Catholic Diocese of Dallas

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Key Church Evangelization and Catechetical Documents For Adult Faith Formation


Our Hearts Were Burning Within Us  1999

A Pastoral Plan for Adult Faith Formation in the United States

Offers a vision of adult catechesis at the center of all catechesis. Provides goals, principles, content and approaches for implementing the vision. 

OHWB Summary

OHWB PowerPoint

Click on the cover photo to read the document.

General Directory for Catechesis 1999 

An essential companion to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, the General Directory for Catechesis (GDC) provides religious educators, teachers, and catechists with a single point of reference for all aspects of catechetical instruction, for content and pedagogy, as well as for methodology. Beginning with an introductory reflection of how contemporary human and ecclesial conditions have impacted the preaching of the Gospel, the Directory moves through a detailed presentation of the goals and essential elements of catechesis, from its role in the Church's mission of evangelization, to norms and guidelines for its presentation, to adaptations for various groups and situations. PowerPoint 

Click on the cover photo to read the document.


National Directory for Catechesis 2005 

The National Directory for Catechesis (NDC)  The NDC provides basic theological and pastoral principles for catechesis in the U.S. and offers guidelines for the application of these principles that will continue the renewal of catechesis in the U.S. The NDC focuses on the context, meaning, and methodologies for catechesis.


Click on the cover photo and you will be directed to the USCCB on Catechesis.  Worksheets for the NDC are available to download.



Book - United States Catholic Catechism for AdultsCatholic Catechism for Adults 2006                         

Catechism of the Catholic Church 1994 

Provides a “sure and authentic reference” for Catholic doctrine organized according to four pillars: Creed, Sacraments, Morality and Prayer. A resource for developing other catechisms and materials. 



Click on the cover photo to read the document.




Adult Catechesis in the Christian Community 1990 

The document focuses on the most significant aspects of the catechesis of adults. It touches on common issues, common problems and probable solutions, which seem prevalent throughout the world, fully recognizing that inculturation will have to be made in the local Churches. This document is addressed to the whole People of God, gathered in the diverse Christian communities throughout the world, under the guidance of their Pastors. In a more direct way it has in mind those lay catechists who are already engaged in the catechesis of adults or who are preparing themselves for this service.

Click on the cover photo to read the document. 



Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults 1988 

A direct result of Vatican II. It restored the catechumenate and transformed the experience of becoming Catholic into a public journey of conversion marked by stages and rites. (The catechumenate provides the model for all catechesis.)

Click on the cover photo to learn more about the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults.



Catechesi Tradendae 1979 

Emphasized the christocentric nature of catechesis: “The definitive aim of catechesis is to put people not only in touch but in communion, in intimacy, with Jesus Christ…” (#5) Catechesis is for everyone in the Church and needs to be systematic. It is a “moment” in the process of evangelization and affirmed experience as a legitimate “point of departure” for catechesis. 

Click on the cover photo to read the document. 



Evangelii Nuntiandi 1975 

Recognized that proclaiming the Gospel to all people (evangelization) is central to the mission of the church. Identified catechesis, along with preaching, as forms of evangelization

Click on the cover photo to read and/or download the document. 



Evangelii Gaudium 2013
 The Joy of the Gospel

“The Joy of the Gospel fills the hearts and lives of all who encounter Jesus. Those who accept his offer of salvation are set free from sin, sorrow, inner emptiness and loneliness. With Christ joy is constantly born anew. In this Exhortation I wish to encourage the Christian faithful to embark upon a new chapter of evangelization marked by this joy, while pointing out new paths for the Church’s journey in years to come.”


– Pope Francis (Evangelii Gaudium)

Click on the cover photo to read and/or download the document.



Amoris Laetitia 2016 

The Joy of Love

The Church in the United States, together with the Church throughout the world, has found in Pope Francis' Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia (The Joy of Love) a wealth of encouragement, guidance, and wisdom about the beautiful gift and vocation of marriage and family life. Since its release date on April 8, 2016, bishops, lay leaders, and families in the United States have proactively sought to receive Pope Francis's teachings joyfully and to implement them in our shared task of caring for marriages and families. 

Click on the cover photo to download the document.

Laudato Si' 2015 

On Care For Our Common Home

On Care for Our Common Home (Laudato Si') is the new appeal from Pope Francis addressed to "every person living on this planet" for an inclusive dialogue about how we are shaping the future of our planet. Pope Francis calls the Church and the world to acknowledge the urgency of our environmental challenges and to join him in embarking on a new path. This encyclical is written with both hope and resolve, looking to our common future with candor and humility.

Click on the cover photo to read and/or download the document.