Evangelization & Formation
The Evangelization area coordinates all levels of evangelization and catechetical programming in the parish, children through adults, Catholic and public school children alike. The objective in this area is to foster cooperation, coordination and communication among all groups and individuals involved in our parish community.
Responsibilities: To provide religious formation for the parishioners of St. Thomas More; to encourage all parishioners to become involved in the religious formation programs of the parish; to facilitate communication and coordination between the various ministries within the Evangelization area; to foster greater awareness and participation; to inform parishioners of the religious formation classes, programs, activities, retreats and other such events.
Ministries: Welcome Ministry, Adult Formation (Education Series, RCIA/RCIC, Small Christian Communities, Parish Missions, Young Adult); Children Formation (Pre-K – 5th PSR, STM Preschool, STM School, Vacation Bible School, Children’s Liturgy, Sunday Nursery); Adolescent Formation ( 6th – 12th PSR, Youth Ministry, Life Teen/Edge, Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts); Sacramental Prep (Baptism, First Reconciliation, First Eucharist, Confirmation, Marriage); Vocations.
The Welcome Ministry is a group of parishioners that welcome newcomers to St. Thomas More Parish. Each welcome minister will meet and share an information packet provided by the parish office to the newly registered parishioners. This is a great opportunity to make our new families feel welcome and at home. Contact: Liz Core
This ministry is quite diverse and involves an array of opportunities for parishioners to become involved as a participant and volunteer.
Parish Mission Team Member (Adult and High School Volunteers needed)
The 2016 Parish Lenten Mission will be given by Fr. Michael Alello, pastor of St. Philomena Parish in Labadieville, LA. The Mission will take place March 7-9 beginning at 7:00pm. This team will help plan, publicize, organize and implement the annual Lenten Parish Mission. Contact: Sarah Neau
Catholics Q & A Participant
Catholics Q & A meets on Tuesdays from 6:30pm to 8:30pm during the interims of Adult Bible study. Q & A is for those who wish to deepen their faith by exploring the tenants of Catholicism. Topics include Church history, the Bible, Authority, Tradition, Incarnation, Salvation and many other dogmas. In order to defend and treasure our faith, we are called to know it. This is a great avenue to explore the foundations upon which we hold true to our beliefs, seeking understanding and clarity. Contacts: Jim Jasek and Lynell Whipple
Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults and Children (RCIA/RCIC)
This program is for non-Catholic adults and children seeking to learn more about the faith. Unbaptized adults and children are highly encouraged to join, as well as those seeking to make a full profession of faith. Those who feel called to become Catholic are encouraged to attend classes offered on Tuesdays from 6:30pm to 8:00pm. Contact: Sarah Neau
RCIA Adult Catechist
Those wanting to become RCIA catechists should have a background in Catholic doctrine and be interested in sharing their knowledge with those in the process. They also help facilitate Tuesday evening sessions on specifically assigned topics. Catechists are needed for both adults and children attending the classes. Contact: Sarah Neau
RCIA Children’s Catechist
Those wanting to become RCIA catechists should have a background in Catholic doctrine and be able to share that knowledge with children between 3rd grade and 12th grade students who are seeking to join the Catholic faith or complete their initiation sacraments. Volunteers would be responsible for leading Tuesday evening sessions with the young people as well as Morning of Reflections prior to each of the major Rites of the process
Becoming a sponsor gives volunteers the opportunity to be a spiritual companion for those participating in the RCIA process. All that is needed is the desire to share your faith with someone seeking to know more about what it means to be Catholic. Contact: Sarah Neau
This formation process is for practicing adult Catholics who are in need of the Sacrament of Confirmation. This eight-week program begins in the Spring and continues through the Sunday of Pentecost when the candidates become fully initiated into the Catholic Church. Volunteers are needed to serve as catechists, sponsors, hospitality teams, and administrative help. Contact: Sarah Neau
For Better Forever: Marriage Preparation
For Better and For Ever is a couple to couple marriage prep program. Engaged couples are matched with a ministry couple. Communication is the main focus of the program as couples read, journal and discuss topics vital to a successful marriage and meet with the ministry couple for follow-up. Volunteer couples will be trained in this wonderful process of ministering to young couples beginning their lives together. Contact: Ann & Ron DeJean
The vocations ministry works to promote a better understanding and openness to the priesthood and religious life. They are advocates that support those in our parish and the diocese who are either in the process of discerning their vocation, are in active formation and fulltime priests and religious that daily, in faith, respond to God’s call. The Vocations Ministry supports events such as ordinations, Senior Altar Server appreciation, support for our pastor, Vocations Awareness Week, Come & See Weekends, outreach to the religious in our area and much more. You are invited to contact the Vocations Ministry to volunteer your time in supporting those called to the priesthood, religious life and lay ministry. Contact: Sarah Neau
These ministries are in need of volunteers to serve the young people of our parish. Opportunities to serve are:
Child Protection Requirements
The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops instituted the Safe Environment Program for the prevention of child abuse. This program mandates that all volunteers and employees of Catholic schools and parishes complete the following:
Background checks for all employees and for adult volunteers working in an ongoing unsupervised role with children.
