Faith Formation

Children’s Faith Formation

Welcome to ST. MARK Religious Education

Please read the information below about registering your child/children for ST. MARK Religious Education for the 2024-25 school year. Classes begin on August 25/26 and continue through April 28/May 4.

In-person class on Sunday mornings from 9:30-10:45am. This (or Monday, when applicable) is a highly preferred option, especially for those children in Grades 1-2 and 7-8 who are preparing for a Sacrament.

In-person class on Monday afternoons – 6th grade from 4:45-6pm and 7th and 8th grades from 4:30-5:45pm. This (or Sunday) is the preferred option for those children in Grades 7-8 who are preparing for a Sacrament.

A self-paced online curriculum using My Catholic Faith Delivered. With some assistance from parents, a child will work through the lessons using an online platform according to a prescribed schedule. The Office of Religious Education will monitor your child’s progress. This is not the preferred option for those children in Grades 1-2 and 7-8 who are preparing for a Sacrament.

In-person class one Sunday afternoon per month over the course of two years to prepare for High School Confirmation. If you seek to have your high schooler confirmed, please email Joe Flaherty at jflaherty@stmark.org. This registration will be handled separately from the RE registration once you have communicated with Joe.

Registration Information

The early registration rates for registered parishioners are as follows:

  • One child $135
  • Two children $215
  • Three children $275
  • Four+ children $350
  • Late fee $100 per family
    (starting 8/1)

For those not registered as ST. MARK parishioners, the fee is $300 per child; $450 for two or more children.

There are also sacramental administrative fees as follows:

  • First Eucharist $30 (Penance and Eucharist workshop fees)
  • Confirmation $265 ($250 Fall weekend retreat fee + $15 robe fee)

Please read our Policies and Procedures Document and print for your reference. You will be asked to acknowledge these during the registration process.

  1. At least one parent is expected to volunteer for Religious Education or attend an Adult Faith Formation program. Besides Sunday mornings during Religious Education class, there are other Adult Faith Formation options available – for example, Alpha, Bible Study, and Christians in Commerce. Click here for more information on Adult Faith Formation opportunities.
  2. If you wish to volunteer instead of participating in Adult Faith Formation, you will find a list of your options here. We are particularly in need of catechists and assistant catechists for Monday afternoons.
  3. We expect that all children enrolled in Religious Education attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation. Mass at ST. MARK is available on Saturday at 5:30pm and Sunday at 9am and 11am. Attending the 11am Mass will be a convenient option for families with children attending Religious Education classes, and Children’s Liturgy of the Word is offered at this Mass during the school year.

Go to the online enrollment page and pay by credit card. If you have questions about registration, fees, or your parish registration status, or if you need to pay by check, please contact Sarah Lundquist at slundquist@stmark.org or 703-938-1948. Contact the Director of Religious Education, Joe Flaherty, with any other questions or concerns: 703-938-1948 x1.

For inquiries and questions call 703-938-1948.

Joe Flaherty, Director of Religious Education: jflaherty@stmark.org

Sarah Lundquist, Office Administrator: slundquist@stmark.org

Vacation Bible School

Scuba: Diving into Friendship with God

July 22-26, 2024

9:00am-12:00pm (dropoff time is 8:45)

Campers (preK through rising 5th grade) and volunteers, especially adults, are needed. Setup and training for volunteers on the afternoon of July 21st. 

Volunteer: In order to run VBS, we need many adults as well as helpers 6th grade and older. Volunteers must commit to all days, and those 18 and older must be (or become) compliant with diocesan child protection requirements; we can assist. Complete this form to volunteer.

Email Sarah at slundquist@stmark.org for more information and job descriptions.

New this year: Rather than rotating through stations like the younger grades, the rising 4th and 5th graders will comprise a Missions Team. Adults compliant with diocesan child protection requirements will work with them on acts of service for the parish and the community.

How to register: If you would like to register a participant (preschool age 4 – rising 5th grade; preschoolers must be potty trained and have completed a year of school) visit https://forms.ministryforms.net/viewForm.aspx?formId=8642a067-6f44-468f-9ab1-590fb7f17f80.

The cost is $65 per child. Don’t delay – only 60 spots are available!

Adult Faith Formation

Adult Faith Formation Opportunities – join either a short-term or long-term group!

Adult faith formation sessions on various topics take place in the Christian Formation Center Gym on RE Sundays from 9:30-10:45 am.

  • Meeting each RE Sunday: Alpha. While Sunday Alpha meets for the convenience of parents dropping their children off for RE, it is open to anyone inside or outside the Parish. Each session begins with coffee and donuts and an inspiring video, followed by small group discussion. Participants are able to attend the 11:00am Mass.

Alpha is a gathering of folks in a small group setting, who are simply looking for Community and for ways to grow in their faith in Jesus Christ. Sessions are available both in person and online.

Karen Asta, karenjasta@gmail.com, for information on the next Alpha session.

Meet at members’ homes or by Zoom most days of the week. Some are short-term groups formed for Advent and Lent. For more information contact Julie Scott at juliescott2010@gmail.com.

We are currently offering Bible Study via Zoom. Contact Mark Morneau at Mark.Morneau@gmail.com or 703-620-5101 for more information.

