Certification and Formation

"Effective formation methods address the whole person: emotions, imagination, will, heart, and mind. It is the whole person who ministers, so the whole person is the proper subject of formation."
- USCCB document: Co-Workers in the Vineyard of the Lord

A Message from Bishop Barry C. Knestout

We are grateful for the many talents and strong witness to the faith you share with your school communities. We are excited to announce that the Office of Christian Formation has introduced a new learning platform for our diocese to provide practical training, on-demand classes and ongoing support for your catechetical needs.

Religion Certification for our teachers of religion in a catholic school plays an integral part in the catholic identity of each of our schools. Each year, religion teachers are required to submit 10 hours of approved catechetical formation. Currently, there are five levels of Religion Teacher Certification: Preliminary, Intermediate, Advanced, Master, and Professional Levels.

Preliminary Certification:
Teachers new to the diocese or new to teaching religion must complete the Preliminary Certification level during their first year of teaching. This level includes the course Pathways: Delivered and an additional 6 hours of approved catechetical formation. The Pathways: Delivered course includes teachings on Vocation of the Catechist, Catholic Approach to Scripture, and Catholic Tradition. This course is available online and is accessible to take at your own pace.


Pathways Delivered - Tier 1

All parish catechists and school religion teachers are expected to complete this training within their first year of service. The estimated time of completion is 4-5 hours. Tier 1 is comprised of 3 courses:

  • Vocation of the Catechist
  • Catholic Approach to Scripture
  • Catholic Tradition

Price: $35.00


Following the first year of teaching, religion teachers are required to submit 10 hours of approved catechetical formation to achieve further certification levels. Approved Catechetical Formation includes formation experiences from workshops or in-service opportunities provided by offices in the Catholic Diocese of Richmond, parishes, or schools. Please check with your school's Religion Coordinator to gain approval for activities you desire to participate in.

If you do not already have a login, contact your school religion coordinator. The total cost of these courses is $35, billed to your school.