Reason sought for catechism directive
We write to express our complete agreement with the arguments expressed by Chris Delicata on the Curia's catechism directive (October 13).
My daughter received her First Holy Communion at St Patrick's in May 2004. The ceremony was one to remember - everything was plain and simple with all the children participating in the Holy Mass and each individual child playing an active role in one way or the other.
In May 2006 it will be my son's turn to receive his First Holy Communion and following our positive experience with the way the Salesians have prepared our daughter we obviously contacted St Patrick's once again only to be told that unfortunately the Archbishop's Curia have forbidden catechism classes from being held.
No apparent reason was given and when we contacted the Archbishop's Curia (way back in August) the Monsignor we spoke to had to check because he knew nothing about it. After a week we received an answer that seems to be pure conjecture as to what might be the reason for it being stopped.
Following the recent letters in The Times, it appears that the Curia was not satisfied with having children attending catechism classes once a week for 75 minutes - it had to be at least twice a week even if it is for just 30-45 minutes.
Do the authorities involved know the pressures on parents and children in having to fit in catechism classes on multiple days each week? Each of these lessons requires a 15-minute commute each way (usually at rush hour), parking problems and coping with school homework. I would not mind so much if my children were enjoying the experience - as we did not mind driving my daughter from Msida to Sliema once a week for eight months.
This apparent total disregard for the needs of today's family by the institutionalised church is a source of pain for all those who try to live a life of Christian faith. We have tried to find the right source of catechism classes for our daughter and she used to look forward to going to the classes because they were well prepared and animated and they were fun! No learning by heart but opening the heart to what Reconciliation and Communion are all about.
It is unbelievable that in this country we always seek to complicate our lives when we can make it easier for ourselves - and what makes it worse is the sheer lack of a justifiable reason for doing so. We believe that as a society we should be looking for ways to reduce the sources of stress and pressure that parents and children and being subjected to.
In the face of these arguments, we would appreciate if somebody at the Archbishop's Curia would provide the general public with the rationale behind this decision, although we are not hopeful that a comprehensible reason will be forthcoming. Hiding behind some lofty argument that has no relevance to the way families live their lives today simply will not do.