Meets the 2nd Wednesday of the month, September through June, at 7:30pm via Zoom. Contact Mark Morneau at Mark.Morneau@gmail.com or 703-620-5101 for more information.

Meets every Wednesday for prayer, teaching, small group discussion and fellowship from 7-8am via Zoom. Please contact Bill Dalgetty at bdalgetty@cox.net for more information.

The Cursillo is an opportunity to examine and celebrate yourself, your relationship with Christ and your relationship with the Christian community. Please go to the Cursillo website to get up-to-date information about Cursillo dates. After the Cursillo weekend you meet with other Cursillistas for a weekly reunion. There are also all-community gatherings periodically throughout the year.

  • FORMED Catholic Media Streaming: Formed has Catholic movies, video series, books, audiobooks and more for both children and adults.
    • Visit formed.org/signup
    • Enter our parish zip or name
    • Enter your name and email
    • Enjoy and share with others!
  • There are also very good online classes from Boston College called “Crossroads” which are inexpensive and excellent. Upcoming courses include: online book clubs, Spirituality and Prayer, Sacred Scripture, The Moral Life, and Themes from Our Christian Tradition. To register click here.

For more information contact Joe Flaherty in the RE Office at 703-938-1948 x1. Let us know if you have other ideas!

RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults)

ST. MARK is a vibrant Christian community of faith committed to Jesus Christ and His Church which welcomes your questions. We offer many ways to explore questions you may have. There is no obligation to become Catholic. We respect your free decision to come and inquire for as long as you like. To find out how, please simply contact the Director of Religious Education, Joe Flaherty, in the RE office at 703-938-1948 x1.

The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) is a gradual process which allows adults who have either not been raised in any formal faith or are from other faith traditions, as well as those who have been baptized Catholic who have never been CONFIRMED or received EUCHARIST, to seek and encounter a deeper relationship with Jesus within the Catholic Church.

Through participation in RCIA each person receives formation on how to live as a disciple of Jesus through a Catholic way of life within a specific faith community. The process includes exploring the Bible as well as Church teachings and traditions, participating in the prayer, rituals, and liturgies of the Catholic Church, forming relationships within the community, and developing an ever-deepening personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

Each person expresses a willingness and desire to become Catholic differently. Your journey may take you to the initial inquiry stage or all the way through the formal stages involved in the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults including reception of the Sacraments and integration in the life of the community. To begin your journey, contact the DRE, Joe Flaherty, at 703-938-1948 x1.

Thank you for building that relationship of trust with someone who has expressed an interest in wanting to know more about Catholicism or becoming Catholic! Simply put them in touch with the DRE, Joe Flaherty, at 703-938-1948 x1.

Each person’s journey is unique. Therefore, reception of the Sacraments is determined on an individual basis beginning with an informal meeting with the Director of Religious Education (DRE). This initial meeting allows the DRE to get to know you by listening to your story to assess your needs. You will be able to ask questions too! To begin sharing your story, contact the DRE, Joe Flaherty, at 703-938-1948 x1.

The Office of Religious Education will be happy to assist you in reception of the Sacraments of CONFIRMATION and EUCHARIST. In your initial conversation with the Director of Religious Education, Joe Flaherty, you will have the opportunity to ask questions and have your concerns addressed.

Adult Confirmation

Are you an adult BAPTIZED Catholic over the age of 18 who desires to receive the Sacraments of CONFIRMATION or EUCHARIST? The Office of Religious Education will be happy to assist you. In your initial conversation with the Director of Religious Education (DRE), Joe Flaherty, you will have the opportunity to express your questions and have your concerns addressed. Contact Joe at 703-938-1948 x1.

Each person’s faith journey is unique. Therefore, reception of the Sacraments is determined on an individual basis beginning with an informal meeting with the DRE. This initial meeting allows the DRE to get to know you by listening to your story to assess your needs. To begin, contact Joe at 703-938-1948 x1.

Confirmation of BAPTIZED Catholics takes place at the Cathedral of Thomas More each year on Pentecost Sunday.

You will need a sponsor to journey with you toward reception of the Sacraments of CONFIRMATION and/or EUCHARIST. Your sponsor will not only accompany you along the way but plays an integral part in the ceremony itself.

There is a close association between BAPTISM and CONFIRMATION. Therefore, the Church encourages if at all possible that one’s BAPTISMAL godparent also be one’s sponsor. The relationship between a godparent and their godchild, which began at BAPTISM, develops over the lifetimes of the godchild, which witnesses to a committed relationship with Jesus lived through prayer, sacramental participation, and service toward their neighbor.
If for some reason you want a different person other than your godparent to be your sponsor, the Church states that a CONFIRMATION sponsor must meet the requirements below:

  • At least 16 years of age and sufficiently mature
  • Cannot be the parent of the one seeking CONFIRMATION
  • Have received BAPTISM, CONFIRMATION, and EUCHARIST
  • If married, their marriage is recognized by the Church
  • Participate in the life of their parish community through frequent reception of the sacraments
  • Live a life of moral commitment in loving service to others

Being a Sponsor or Godparent provides a more in-depth historical context of the explanation of these requirements.

The community of ST. MARK has many faithful Catholics who would be more than happy to accompany you. The DRE will be able to match you with a sponsor.

If you have youth in High School and desire to have your child CONFIRMED, please contact Joe Flaherty at 703-938-1948 x1.