Open to Wonder!

We invite you to discover God and His Joyful surprises

Michele Dexter

Director of 

Catechesis of the Good Shepherd


Shai Hill

Director of Faith Formation

406. 541.6044

14 + 10 =

Children's Liturgy of the Word CLOW

Children’s Liturgy of the Word

When: 10am Mass, every Sunday except Easter
What: Developmentally appropriate (and fun!) proclamation of, reflection on, and activities around the Sunday readings. For children of all ages, dismissed with a blessing before the first reading, meets in the Parish office during Reidy Hall renovation downstairs, and return before communion.


Learn More about Children's Liturgy of the Word

C.L.O.W (Children’s Liturgy of the Word)

What is CLOW?

CLOW is developmentally appropriate (and fun!) proclamation of, reflection on, and activities around the Sunday readings. For children of all ages, dismissed with a blessing before the first reading of the 10 am Sunday Mass, meets in  Reidy Hall  and return before communion.

Who can attend CLOW?

Anyone can come to hear the word. Parents are welcome to come and assist the younger children if they need help sitting to listen to the story being told.  There is no age limit, but we do ask the older children to be good roll models for the younger children still learning how to sit still and keep their hands to themselves.

Who can lead CLOW?

Anyone with an interest in helping to spread the word of the Lord. There must be at least one adult with Virtus training to assure the safety of children. You do not have to be a parent. There will always be someone to help and support you. If you have an interest in helping, please contact the office at 406.542.0321

The handout we give the children at CLOW have some great information. Not all children attend the Sunday 10 am Mass. We have chosen to share with you the Catholic Corner from the handout There is usually an activity for the family to enjoy. We will try to share Catholic Corner every Sunday. There are a few handouts placed in the back of the church before the Sunday 8 am mass.


Catechesis of the Good Shepherd

God and the child have a unique relationship with one another, particularly before the age of six. The growth of this relationship should be assisted by the adult, but is directed by the Spirit of God within the child. Catechesis of the Good Shepherd is rooted in scripture, liturgy, and contemplation. Drawing from the Montessori method, CGS takes place in a specially prepared environment at our parish called the Atrium.  Extensive program information at

Contact: Michele Dexter

Atrium Schedule

Our Program begins in late September through Pentecost in 90 minute sessions cgs 2024-2025

Level I  3-6 year olds. (Must be potty trained)

Level II  6-9 year olds.

Level III  9 – 12 year olds

Our atrium schedule 2024 /25:

Tuesday 9:30 – 11:00 am Level I

Tuesday 4:30 – 6:00 pm Level I, II, & III

Wednesday 4:30 – 6:00 pm Level I, II, & III

Children meet once weekly in the Atrium community (choose one consistent time). Children work with Montessori inspired lessons and materials based on scripture, liturgy and tradition. Emphasizes contemplation and respects the child’s natural capacity and hidden life in Christ. Contact Michele for registration, a tour, or more information. 

Registration is limited to 12 children per class. Registration fee is $55.00 per child with a maximum of $100.00 for 3 or more. No fee required if you volunteer in atrium for the year. (not your child’s atrium)

To register: use the enterable portal on our website, leave message on phone# 406-541-6040 or email

For brand new children the message must include the whole family’s names, ages, birthdates, cellphones numbers and postal address and choice of atrium time and level. For returning children message must include child’s name, age, and choice of atrium time and level.


Frequently Asked Questions

St. Francis Xavier’s Catechesis of the Good Shepherd:

“Help me do it by myself.” – Child in Atrium, age 4

Frequently Asked Questions:

2024 CGS trifold

What is Catechesis of the Good Shepherd? (CGS)

A Montessori based, hands-on approach to the religious formation of children grounded in Sacred Scripture, Catholic Doctrine, Liturgy and Prayer. It takes place in our Atrium, a prepared environment in the parish’s Loyola Center. Call Michele for a personal tour and explore CGS philosophy and practice at

Age Availability:

Level I CGS 3-6 year olds  Children must be 3, 4 or 5 years old by Sept. 1st and potty trained.

Level II CGS 6-8 year olds

Level III 9-12 year olds

Times Available:

Classes are limited to 12 students per session. Register soon! Consistent attendance (no more than three absences) is required. We will have a waiting list. Inconsistent attendance may forfeit your place.

  • Tuesdays: 9:30 – 11:00 am Level I
  • Tuesday: 4:30 – 6:00 pm Level I, II, & III
  • Wednesday: 4:30 – 6:00 pm Level I, II, & III

Session Schedules:

Sessions meet once per week, begin late September and end at Pentecost. 

Cost: Annual fee is $55/child or family of 3 or more, $100. Cost should never prevent participation, assistance available.

Our Parish Team: 

Director of the Atrium: Michele Dexter

Catechist: Diane Szeckly

Assistant Catechists: Maybe you! Reduced fee available to assistant families.

That Sounds Amazing! How Do We Register?

You may use the enterable form below on this webpage or

Call Michele at 406-541-6040 or send her an email at with this info:

  • Desired Session Day and Time
  • Names & Birthdays of Children
  • Guardians full names
  • Cell phone numbers
  • Emails
  • Postal Mailing Addresses
The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd is looking for volunteers to help assist in the Atriums!

We will have three Atria this coming year and we need assistants to help the Catechists. I will need you for about 2 hours on either Tuesdays or Wednesdays from 4pm to 6pm. Seniors, (like me), Men, Women, College and High school students are welcome to help! You have a choice to work with your favorite ages: Atrium 3-6 yr. olds, 6-9 yr. olds or 9-12 yr. olds.

