Family Intergenerational Religious Education (FIRE) is done in small groups and based out of homes. Groups decide when and in what homes they will meet to complete approximately 16 lessons during the school year. FIRE can be a substitute for regular Christian Formation classes. Rather than dropping kids at several different class times on Sunday, everyone attends the same meeting at a time that’s convenient for the whole family..
The FIRE Program is open to all — families with & without children, singles, divorced, widowed, even non-Catholics. Current participants range in age fr0m 4 to 75.
Each home group has one or more facilitators, who prepare for and lead FIRE meetings. A facilitator formation session is offered. Contact the Coordinator (Al Reynolds) to find out more about being a FIRE facilitator.
- FIRE is a Christian Formation program in which people form groups to conduct pre-planned lessons that are engaging and designed to help people of all ages to grow in their faith.
- It takes the place of regular classroom-based CF for kids.
- It enhances family spirituality.
- FIRE is for everyone – single, married, divorced, catholic or non-catholic.
- It builds community.
- It is fun and convenient (groups set their own schedules and decide where to meet)
- It is cheap ($75 per family regardless of the number of members)
FIRE meetings begin with a potluck; often have an icebreaker; always have a prayer & scripture discussion period; always have an interesting activity (usually conducted with small groups — sometimes within the family, sometimes with a mix of non-related kids & adults); and, always have a closing ritual.
- Rich: My wife and I moved to Charlottesville as empty-nesters.. We had always been involved in our children’s activities: sports, bands! The parents of our kids friends were a large part of our social circle. When FIRE started at Incarnation, we joined, partly motivated by the need to fill a social hole and a similar experience in Australia a few decades back. We also saw an opportunity for growth. It’s turned out to be a real blessing and an excellent opportunity to grow in our faith. It’s been impressive to see young parents making extraordinary efforts to pass on their faith and to be able to help with that in a small way. The lessons are very interactive and help to build relationships.
- Jane: We joined FIRE because we wanted to be more involved in our daughter’s religious education and formation, but what we got out of it was so much more than that. We found a community within our Parish. It is so amazing to see our 7yr old scan the sanctuary for people she knows the minute we walk into Church. During the Sign of Peace, when she used to bury herself in my side, she now goes about the room hugging everyone she can get her hands on from our FIRE group. We love the sense of community, and we love the opportunity to discuss our faith with our daughter and other families. The FIRE lessons have really sparked amazing conversations in our house, and they let us answer our daughter’s questions. Can’t wait for this year to begin!
- Alex (age 12) One reason I like FIRE is because the activities are fun and engaging. Being in FIRE has helped me meet and become good friends with new people. Another reason I like FIRE is the food, especially Tif’s jello!
- Joshua (age 8) The activities we do are always fun and I love the food – I am going to miss them over the summer.
Registration and Fees
For those new to FIRE, to allow adequate time to form groups, we ask that you register as early as possible. The fee for FIRE is $75 per household. Please mail or drop off your registration form with payment to the office.