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Circular 20 - Department of Catechesis

posted Apr 14, 2018, 11:25 AM by Department of Catechesis   [ updated Apr 14, 2018, 11:52 AM ]

DoC / 2018 / 20

7 April 2018

Dear Rev. Fathers, Rev. Sisters, Headmasters, Teachers and Students of Sunday School,

Prayerful Greetings from the Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation!

Long association with the Department of Catechesis, which began in the year 2006 in Muvattupuzha Diocese, continued in MCC ETRI from 2008 to 2015, with the exception of one year in between 2011-12 and extended to the Exarchate of St Ephrem, Khadki-Pune in 2015 is coming to an end with the appointment of new Exarchial Director of Catechesis, Fr Philip Pulipra with effect from 15 April 2018. The long journey from 2006 till today was a time to deeply reflect upon the faith of the Church, closely observe the methodology of catechesis, steadily implement systematic approach and thoroughly maintain strict discipline in the Department of Catechesis. Now the time has come for me to step down as the Director of Catechesis, Exarchate of St Ephrem, Khadki-Pune.

The time to depart is the time to ponder over the warmth and strength of a relationship. It is the time to gratefully acknowledge the support received to fulfil this mission. With a thankful heart, I take this opportunity to appreciate your whole-hearted involvement in the activities of the Department of Catechesis. The able guidance of Rev. Fathers, the active presence of Rev. Sisters, strong leadership of the Headmasters/Headmistresses, the committed service of the Teachers and the sincere motivation of the Parents have helped a lot in nurturing and stabilizing the initiatives of the Department. The timely interventions of our Aboon, His Excellency Thomas Mar Anthonios, have helped to overcome many confusions and go beyond the normal expectations. The genuine support extended by V. Rev. Msgr. Varghese Mattamana, the Proto-Syncellus is worth mentioning. V. Rev. Fr Varghese Kaithon, the Finance Officer was very generous and prompt in the matters concerning finance.

Beyond these, a person who needs special mention is Mr Joel Joykutty, a youth from Baroda Parish in the Diocese of Gurgaon working in Pune. Ever since I took up the responsibility of the Department of Catechesis, MCC ETRI in 2008, when I was the Vicar of Baroda, he has been with me throughout as a close aide in helping me with the systematization of the Department. It was his sincere and strenuous efforts that helped me to translate the vision of the Department into concrete plans and execute the desired plans according to the context of each District. Even when he was caught up with the hectic schedule of his office work and travel, he invariably found time to help me in computerizing the data, printing the Question Papers, arrangement of evaluation and creating the Mark Lists. The Department of Catechesis is indeed indebted to his selfless service!

When I joyfully hand over the responsibilities to Rev. Fr Philip Pulipra, who has done higher studies in Education and Mass Media Communication, the future of the Department is intact. He will be able to take the Department to newer heights. His expertise in the field of education will enable him to introduce new pedagogies in the process of catechesis. His working experience in Mass Media Communication will be an added advantage to efficiently use Communication Media in faith formation. His association with the Department of Catechesis as the Catechism Director of Mumbai District has helped him to have a thorough knowledge of the existing system prevailing in the Department. I wish him all the best in all his endeavours as the Exarchial Director of Catechesis. I ensure him my whole hearted co-operation in making the Department the best in Malankara Catholic Church.

With folded hands, standing before the Almighty Lord, I prayerfully acknowledge the miraculous interventions He has made in bringing about a tremendous change in the Department of Catechesis in the last 10 years. The challenge I took up, through His inspiration, to equip the Teachers through timely Seminars have been fruitful occasions for me in deepening my faith in Christ and the Church. I had many opportunities to learn and form myself. The preparations of Question Banks and Question Papers have helped me to expand my knowledge in the content of faith according to the context of the children.

Let me conclude by reminding the motto of the Department:

‘Grow in Christ; Rooted in the word and guided by the Spirit’.

May the Good Lord bless you all!

Yours in Christ Jesus,

Fr Varghese Valikkodath

Secretary

Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation

Circular 16 - Department of Catechesis

posted Sep 23, 2017, 9:52 AM by Department of Catechesis   [ updated Sep 23, 2017, 9:57 AM ]

DoC / 2017 / 16

21 September 2017

Dear Rev. Fathers, Rev. Sisters, Headmasters, Teachers and Students of Sunday School,

Prayerful Greetings from the Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation!

