St. Paul Lutheran Church Eldora, Iowa
Becoming followers of Christ by grace, through faith, for this life, and heaven which waits!
Learn by Heart Catechism
The Learn by Heart Catechism is a tool given to the parents of children at St. Paul Lutheran Church to equip the members of our congregation for a Christian life of faith. This tool gives parents a guide for teaching the basics of the Christian faith in ten simple levels. When the students have learned each level that they can recite it word for word from memory, they may recite it to Pastor to receive their award. Pastor will be available in his study every Sunday before Sunday School at 8:15, following the service, or by appointment as necessary.
This Catechism is given for parents to recite with their children. When parents recite and learn the Catechism alongside their children, they show the importance of this information. When parents leave teaching the Catechism to other members of the Church and don't learn it themselves, their children will see it as unimportant.
Concordia Publishing House has set the Small Catechism to music. This will greatly aide the parents and students in learning the Catechism. It is available for free on YouTube, and possibly other streaming services. Where possible, a link to the video(s) has been provided for each level. The whole playlist is available here.
The Lord's Prayer
Our Lord, Jesus Christ, taught us to pray in this way. In this short, simple prayer is contained anything and everything we need to support us physically and spiritually in this life and the next.
Upon successful completion of this first level, the student will receive a certificate recognizing and celebrating learning this all-sufficient prayer.
CPH Music Link: The Lord's Prayer
In the Ten Commandments, God summarizes the Law in showing us how to live toward Him and toward our neighbor.
The Apostles' Creed places the faith once witnessed and confessed by the blessed Apostles into our hearts and mouths, that we too can confess who God is.
Upon successful completion of this second level, the student will receive The Story Bible published by CPH. This resources contains 130 Bible Stories faithfully summarized with age-appropriate vocabulary helps, activities, and prayers. Each story is accompanied by a realistic illustration to drive home the historic nature of the stories.
CPH Music Link: First Article, Second Article Part 1, Second Article Part 2, Third Article
Baptism and Lord's Supper Institution
Our theology isn't founded upon manmade philosophies or traditions. We believe, teach, and confess what has been commanded by Christ and handed down to us through the Scriptures. This applies especially to the great promises Christ delivers to us in Holy Baptism and the Lord's Supper. By learning these Scripture passages, the student is given a scriptural foundation for trust in Christ's promises.
Upon successful completion of this third level, the student will receive Whisper, Whisper: Learning About Church. This fun little book will familiarize them with the Church building, furniture, and different aspects of the Divine Service.
CPH Music Link: Baptism: Verse 1, Verse 2, Verse 3, Verse 4; Lord's Supper: Words of Institution Part 1 and Part 2
The Ten Commandments Explanations
Luther's Morning Prayer
In this level, the student will build upon the foundation of Level 2 by gaining a deeper understanding of the Ten Commandments. They will learn what gifts the Lord gives in each of the commandments and how we can protect these for our neighbors.
The student will also learn a little prayer composed by Dr. Martin Luther as a simple dedication at the beginning of the day and a petition for continued grace from our heavenly Father.
Upon successful completion of this fourth level, the student will receive their own copy of the Holy Scriptures. This will allow them to follow along with the readings in the Sunday morning service as well as home family devotions.
CPH Music Link: First Commandment, Second Commandment, Third Commandment, Fourth Commandment, Fifth Commandment, Sixth Commandment, Seventh Commandment, Eighth Commandment, Ninth Commandment, Tenth Commandment, Luther's Morning Prayer
Articles of the Creed Explanations
Luther's Evening Prayer
In this level, the student will continue to build upon the foundation of Level 2 by gaining a deeper understanding of the Apostles' Creed. They will learn of the particular works and gifts given to them by each of the three Persons of the Holy Trinity.
The student will also continue learning useful prayers for daily life in Luther's Evening Prayer and Asking a Blessing on a Meal.
Upon successful completion of this fifth level, the student will receive The Illuminated Catechism. This resource provides the students an opportunity to reflect on the Six Chief Parts of Luther's Small Catechism while coloring related pictures.
CPH Music Link: First Article Meaning 1, 2, 3, 4; Second Article Meaning 1, 2, 3; Third Article Meaning 1, 2, 3; Luther's Evening Prayer; Table Prayer 1, 2
The student will build upon the foundation laid in Level 3 by learning about the promises delivered by Christ in this sacred mystery. They will also learn what Baptism continues to mean in living their life as a redeemed child of God.
Upon successful completion of this sixth level, the student will receive Luther's Small and Large Catechisms bound together in one volume. These two works bound in one small book will give the student ample opportunity to grow in the knowledge and understanding they are receiving now and later on in their Christian life.
CPH Music Link: Baptism First Part, Verse; Second Part, Verse; Third Part, Verse; Fourth Part, Verse
The Sacrament of the Altar
The student will continue to build upon the foundation laid in Level 3 by learning about the promises given by Christ in this sacred mystery. They will also learn how the Lord feeds and nourishes the faith delivered to them through His very body and blood given and shed for the forgiveness of their sins.
Upon successful completion of this seventh level, the student will receive The Illuminated Hymnal. This resource provides the students an opportunity to reflect on different hymns from the Divine Service and elsewhere in the Lutheran Service Book.
Office of the Keys
In this level, the student will hear Christ's command to pastors to forgive the sins of repentant sinners and to withhold forgiveness from the unrepentant as long as they do not repent. They will learn of the great comfort afforded to those rightly terrified of their sins spoken by the pastor as if Christ our dear Lord had said it Himself.
Upon successful completion of this eighth level, the student will receive a wall crucifix. This beautiful piece of religious art will serve as a constant reminder of Christ's sacrifice not only for the student but for the whole world.
CPH Music Link: Confession: 1, 2, 3; Office of the Keys 1, 2, 3
Lord's Prayer Petitions and Explanations
In this level, the students will build upon the foundation laid all the way back in Level 1. Each of the petitions of the Lord's Prayer contains great promises. Through careful consideration and reflection on each of these petitions, the students will develop a deeper understanding of what Christ is telling us to ask our heavenly Father, and what He promises to deliver.
Upon successful completion of this ninth level, the student will receive their own Lutheran Service Book. This hymnal will bolster the student's devotional life by providing prayers, hymns, and brief devotional services for daily use of individuals and families.
CPH Music Link Confession: Lord's Prayer Introduction; First Petition 1, 2; Second Petition 1, 2; Third Petition 1, 2; Fourth Petition 1, 2; Fifth Petition; Sixth Petition; Seventh Petition; Conclusion
Christian Questions with Their Answers
In this final level, students will learn a series of questions and answers to help prepare themselves to receive the body and blood for the forgiveness of their sins.
Upon successful completion of this tenth level, the student will receive their own pocket edition of the Book of Concord. This book contains all the confessional writings and standard of the Lutheran Church and are a faithful exposition and exhibition of the Holy Scriptures. This award, along with all the others, is given that the student might develop and feed a life-long fascination with studying theology and the Word of God.