NPCD: The Parish Catechetical Voice of NCEA
Offering Leadership, Direction and Service for Parish Catechesis since 1972

 

The National Association of Parish Catechetical Directors (NPCD) is a professional membership organization within NCEA. NPCD advances excellence in catechesis by networking, representing and empowering parish catechetical leaders at the national, regional and local levels. Membership in NPCD can be individual or institutional, depending upon the professional needs of the person or group seeking membership.

 

Who We Are:

            Parish Catechetical Leaders (Directors of Religious Education and Coordinators of Faith Formation)
            Pastors
            Parishes
            Students Preparing for Catechetical Ministry

 

Why We Exist:

"The single most critical factor in an effective parish catechetical program is the leadership of a professionally trained parish catechetical leader." NDC 54, B 5

 

What We Do:

NPCD’s Executive Committee works with NCEA staff to serve its members in networking, representing, and empowering parish catechetical leaders. Member support is coordinated through 11 geographic regions, each served by an elected representative. Our focus is to:

    Increase ways catechetical leaders’ voices can be heard and members’ professional concerns can be addressed on the local, regional and national levels
    Ensure members feel valued, connected and knowledgeable as catechetical leaders

The annual NCEA Convention and Expo is a unique opportunity to gather with a wide range of Catholic educators from across the country to further develop your knowledge, practice, and spirituality as a religious educator. The department sponsors religious education offerings within the Convention, such as workshops, award ceremonies and a departmental keynote address. The convention’s major keynote sessions, exposition and other events along with the departmental offerings help attendees to:

  • celebrate our shared work in echoing the Word of God
  • renew their commitment to Catholic education and ongoing faith formation
  • develop the professional aspects of competent catechetical ministry
  • explore the latest resources available to support effective ministry
  • network with others to support and strengthen the work of handing on the faith to people of all ages

The annual convention includes the NPCD Convocation, a conference-within-a conference designed especially for parish catechetical leadership and addressing the issues and needs distinct to catechesis in the parish setting.

NPCD members have access to publications and tools such as the Assessment of Children/Youth Religious Education (NCEA IFG : ACRE edition) and the Information for Growth (IFG: NCEA Adult Faith Formation Survey) to assist those working in the field of catechesis. These assessment tools help schools and parishes know how effectively they are teaching the faith at two levels: the cognitive level (knowledge of the faith) and the affective level (practicing the faith).

 

How We Connect:

NPCD encourages regional networking and gatherings among its members and with those who are new to the ministry. We also encourage members to connect with one another to advance excellence in catechesis. We invite you to:

  • send emails and/or gather with your regional representative and other NPCD members in your area
  • attend the annual NCEA Convention and Expo and NPCD Convocation – usually scheduled Easter Week (dates for 2014 are April 22-24 in Pittsburgh)
  • participate in the online interactive Yahoo Group called DRE-Talk
  • join the NPCD Facebook page

 

When We Pray:

As the bishops remind us in the National Directory for Catechesis, "The word of God nourishes both evangelizers and those who are being evangelized so that each one may continue to grow in his or her Christian life" (NDC, Washington, DC: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, 2005, no. 17).

We invite you to join us in praying with and for one another as teachers and learners, evangelizers and the evangelized. May the Holy Spirit continue to deepen our own knowledge, intimacy, and communion with Jesus Christ as we live out God’s call to catechize.

 

NPCD Membership

 

We invite you to contribute to the strength of our association by becoming a member of NPCD. Click here for current application form. Membership can be individual or institutional, depending upon the professional needs of the person or group seeking membership.

Member Categories

  • Parish Catechetical Leaders    
  • Directors of Religious Education        
  • Coordinators of Faith Formation
  • Pastors
  • Parishes
  • Students Preparing for Catechetical Ministry

Our Focus for 2013

  • Raise the bar for all levels of communication, including electronic and hard copy
  • Increase ways catechetical leaders' voices can be heard and members' professional concerns can be addressed on the local, regional, and national levels
  • Ensure members feel valued, connected and knowledgeable as catechetical leaders

 

 “The single most critical factor in an effective parish catechetical program is the leadership of a professionally trained parish catechetical leader.” NDC 54, B 5

NPCD Member Benefits

 

As members of NCEA's Religious Education Department, NPCD members enjoy all of the following:

NPCD National Convocation

Held each year in conjunction with NCEA's annual Convention and Expo. Designed especially for parish catechetical leaders, the convocation is a four-day conference promoting professional growth, prayer and renewal.

 

DRE-Talk

An NPCD sponsored Yahoo group for parish catechetical directors. Over 400 members, with access to:

  • DRE-Talk archives for topics discussed in previous years.
  • A links page connecting to publishers, the Bishops' Conference and other sites related to catechetical formation. Members are welcome to add their favorites.
  • A vault where members can upload files they think would be of interest to the group.
  • A database, or membership list, that is voluntary and includes member name, city, state, parish and position in the parish, and email address.

 

Professional Development Materials

Discounted professional publications, available through the NCEA Online Store and: 

  • Year of Faith Minute, a Scripture-based reflection emailed weekly
  • NPCD News, a member newsletter printed and online quarterly
  • NCEA’s Momentum magazine, published four times a year

 

NCEA ACRE and IFG

Assessment tools designed to strengthen catechetical/religious education programs:

 

 National Awards

  • Emmaus Award for Excellence in Catechesis, presented to outstanding national leaders in catechesis.
  • Religious Educational Excellence Award (REEA), presented to parish catechetical leaders who exemplify leadership within the parish faith community, whose programs offer new or unique approaches fostering lifelong faith formation.

 

NCEA Job Bank

For posting new job announcements and searching DRE and Catholic schools positions which are open around the country.

NPCD Regional Representatives

NPCD member support is coordinated through 11 geographic regions. Each region is served by an elected representative for a term of three years. Representatives can run for an additional three-year term if he or she chooses.    

 

  

Part of the work of a national professional or ministry organization is holding up models of outstanding leadership. Each year NPCD honors exemplary catechetical leaders during their annual convocation.

2013 Emmaus Award honorees: The Sadlier Dinger Family

 

2013 Religious Educational Excellence Award honorees