The policy of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati is that children in the 2nd grade and above, about age 7 or older, be prepared for and celebrate the sacrament of Penance before they are prepared for and celebrate the sacrament of Eucharist. Therefore, children are prepared for and celebrate the two sacraments in the same year.
“Parents are to “be recognized as being primarily and principally responsible for their [faith] education…it is almost impossible to provide an adequate substitute.” (GE #3) Therefore, it is through and with the family that we promote an understanding of and preparation for the sacraments. The parish community in partnership with the parents prepares for sacraments.” (Excerpted from Sacraments for Young Children)
They are also to be prepared by their parish of membership. St. Max recognizes the formation children receive in an Archdiocesan Catholic School and Religious Formation of Youth (RFY) classes or Home Study program at St. Max. (If your child receives formation through Home School or a non-Archdiocesan school, please contact Mary Montour.)
Families who want their child(ren) to prepare for and celebrate the sacraments of Penance and First Communion, should first meet with the pastor to discuss family readiness. Following the initial conversation with the pastor, we have a Saturday morning retreat and 3 Tuesday evening sessions for each of the two sacraments for the integration of the knowledge of the language and “how to” of our faith with the traditions and practices of the faith. These additional sessions beyond the classroom are for the child and a parent (or special adult) to attend together. Using our parish data base, all parents of children with an appropriate birthday will receive an informational letter concerning preparation so as to not overlook any child.
If your child is in the first grade or third grade and has already celebrated the sacrament, please just leave a message with Carol Heuser at 777-4322 ext. 104 that preparation is not needed at this time.