The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd

Children delighting in a wooden cross

The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd (CGS) is a religious formation methodology for children aged from three through to 12 and unites adults and children in a common religious experience. 

Based on Montessori principles of education, CGS was developed in Rome in 1954 by a Catholic Hebrew and Scripture scholar, Sofia Cavaletti and Montessori Educator Gianna Gobbi. 

Children learn in a specially prepared environment called 'the Atrium', a sacred, “hands-on” space where catechists and children hear, ponder and celebrate the most essential mysteries of our faith as revealed in Sacred Scripture and Liturgy. Catechists in the Atrium receive specific training in the methodology and the materials developed are carefully prepared to foster in children the inherent longing for a relationship with God and curiosity about the elements of our faith.

CGS Fundraiser

This August, CGS is running a movie night fundraiser to raise funds to help cover training costs.

The advanced screening feature of Sound of Freedom will be held at Hoyts Riccarton at 7:30pm on Wednesday 23rd August.

More information and to purchase tickets can be found on the Event Page

Further Information


CGS - USA Website

New Zealand Catholic Article

The Children's Atrium

St Joseph's School
4 Vagues Road

Session Times:
Level 1 (3-6 year olds) - 9:30 am - 11:00 am Mondays during term time
Level 2 (6 - 9 year olds) - 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm Mondays during term time
Level 3 (9 - 12 year olds) - planned for 2024


For information on becoming a catechist, enrolling your child, volunteering, or supporting CGS, please contact:

Katherine Pawson at