Sunday, June 25, 2017

July 2, 2017 13th Sunday Ordinary Time A



Children’s Liturgy Instructions

Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time   Cycle A


Welcome the children to their worship space.

 Ask them to get their carpet squares and sit down in a circle.

Introduce yourself and your helpers.

Introduce

            Say: Today is the 13th Sunday in Ordinary Time.

            Ask:  Last week’s symbol was two joined circles.  We talked about how God was stronger than anything and would always take care of us.  We talked about our responsibility to bring God’s light to others.

Introduce symbol

Say:  Today’s symbol is a pineapple.  Does anyone know what a pineapple represents?  <let the children guess>  In the southern part of the United States, a pineapple is often used to represent the idea of welcome or hospitality.  In the past few weeks, we have talked a lot about how God wants us to treat each other.  Today’s readings focus on the idea of hospitality and gratitude.

Say:  What does it mean to welcome someone?  <to make them comfortable, to feed them, to take care of them in your home>  To share hospitality is the same thing.  Often it means to give a person rest or an opportunity to be refreshed in some way.

Ask: What is gratitude?  <being thankful>

Say:  Let’s look at today’s poster.  What does it say? <Forever I will sing the goodness of the Lord.>  This is our Responsorial Psalm for today.  The Responsorial Psalms also come from Scripture, from the Book of Psalms in the Old Testament.

Introduce readings

We have two readings today.

Say:  Let’s light the candle to show that we are ready to listen to the Word of God.

Say:  Today’s first reading today is from the second Old Testament book of Kings.  (2 Kings 4:8-11, 14-16a). In this reading, the prophet Elisha travels to a town to spread the word of God and stops for the night.  There is a woman who welcomes him and lets him spend the night.  Listen to the story and see if you can hear what happens to her.
                         
Have the reader read the reading.

Ask:  Did you hear what happened?  The woman was hospitable to Elisha and Elisha was grateful.  <Elisha rewarded her with a son>  Can anyone tell me why a son would be a good reward for this woman?  <long ago, a woman generally wasn’t able to take care of herself.  She needed a man to provide food for her>  So, it was a great thing that Elisha did to repay her kindness.

Ask:  Can anyone tell me if what this woman did was important?  <discuss>  Was it as important as Elisha’s job or teaching the people about God?  <yes>

Say:  Without the woman’s hospitality, Elisha would have had to worry about what to eat and where to sleep.  Since he didn’t have that worry, he could spend his energy on his teaching.  Without her, he would have to slow down or stop for a while.  He was thankful that she helped him teach about God.

Say:  Now it is time for the Responsorial Psalm.  Your part is to say:
 To the upright, I will show the saving power of God.           

Have reader read the psalm

Say:  Now it’s time to read the Gospel.  Today’s Gospel reading comes from the New Testament book of Matthew.  (Matt 10:40-42) In Matthew’s Gospel today, we hear what Jesus told his disciples about hospitality.  Pretend that you are a child listening to what Jesus is telling the grown-ups and see if you can decide what Jesus' message means to you.
 
Say:  Now we will stand and get ready to hear the Gospel.
Glory and praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.

Read the Gospel.

Ask:  What did Jesus say?  <let the children discuss>  Who in your life spreads Jesus’ word?  <parents, teachers, priests, different leaders>  What can you do to show hospitality and gratitude?  <gifts, cards, meals>

Hand out the large Offertory symbols (pineapple) for the children to color and the smaller symbols (oval) for the children to put their names on for the poster.

Explain: We will color the pineapples (don’t forget to put your name on the back!)  to show that we have learned about showing hospitality and gratitude to others..

Ask:  If you can, write one thing that you can do this week to show your gratitude to someone who shares the message of Jesus with you.

While they are coloring, go over the procedure for entering the church at the Offertory, how they approach the altar and put their symbols in the basket that the lead child will place at the altar.

Remind the children that the large symbol is to be offered in the Offertory procession to show the congregation what they have learned.  Remind them to put their names on the back and that they can retrieve the symbols after Mass.

Collect the smaller symbols to glue to the communal poster.  Remind the children to bring their parents back after Mass to see it.

Give out parent letters, coloring hand-outs and stickers as the children leave their worship space.



Parent Letter

13th Sunday of Ordinary Time  A


            Today is the 13th Sunday in Ordinary Time.  Your children have heard a simplified version of two of the same reading you heard:  Wisdom 1:13-15; 2:23-24a; Mark 5:21-24, 35-43.

Symbol:  Rock

To Reinforce at Home:
          For the first few Sundays in Ordinary Time we focus on two concepts:  receiving earthly life from bread and wine compared to receiving spiritual life from Christ in the Eucharist and on the virtue of Faith.

