Each parish has one Mass and the families chose the Mass they wanted to attend. Each parish has ONE Mass each weekend - two on Saturday; two on Sunday.
And it all meant that our religious ed attendance plummeted. Not to mention the presence of catechists ;)
Our level 2 catechist is what I call "the main music lady" - she covers it all at the one parish (arranges for rotating musicians so she doesn't have to do music every weekend; she does the music every other weekend at one of the other parishes; and she is the sacramental preparation catechist (and my life-saver, right-hand, God-send, blessing - you name it!).
WELL. Our religious ed class is after one parish's early morning Mass; and before the next parish's. With after-Mass photos, the level 2 catechist knew she wouldn't be in class more than 5 minutes (and then she went to the other parish); the DRE would be late; my assistant was out of town; the level 1 catechists all had subs; the level 2 assistant would be late.....
As the only "regular atrium catechist" present, I gathered all the level 3 and level 2 children in the level 2 atrium; monitored the level 1 children until their catechists arrived... and otherwise just observed what would happen.
With fewer numbers, it was really interesting:
My level 3 children were, at first, the only children there. Then one came in with her level 2 age brother. Then the others trickled in.
About half-way in, I called the L2 children for a presentation on the Maxims cabinet and Summary of the Law - I only had 1st an 3rd graders. The L3 children all came as well even though they knew they didn't have to. They did a remarkable job staying with the level 2 meditation and helping the level 2 children "understand".
|Level 3 got right to work with items of interest from level 2|
(none of these girls had been in level 2 before)
|They don't even fit under the tables!|
|These 4th graders miss the model altar!|
|She thinks she's getting into trouble and trying to pull the innocent face ;)|
She IS innocent!
|They don't believe me they are ALLOWED to get out this work!|
|L2 boy who LOVES to decorate the atrium -|
brought this HUGE bouquet of flowers for the prayer table.
Mystery of Life and Death in the foreground there.
|Close-up of those flowers - they shifted when we walked with them,|
so he had to adjust them more beautifully.
|Happy to come back for a visit to their childhood atrium ;)|
L3 boy in the back with the wooden Holy Bible
(note to self - the children still want this wooden work in L3 -
the paper version isn't cutting it)
|Planning Communal Prayer - of their own accord|
|Busy working - mix of L2 and L3|
|Still planning prayer :)|
|One of the girls who planned prayer, needed to leave;|
so her brother filled in.
I just LOVE how we can transfer atrium spaces and the children entirely respect one another, respect the space and truly desire to beautify the space. This shows me that they find something of value in this place - and they cherish it.
Thank you children!