Parish Religious Education Program: PREP

(Formerly called CCD)

PREP provides Ignatian-based religious formation to children from first grade through Confirmation (usually sixth grade) not attending a Catholic school.  We require two years of instruction before the reception of a sacrament.  The program has four components:

  •  Teaching children the tenets and practice of our faith
  • Guiding children to recognize God’s presence in their lives, to develop a personal relationship with God, and to learn to make moral choices based on that relationship
  • Preparing children for the sacraments of First Reconciliation, First Holy Communion, and Confirmation (those in Catholic school join PREP students in the celebration of the sacraments)
  • Fostering a sense of community for children and families in the parish

When and where:  First- through fifth-grade PREP classes meet at St. Mary’s Interparochial School at 5th and Locust Sts. (enter on Locust) on Mondays from 6:00 to 7:00 PM from September through May.  The children gather in and are dismissed from the multi-purpose room in the basement.
Sixth-graders have a six-week Confirmation preparation class at Old St. Joe’s on Thursdays from 4:30 to 5:30 PM prior to the Confirmation date.  The class meets in Barbelin Hall underneath the church.

Click here to download the PREP Registration Form. It is a fillable PDF form. You can type in the form and save it. Please return the form to the parish office or email the form to

Click here to download the PREP 2017/2018 Calendar.

For further information on PREP or to become a teacher, contact, the Coordinator of Religious Education, Christine Szczepanowski at 215-923-1733 ext. 123 or 267-250-3049 (cell) or

PREP 2017-18 Calendar

Monday, September 11, 20176:00 – 7:00 pmPREP begins (grades 1-5) at St. Mary’s Interparochial School (SE corner 5th and Locust Sts.—enter on Locust)
Thursdays, Sept. 21 – Oct. 264:30 - 5:30 pmConfirmation class meets in the parish hall
Saturday, September 233:30 - 5:15 pmHome-schoolers gathering (for those unable to attend PREP)
Monday, October 9NO PREP—Columbus Day
Wednesday, October 257:00-8:30 pmPastor’s talk for Confirmation parents in the parish hall
Monday, October 30NO PREP—St. Mary’s School closed
Saturday, November 410:00 am - 4:30 pmConfirmation retreat (includes lunch). Parents join Confirmandi at 2:30 (includes rehearsal)
Sunday, November 1911:30 MassConfirmation
Monday, November 27NO PREP—St. Mary’s School closed
Monday, December 25NO PREP—Christmas vacation
Monday, January 1NO PREP—Christmas vacation
Monday, January 8, 20186:00 – 7:00 pmPREP resumes (grades 1-5)
Monday, January 15NO PREP—Martin Luther King Day
Saturday, January 273:30 - 5:15 pmFamily activity day in the parish hall (followed by optional 5:30 Mass)
Monday, February 19NO PREP—Presidents’ Day
Wednesday, February 287:00-8:30 pmPastor’s talk for First Reconciliation parents in the parish hall
Saturday, March 10 3:30-5:15Home-schoolers gathering
(for those unable to attend PREP)
Tuesday, March 207:00-8:30 pmPastor’s talk for First Communion parents in the parish hall
Monday, March 26NO PREP—Easter break
Monday, April 2NO PREP—Easter break
Monday, April 96:00 - 7:00 pmFirst Reconciliation rehearsal (during PREP class--non-PREP kids are invited)
Wednesday, April 117:00 – 8:30 pmFirst Reconciliation penance service for First Communicants and their families
Saturday, April 283:30 – 7:00 pmFirst Communion retreat for First Communicants & families (includes rehearsal, Mass, supper, and banner-making)
Sunday, May 69:30 MassFirst Holy Communion
Monday, May 21Final PREP class