Pastoral Catechesis

A listing of teaching materials developed by or for pastors to teach the catechism.

If you have published a set of such materials online, please let us know. If you have developed a set of such materials but have no place to publish them online, please let us know.  Contact by Email

Catechesis for Life: Catechism (2014)

A 42-part series on Luther’s Small Catechism, each featuring a mini study by Pastor John Wollenburg Sias and excerpts from Luther’s Large Catechism.

This is a series developed by Pastor Sias with the aim of encouraging the congregation in weekly engagement with the doctrine of the faith. Its aim is to cover the Catechism and Liturgy and then add more “modules.” These are provided for evaluation and use, personal or congregational. Pastor Sias welcomes feedback, corrections, and suggestions at the e-mail address listed at the bottom of linked page.

Lessons For Lambs

These are mentioned here because of the “Catechism Corner” that each contains, and the rest of each insert also is, well, frankly, amazing. Consider how this Catechism Corner puts the Catechism before little children each week, and how it shows parents the ease of using little portions of the Catechism.

Lessons for Lambs is a children’s bulletin that follows the one-year historic lectionary. Lessons for Lambs is not meant to serve as a way to keep kids busy and quiet during the service, but rather to involve them in what’s going on in the service so they can begin thinking about it. The bulletins are geared toward kids in 2nd through 6th grades with varying degrees of independence. They could certainly be used with younger kids, in part, with help from their parents, and by older kids who still need a better theological foundation.

This resource for churches was developed by Mrs. Heidi Sias (comments welcome, Send Email), and is free of charge for congregational use.

Each bulletin contains:

  1.  Name of the church year week (with an explanation if necessary)
    and color;
  2.  Artwork depicting the Gospel reading for the kids to color (front
    cover artwork is by Ed Riojas and has been used by permission of  Higher Things copyright © 2006.  If you would like to order a complete set of the  cover art, CLICK  HERE);
  3.  Something for the kids to “listen for” during the service;
  4.  The week’s Gospel reading with questions to think about;
  5.  A biography of a featured person from the Bible (related to one of
    the weekly readings when possible);
  6.  A catechism lesson (from the 1912 version, now in public domain,
    which is almost identical to the 1943 edition familiar to many older LCMS  members) and/or hymn (also public domain); and
  7.  A puzzle related to what is covered in the week’s bulletin (word
    search, crossword or word scramble).
  8.  Some weeks also include additional artwork to color or drawing
    boxes asking the children to draw something related to the week.

Didache by John T. Pless

Didache aims to help contemporary Christians understand the interplay between what Lutherans confess (doctrine), how we receive Christ’s gifts in the Divine Service (liturgy), and how we pray and live under the cross of Jesus Christ (vocation).

Didache seeks to instruct Christians in a basic pattern of catechesis which recognizes that doctrine is drawn from the Holy Scriptures, confessed in Luther’s Small Catechism, and expressed in the hymnal. These are the three books of the Church’s life; they should be known by individual Christians as well.

Didache is designed to lead students ever deeper into these basic books. It follows the pattern of Luther’s Catechism.

See blog post with further description and links to the Table of Contents and sample pages, here.

Studying Luther’s Large Catechism: A Workbook for Christian Discipleship, by Ryan C. MacPherson, Ph.D.

Always beginning with prayer and concluding with song, the twelve lessons in this study book provide biblical instruction concerning the Ten Commandments, Apostles’ Creed, Lord’s Prayer, Baptism, Lord’s Supper, and Confession & Absolution.

12 lessons, each with study questions. Introductory Materials include The Place of Martin Luther and His Catechisms in Church History; How This Study Is Organized; Supplemental Resources; and Suggestions for Teachers.

Detailed contents, testimonials, and opportunity for bulk discounts listed here. Buy it on Amazon here.

Teach These Things: Catechesis for the Lutheran Parish

The work of Pastor Lincoln Winters, with information, samples, syllabus and more at Catechesis for the Lutheran Parish. Also sold on LuLu.

A catechesis that follows Luther’s outline for instruction. Prayerful and practical. Simple without being simplistic. This curriculum is appropriate for children, teens and adults. It can be used as an introduction to the faith, or as a refresher.

We have a blog post coming that will give more information, including recommendations, Issues, Etc. interview, and more. In the meantime, see A Review of “Teach These Things” on Brothers of John the Steadfast, by Pastor Daniel Hinton.

Catechesis in Normal Words

This adaptive Catechesis curriculum teaches the six chief articles of Luther’s Small Catechism (plus a little on the Table of Duties) in a way that asks questions that stick to the subject, but in a way that a young person would ask. Humor is also thrown in from time to time. Some of these questions are what other catechumens have raised during previous years of my teaching.

Also, this curriculum gives extra attention to the Word of God, as well as the worship of the Lutheran church. Lutheran Service Book is referred to often, and the individual lessons end with teaching on why various parts of the Divine Service are done.

by Rev. Robert Mayes, pastor of Immanuel Lutheran Church, Beemer, NE and Zion St. John Lutheran Church, Wisner, NE.

Catechesis by Pastor Michael Mohr

Pastor Michael Mohr, Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church, Strasburg, Illinois (LCMS) has developed a complete program of congregational catechesis. This is a coordinated approach for the whole congregation. We will publish soon a blog post providing much further information about this very interesting program.

Large Catechism Readings – Rev. Craig A. Meissner

Rev. Craig A. Meissner, Pastor, Immanuel Lutheran Church, Steger, Illinois, created “Large Catechism Readings for the One-Year Lectionary (LSB),” 2013. The link is to the file on Emmanuel Press’ website.

Greenlight Pre-Confirmation Curriculum

See Guest Post – Green Light Pre-Confirmation Curriculum, by Kim Halvorson

Catechism Bible Illustrations

This is a table of Bible illustrations to help parents, teachers, and pastors illuminate truths taught in the Small Catechism.

Part 1 – The Ten Commandments

Part 2 – The Creed

Part 2a – The First Article
Part 2b – The Second Article
Part 2c – The Third Article

Part 3 – The Lord’s Prayer

Part 4a – Baptism

Part 4b – Confession and Keys