Five months have passed since the beginning of the new Academic Year. With regard to the lessons and the liturgical hymns, the Syllabus of the previous year has to be continued. But there is a slight change in the Syllabus of the Liturgical Prayer section. It has been so arranged that a child should completely by-heart the Morning and Evening Prayers of the Malankara Syrian Catholic Church atleast by Class X. A child has the freedom to study the prayers either in English or in Malayalam. Even though there are different versions of English Prayers available, an updated version of the English prayers will be made available by the Department of Catechesis within two weeks.

The Registration Form to forward the details of the new students is send herewith. The Survey Form to furnish the details of the Teachers is also attached. Kindly forward the filled Forms to the Department latest by 16 October 2017.

The First Semester Examination of 2017 – ’18 is scheduled to be held at 11.00 am on 26 November 2017. Let me repeat the earlier decision regarding the Semester Examination: According to the decision of the Apostolic Exarch and as endorsed by the Pastoral Council, from 2016-17 onwards, those who have not attended the Semester Examination or the Re-Examination should not be promoted to the Higher Class. The Parish Priests and the Headmasters are requested to strictly follow this decision. In case of any confusion, feel free to contact the Department for further clarifications.

The website of the Commission for Faith Formation is revamped and is available at www.exarchate.online

Wishing you all a fruitful and blessed Academic Year,

Yours in Christ Jesus,

Fr Varghese Valikkodath

Secretary

Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation

Circular 15 - Department of Catechesis

posted Aug 15, 2017, 6:25 AM by Department of Catechesis   [ updated Aug 15, 2017, 6:30 AM ]

DoC / 2017 / 15

1 June 2017

Dear Rev. Fathers, Rev. Sisters, Headmasters, Teachers and Students of Sunday School,

Prayerful Greetings from the Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation!

We are at the threshold of the new Academic Year 2017-’18. The Sunday Schools in the Parishes have to be reopened on 11 June 2017 after the Summer Holidays. Since we conducted the Second Semester Examination of last Year in the month of April, we could not find a proper date to conduct the Re-Examination due to Summer holidays for those who have obtained E Grade and who have not attended the Examination. The Re-Examination of the Second Semester is scheduled to be held on 18 June 2017 at the respective Centres in the Exarchate.

According to the decision of the Apostolic Exarch and as endorsed by the Pastoral Council, from 2016-17 onwards, those who have not attended the Semester Examination or the Re-Examination should not be promoted to the Higher Class.

This is a strict decision and all the Parish Priests and the Headmasters are expected to abide by this and implement this decision without any excuse.

Class XI began in the Sunday Schools of the Exarchate last year; subsequently, Class XII will be initiated from this Academic Year onwards. Accordingly, with this year, Catechism Curriculum will be extended to 12 Years and the Certificate will be issued only after successfully completing Class XII.

The MCCL Anthem is being sent along with this Circular in order to use in the Sunday Schools of the Exarchate. The Anthem should be recited together every Sunday at the culmination of the Sunday School and as a final event whenever a programme is conducted either in the Sunday School or in MCCL.

Wishing you all a fruitful and blessed New Academic Year,

Yours in Christ Jesus,

Fr Varghese Valikkodath

Secretary

Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation

Circular 14 - Department of Catechesis

posted Aug 15, 2017, 6:20 AM by Department of Catechesis   [ updated Aug 15, 2017, 6:29 AM ]

DoC / 2017 / 14

 15 April 2017

Dear Rev. Fathers, Rev. Sisters, Headmasters, Teachers and Students of Sunday School,

Prayerful Greetings from the Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation!

This is to inform regarding the Second Semester Examination 2016–’17.The Hall Tickets for all the students appearing for the Second Semester Catechism Examination 2016-’17 of Classes IV to X have been sent to the Headmasters last week itself.

The Question Papers for the Second Semester Catechism Examination 2016-’17 have beensent from the Centre to the District Directors last week. Answer Papers of children of the same class have to be wrapped together (should not staple together) and kept separately in the cover. Kindly arrange the answer papers in the ascending order of the Unique Identification Number (UIN).

