Deanery FFL Meetings for December

The meetings for December can be found at

Items from the December Executive Calendar

  • Evaluate All Saints, All Souls, Thanksgiving events
  • Implement plan for Advent, Christmas
  • Plan for January in-services at both local and Archdiocesan levels
  • Plan for Vocation Awareness and Catholic Schools Week, if applicable
  • Begin study of the budget
  • Promote TEC to HS seniors

DIOCORE/Regional YM Meeting Agenda Items – December

  • Discuss feedback from the Adult Conference:  Family Matters held in Waterloo on Saturday, November 7.
  • Discuss “next steps” after NCYC.
  • If you did not meet in November, discuss feedback from the Pastoral Leadership Study Day with Dr. Sean Reynolds.
  • VLCFF Registration for Cycle 1 (begins January 10) is now open and closes January 6, 2016.
  • Verify that Safe Environment requirements are met for all catechists and volunteers.  Send out information regarding when you will be teaching the Safe Environment Training for Children curriculum.
  • Don’t Forget: Share information from the InFo and the Leader’s Gram with your Faith Formation Commission.
  • Mark Your FFL Calendar Items.

AFFR (Archdiocesan Faith Formation Report)—2015-2016

Thank you to everyone who completed their Data Survey. If you have not yet completed the survey or have some sections that need updating, please contact Joanne Pohland at or Julie Sanders at Watch for reports based on the information you have provided. If you have any questions, please contact Julie Sanders at
Faith Formation Leader Evaluations
Evaluation forms prepared by the Offices of Adolescent Faith Formation and Catechetical Services were sent to Pastors/Parish Life Coordinators and FFC Chairs in early November and can be accessed by going to:  This tool, and adaptations of this tool, or another tool of your choosing can be utilized in the evaluation process.  When completed, we ask that you please send a summary of this evaluation is to the Office of Catechetical Services.
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?

Totus Tuus
If you are interested in hosting Totus Tuus in Summer 2016, please contact Kevin Feyen (563) 556-2580, ext. 253 or
VLCFF Of Dayton Update
While no classes are offered during the month of December, Cycle 1 (2016) classes begin on January 10. Registration for these classes is open, closing on January 6, 2016. What a wonderful way to herald in the New Year but with a VLCFF course. The long months of winter may afford you extra time at home and on the weekends so certainly January is a great time to take a course. Consider taking a course as 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 DBQRELSEC for assistance with the voucher. For more information go to or email Julie Johnson at
Budget Preparation
As you are preparing your 2016-2017 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.
Protection of Children Information
The NewsNotes information as well as the curriculum for 2015-2016 is available in the Protection of Children Conference in First Class.  The next NewsNote for parents will be posted in January. It is mandatory to provide the curriculum during the course of each program year.  Watch for the annual “Count Form” in January.
FFL Meeting #2 (via Zoom) on January 19
Seventeen FFLs, including several new and nearly new FFLs attended an on-line chat session via Zoom with members of the Archdiocese of Dubuque staff on October 19. We discussed topics such as the AFFR, finding a good spiritual director, communication with parents and various approaches in meeting and praying with new and returning catechists.  

Another such session is planned for January 19.  All are invited to attend although new and nearly new FFLs are especially encouraged to attend.  Please put the date on your calendar.  Details will follow.  It is a great opportunity to hear about programming in other parishes or clusters and get advice from one another.
From the Educational Resource Center
The Education Resource Center (ERC) has posted a new mini-catalog on the Media Picks web page. This December issue highlights media for Advent, Advent saints, and Christmas. Also listed are resources to introduce the Year of Mercy which opens December 8, 2015. Check out the resources found at the link below.  Please forward this to your catechists and teachers. Contact Kim at or Tricia at for more information or resources. Visit:
Praying Advent and Christmas
Here are several links to Advent and Christmas resources that you may use in a number of ways, particularly your own spirituality:
Celebrating the Year of Mercy

Visit for more information about how to celebrate the Year of Mercy. Here you will find:
  • Instruction from Archbishop Jackels
  • Information about the Archdiocesan opening and closing Liturgies on Dec. 13, 2015 and November 20, 2016
  • Details of making a pilgrimage to the Cathedral of St. Raphael
  • Activities and Media for families, youth and adults
  • Prayer and Music resources
  • Details of the Archdiocesan-wide Works of Mercy Service Project

Holy Hours for Vocations
In an effort to help young men hear God’s call to vocation, Archbishop Michael Jackels began leading a series of Holy Hours across the Dubuque Archdiocese, part of a wider effort called “Let God Hear Our Prayer for Vocations.”

Please encourage people to join in praying on the following dates:
  • January 20, 2016: Church of the Nativity, Dubuque, 6:30pm
  • February 17, 2016: St. Joseph, Bellevue, 6:30pm
  • March 11, 2016: St Patrick, Clear Lake, 7:00pm
  • Additional dates TBA
Adoration Brochure Update
The brochure that can be used to help those attending Eucharistic Adoration is now available at
FFL/CSA Book Club 2015-2016
The Church of Mercy:  A Vision for the Church
Collected from Pope Francis’s speeches, homilies, and papers presented during the first year of his papacy, The Church of Mercy is the first Vatican-authorized book detailing his vision for the Catholic Church. From how to be citizens of the world to answering God’s call for evangelization, Pope Francis's deep wisdom reminds us that the Church must move beyond its own walls and joyfully bring God's mercy wherever suffering, division, or injustice exists. Continue to read this excellent resource and let us know your thoughts!
Mark Your Calendar
For information on the enrichment offerings for Faith Formation Leaders and Catholic School Administrators, please click here:
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

Upcoming Events


Spring Regional Meeting: Mason City, New Hampton


Spring Regional Meeting: Marshalltown, Cedar Rapids


Spring Regional Meeting: Elkader


Spring Regional Meetings: Dubuque


Archdiocesan Pastoral Leadership Study Day


Annual Retreat for FFL's and CSA's

Contact Us:

Director of Catechetical Services
Joanne Pohland

Director of Adolescent Faith Formation
Kevin Feyen

Associate Director of Catechetical Services
Julie Johnson

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