Open to Wonder!

We invite you to discover God and His Joyful surprises

Michele Dexter

1st Communion & 1st Reconciliation

Catechesis of the Good Shepherd


Erin Turner & Leah Graff



15 + 14 =

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

Great News from Catechesis of the Good Shepherd (C.G.S.)!
We are blest to have two women, Mary and Holly, who have just completed their first 50 hours of catechist training this summer! Congratulations!

Level 1 is for 3-5 year olds. (Must be potty trained)

Level 2 is for 6-9 year olds.

Our atrium schedule will be the same as last year. Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons, both Levels 1 and 2, from 4:30p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Tuesday morning 9:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. for Level 1 children.
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.

When: Sessions meet once per week, begin late September and end at Pentecost, 90-minute sessions
Tuesdays , Level 1 and 2  4:30 to 6:00 p.m.
Wednesdays,  Level 1 and 2,  4:30 -6:00 p.m.
Tuesday, Level 1  combo class 9:30  to 11:00 a.m.

What: 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. 

The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd Calendar          TBA

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:

2023 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 (3,4,5). Children must be 3, 4 or 5 years old by Sept. 1st and potty trained.

Level II CGS (6,7,8).

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: 4:30 – 6:00 pm Level I & II
  • Wednesdays: 4:30 – 6:00 pm Level I & II
  • Tuesday: 9:30 -11:00 am Level I

Session Schedules:

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

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
Catechist training 2024

Wonder is very much alive in our Catechesis of the Good Shepherd Atrium!

As our program grows, we invite you to consider being a part of something unique and life giving to our youngest children as a catechist or assistant.  We are so fortunate to have a catechist training offered this spring/summer in Kalispell.  The Parish will pay expenses to cover the training and hotel. Please prayerfully consider assisting our children and yourself to a lifelong relationship with God.

Please, come join the team of energetic people with a passion to share our faith!

You are also invited to “An Introduction to Catechesis of the Good Shepherd” with Sr. Mary Michael Fox OP, March 6 at St, Anthony Parish Life Center, Missoula 6:15- 7:00p.m.   I will be there, come keep me company!

Blessings, Michele

Michele Dexter would be happy to answer any questions you may have 406.541.6040 or

3 + 15 =


Infant/Child Baptism Preparation

When: Offered once a month, 11:30 am. Attend one “A” session and one “B” session. Usually Meets on the 2nd Sunday of the Month
“A” Sessions:   For  2023: October 15th,
“B” Sessions:  For 2023:    September 17th, November 12th,
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 Communion2023 Parent Handbook

Notice to parents :  If you have a second grader (or older) who would like to receive their First Reconciliation and First Communion this spring there is a ONE and ONLY PARENT MEETING scheduled for Sunday August 27,2023. Meeting will be from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. (between the masses) in the Loyola center, Dave Thomas room.

Please bring a copy of your child’s Baptismal Certificate. Or the complete name and address of the church of baptism, with child’s full name and possible baptism date. If your child needs baptism to call the church office as soon as possible.
Please tell your friends who might be out of town. This meeting will include: 
  1. Sign up commitment from parents
  2. First Reconciliation and First communion Handbook
  3. Class dates for Reconciliation and Communion
Any Questions contact: MicheleDexter 406-541-6040 please leave message
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 2024 Confirmation Preparation 

Date May 19, 2024 at 3:00 pm at Christ the King

Meets 6 – 7:00 pm at Christ the King

Jan. 14: Parents & Students Information session
Jan. 28: Session 2
Feb. 11: Session 3
Feb. 25: Session 4
March 10: Session 5
March 24: Dinner with Sponsors & Students
May 19: Confirmation Mass with Bishop Vetter

Please register with the Director of jr. high and high school youth ministry Jack Peed

Fr. Kirby Longo 406.697. 5828 and Fr. C. Hightower, SJ will be teaching the  Class


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!

High School Youth Ministry

We are happy to Welcome Jack Peed!

Hi there! My name is Jack Peed and I am excited to share the news that I will be your new Director of Jr. High and High School Youth Ministry!

Originally from North Idaho I came to Montana to attend Carroll College where I first got involved in ministry. Serving in Carroll’s campus ministry, on the Diocesan summer ministry team, and as a counselor at Legendary Lodge.

I am also happy to share that I will  be joining the Loyola Sacred Heart community this fall semester to teach sophomore theology.

I know the Lord desires beautiful things for the youth in our community and I cannot wait to get to know all of you and your families during this next year as we continue on this wonderful journey of faith!

My office will be at Christ the King and you may reach me at

For more information on Missoula Area Youth Ministry

Please contact our  Director of Jr. High & High School Youth Ministry Jack Peed

Missoula Youth Ministry Spring 2024 Newsletter

Youth Group  meets Wednesdays at Christ the King 1400 Gerald Avenue

Jr. High – 5:00 to 6:00 pm

High School – 6:30 to 8:00 pm



Information on 2024 Confirmation Preparation


Confirmation class:
Meets 6 – 7:00 pm at Christ the King

Jan. 14: Parents & Students Info session
Jan. 28: Session 2
Feb. 11: Session 3
Feb. 25: Session 4
March 10: Session 5
March 24: Dinner w/ Sponsors & Students
May 19: Confirmation Mass with Bishop Vetter 3:00 pm at Christ the King

 Please register with the Director of Jr. High & High School Youth Ministry Jack Peed




Legendary Lodge

Legendary Lodge Camps affirm the great Truths of the Catholic Faith for campers during a week-long adventure of fun and friendship. Salmon Lake is the setting for creating memories, building friendships and experiencing God’s profound love.

See the New Facebook page

 2024 Dates

Dates for Legendary Lodge Camps –
2024 Dates for Legendary Lodge camps are official! 
  • June 16-21: Junior High #1
  • June 23-28: High School #1
  • July 7-12: 5th/6th Grade Boys
  • July 14-19: High School #2
  • July 21-26: Junior High #2
  • July 28-August 2: 5th/6th Grade Girls
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 September 20, 2023 at 7pm in the Loyola Building. 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.

2023/2024 Calendar 

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:  Erin Turner 


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…”