Celebration of Solemn Communion 2023 A Spiritual Preparation Beginning January 22 and Culminating February 19 Dear Parents, We would like to invite your children to deepen their understanding of how our relationship with Jesus is lived out through the sacrament of Eucharist by offering a Celebration of Solemn Communion. In January and February, we will set apart a special time to intentionally prepare for Holy Eucharist by prayerfully participating with your children in a series of scripture meditations Jesus shares about the relationship we are called to have with God that ultimately leads us to worship. This is a four week preparation that will include a deeper understanding of Baptism, Eucharist, and Reconciliation. The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd Levels II and III catechists of St. Catherine’s will be offering this preparation and anticipate that it will be a peaceful, joyful, and memorable experience for all. Although the very youngest children in the Episcopal Church are invited to receive communion from the time of their baptism, taking the time to consider the meaning of the sacraments of Baptism, Reconciliation, and Eucharist can be a very important part of their spiritual journey. All baptized children from First grade through Fifth grade are invited to participate in this year’s preparation and celebration. We are also including any older children who began this preparation in 2020 but who were unable to finish it because of the pandemic. We will meet on Sunday afternoons for two hours, which gives the children a time set apart to listen to and contemplate the scripture meditations along with time to complete the work associated with the preparation. To culminate their preparation, the children will have a Retreat on Saturday, February 18. In addition, the Retreat Day will conclude with a family Liturgy of the Renewal of Baptismal Promises. All members of the family are invited to attend this particularly meaningful liturgy. The Solemn Communion Celebration for the children will be Sunday, February 19, during the 8:30 am Holy Eucharist Family Service. The children will sit together in the front pews and receive the Holy Eucharist as a group. Please discuss this opportunity with your child and together decide about your child’s participation. We encourage all of our children to be involved in this very special time of preparation and celebration. There is a $40 materials fee for each child, with scholarship money available if the cost is a hindrance. This fee will cover the special materials we will use during the retreat and lunch for the children on the Retreat Day. We look forward to sharing this experience with your children and you. Please register by responding to our Evite email invitation. In the Joy of the Good Shepherd, The Level II and Level III Catechists, Ina Bachmann, Alison Harris, Laurie Dirksen, and Karen Maxwell Dates for Celebration of Solemn Communion 2023
January Sunday, January 8, Parent meeting in Parlor, 9:30 am Sunday, January 22, 1 - 3 pm Sunday, January 29, 1 - 3 pm February Sunday, February 5, 1 - 3 pm Sunday, February 12, 1 - 3 pm Saturday, February 18, Retreat Day, 9 am - 3 pm Sunday, February 19, attend 8:30 am Holy Eucharist for Sol Communion
· 4 Sunday Afternoon Sessions from 1 - 3 pm
· 1 Full Day Saturday Retreat from 9 am – 3 pm
· 1 Sunday 8:30 am Holy Eucharist Family Service for the Solemn Communion Celebration when the candidates will receive the Sacrament of Eucharist as a group.
· Sunday, January 22 from 1 – 1:30 pm: Attend the Dedication and Presentation of Candidates ceremony.
· Provide a $40 materials fee to cover the cost of the white gown material, a Bible, Prayer beads, lunch on Retreat Day, and other consumable materials. Scholarship money is available if cost is a hindrance.
· Provide a sewn white gown for your child by Sunday, February 5. We provide the material and instructions; you provide the sewing done either by yourself, a family member, friend, or church volunteer, or by hire.
· Saturday, February 18 from 2 – 3 pm: Attend the Liturgy for Renewal of Baptismal Promises to renew our commitment to Christ in preparation for solemn communion the next day.
· Sunday, February 19: Attend the 8:30 am Holy Eucharist Family Service Solemn Communion Celebration.
· Optional: Saturday, February 18 from 9 pm – 2 pm: Volunteer to help with the retreat.