Must-Own Books for Catechists

Share this article:

by Sarah Reinhard and the editors at Catechist

If you don’t already have a copy of the Catechism of the Catholic Church and at least one Catholic Bible, those need to top your list. And, I would add, you need to be familiar with them and able to dig around in them. Make that your top priority in your faith formation and training! For learning and digging into the Catholic faith, I recommend these books:

YOUCAT (Youth Catechism) (Ignatius Press, 2011)

Compendium: Catechism of the Catholic Church (United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, 2006)

The Faith: A Question-and-Answer Guide to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, by Father John Hardon, S.J. (Servant Books, 2014)

Totally Catholic!: A Catechism for Kids and Their Parents and Teachers, by Mary Kathleen Glavich, SND (Pauline Books & Media, 2013)

31 Days to Becoming a Better Religious Educator, by Jared Dees (Ave Maria Press, 2013)

The Catechist’s Toolbox: How to Thrive as a Religious Education Teacher, by Joe Paprocki (Loyola Press, 2007)

Beyond the Catechist’s Toolbox: Catechesis That Not Only Informs but Also Transforms, by Joe Paprocki (Loyola Press, 2013)

Be an Amazing Catechist: Inspire the Faith of Children, by Lisa Mladinich (Our Sunday Visitor, 2010)

Be an Amazing Catechist: Sacramental Preparation, by Lisa Mladinich (Our Sunday Visitor, 2011)


The editors of Catechist recommend these books for catechist formation (first list) and for classroom use (second list):

Catechist formation

Called to Be a Catechist: Your Practical Guide, by Cullen W Schippe (Pflaum Publishing Group, 2005)

Catechism of the Catholic Church: Second Edition, (United States Catholic Conference Inc., Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 1997)

CATECHIST Handbook & Planning Guide 2015-2016: Mercy, from the editors of Catechist magazine (Pflaum Publishing Group, 2015)

CATECHIST magazine’s prayers for Catechists, by Kass Dotterweich (Pflaum Publishing Group, 2006)

Deep Within Us: A personal retreat with the Holy Spirit (eResource), by Bill Huebsch (Twenty Third Publications)

Here’s How: A Catechist’s Guide: Planning and Teaching Your Catechetical Sessions, by Lee Danesco (Twenty Third Publications, 2014)

Jesus: The Master Catechist: Twelve Lessons from Jesus on Being a Catechist, by Bill Huebsch (Twenty Third Publications, 2015)

National Directory for Catechesis by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, (United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, 2005)

Teaching the Basics of Catholic Morality: A Catechist’s Guide to Fostering the Virtuous Life, by James Philipps (Twenty Third Publications, 2015)

The Creed: A Catechist’s Guide: Understanding And Sharing What We Believe, by Janet Schaeffler, OP (Twenty Third Publications, 2014)

The General Directory for Catechesis in plain English: A Summary and Commentary, by Bill Huebsch (Twenty Third Publications. Available only as a PDF ebook.)

The Spirituality Of The Catechist: Feeding Your Soul, Growing in Faith, Sharing with Others, by Janet Schaeffler, OP (Twenty Third Publications, 2014)

To All the World: A Retreat for Catechists (eResource), by Kathy Coffey (Twenty Third Publications)

What Do I Do Now? A Guide for the Reluctant Catechist, by Dan Pierson and Susan Stark (Pflaum Publishing Group, 2005)

Classroom use

50 Interactive Bible stories … for children ages 5-8 by Phyllis Vos Wezeman (Twenty Third Publications, 2009)

70 Prayer Starters for Children … and those who teach them by Patricia Mathson (Twenty Third Publications, 2011)

Active Learning for Catholic Kids, Volume 1: Reproducibles for Primary Grades by Jean Larkin (editor), Mary C. Noschang (editor), and Jean Buell (other contributor) (Pflaum Publishing Group, 2008)

Bible Arts & Crafts by Kathryn Nider Wolf (Pflaum Publishing Group, 2006)

Celebrate With Jesus: A Child’s Book of the Sacraments, by Jean Larkin – editor (Pflaum Publishing Group, 2007)

Lessons and Activities on What Makes Us Catholic by Janet Schaeffler, OP (Twenty Third Publications, 2015)

Lessons, Prayers and Activities on the Teachings of Jesus by Lee Danesco (Twenty Third Publications, 2015)

Skits from Scripture: 10 Plays from the New Testament by Page McKean Zyromski (Pflaum Publishing Group, 2002)

The Three Great Catholic Prayers by Benoit Marchon, Catherine de Lasa, Jean Debruynne, Simon Kroug, Marcelino Truong Francois Roudot, Luc Mélanson and Didier Balicevic (Novalis Publishing, 2008)

What’s Your Catholic IQ? 22 Faith Quizzes for All Ages by Page McKean Zyromski (Pflaum Publishing Group, 2006)

These books and many others are available from the publishers’ websites:

Ave Maria Press:

Ignatius Press:

Loyola Press:

Our Sunday Visitor:

Pauline Books & Media:

Pflaum Publishing Group:

Servant Books:

Twenty Third Publications:

United States Conference of Catholic Bishops:


Sarah Reinhard writes online at

Copyright 2015, Bayard, Inc. All rights reserved. This article is protected by United States copyright and other intellectual property laws and may not be reproduced, rewritten, distributed, redisseminated, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast, directly or indirectly, in any medium without the prior written permission of Bayard, Inc.

This article was written by the Catechist Staff and appeared in Catechist magazine, January 2015.

Image Credit: Shutter Stock 36076513

Share this article: