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The most effective way to pass faith to the next generation is through family. In fact, recent research indicates that most young adults attribute the strength of their faith life and moral development to their own parents. The Conversations about L.I.F.E. program harnesses the power of parental love to guide children and teens to make healthy choices regarding loving relationships and empower them to recognize, avoid, and respond to any relationship that might be abusive or exploitative.
Conversations about L.I.F.E. fosters parent-child conversations through year-by-year, age-appropriate, guided lessons on Love, Infatuation, Friendship, and Exploitation using downloadable, comprehensive lesson packages. Each lesson helps parishes and dioceses foster opportunities for parents and guardians to talk with each child in a healthy and age-appropriate way. This program helps youth negotiate the exciting, yet sometimes perilous, journey from family love, to friendships, to teenage infatuations, to falling in love, to life-time love commitments.
This program empowers families to talk about relationships, sex, and sexual abuse in an easy-to-implement, ongoing educational program that addresses critical life issues. Issues that will be important throughout their entire lives.
Conversations about L.I.F.E. gives parents and guardians the tools they need to help their children—from preschool through high school—to understand and navigate the ever-changing world of relationships. Our parent-child conversations are designed as one- to two-hour sessions held in the parish hall or school cafeteria for children of each age level with their parents, in which the family conversations are directed by a trained facilitator. The lessons can also be adapted for use in the classroom as introductions to the more sensitive material that will be taught at home by parents using materials provided in the parent follow-up packet. The program also makes an ideal guide for homeschooling parents or coalitions. Conversations about L.I.F.E. gives parents and guardians the tools they need to help their children—from preschool through high school—to understand and navigate the ever-changing world of relationships. Each lesson package download includes a carefully crafted, easy-to-follow, Lesson Plan; corresponding PowerPoint presentation, Activity Book, Classroom Adaptation, and Parent Follow-Up Packet.
Conversations about L.I.F.E. provides a vehicle to help parishes and schools satisfy key mandates on safe environment and chastity education in one comprehensive, evidence-based research program. Through downloadable, age-appropriate activities, faith-based lessons, and parental participation, Conversations about L.I.F.E. teaches children how to understand and develop healthy, loving relationships, and, conversely, how to identify and avoid sexual abuse.
Conversations about L.I.F.E. was written, tested, refined, and perfected by Dr. Kathie Amidei and Sister Kieran Sawyer.
Conversations about L.I.F.E. was developed from first-hand, real-life experience. Both authors have spent decades facilitating parent-child conversations. Both have directed actual programs during which parents talk with their own children about important life issues such as relationships, sexuality, and abuse. Thus Conversations about L.I.F.E. is based on real experience in the field, coupled with evidence-based research strategies. It is a comprehensive and effective tool for both relationship education and safe environment training.
Sister Kieran Sawyer, SSND
Sister Kieran Sawyer, SSND, is nationally recognized for her creative work in youth ministry and catechesis. Over the years she taught religion at all levels of grade and high school, in religious education programs, and in youth retreats. She has also presented numerous training workshops for religion teachers and youth ministers across the country.
Dr. Kathie Amidei
Dr. Kathie Amidei serves as Pastoral Associate at St. Anthony on the Lake Parish in Pewaukee, Wisconsin. She was formerly the Associate Director for Catechesis and Child Ministry for the Archdiocese of Milwaukee and has served in a number of parishes as a teacher and a director of religious education. She is a wife, mother, and grandmother.
Conversations about L.I.F.E. is the product of years of experience and education. It is founded in theology and the belief that sexuality and authentic love are gifts from God. This website has been designed to provide all of the information you will need to offer a successful program that meets both safe environment training and chastity education requirements. Use our program support pages for additional guidance on how to schedule, prepare for, and present the program.
Sister Kieran Sawyer and Dr. Kathie Amidei have spent many decades working with parishes and dioceses to create methods and materials that are comfortable, doable, and effective in achieving these goals. Please reach out to them if you have any questions about their program or suggestions for how to improve it. Sister Kieran and Dr. Kathie are also available for in-person and online presentations regarding the Conversations about L.I.F.E. lessons.