Catechesis of the Good Shepherd

Space is limited based on volunteer availability to safely re-open. 

Substitute volunteers are needed this year!  Each session will require at least 2 parent substitute volunteers, otherwise the session will be cancelled. 1:1 training and brief atrium orientation will be provided in September. 

Email for ways you can help! 


Holy Family Kirkland follows the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd (CGS) for Faith Formation.  The children meet in the atrium, a place of prayer designed to meet the spiritual and developmental needs of children using the Montessori method. 

In the atrium, the child works and prays with lovely hand-made materials to dive deeper into the Bible and liturgy.  The children are invited into a life long relationship with the Good Shepherd who gives "life to the full." 

When are atrium sessions?  They are offered as weekly 2-hour sessions from September through May for children in Level I (for 3-6 years old), Level II (for 6-9 years old), and Level III (9-12 years old). 

Catechesis of the Good Shepherd offers remote preparation for Mass. It is not meant to replace Sunday liturgy or the domestic church.

"It is in the bosom of the family that parents are "by word and example . . . the first heralds of the faith with regard to their children." - CCC 1656

Prayerfully consider how you can set time aside for your child to attend atrium sessions and Sunday Eucharist. Consistent Mass attendance is critical for a strong prayer life in the family. 

"On Sundays and other holy days of obligation, the faithful are obliged to participate in the Mass." - Canon Law 1247 

Keep in mind, due to high demand, once admitted your child is expected to attend all sessions. Priority will be given to families who volunteer as catechists and registered parishioners as a token of appreciation to the generosity of our volunteer catechists and the stewardship of this parish community.


Sacramental Preparation

Sacramental Preparation is the process of preparing children (age 7 or second grade, but they may be older) for First Reconciliation and First Eucharist.

Only baptized children participate in sacramental preparation. At Holy Family Parish, baptized children who have been preparing through daily family prayer, Sunday liturgy, and in the atrium begin the discernment process for their First Reconciliation and First Eucharist. The child, with their parents, must spend time in prayer and reflection and together ask to receive the sacraments.

The immediate year of preparation for the Sacraments of First Reconciliation and First Eucharist take place from September to May - with meetings, workshops and rehearsals outside of the CGS Level II atrium sessions.  First Penance takes place in December and First Eucharist takes place in May.

A copy of the baptismal certificate should be submitted with the online form.  If you have a child who is not yet baptized, and over the age of seven, please contact Maria Muscado at


Parent Participation

The work of many hands is required to provide the CGS ministry All families are expected to participate.  At the time of registration, you will complete an online survey with many options for participation.  If you would like more information about this requirement, please contact Maria Muscado at

"By praying with their children, by reading the word of God with them and by introducing them deeply through Christian initiation into the Body of Christ - both the Eucharistic and the ecclesial Body - they become fully parents, in that they are begetters not only of bodily life but also of the life that through the Spirit’s renewal flows from the Cross and Resurrection of Christ."  — St. John Paul II, Familiaris Consortio

Families who participate in CGS are active and registered parishioners of Holy Family Parish, giving of the time, talent, and treasure. Click HERE for more on the next Newcomer's Social. 


CGS Registration 
Open Online:

CGS Application

First Eucharist 

CGS Payment


Parent Handbook

Catechist Volunteers Needed!


The Sheepfold:  Courses for Adults

More on Courses for Adults


What is the CGS approach?

CGS in the Home


Contact Us


Kids 4th Grade and above are eligible to be altar servers.  Click here to learn more. 







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