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Upcoming Events

  • February 4, 2017— Archdiocesan Women's Conference, "Beauty In Christ"

  • February 28, 2017—Day for Ministers of Young Adults:  Engage. Exchange. Explore.  The day will be held at American Martyrs Retreat House, Cedar Falls and will begin at 11:00 am and conclude at 3:00 PM.
  • March 9-10, 2017—Art of Accompaniment Workshop.  Watch for more information.
  • April 20, 2017—Spring Pastoral Leadership Day:  The keynote speakers will be Fr. Michael White and Tom Corcoran, the authors of Rebuilt.
  • May 5-6, 2017—Youth Ministry Leaders Conference and Retreat.  Watch for more details.
  • August 10, 2017—Fall FFL/CSA Gathering will take place at Blessed Maria Assunta Palotta Middle School in Waterloo.  Watch for more details.

Strong Catholic Families at St. Anthony, Dubuque—by Katie Pfiffner, Director of Faith Formation

Strong Catholic FamiliesStrong Catholic Families is an on-going process that is helping to shape and guide the direction of faith formation at St. Anthony’s.  Not only has it provided the faith formation staff a means of sharing the information gleaned from the National Study of Youth and Religion with adults in our parish, but it has also helped us to engage them in meaningful conversations around how the findings are playing out in their lives and how the parish can be a place of support and serve as a resource for what they need.
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Digital Open House

We will be hosting the February “Digital Open House” on Monday, February 13, 2017 at 10:00 AM.  We will be utilizing “Zoom” as our means of connection.  This “open house” will be hosted by Kevin Feyen, Julie Johnson, Mary Pedersen, Mindy Hart, and Joanne Pohland.  We will dedicate time during this “open house” to offer some insights on how to include individuals with disabilities in Faith Formation programs.  Mindy Hart, Director of the Office for Persons with Disabilities will be our presenter.  As always, we want this to be an ongoing opportunity for you to be able to connect with members of the Archdiocesan Pastoral Center Staff and with others in the field to ask questions, share ideas, and learn about new developments.  To join on Monday, February 13 at 10:00 AM, click here: or join by phone at (408) 638-0968--Meeting ID: 919 574 442.

Picture Wall

Picture WallThank you—we have again received additional pictures! We would love to have pictures of all FFLs!  They remind us that we have so many dedicated people working in this ministry throughout the Archdiocese.  Are you “in the picture”?  If not, please send a digital picture of yourself (preferably a “head shot”) to Joanne at  We want to showcase ALL the wonderful FFLs in the Archdiocese!

Youth Ministry Leader Conference and Retreat

Frank MercadanteYouth Ministry Leaders are encouraged to attend our 3rd annual YML Conference & Retreat on the weekend of Friday, May 5 and Saturday, May 6. This year we will have Frank Mercadante from “Cultivation Ministries” lead the program on Friday during the day (10:00 – 4:00 PM). Frank will speak on growing your parishes ministry to teens. Friday evening will be a mini-retreat. Saturday morning will focus on sharing ideas and resources with others in attendance. Plan to attend a portion or the event or the whole event. Registration information will be available on March 1, 2017.

Praying Lent

Please check the Archdiocesan website for several links that can be helpful for your own spirituality during Lent. If you are involved in adult faith formation, you may be very interested in in these resources. Since links may be added throughout Lent, be sure to check the website periodically.

March is Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month

You can find resources and information, including ideas, for how to observe Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month by clicking here:  For more information, regarding ministry to persons with disabilities, please contact Mindy Hart, Director of the Office for Persons with Disabilities at

Discussion Topics for Every Faith Formation Leader and His/Her Pastor

  • How are things going so far this year?
  • How can we best serve parents, who are the primary catechist of their children without “taking over” for them?
  • How is Faith Formation ministry fitting into the whole parish structure?

NCYC Group Leader Monthly Update

Mark your calendars for the 3rd of a series of monthly online NCYC update presentations – Friday, February 17 at 10:00 AM. A link will be sent to all group leaders the Monday before the Live Streaming Update. Visit for more information. The first two video updates are currently posted on the website.