          The symbol for this week is a rock.  We talked about how Christ used His hand to give life to Jairus’ daughter and we talked about the kinds of “life” we can give with our hands.  We have talked before about how when nice things happen to us, it helps us feel good - or more alive.  Today we reinforced some things we can do for each other to bring Christ’s love - or life - to other people.


Activities to do at Home:
           
            * Write a card or a note to a person who is sick or shut-in.  Taking the name of a parishioner from the bulletin may make this particularly relevant.

            * Give a hug!

            * Think of other ways to use your hands to make others happy.


Thank you for sharing your children!
              

 

Sunday, June 18, 2017

June 25, 2017 12th Sunday Ordinary Time A




12th Sunday of Ordinary Time  Cycle A

Welcome children to their worship space.
Ask them to get their carpet squares and sit down in a circle.
Introduce yourself and your helpers.

Introduce
            Say:  Today is the 12th Sunday of Ordinary Time.

            Ask:  Can anyone tell me what we talked about last week?  <show the symbol of the hand>  We talked about serving God as priests.  We talked about things we can do to take care of each other.

Introduce symbol


            Say:  Today’s symbol is two circles, one light and one dark.  When we use darkness and light symbolically, what do you think it might represent?  <the children will have different answers: sin & absence of sin, dirty & clean, etc. >  In this instance, we are going to talk about good and evil.

            Ask:  Why are we afraid of the dark?  <discuss – bad things might happen to us that we can’t see>  If you wanted to do something wrong, something you know that your parents would not want you to do, would you do it in a dark quiet place or out in the open in front of everybody?  <you would want to hide what you are doing>  God tells us today not to be afraid of the dark.  God reminds us that we are never alone and that God will always take care of us.

               Say:  Let’s look at the poster.  What does it say?  <Lord, in your great love, answer me.>  This is our Responsorial Psalm for today.  The Responsorial Psalms also come from Scripture, from the Book of Psalms in the Old Testament.

            Ask:  Why do we ask God for help?  <discuss>

Introduce readings

            We have two readings today.
           
Say:  Let’s light the candle to show that we are ready to listen to the Word of God.

Say:  Today’s first reading is from the Old Testament book of the prophet Jeremiah. (Jeremiah 20:10-12a, 13)  In this reading, Jeremiah shows that he has a lot of faith.  See if you can hear something in this reading that tells about Jeremiah’s faith in God.

Have the reader read the first reading.

Ask:  What did you hear that tells about Jeremiah’s strong faith?  <he believed that God loved him and would handle the people who were trying to trick him>  He believed that if he asked God for help, God would take care of him.

Say:  Now is the time for the Responsorial Psalm.  Your part is to say:
            Lord, in your great love, answer me.

Say:  Today’s Gospel reading is taken from the book of Matthew (Matt 10:26–31).  In the reading today, St. Matthew tells us not to be afraid.  He tells us that God loves us so much that he will always take care of us.

Say:  Now we will stand and get ready to hear the Gospel

Have the reader begin:  “a reading from the holy Gospel according to…”

Read:  Read the Gospel

Ask:  What happened?  <let the children retell what they heard>  Do you think that it is always easy to have this much faith in God?  <why or why not>

Say:  When we believe and trust in God, we are filled with the light of God’s love.  We bring that light with us in our behavior and our attitudes.

Hand out the small poster cut-outs for the children to put their names on.  Collect them to glue on a poster when they are finished.

Hand out the larger Offertory symbols (two circles).  Ask the older children to write one thing they can do this week to show how they can bring God’s love into an unhappy part of their life.

Explain:  Color this symbol of the two circles and bring it to the altar (don’t forget to put your name on the back!) to show that we have learned about bringing the light of God’s love to others.

If there is time, ask questions and go over the lessons one more time to help the children remember.

Give out stickers and hand-outs as the children leave to join the Offertory procession.






Parent Letter

12th Sunday of Ordinary Time

Dear Parents,

        Today is the 12th Sunday of Ordinary Time.  The children listened to two of the same readings you heard:  Jeremiah 20:10-12a and Matthew 10:26-31.

Symbol:  two joined circles


To reinforce at home:
        The readings today talk about how God’s love is stronger than evil.  He will always take care of so we should not be afraid.

Activities to do at home:
        *  Show your faith in God!  Ask him for something you really want and then believe that he hears you.
       
        *  Stay in the light!  Use a flashlight one summer evening to show your child how light takes away fear of the dark  Use the light to expose some dark scary places in your yard or a nearby park.

        * Bring the light of God’s love to others!  Visit someone who is lonely or sick this week.


Thank you for sharing your children!