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Disciples on Mission / OCIA & Youth

“To each is given a Manifestation of the Spirit."

(1 Cor 12:7)

Spiritual Gifts for Missionary Disciples
(OCIA & Youth)

OCIA Adult Charism Inventory 


As OCIA candidates prepare for the Sacraments of Initiation it is important to help them discern their charisms.  Full Communion in the Church means they accept God's plan for them to have a responsibility to not only know their charisms but also use their charisms as Intentional Disciples.  It is important for those who coordinate OCIA to have a plan that includes Charism Discernment during the mystagogia period - the 50-days after Eastertide.  A charism inventory is a powerful tool to enable the neophytes to discern the gifts they have been given for their spiritual growth and for their mission to bring Christ to others as Missionary Disciples.  


The Easter Season is the perfect time for discerning Charisms and learning how to put them to use in parish ministries and in their daily lives with their immediate and extended families.

Confirmation: Catholic Youth Spiritual Gifts Inventory 

The Catholic Youth Spiritual Gifts Inventory is the perfect tool for youth confirmation candidates.   Below are some questions asked by Youth Directors.

How do I present the charisms and use this tool in a 2 hour time class period?


  • Use the On-line Charism Inventory for Catholics prior to the start of your class.  The students will receive their results immediately.  They will bring them to their next class. 

  • During the follow-up class the teacher will summarize everyone's charisms and then invite the students into small groups for sharing their results and listening to the results of their peers.  Call for detailed information on how to facilitate the groups including the forms you will need to support your work. 

  • Caution:  it is pointless to invite students to complete the inventory and stop there.  Teachers must talk about all of the charisms, invite students to read about them, learn how Jesus expressed them, learn about others' charisms, and find ways to use them to minister to others.


  • Also, students' charisms need to be put into action through group project so they can intentionally practice using their charisms and see the graces that flow from their experiences when all their charisms are at work together. 


Below are a few ideas showing to how to present and use the charism inventory with youth and confirmation candidates:

Use the book's narrative to teach the rationale for charism discernment.  

It is based on Scripture, the catechism, and papal teachings and letters.  


After your teaching ....  


Have the students pray beforehand and then take the Inventory in silence. 


Tape Poster Sheets around the room with one charism as the Title of each poster sheet.


Help students score the Inventory.


Invite students to write their names under each poster that represents one of their top charisms.


Stand by the first poster and ask the kids whose names are on that poster to come forward and stand there while you talk about each charism:  What is it?  When does Jesus express it? Why is it important? etc.


Help students tally their top 3-5 charisms.


Begin a class discussion taking note of the number of students' names on each poster.


Ask students whose names are on the poster to share when they have operated in that charism.


Tape Poster Sheets around the room with one charism as the Title of each poster sheet.


Continue the same process with each poster.


Tape Poster Sheets around the room with one charism as the Title of each poster sheet.


As an assignment, ask students to write about (journal) their charisms.


As an assignment, invite students to write a “Dear Jesus Letter” asking Jesus how He wants them to use their charisms to build His Kingdom.


Plan a class project and ask students to choose only one of their top charisms to intentionally use during throughout the project.  


Ask students to keep a log of each time they use their charisms and describe the impact and/or experience.

​Is it necessary to purchase the Youth Charism Discernment tool for each candidate?  

You will need to purchase the book for each student.  There are discounts for multiple orders.  Why is this needed?  Students need the book to learn about their charisms and the learn about each other’s charisms, and they will use the book for small group discussion as well as for future reference as to how to put their charisms to use as missionary disciples for those they meet in their daily lives.  Since charisms are dynamic, meaning  they change over time, the book and inventory will be needed to ongoing discernment of their current, as well as new charisms the Lord may bestow upon them as they grow and mature in Christ.

The following is one parish's testimony and communications related to how they used the Charism Inventory with their confirmation candidates:

Your website gave a very good example of how they used the Discernment Tool in a retreat format.  Do you have other activity suggestions I could use with this tool?

Yes, try this: 

Each week, after your students discern their charisms, call them forth to use them, perhaps for a whole class project or from week to week during class time.  Those with knowledge and wisdom can do research, those with teaching gifts can teach, the intercessors can pray, the pastoral gifts can share scripture passages, the administrators can organize a class project, the craftsmanship gifts can “decorate the church for Confirmation or the class environment according to the needs”, the writers can write invitations, advertising, thank you notes, blessing prayers, etc., and the encouragers can motivate the class to grow spiritually.  Imagine what your class would be like if your students were operating in their spiritual gifts!


Call for more ideas!  419-343-1604

As for the youth charism discernment retreat, your suggestions worked really well! I used your suggestion of having a poster for each charism on the wall and had the students write the names of their peers related to what charism they thought they had. Then I had them find the posters where their own names were used the most and then each reported of what was said about them and whether or not it matched their inventory results. 

Before this activity, I had them take the inventory so they would have an  idea what each of the charisms. I spent one class period with them looking up and reporting on their charisms based upon what they read in the book. So once they were all standing by the posters that had their names on them, we went around the room and I asked each student if they thought their peers were accurate. All of them agreed! Then we switched it up, and I had them go to the charism poster that represented their "highest charism". 

25% of the students stayed in the same poster area where their peers affirmed them in their charisms.  And 25% were very similar to what their peers stated i.e. Hospitality vs Community Building.  


They loved all the exercises we did and they proved to be very fruitful as they thought about what ministry and where they could use their charisms.  

Then at the end of the retreat, we debriefed in what they learned and how they had seen themselves or others using their charisms. It was awesome! It was a great exposure to the students and everything went so smooth, the Holy Spirit was guiding throughout the whole day!  Our theme was "We're Better Together". So the charisms tied in so well and the students were able to see that we are many parts to one Body. In fact, we went to daily mass that morning and the first reading was the reading of we are many parts of One Body. I was glowing all day.

Youth Coordinator
St. Wendelin Parish & School
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