You are requested to send the Answer Papersto the following address on 24April itself:

Fr. Varghese Valikkodath

St Mary’s Malankara Catholic Cathedral

51, BhauPatil Road, Bopodi

PUNE – 411 020

Phone: 0 8018 8058 70

It is the responsibility of the Headmasters to make sure that the Hall Ticket, which has all the required details furnished, is attached with the Answer Papers. Please do not put the seal of the Church on the answer papers. No one except the Supervisor and the Headmaster or a Teacher appointed by the Unit Director is allowed in the Examination Hall.

Once again I remind:Kindly do not open the envelope containing the Question Papers before 10.45 a.m. on 23April 2017.

Wishing you all a fruitful and blessed Easter Season,

Yours in Christ Jesus,

Fr Varghese Valikkodath

Secretary

Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation

Circular 13 - Department of Catechesis

posted Mar 21, 2017, 9:40 PM by Department of Catechesis   [ updated Mar 21, 2017, 10:15 PM ]

DoC / 2017 / 13

19 March 2017

Dear Rev. Fathers, Rev. Sisters, Headmasters, Teachers and Students of Sunday School,

Prayerful Greetings from the Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation!

We are nearing the conclusion of the Second Semester. This Semester will come to an end with the Second Semester Examination scheduled to be held at 11.00 am on 23 April 2017. Even though it is little difficult for the students, this is the most appropriate timing available for the Examination in the given situation of the Exarchate. So let us adhere to this decision confirmed in the gathering of the catechism representatives from every Parish on 3 October 2016.

In order to assist those who will be in Kerala during the Second Semester Examination, according to the need of the students, Examination Centres will be provided in the Diocesan Headquarters (Trivandrum, Mavelikkara, Pathanamthitta, Tiruvalla, Muvattupuzha, Bathery). The Headmasters are requested to send a list of students, before 3 April 2017, who wish to write the Examination at any of the above Diocesan Headquarters. Other Centres will be allocated if there are more than 5 students to write the Examination. No requests will be entertained after 3 April.

As usual, Jeevan Darshan Camps are planned in Pune, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Chennai Districts of the Exarchate. The Exarchial Brothers who are studying in different Seminaries will lead the Camps. The date and venue of the Camps will be announced in the Districts by the respective District Directors of Catechesis. Fr. George Mathew OIC, the Rector of the Minor Seminary will be in-charge of the Camps.

Wishing you all a fruitful Holy Week and a blessed Easter,

Yours in Christ Jesus,

Fr Varghese Valikkodath

Secretary

Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation

Circular 12 - Department of Catechesis

posted Mar 4, 2017, 8:49 PM by Department of Catechesis   [ updated Mar 4, 2017, 8:52 PM ]

DoC / 2017 / 12

11 January 2017

Dear Rev. Fathers, Rev. Sisters, Headmasters, Teachers and Students of Sunday School,

Prayerful Greetings from the Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation!

As informed earlier, the First Semester Catechism Re-Examination is scheduled to be held at 11.00 am on Sunday, 15 January 2017. The modifications in the pattern of Re-Examination brought about by the instruction of the Apostolic Exarch have been shared as guidelines in the previous circular DoC/2016/11. All are requested to read in detail the guidelines regarding the Re-Examination.

The valuation of the Answer Sheets will be done at the District Centres under the supervision of the District Directors with the guidance from the Centre. So the Headmasters are requested to send the Answer Sheets to the following Priests in the respective Districts:

Pune                           :           Fr Joseph Venmanath

Mumbai                     :           Fr Philip Pulipra

Bangalore                  :           Fr Varghese Kadakketh

Chennai                     :           Fr Varghese Maruthoor

Hyderabad                 :           Fr John Thundiyath OIC

On an experimental basis, we are initiating a process to show the Answer Sheets to the respective Teachers before sending them for valuation. The Teachers have to assemble in a Room and a provision has to be made so that they can have a preview of the Answer Sheets of their students which will give them a direct idea about what their students have written. This has to be done with true spirit in the presence of the invigilator. If this can help the Teachers in any way to improve the standard of the students, we can think of extending the same process for the Semester Examinations. 

Hall Tickets sent for the Semester Examination can be used for the Re-Examination.

The Results will be announced on 22 January 2017.

Any complaint regarding the Exams should be registered latest by the next day.

Yours in Christ Jesus,

Fr Varghese Valikkodath

Secretary

Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation

Circular 11 - Department of Catechesis

posted Dec 27, 2016, 8:27 PM by Department of Catechesis   [ updated Dec 27, 2016, 8:31 PM ]

DoC / 2016 / 11

12 December 2016

Dear Rev. Fathers, Rev. Sisters, Headmasters, Teachers and Students of Sunday School,

Prayerful Greetings from the Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation!

