of the teaching points follows, and concludes with some ideas of how you might present these concepts.

Formation in Christian Chastity + Grade 4

What can parents teach to Fourth Graders?

The basic theme is the mystery of God and our personal relationship to Him. Starting with God, we see how we grow to love Him in our life, and how our lives can be offered in service to Him. A listing of the teaching points follows, and concludes with some ideas of how you might present these concepts.

Formation in Christian Chastity + Grade 5

What can parents teach to Fifth Graders?

During the first four years, the formation program in chastity was presented almost exclusively by the parents. The teaching points that were provided to you accomplished this. As the young people reach the middle school years, there are some elements of formation that will be covered in the school or parish catechetical programs. However, the parents will give the intimate and very personal information. Since each child differs in their needs and personal rate of development, the information needed by one child is often very different from others.

Grade 5 - Classroom Plan 1

If we want to know the truth, we need to do all we can to learn about Jesus. By reading the Bible, learning the teachings of the Church, and following the teaching of the Pope and the bishops in union with him, we will come to know Jesus and the truth. The Church teaches that each person is a unique creation and should be treated with dignity and respect.

Grade 5 - Classroom Plan 2

Our conscience is our guide for helping us to understand what’s right and wrong. But in order to form our consciences correctly, we need to listen to God’s word, pray, go to Mass every Sunday and Holy Day of Obligation, go to Confession regularly (once per month is a good practice here), follow the teachings of the Church, and obey our parents.

Every human being is a gift from God whose life is to be treasured. Abortion is a grave sin, because it involves the deliberate killing of an unborn child.

We have an obligation to care for the sick and the suffering. The 5th Commandment forbids murder, including the killing of those who are ill or have physical or mental disabilities. We must pray for those who have died through abortion and euthanasia and for those who have committed these sins. We must pray for the protection of the right to life of every single human being, since every human person is made in the image of God.

Formation in Christian Chastity + Grade 6

What can parents teach to Sixth Graders?

For young people, friendships outside the home are very important. Parents should know who their child’s friends are, along with where they spend their time. Especially note if your child is “hanging around” with students who are several years older. This is always a red flag for parents. Also, be conscious of the adults that spend time with your children. Do they meet with your approval, and is the time and circumstances of their involvement appropriate? Media influences are very much parts of the cultural formation young people receive. Monitor movies, books, and especially computer use. Computers should be in a “public” area of the home under the watchful eye of parents. Children alone can be susceptible to the activity of strangers via chat rooms. Mixed group activities are best for young people in the middle grades; we strongly discourage single dating until much later in the high school years.

Grade 6 - Classroom Plan 1

Today we have learned that God creates every person out of love and that because we are made in his image, we must love him above all things and our neighbor as ourselves. True love involves self-sacrifice. Jesus shows us this by his whole life and especially by his death for us on the cross.

True friends are those who are for the good of another person and who help them along the path to heaven. Love of neighbor rules out ever doing harm to another, whether physically, emotionally, or spiritually. We must never be unkind to anyone. Gossip, bullying, and ridicule are acts, which are displeasing to God. We should avoid those who seek to use us for their own pleasure or selfish gain.

Grade 6 - Classroom Plan 2

Today we have learned that chastity is a virtue that helps us to think and act purely and which frees us from selfishness. We have learned that to be chaste, we must be modest. Modesty involves keeping private things private. It affects how we speak, dress, and act. Finally, we learned that by living chaste lives, we could live the holy lives that our Lord wants us to live.

Formation in Christian Chastity + Grade 7

What can parents teach to Seventh Graders?

As your child matures, it is your privilege and responsibility to communicate the truth and meaning of human sexuality to your child and to help him/her through the stages of development. The relationship and trust you establish now, will help your child to navigate his/her way from childhood, through adolescence, to adulthood in a virtuous and successful way.

As parents, the love and support that you give your children during this time of transition from childhood through adolescence to adulthood will pay big dividends down the road. While making sure to give proper supervision, it will be important for parents to respect their child’s increasing need for privacy.

Grade 7 - Classroom Plan 1

Today we have discussed that our true and lasting happiness is to be found in loving God and neighbor. If we love God, we will keep His commandments. We are responsible for our acts because of the freedom that God has given us. We need God’s grace to live morally upright lives and we receive grace primarily through Mass, prayer, and the Sacrament of Penance.

Grade 7 - Classroom Plan 2

Today we have discussed that a vocation is the particular call the God makes to each person to live out his or her life in a holy way. We must practice the virtual of chastity, as well as the other virtues, if we are to live out this call to holiness. Part of being holy is choosing our friends wisely, that is, choosing as friends only those people who will help us to follow God. If we choose our friends wisely, practice the virtues, and receive the sacraments regularly throughout our lives, we will be the holy people that God made us to be, and one day we will reign with Him forever in heaven, where we have total and unending happiness.

Formation in Christian Chastity + Grade 8

What can parents teach to Eighth Graders?

People express their love physically, as well as emotionally and spiritually. The fullest physical expression of love takes place in the marriage of a man and a woman. The act of intercourse (the marital act) is the sacramental expression of love between a husband and wife, which is founded on the marriage covenant. This act is a sign of deep love and self giving between husband and wife and is intended by God for two primary purposes: the generation of life (procreative end) and the deepening of the union between husband and wife (unitive end). Every marital act (act of intercourse between husband and wife) must be open to these two ends. In marriage, the physical intimacy of the spouses becomes a sign and pledge of their spiritual communion. This bond between a baptized man and a baptized woman is sanctified in the Sacrament of Matrimony.

Grade 8 - Classroom Plan 1

Today you have learned that in the sacrament of marriage the husband and wife are called to make a total gift of self. You know that the marital act must always be open to life and love, and this is reserved for the sacrament of marriage. Any sexual act outside of marriage is gravely sinful, however, God always gives us the grace to live chaste lives. We gain this grace primarily from Mass and the sacraments, through prayer, keeping the commandments, and through virtuous acts. If a person has fallen into sin, he should never despair. God’s love and mercy are without limit. He always wants to reconcile us to Himself and He does this through the Sacrament of Confession.

Grade 8 - Classroom Plan 2

Today you have learned about freedom – what a gift it is and the responsibilities that come with it. You have also learned that this stage in your life is for building and deepening true friendships with the same and opposite sex without the pressures of dating. You know that modesty involves keeping private things private, whether in dress or in conversation. You know that the use of pornography is a grave evil which degrades people and which has destroyed many marriages and families. It must be avoided! Finally you have learned that abuse is always sinful. You must never abuse another in any way and it is never ok for anyone to abuse you. If this happens, immediately tell a parent or a trusted adult. Remember the two great commandments: The first and greatest is this: That you must love the Lord your God with all your heart and all your mind and all your soul and all your strength. The second is like it: You must love your neighbor as yourself.