If you are hoping to have a group attend NCYC in 2017 and haven't reported your group estimate yet, please contact Kevin Feyen at

Moving With Mission

Day for Ministers of Young Adults:  Engage. Exchange. Explore.  Tuesday, February 28th, 11:00 am to 3:00 pm at American Martyrs Retreat House, Cedar Falls

This is a great opportunity to gather with other ministers of young adults to engage in prayer, exchange ideas, and explore new ways of ministry. $15.00 per person, lunch included. Click here to register. Offered by the Offices of Adolescent Faith and Adult Faith.

The Art of Accompaniment:  March 9 & 10: American Martyrs Retreat House, Cedar Falls
According to Pope Francis, “the art of accompaniment,” occurs primarily through listening. This two-day workshop leads ministers through the skills needed for radical listening. This workshop was held two years ago and received rave reviews. For more information or to register, please click hereOffered by the Office of Family Life.

Archdiocese of Dubuque Women’s Conference

Thanks to all our faith formation leaders who have supported the Archdiocesan Women’ Conference! See you at this inspirational day!
For more information, to view videos of our presenters visit  Offered by the Offices of Adult Faith and Catechetical Services.

Impact 2017-2019

“Come and See” Meetings for 2017-19 IMPACT!
Please encourage interested parishioners and those who would benefit from IMPACT (catechists, pastoral council members, faith formation leaders and commission members, staff, etc.) to attend one of the following “Come and See” open houses with director, Mary Pedersen. Please send the following announcement to your catechists and parish leaders, with information for the nearest “Come and See.”

Announcement: Are you hungry for more? Are you ready for the next step? IMPACT may be right for you! The next cohort of IMPACT, the Archdiocese of Dubuque’s two-year adult lay formation program, will be held at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, Hiawatha, beginning September 2017. If you’re interested, please come to ask questions and receive more information at one of our “COME and SEE” open houses, hosted by Mary Pedersen, director of IMPACT. Come and see if IMPACT is right for you!  For more information and dates, click here.

COME and SEE Open Houses
  • Dyersville, St. Francis Xavier Rectory: Thursday, February 16: 5:30 to 7:00
  • Marshalltown, St. Mary: Monday, February 27: 5:30 to 7:00
  • Waterloo, St. Edward, Church Basement: Thursday, March 2nd: 5:30 to 7:00
  • Hiawatha, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, Parish Center: Monday, March 6: 5:30 to 7:00
  • Dubuque, Resurrection, Social Hall: Tuesday, March 7: 5:30 to 7:00

Spring Retreats

“Come away by yourselves to a deserted place and rest a while.” Mark 6:31
Spring is a perfect time to hold a parish/cluster retreat or to encourage your parishioners to attend an offering at a nearly retreat house. For more information on retreats visit, including the Joyfully Gifted Retreat: and Disciple Experience Weekend (DEW):

Presentations Offered through the Office of Adult Faith Formation

  • Small Group Facilitator Training
  • Facilitating an Encounter with Christ through Prayer
  • Joyfully Gifted Retreat
  • The Joy of the Gospel: Pope Francis’ Vision of Evangelization

To schedule a presentation or to have one catered to your parish/cluster, please contact Mary Pedersen at

A Visit From Pastoral Center Staff Members to Your Parish

Interested in exploring ways that you could grow or strengthen your faith formation program next year. The staff of the Archdiocesan Faith Formation Division would be happy to visit your parish and/or program and lend you another pair of eyes and ears. We are here to help you and provide our insights and years of experience to you, your pastor, and your FFC. If you would be interested, Joanne, Julie, Kevin, or Mary would be happy to visit, join in the discussion and learn from each of you.  Just ask and we will come!

Budget Preparation

As you are preparing your 2017-2018 budget, please keep in mind the following Archdiocesan Events:  August CSA/FFL Day, the New & Nearly New FFL Day, the Renewal Day, the Fall & Spring PLSDs, and the Spring CSA/FFL Day.  Watch for more information and details.

