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Religious Education for Children

"Dear Pope Francis, 

Why do you think children have to go to religious education?

Dear Ana, 

Religious education classes help you to get to know your friend Jesus better and his great family, the Church."  

Dear Pope Francis, The Pope Answers Letters from Children Around the World by Pope Francis


Children not attending Catholic Schools

Welcome to Our Lady of Sorrows (OLS) Catechism! 

Our ministry provides religious education for Catholic students, grades 1-7 inclusive, not currently attending a Catholic school.  We follow the religious education curriculum set by the TCDSB.  Attendance is mandatory for those children who wish to receive their sacraments at OLS Church if they are not attending a Catholic school. 

Please note that Sacramental Preparation for First Holy Communion, Reconciliation, and Confirmation takes place separately and in addition to the religious education classes. You can email Marta at marta.oloschurch@gmail.com for information regarding preparation for the specific sacraments.

Religious Education Classes

  • Every Monday from 7 to 7:40 p.m. - Online Zoom Meeting

  • Runs from the end of September to the beginning of May excluding all statutory holidays for a total of 26-28 weeks depending on the calendar year.

  • Classes are ideally kept at a maximum of 20 students.  

It is expected that the children of registered OLS families who do not attend Catholic schools will attend all religious education classes (grades 1-7) and not register only during the sacramental years, that is, grades 2 & 7.   

Registration for the upcoming year takes place online during April/May preceding the start of the regular school year.  Registration forms submitted before this date are gladly accepted.  For administrative purposes and class assignment we ask that students are registered as early as possible.  In order to guarantee student placement it is strongly recommended that registration takes place before September.  

There is a registration fee of $40 per child up to a maximum of $80 per family. Fees are collected at the time of class assignment (usually the third Monday in September). Registration after the beginning of classes (usually the fourth Monday in September) is $50 per child up to a maximum of $100 per family.         

You can register your child(ren) by completing the Religious Education form found here. The completed form can be emailed to karen_m_zimmer@yahoo.ca

Parents of enrolled students are asked to volunteer their help to support the program. We are a community and this program belongs to all of us.

Religious Education Teachers

The OLS Religious Education program is run strictly through the dedication of volunteers. These include but are not limited to parents of enrolled students, parish members, high school and university students, and student teachers.  Previous teaching experience is an asset but is not a requirement.

Volunteer Commitment:

Volunteer Screening Program (established 2001) is a part of the Archdiocese of Toronto's Safe Environment Policy. It ensures that all vulnerable persons, volunteers, Ministry Leaders, and participants are able to engage in a safe, caring community.

Volunteer screening for Religious Education teachers includes:

  • Completion of Application Package
  • Completion of an In-Person or Telephone Interview
  • Completion of a Reference Check
  • Completion of a Criminal Records Check
  • Completion of an Annual Self-Review and Offence Declaration

Two principal teachers and 1 substitute teach are assigned to every class.  The principal teachers schedule how and which classes they will teach.  The substitute is called if one of the principal teachers is unable to attend.  Whenever possible, experienced teachers are partnered with teachers new to the program.

All teachers are provided with a grade appropriate textbook.  Teachers are responsible for preparing class lessons.  Training/workshops are available through the Archdiocese if required.  Specific teaching manuals may be provided if required.

Yearly Time Commitment

Principal Teacher                                               Substitute Teacher

13-14 hours in class time                                           0-3 hours in class time

Lesson preparation                                                     Lesson preparation (if time allows)

1 hour initial meeting                                                 1 hour initial meeting (optional)

Please note that all those involved in parish ministries and groups must participate in volunteer screening, and some positions will require police checks.

For more information on volunteer screening visit www.archtoronto.org.

If you are a dynamic individual who enjoys working with children and is passionate about sharing our faith as either a Principal or Substitute teacher or if you would like more information about the OLS Religious Education program, please contact Karen Zimmer at karen_m_zimmer@yahoo.ca.