Policies & Procedures

Faith Formation Policies and Procedures 2015-2016

Faith Formation Office          Phone: 616.676.9111 ext 114

Email: faithformation@strobertchurch.org

 Scroll down for information, accordingly.

  • Focus of Faith Formation Ministries
  • Policies & Procedures
    • Calendar
    • Closings & Cancellations
    • Food & Snacks
    • Parent Participation
    • Drop Off & Pick Up
    • Photos/Videos
    • Placement
    • Registration
    • Safe Environment/Protecting God’s Children
    • Safety – Tornado, Fire, First Aid
    • Sports & Appointments
    • Student Conduct
    • Textbooks
    • Fees
    • Visitation



St. Robert of Newminster Church’s Faith Formation Team is committed to providing resources and opportunities for the development of faith for persons of all ages. We take our directive from the Church, which says that “the definitive aim of catechesis (religious education) is to put people not only in touch but in communion, in intimacy, with Jesus Christ.” (National Directory for Catechesis, 19B) Through our ministry, we aim to assist people of all ages to grow in knowledge of the Catholic faith, participate more explicitly in the liturgy and sacraments, live according to Jesus’ moral teaching, become people of prayer, and participate actively in the life and mission of the Church by becoming missionary disciples in their families, communities and world.


As we grow in relationship with God and knowledge of and in love with Jesus Christ, we ask for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit to guide and nurture the faith development and discipleship of the community of St Robert of Newminster Church.



CALENDAR  Click here for Faith Formation Calendar, including session dates and dates to remember.

CLOSINGS & CANCELLATIONS  Faith formation sessions are automatically cancelled when Forest Hills Public Schools cancel classes due to weather conditions. If bad weather starts just prior to session times and the staff decides to cancel sessions, the staff will notify catechists and parents via email and will post cancellation information on the parish website and to be broadcast over local radio and television stations, including WOOD-AM (1300), WOOD-FM (105.7), WOOD TV-8, WZZM TV-13. Parents may also sign up to receive text messages through REMIND. If in doubt, please contact the Faith Formation Office.

FOOD & SNACKS  No food or snacks will be allowed in the rooms. Parents are responsible for ensuring their children eat before entering the learning space. (There may be exceptions for lesson-related activities, as approved by the Pastoral Associates.)

PARENT PARTICIPATION  Every parent is expected to volunteer with an activity at least one time during the year. Sign-up by completing the Ministries Opportunities Form.

DROP OFF & PICK UP  In order to maintain safety and security, the standard procedure for dropping off and picking up children in the Early Childhood Sunday School and Be My Disciples Elementary programs is for parents or other authorized adults to escort their children to and pick up their children from their learning spaces/rooms. Middle school students participating in Catholic Connections may sign themselves in and out, but parents are encouraged to escort them in and out of the building.

PHOTOS/VIDEOS Participants of St Roberts faith formation activities may have their pictures taken for use in promotion of parish programs. Parents/guardians may designate on the registration form that they wish to not have their children photographed.

PLACEMENT  Because approximately 1200 children participate in faith formation sessions, we cannot take special requests for placement with friends or certain catechists. All placement is done in a practical manner.

REGISTRATION  You must be a member of the parish to register your family for Faith Formation activities. Click here for registration form

SAFE ENVIRONMENT/PROTECTING GOD’S CHILDREN (VIRTUS) St Robert of Newminster Parish complies with the requirements of the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and the guidelines of the Diocese of Grand Rapids. Under the requirements of the program, all employees and volunteers of the parish engaged in regular contact with children or young people must undergo a criminal history background check and attend a Protecting God’s Children abuse awareness session.

SAFETY In the event of a TORNADO, learners will be escorted to the inner hallway and rooms and be seated facing the wall with a book over their necks and heads. Tornado drills will be held during session times on September 27-30.

In the event of a FIRE, learners will be escorted out the nearest exit to the back of the parking lot where attendance will be taken. Parents will meet us at the back of the parking lot and must sign out their children with the catechist before taking their children away. Fire drills will be held during class times on October 5-7.

If a student is injured, appropriate FIRST AID will be performed. In the case of a minor injury, faith formation staff will perform basic first aid, and parents will be notified as soon as possible. In the case of an injury requiring professional medical attention, faith formation staff will contact 911 for emergency treatment and will contact the learners’ parents or the designated emergency contact. Medical Treatment Release is obtained through the registration process.

SPORTS & APPOINTMENTS  We discourage early dismissal of learners for other activities. If this situation arises occasionally, parents are required to notify the Faith Formation Office.

STUDENT CONDUCT  St Robert Faith Formation learners are expected to be respectful of catechists, fellow learners, and church property. Restitution for any damage incurred by a student is the responsibility of the student and/or his/her parents/guardians. If a student is disrespectful to the catechist or fellow learners or damages church property, the following steps will be taken:

  • The catechist will give the student a warning.
  • If a second correction is needed during the same class session, the student is sent to the office to complete an assigned activity.
  • The student will complete a Responsible Action Form and give this to the staff person in charge. A copy of the form may be sent home to parents/guardians. The original will be kept in Faith Formation office files.
  • If a student is sent to the office for a second time during a six-week period, parents/guardians will be asked to come in for a consultation with the staff.

TEXTBOOKS  Textbooks will remain in the rooms. If a parent prefers to have an additional at-home text, contact the Faith Formation Office.


  • Registration fees are $35 per student registered for any program, including home study.
  • Sacrament Preparation fees are $15 per student – First Reconciliation/Communion (Gr 2) and Confirmation (Gr 8).

Catechists do not have to pay registration fees for their children, but do still need to complete a registration form.

Scholarships are available for families experiencing financial hardship.

You may make your payment with credit card online by clicking the online payment icon on Faith Formation Registration webpage under the Faith Formation tab on the parish website: www.StRobertChurch.org. You may either sign up for a new account, or you may select the “Quick Give” option to make a one-time payment of your Faith Formation Registration Fee.  After choosing one of these options, under Gift Information select Fund and choose “Faith Formation Registration Fee” and/or “Sacrament Preparation Fee.”

VISITATION  Parents are always welcome and encouraged to visit their children’s faith formation sessions.