Media Offerings From the Educational Resource Center

By this time of the faith formation year, children and youth seem to be a little more restless, so keeping their attention can become a little more difficult. Therefore, this is a good time to remind catechists, teachers, and youth ministers of the treasure of media that is available through the Education Resource Center (ERC) to engage children and youth. The ERC lends a great variety of media to help you present stories through art/craft, drama, and music; teach lessons with puppets, storybooks, magic tricks, and reproducibles; invite students to engage in visual and tactile presentations with beach balls, sturdy figurines, and plush manipulatives; touch the hearts, or the funny bones, of young people with DVDs and storybooks; encourage meaningful prayer through lessons, activities, and ready-made prayer services; tap into the natural tech-savvy enthusiasm of children and youth with online coloring pages, games, projects, and learning tools; and review content with games in the style of Bingo, Jeopardy, Tic-tac-toe, and more. For more information about resources, contact Kim at or Tricia at, call 563-556-2580, or visit

Holy Hours for Vocations

Archbishop Jackels will celebrate Holy Hours for Vocations throughout the Archdiocese. Prayer is the basis of our relationship with God and discovering God’s call. Please come, and encourage others to join you, in praying for vocations to the priesthood for our Archdiocese as well as to listen to one seminarian’s experience of God’s call.
  • February 22, 2017 at Basilica, Dyersville from 7:00 - 9:00pm
  • March 7, 2017 at St. Thomas Aquinas, Ames from 7:00 - 9:00pm
  • April 5, 2017 at Immaculate Conception, Charles City from 6:45 - 8:45pm

AFFR (Archdiocesan Faith Formation Report) 2016-2017

Thank you to everyone who completed the AFFR for this year.  Watch for a report based on the information you have provided.

Faith Formation Leader Evaluations

As with all employees, Faith Formation Leaders should have ongoing evaluations based on their job description.  This is especially important for new FFLs.  If our offices can be of service to you in providing resources or by working with you to respond to the needs of your parish/cluster, please contact us.

VLCFF Of Dayton Update

Cycle 1 (2017) classes continue through February 18. Registration for Cycle 2 classes is now open and closes March 1. Consider taking a course as a formational gift to yourself. For a complete listing of courses, go to:

If you have not yet used your free voucher for a class, email Julie Sanders at for assistance with the voucher. For more information go to or email Julie Johnson at

If you need more information about VLCFF from the University of Dayton, please go to this short introductory video:

Ministry-Affiliated-Cohorts (MACs)

If you have questions about this, please contact Joanne Pohland at

A Visit From Pastoral Center Staff Members to MAC

By now, most of you have already met with your MAC (Ministry Affiliated Cohort).  Perhaps you have even met more than once.  The staff would be happy to visit a MAC if the group would like a visit. Remember, this is your cohort led by a Faith Formation Leader.  However, if you would be interested, Joanne, Julie, Kevin, or Mary would be happy to visit, join in the discussion and learn from each of you.  Just ask and we will come!

The 2016-2017 FFL/CSA Book Club Book

Don’t forget that the FFL/CSA Study Book, A Church on the Move - 52 ways to Get Mission and Mercy in Motion by Joe Paprocki, can be used with your cohort or regional gathering. Joe Paprocki insists that there is good news for the future of the Church. What is this good news and how do you put the right plans in place for your parish or cluster?

Remember that each chapter begins with a quote from Pope Francis. The quotes themselves are worthy of study but see how the quotes lead into how the Church moves, thinks, worships and forms disciples. Does your parish parallel the situations discussed by Paprocki?

Let us know your feedback on the book.  Your group may even choose to start a blog so everyone can weigh into the conversation electronically.

Protection of Children Information

For questions regarding any Safe Environment issues, please contact Carol Gebhart, Director of the Office for the Protection of Children (

Persons with Disabilities Newsletters

You can view newsletters with resources for providing ministry with Persons with Disabilities at  For more information, regarding ministry to persons with disabilities, please contact Mindy Hart, Director of the Office for Persons with Disabilities at

To Teach as Jesus Did

The offering, “To Teach as Jesus Did”, designed particularly for new catechists (but can be distributed to all catechists), is distributed separately through the host group $DBQFFL and is also available by going to
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