More than 500 religious education leaders and catechists from parishes across Long Island convened Sept. 15 at St. John the Baptist Diocesan High School, West Islip, to participate in the Diocese of Rockville Centre’s annual Catechetical Congress.
The daylong event, presented by the Office of Faith Formation, offered attendees a multitude of instructional workshops and roundtable discussions designed to support and advance their evangelization efforts.
Auxiliary Bishop Andrzej Zglejszewski opened the day by presiding at morning prayer in the school auditorium. The bishop delivered the keynote address following the service and later led a workshop entitled “The Eucharist: Source and Summit of Missionary Discipleship.”
Bishop John Barres arrived at the event in the afternoon to celebrate Mass and impart a blessing on the catechists. The liturgy coincided with the Catechetical Sunday observance, which falls each year on the third Sunday in September. Prior to the Mass, Bishop Barres visited several classrooms to witness the presentations, a number of which were given in Spanish.
Below is a gallery of photos from the day. A larger collection of images can be viewed on The Long Island Catholic’s Facebook page.
Photos by Gregory A. Shemitz
Sign along Montauk Highway greets participants.
Lynn Fein, director of faith formation at St. Mark Parish, Shoreham, welcomes participants to the event.
Sister of St. Joseph Mary Alice Piil, director of the Office of Faith Formation, addresses the audience at the beginning of the day.
Catechists Barbara Goulding and Deacon Sonny Pagnotta of St. Frances Cabrini Parish, Coram, join the assembly at morning prayer.
Auxiliary Bishop Andrzej Zglejszewski delivers his keynote address.
Catechist Carmen Garcia of Our Lady of Loretto Parish, Hempstead, reviews educational resources in the exhibit area.
Lucy Creed, associate director of the Office of Faith Formation, addresses students during a workshop.
Participants listen intently during a workshop..
Catechists from Queen of the Most Holy Rosary Parish, Roosevelt, and Sacred Heart Parish, North Merrick, participate in a roundtable discussion during a lunch break.
Dr. James Spencer, senior vice president for Mission and Ministry at Catholic Health Services of Long Island, directs a workshop.
Participants make time to pray in the school chapel.
Bishop Zglejszewski speaks to participants during a workshop.
Lauri Przybysz, co-founder of Catholics for Family Peace, leads back-to-back workshops.
Maria Davidson, director of faith formation at St. Lawrence the Martyr Church, Sayville, responds to a question during a workshop.
Allison O'Brien, Respect Life Office director, leads a workshop.
A woman participates in a Spanish-language workshop.
Bishop John Barres greets participants before Mass.
Members of a choir from St. Hugh of Lincoln Parish, Huntington Station, sing.
Participants pray during Mass.
Bishop Barres delivers his homily.
Bishop Barres is joined at the altar by Deacon Roberto Polanco, left, Hispanic Ministry director, and Father John Wachowicz of St. Rosalie Parish, Hampton Bays.
Danielle Santevecchi, an intern with the Respect Life Office, receives Communion from Bishop Barres.
Deacon Polanco distributes Communion.
Bishop Bares imparts a blessing on the catechists at the end of Mass.
Bishop Barres greets participants after Mass.