Building a Faith Foundation
The goal of the Regis St. Mary theology program is to develop disciples of Christ who love, learn, lead, and serve. We meet our students where they are at in their faith journey and provide them opportunities to grow closer to the Lord with engaging classroom instruction, regular participation in the celebration of the Mass, personal prayer time, retreat experiences, and serving Christ in their neighbor in need.
St. Mary Campus Elementary School Religious Education
The elementary school religious education curriculum follows the Archdiocese of Portland Standards. We use the highly respected Faith and Life Series from Ignatius Press and offer daily instruction in the faith. Each class also has a special patron saint. To prepare to celebrate these saints’ feast days, our students spend extra time studying their lives to learn how to grow in holiness.
Guided by the spirituality of the first teachers of our school, the Sisters of St. Mary of Oregon, we emphasize prayer throughout every school day and weekly participation in the Eucharist.
We celebrate the beauty of each of the liturgical seasons, with a particular emphasis on the Marian feast days during the year. Some of the special highlights of the school year include the celebration of All Saints Day, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, the all-school Mass to honor Our Lady of Guadalupe, the living Stations of the Cross conducted by the students during Lent, and the crowing of Mary that takes place each May.
Our middle school students attend a class retreat each year at the Father Bernard Youth Center and also have the opportunity to participate in Christian service projects throughout the year to help the poor, the elderly, and the lonely in our local community.
Regis Campus High School Theology Program
The high school theology classes help form students as disciples of Christ by leading with the beauty of the Catholic faith. Our students are fully immersed in the Bible and engaged in reading age-appropriate Catholic literature and excerpts from primary source documents. To help students learn to evangelize, written papers and oral presentations are part of the regular assessment of student performance. The incorporation of engaging material from Catholic media and film augments formal study.
The theology curriculum follows the Archdiocese of Portland Theology Standards. It is grounded in the Eucharist, Sacred Scripture, prayer, service, studying the lives of the saints, Catholic literature and the arts. These are incorporated in the following ways:
- Daily Study of Sacred Scripture: St. Jerome famously said that “Ignorance of scripture, is ignorance of Christ.” For this reason, all theology classes typically begin by briefly reviewing the daily Gospel or other pertinent passages from Sacred Scripture. Students also study the major covenants of the Old Testament, the Gospel of Mathew, the Acts of the Apostles, the Letter to the Romans and the Letter of James.
- Liturgy Preparation: Class time is used to prepare for the school liturgy either with instruction on the Mass, choir practice, or studying the scripture readings.
- Eucharistic Adoration and Prayer: Twice a month, each class participates in periods of silent prayer, adoration, praise and worship, or communal practices of piety.
- Lives of the Saints: Each year, students conduct extended time learning about one of the following holy men and women of God; St. Therese of Lisieux, Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati, Saint Pope John Paul II, Servant of God Dorothy Day, and St. Benedict.
- Christian Literature: As part of classroom instruction, students are exposed to such authors as Saint Pope John Paul II, Pope Benedict XVI, Pope Francis, George Weigel, C.S. Lewis, Flannery O’Connor, Scott Hahn, Abbot Jeremy Driscoll, Archbishop Sample, Thomas Merton, Father Greg Boyle and Gerard Manley Hopkins.
- Service: Besides school-wide service activities, the Theology Instructor oversees a small school garden whose produce is given to the local food pantry. During the Spring/Fall, students spend one class period a month in the garden.
- Term Papers: Each semester, an appropriate length MLA formatted term paper is completed by all students. The English teacher assists Freshmen and Sophomores classes in proper formatting and proofreading. For Seniors, this paper is part of their Capstone Senior Service Project and bridges both semesters.
- Sacred Art, Music, and Literature: Exposure to sacred art, music and literature are proven methods of evangelization and are regularly incorporated into lesson plans.
In addition to classroom instruction, all students participate in a yearly retreat. This is highlighted by the overnight Junior Encounter that occurs off-campus at a retreat center. The goal of each of these retreats is to allow the students periods of silence and contemplation as well as communal worship so that they can grow in their relationship with Jesus Christ.
Having been loved by God, our theology program places a strong emphasis on service. During the year, each student participates in service activities to feed the poor, support human life, and help the planet. Students also volunteer at the school auction, to honor those who have supported the school since its founding.
In addition to the school-wide service events, all graduates complete a Senior Capstone Service Project of their choosing based on the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy or one of the Seven Themes of Catholic Social Teaching.
GO THEREFORE AND MAKE DISCIPLES.
Ut Fidem, from a longer Latin phrase meaning “Keep the Faith,” strives to develop high school students into intentional disciples who will keep the faith for the rest of their lives, and especially through college.
Ut Fidem supports students in forming deep, personal relationships with Jesus Christ through bi-weekly small groups of 6 young men or women who are actively discipled by an adult faith mentor. Groups grow their devotion to personal prayer, the Sacramental life, understanding of Church teachings, and enter into the lifestyle of an on-fire Catholic. By forming virtuous relationships with one another, groups develop deep relationships with Jesus Christ. No longer are students alone in the journey, but they are walking shoulder to shoulder together at a time when isolation, depression, and anxiety are running rampant.
A Proven Solution
By the end of year one at Regis High School, Ut Fidem grew to involve 6 active small groups, or 40 students, which was one-third of the student body.
TELL ME MORE…
Approximately 6 students in each group (same gender and grade)
1-2 Ut Fidem adult mentors per group
VIRTUS certified with background check
Received Ut Fidem small group mentor training
Equipped with “Forming Intentional Disciples,” by Sherry Weddell
Groups meet for an hour twice a month.
Students discuss anything from apologetics to personal prayer to the life of the saints to any question on their hearts.
Each group meets during normal theology class time. In this way, everyone who desires can participate in an Ut Fidem group.
Ut Fidem forms groups out of friendships so that the same students who talk about faith, are the same students that eat lunch together, and the same students who play basketball together or sing in choir together, etc. This is vital to avoid the compartmentalization of faith.
ADVANTAGES OF SMALL GROUPS…
Ut Fidem can uniquely meet all 5 essential needs of a human person.
The need to be understood.
The need to belong.
The need to be transparent.
The need for critical thinking around faith and beliefs.
The need for guidance.
WAYS TO GET INVOLVED WITH UT FIDEM
Join an Ut Fidem group as a student.
Discern Ut Fidem adult mentorship.
Join the Ut Fidem 24 hour prayer team.
If interested in becoming involved in any of the above ways, contact Ut Fidem coordinator, Dr. James Tabor, at email@example.com to arrange a meeting time.