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 Level 1 Part 1 National Formation Course

Wed 17 – Sat 20 April 2024 & Mon 30 Sep – Wed 2 Oct 2024 (7 days total)

St. Mark’s Catholic Mission Church, Pakuranga Heights, Auckland

This course is for adults seeking to serve children who are three to six years old. This is the foundational training for all succeeding levels of catechist formation. All the key themes and presentations that are essential to this method of catechesis are introduced at this level, so it is important for an adult to begin at this level. It is also valuable for the adult in understanding the child’s developmental needs and religious capacities at this level.

Contact for more info or click here to register online by 1st March 2024.

3 year old finding Israel on the Globe

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) - 1:15 pm - 3:15 pm Mondays during term time
Level 2 (6 - 9 year olds) - 3:30 pm - 5:30 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