Child Protection training (“Safe in Place”) for all employees and for adult volunteers in an ongoing unsupervised role with children. Sign acknowledgement of the Code of Ethics. Completion of the diocesan application.
Parish School of Religion (CCD)-Grades Pre-K through 5th
Elementary Parish School of Religion has been a constant ministry in the parish since its inception and provides continuous religious education to young children in grades Pre-K to 5th grade. The elementary school children are guided by their catechists and parents on a journey through religious studies and life applications. They learn to grow in their faith through prayer, service, Bible stories, Church teachings, music, crafts and more. Volunteer opportunities include classroom leaders and assistants, as well as administrative help. Any family with children in the parish attending a private or public school is strongly encouraged to enroll them in the Parish School of Religion. Catholic school children are also welcome to participate. Classes are held on two Sundays each month in the Youth House after the 10:00am Mass. Teachers and teaching assistants are needed to guide the children in their faith formation and religious studies. Registration for children is available by calling the parish office. Contact: Sarah Neau, 275-3940
Children’s Liturgy of the Word
Children ages 3/4 years old through First Grade are the primary focus of Children’s Liturgy of the Word. Each 10:00am Sunday Mass these young children are dismissed during the Liturgy of the Word to participate in the reading and sharing of the Gospel story. The children, in this smaller setting, have an opportunity to grow deeply in the Gospel message. The children return to join the congregation for the Eucharist Prayer. High School, young adult and adult volunteers are welcome! The parish office provides all the supplies necessary so everything is ready before the Sunday Mass. Volunteers are still able to attend the same Mass and fulfill their Sunday obligation. Junior helpers are also needed to help the adult leaders guide the children through the lesson. Contact: Sarah Neau
Vacation Bible School
Vacation Bible School is huge! This exciting week long faith-based program ministers to children ages four-years old to 5th grade and it takes an incredible amount of volunteers for its success. Children journey though the Bible with storytelling, crafts, games, and music. Adult volunteers are asked to be classroom leaders, craft helpers, games leaders and music leaders. Junior Helper volunteers ages 6th grade to 12th grade are called upon to assist the adult helpers in all areas, as well as story-telling. This event is very exciting and fun for all ages. We are in need of adult volunteers to help with this ministry. All adult volunteers, young and old are encouraged to call the parish office to sign-up. Contact: Sarah Neau
The Boy and Girl Scout programs here at St. Thomas More minister to build a strong moral foundation for young people, as well as teach skills that will assist in becoming successful adults for the future. Both groups participate in parish, community and national service projects, team building campouts, leadership development programs, safety training, environmental responsibility, fundraising and much, much more. Locally, St. Thomas More Scouts also participate in the Religious Emblem program created to encourage youth to grow stronger in their faith. Families are encouraged to get involved with the Scouts. Scout leaders and volunteers are needed, as well as our young people to participate in this lifelong ministry of faith, family and service. Cub Scouts Contact: Crystal Hebert; Girl Scouts Contact: Maria Kelly-Smith