There will be one or two training meetings. Some tasks include sharpening pencils, reading a book to a child, wetting sponges, refilling supplies, walking a child to restroom, comforting a restless child, etc. These children of God need you to help set an example of our Christian Love passing on through generations.

Prayerfully consider helping us,

Michele Dexter 

5 + 7 =


Infant/Child Baptism Preparation

What: Preparation for parents & guardians of children for the Sacrament of Baptism. Two session programs, attend in either order, with reflections to complete between sessions. Designed for all parents/guardians to attend and participate in together. Baptisms scheduled at regular weekend liturgies.

Pre-Registration Is Required with Katy McKinnon


First Reconciliation and First Holy Communion 2023-24

First Reconciliation & First Holy Communion

Any Questions contact: Shai Hill 406.541.6044
2023-2024 First Reconciliation Calendar

All Classes meet Sundays 9 am to 9:55 am in the Dave Thomas Room of the Loyola Center (1st room to the right as you enter the building on the cornor of Pine Street and Owen) Parents please see handbook for details. 2023 Parent Handbook

August 27, 2023 Sunday. 9am to 9:55 am Mandatory  parent only meeting.

September 10 Class #1 for First Reconciliation

September 24

October 8

October 22

November 12

December 3 with parents

December 4, 2023 6:30 pm in the church Sacrament of First Reconciliation

January 7 Class #1 for First Holy Communion

January 21

February 11

March 3

April 14

April 21, 2024 1:00 pm in the church Sacrament of First Holy Communion

If needed due to a large class an additional date of April 28, 2024 at 1:00 pm will be added.


Information on 2025 Confirmation Preparation 

Contact Shai 406.541.6044


Vacation Bible School 2024
Time to Dive Into Friendship with God

Vacation Bible School – June 10th – 14th 8:30 am – Noon

Registration for Campers and Volunteers OPEN!!! Cost will be $75.00 per child ( If the child has siblings that wish to attend $25.00 for additional child) Intended for children Kindergarten through 5th Grade or contact Katy 542.0321 

We are looking for volunteers to join in the fun!

Please contact Katy if you are available or would like to contribute with an Amazon gift card to defray the cost.

Thank you!

Confirmation 2024-2025

More information TBA



Adult Faith Formation

We invite you to continue your faith journey.

At St. Francis Xavier we offer a variety of ways to enter into prayer. From  small group gatherings to the Spiritual Exercises to putting your faith in action. Join us!

Becoming Catholic RCIA

Anyone interested in exploring becoming Catholic are warmly invited to attend our RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults) Info Night on July 18, 2024 at 6:30 pm in Reidy Hall. Come, ask questions and listen as we share the RCIA journey which the church offers to all interested! This is ideal for those adults never baptized, baptized in another religion or for those who were baptized Catholic and never confirmed.

August – December 2024 Schedule

January – April 2025 Schedule

Becoming Catholic (RCIA) & Adult Confirmation Preparation

When: Monthly Community Gatherings, variable times & activities

What: A facilitated spiritual journey, with individual, small group and large group components, where the whole parish acts as companion and guide to adults who wish to join the Catholic faith and deepen their relationship with Jesus through the sacraments: Baptism, Eucharist, and Confirmation.

Contact:  Shai Hill


Women's Spirituality & Scripture Study

Women’s Scripture Study

Sessions offered in the Fall and the Spring

Spring Session lead by Jonathan Choe, nSJ

Women’s scripture class starts February 8th at 10:00 am, Dave Thomas Room in the Loyola Center. Continuing on the topic of Church History from the Fall.  We will be using the book ‘A Concise History of the Catholic Church’ by Thomas Bokenkotter. 

What: Join an exceptional circle of women, both long-standing members and new participants, for deep exploration of scripture and topics of faith. Presenters rotate, two different topics each year.

Who: Women! Members of the parish and guests, Catholics & non-Catholics, from all backgrounds, with open minds and open hearts for one another.

When:  Thursdays, 10:00 to 11:30am, February 8th – March 15th Church History

Where: SFX parish, Loyola Center, Dave Thomas Room.






An invitation to join “CHALLENGE” – a commitment of just 10-15 minutes a day to pray and meditate on scripture. Then reflect in prayer, with a small support group based off of the ‘SEEL retreat’ which will meet weekly from Noon to 1:30pm in the dining room of the Parish office beginning September 19, 2023 “Challenge” is great if you’re not ready for the ‘SEEL retreat’, or if you have already experienced the SEEL retreat and would like to continue in a small faith sharing group. More information will be given at our first gathering. Facilitators: Beverly Frohlich 406.240.2704 and Patricia Baker 307.851.8339

Men's Prayer Group

Men’s Groups

Catholic Men’s Spirituality Group – every first Wednesday of the month at 7:00 pm
 Meets in the parish office building . Questions: Eric Reiber 406. 370.1777

When: Option #1 Weekly, Friday Morning, 6:30am, Upstairs Meeting Room of Parish Center Option #2 Monthly, First Wednesday of Every Month, 7pm,  Come to one or both!

What: An opportunity for Catholic men, and men interested in Catholic faith, to gather and explore faith, masculinity, fatherhood, being a man, husband, servant, leader, and follower of Jesus. Prayer, discussion, learning, fun.

LGBTQ Outreach Ministry

LGBTQ Outreach Ministry

When: Variable meetings and special events; watch for announcements. Contact Fr. Hightower 

What: Our parish LGBTQ+ ministry, a work for, with and increasingly led by LGBTQ+ Catholics, is
inspired by the Catechism of the Catholic Church 2358:
“They must be accepted with respect, compassion and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God’s will in their lives…”