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A New Book on ''Catechist'' Calls for Revamping the Identity, Role and Formation of Catechists


By Fr. Gilbert Choondal SDB
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Bangalore, Feb. 1. Bangalore: A book, entitled ''Called to be a Catechist'', on the identity, role and formation of catechists edited by Fr. Gilbert Choondal SDB, was released in Bangalore on 31 January 2014. The book was released by Fr. Thomas Panakezham SDB, former Regional of Australasia. The first book was presented to Fr. TC George SDB, the director and Rector of Catechetical Institute, Visvadeep.  The book contains research papers of the catechetical scholars from India and abroad.
''These articles were presented at 17th Indian Catechetical Association (ICA)  held at Patna in February 2013,'' said Fr. Gilbert Choondal, SDB, the president of the Association. ''The articles were presented, reflected, and reworked to provide a synthetic holistic view on the topics'', said the editor, Fr. Gilbert. They provide a new thrust towards identity, role and formation of a catechist. These papers explore these dimensions of catechist along with historical models, religious models, pedagogical models, oriental models and challenges of being catechists today.

The book is a prompt response to the call of the recent Apostolic Exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium. For, the first apostolic Exhortation of Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium (The Joy of the Gospel) refers to the scarcity of parish catechists (lay) especially trained catechists. ''At a time when we most need a missionary dynamism which will bring salt and light to the world, many lay people fear that they may be asked to undertake some apostolic work and they seek to avoid any responsibility that may take away from their free time. For example, it has become very difficult today to find trained parish catechists willing to persevere in this work for some years (EG 81).''

The joy of evangelisation should stem from a joy of being a catechist in all the sectors of the Church. The book reflects on the identity and role of bishops, priests, religious and laity as catechists today.

The book includes final statement of the 17th ICA  based on the deliberations of the papers. The book is published by Kristu Jyoti Publications, Bangalore. The price of the book is Rs. 150/-

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