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Campion student catechists reflect on the past year

Aug 21, 2021

By Sr Luka, Student Life Officer
Image courtesy of CCD Sydney

On Friday the 20th of August, Campion students currently part of the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine (CCD) met with CCD Faith Education Officer Anita Lee to share about their experiences of assisting with or teaching Special Religious Education in primary and secondary schools prior to the lockdown.

First-year student Julian Vieira recalls being ‘blown away’ by the experience.

“It gave me a huge insight into the lives of the average school child and their level of knowledge. It truly made me appreciate all the input I have received at Campion College and abroad. This experience has had a great impact on my life as it has left me with a greater appreciation of the need for personal formation and a burning desire to do more.”

A new catechist usually commences this ministry by assisting a current SRE Teacher. Second-year student Hannah Portelli recalls feeling hesitant to volunteer but compelled by a greater call to step out of her comfort zone.

“Catechism was something that I had always wanted to do yet never felt confident or wise enough to do. After hearing the CCD talk during our Semester 1 retreat, I realised that evangelism and catechism were about God, not about me. I felt encouraged to take a step out of my comfort zone and trust that God would use me as an instrument and give me the necessary skills and virtues in order to be a catechist. After training with the CCD I felt much more prepared to go into the classroom with practical skills to prepare and run a session. I still felt nervous and had self-doubt, wondering how the students would receive me but once I stepped into the classroom, I felt completely comfortable sharing my personal faith journey and was pleasantly surprised by the way the students listened intently and took part.

“My experience as a catechist, although quite short, has been very enriching. It has helped me to personally grow closer to God as I needed faith within myself in order to spark faith in others. It was also encouraging to see that even though the students are still young, they want to engage in Catholic teaching. I am glad that I took the opportunity to be a catechist and I hope to continue again soon.”

While it seems SRE classes are unlikely to resume this year, the CCD is very hopeful to start as soon as restrictions ease. Students who have completed the training in 2021 are encouraged to stay in touch with Anita or Vincent so that they are ready to go into the classroom as soon as it will be possible again.

Students who are interested in volunteering in the future are encouraged to contact the Student Life Office for more information, or click here for preliminary details.