Dear Parents,

Many "firsts" in the life of a child such as their first cry, first word, and first word, and first step occur within the context of the family. With your initiative and faith, your child received the first Sacrament of the Church - Baptism.  Afterwards, it was you who first spoke to your children about God.  Now it is time for your child to recognize the saving love of God in either the Sacraments of Reconciliation or the Sacrament of the Eucharist or both, depending on which of these two sacraments your child has not yet received.

At the Second Vatican Council, the Church taught that the family is the "Domestic Church" and parents, by word and example, are the first heralds of the Faith with regard to their children.  While appreciating all your efforts to nourish the spiritual life of your child, I as your pastor, and all the parishioners of the English Speaking Catholic Mission, pledge our support and assistance in preparing your child for these sacraments.

Within the ESCM, a great deal of emphasis is put on the responsibility for the preparation for the Sacraments being shared by parents, and the parish.¬† Many of your families are ‚Äúinternational‚ÄĚ families, moving from one country to another and in most cases without the benefit and support of a Catholic school system.

Whether your child goes to the Catholic School or to some other school, we will be having some preparation sessions at the Church for you and your child to attend together.  We will also be providing you with some material for you to work with your child at home in preparation for these Sacraments.  We ask you to make a commitment to attend all the sessions at the Church and to do the homework with your child.  Your child's readiness for these sacraments will only be as good as the effort you put into making it happen and to fail to do so deprives no one but your child.

May the faith and example of St. Mary and St. Joseph, who helped Jesus himself to grow in wisdom and in faith, be your strength and inspiration.