Let me thank you all first for the great work you have done in conducting the Examination and sending the Answer Sheets in a systematic and secure way. Your sincere efforts are really appreciated and acknowledged. When most of the Parishes are keen in updating the details of the students and sending the Answer Papers, a few Parishes still continue to fail in these two important aspects concerning the smooth functioning of the Centralized Examination System. Strict instructions will be forwarded to those Parishes in the future communications and they are obliged to adhere to it.

The Answer Papers are indications to the fact that some of the communications from the Centre are not properly reaching the Teachers and the Students. It will have to be considered as grave negligence on the part of the Headmasters, which is really unbecoming for a Centralized System which demands genuine commitment, sincere efforts and timely interventions from the Headmasters.

The Headmasters are requested to take special care in teaching the students the Bible Verses, the Liturgical Hymns and the Liturgical Prayers. The audio of liturgical songs are available in the following link

https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B59zpL06y-ZpM0h3LVBNaFQxTUU

Kindly copy paste this link on Google Chrome Browser.

Those who have got E Grade and those who have not attended the Examination have to repeat the Exam. Rev. Fathers and Headmasters are requested to make arrangements for the Re-Exam on 15 January 2017. Kindly make sure that all those who have got E Grade and those who did not appear for the Exam make it this time. There are certain modifications in the pattern of Re-Exam brought about by the instruction of the Apostolic Exarch. The following guidelines have to be taken into consideration regarding the Re-Exam:

  1. All those who have got E Grade and those who did not appear for the Semester Exam have to compulsorily attend the Re-Exam.
  2. The Question Papers for the Re-Exam will be prepared from the Centre.
  3. The Valuation of the Re-Exam will be at the Centre as same as the Semester Exam.
  4. The Re-Examination is also valid for Classes X and XI.
  5. In order to receive the Certificate of Classes X and XII, each student has to obtain at least D Grade separately in both the Semesters.
  6. Those who do not obtain at least a D Grade in the Re-Exam have to appear for a THIRD Exam.
  7. Those who do not appear for any one of the Semester Exam or re-Exam are bound to repeat the year.   

Regarding the result of students, we have tried our best to make things fool proof. Still if you have some doubt concerning the Grades of anyone from your Centre, you have the provision for both recounting and revaluation. The Headmasters have to apply with the consent of respected Rev. Vicars specifying the UIN of the student with a nominal fee of Rs. 100/-. The amount will be given back if there is any change in the Grades.

A by-law for the Department of Catechesis is in the pipeline. A detailed reading and evaluation of a draft By-law will happen in the months of January and February. The Commission for Faith Formation has the right and responsibility to draft and constitute the By-law for the Department of Catechesis. The Commission will have a formal gathering in the month of January or February to finalize the By-Law of the Department. A draft of the By-Law will be sent to the members of the commission, as early as possible, to read in detail and make necessary suggestions to be discussed in the formal gathering.

Let me conclude with a personal note: My health is improving. Thanks to all your prayers!

Wishing you all a fruitful and blessed Christmas Season,

Yours in Christ Jesus,

Fr Varghese Valikkodath

Secretary

Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation

Circular 10 - Department of Catechesis

posted Dec 27, 2016, 8:15 PM by Department of Catechesis   [ updated Dec 27, 2016, 8:25 PM ]

DoC / 2016 / 10

15 November 2016

Dear Rev. Fathers, Rev. Sisters, Headmasters, Teachers and Students of Sunday School,

Prayerful Greetings from the Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation!

This is to inform you regarding the First Semester Examination 2016–’17. Due to the closing ceremony of the Holy Year of Mercy at St. Mary’s Cathedral, Khadki on 27 November 2016, the First Semester Examination will be held at 11 am on 4 December 2016. Kindly make necessary arrangements accordingly.

The Hall Tickets for all the students appearing for the First Semester Catechism Examination 2016-’17 of Classes IV to X will be sent soon. This year we have five new Sunday Schools attached to the Centralized System; Carmelaram in Bangalore, Ayapakkam in Chennai, Dombivili in Mumbai and Goa.

The Question Papers for the First Semester Catechism Examination 2016-’17 will be sent from the Centre to the Unit Directors next week. The envelope enclosed should be used to send back the Answer Papers. Answer Papers of the children of same class has to be wrapped together (should not staple together) and kept separately in the cover. Kindly arrange the answer papers in the ascending order of the Unique Identification Number (UIN).

You are requested to send the Answer Sheets in the following address on 5 December itself:

Fr. Varghese Valikkodath

St Mary’s Malankara Catholic Cathedral

51, Bhau Patil Road, Bopodi

PUNE – 411 020

Phone: 0 8018 8058 70

Those who are sending the Answer Sheets directly through Courier are earnestly requested to send it either through Blue Dart, DTDC PLUS or First Flight. Kindly make sure that you are making use of the Authorised Franchise. Please do not send it from some small shops which are working as the internal outlets.

As we conducted the earlier exams, Classes 1 to 3 will have Oral Exam with the Question Papers sent from the Centre. Answers are included in the Question Paper itself, for these classes, in order to assist the concerned teachers for conducting the Exam.

It is the responsibility of the Headmasters to make sure that the Hall Ticket, which has all the required details furnished, is attached with the Answer Papers. Nothing that reveals the identity of the person or the church should be written in the Answer Papers. Please do not put the seal of the Church on the answer sheets. No one except the Supervisor and the Headmaster or a Teacher appointed by the Unit Director is allowed in the Examination Hall.

Any complaint regarding the Exams should be registered at the Centre through email latest by the next day. Complaints are not encouraged after that and will not be considered with due importance. 

Once again I remind: Kindly do not open the envelope containing the Question Papers before 10.45 a.m. on 4 December 2016.

The teachers are requested to prepare the students according to the Syllabus and Question Bank provided in the website www.catechesis.in The question paper is set by choosing questions only from the Question Bank. A little more concentration should be given to the teaching of liturgical hymns and prayers. Please do keep in mind that they are inevitable part of catechesis. The audio of liturgical songs are available in the following link https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B59zpL06y-ZpM0h3LVBNaFQxTUU

Kindly copy paste this link on Google Chrome Browser.

As most of you are well aware, I have been advised to take minimum two months bed-rest for my broken leg to heal properly. At present, I am in Khadki at my residence and will be co-ordinating the responsibilities with the help of those who are in the lead in various departments. I wholeheartedly thank each one of you for your earnest prayers and sincere concern towards me when things went haywire at least for a few days. I am getting better now and please do continue your prayers for me.

Wishing you all a fruitful and blessed Christmas Season,

Yours in Christ Jesus,

Fr Varghese Valikkodath

Secretary

Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation

Circular 09 - Department of Catechesis

posted Jul 30, 2016, 6:56 AM by Department of Catechesis   [ updated Jul 30, 2016, 6:58 AM ]

DoC / 2016 / 09

22 July 2016

Dear Rev. Fathers, Rev. Sisters, Headmasters, Teachers and Students of Sunday School,

Prayerful Greetings from the Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation!

Hope you have settled comfortably in the new Academic Year. According to the present understanding, this Academic Year is divided into two Semesters; First Semester from June 2016 to November 2016 and Second Semester from December 2016 to April 2017. The Examination of First Semester will be on 27 November 2016 and the Second Semester will be on 30 April 2017. Since the Semesters are not uniform, there is notable change in the Syllabus of both the Semesters.

The Syllabus for 2016 – ’17 including Class XI is available in the website. The Question Pattern for Class XI is also uploaded in the site. Kindly make necessary copies and provide the same to the Teachers and the Students.

A survey form to collect the details of the Teachers was sent to the Headmasters on 30 May 2016 in order to assess the ministry of the Teachers. Please do send back the filled forms to the Commission latest by 1 August 2016.

We celebrate the Malankara Catholic Sunday School Day this year on 7 August 2016. The Parish Priests and the Headmasters are requested to organize befitting programmes on that Day in order to conscientize the parents about the importance of Sunday School in the present scenario.

Let us welcome the three Parishes which have been recently added to the list of Sunday Schools in the Exarchate: Goa, Dombivili (Mumbai) and Carmelaram (Bangalore).

Wish you all the blessings of the Feasts of Bethany and John Vianney!

Yours in Christ Jesus, 

Fr Varghese Valikkodath

Secretary

Exarchial Commission for Faith Formation

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