Sunday, December 25, 2016

Jan 1, 2017 Feast of Mary, Mother of God

Feast of Mary, Mother of God

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

             Ask:  How was everyone’s Christmas?  <let the children tell a little about their holiday>

Ask:  Does anyone remember what we talked about the last time we met?  <show symbol of the star>  We talked about celebrating Jesus’ birth and that he will come back to us!

Introduce symbol

Say:  Today is the feast of Mary, the Mother of God.  What do we know about Mary? <she was the mother of God, she was young, she was from Nazareth>  Mary was a very young girl who said YES! to God.  We talked about that a few weeks ago.  She loved God very much and praised his goodness even when she was worried.  Do you think Mary had anything to worry about?  <let the children discuss>  She had all the same things to worry about that any mother has but also the wonder (and worry) of what it would mean knowing that her son was really God’s son!   


Say:  Our symbol today is the lily.  A lily is a symbol we use to represent Mary, the mother of God.

Ask: Mary’s son was the son of God.  Do you think she had any idea what that would mean to her own life?  Today we celebrate Mary’s faith.  She praised God and knew that he blessed her… even when she was confused and worried!

Say:  Let’s look at today’s poster.  What does it say? <May God bless us in his mercy.>  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 is from the Old Testament book of Numbers. (Num 6:22-27)   Today we hear something that God told Moses to tell his brother to do.  Let’s listen to what is said and see if we can think of why this reading might tell us something about Mary.

Have the reader read the first reading.

Ask: What did God say?  <let the children retell>  He talked about blessing people.  But what else did God say?  He said that if we speak his name (or tell others about him) God will bless us.  Why would this make us think of Mary?  <Mary’s YES! tells everyone about God and her faith in him>

Say: Now it is time for the Responsorial Psalm.  Your part is to say:
May God bless us in his mercy.

Say:  Today’s Gospel reading comes from the book of Luke.  (Luke 2:16-21).  In the reading today, we hear about the shepherds coming to see the baby.  Listen to see if you can hear how Mary felt.    

Say:  Now we will stand and get ready to hear the Gospel
(hold up card)  Glory and praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.

Have the reader begin: “a reading from the holy gospel.....”

Read:  Read the Gospel

Ask:  What happened?  <let the children retell what they heard>  How do you think Mary felt?  <confused, scared, proud> 

Say:  Mary was just like us.  This is something that would be hard to understand if it happened to us.  Mary accepted.  Mary praised God.  Mary waited and did what God asked her to do.  We should try to be like Mary.

Hand out the poster cut-outs of a lily so that the children can write their names on them for the poster.

Hand out the symbols to color. (The symbol is the lily).  Ask the older children to write one thing they can do this week to praise God.
 
Explain: Color this symbol of a lily and bring it to the altar (don’t forget to put your name on the back!)  to show that we have learned about loving and praising God.                            

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 they leave.

Use this graphic in a small size - pastel flower colors - for the communal poster

Use this graphic for the mid-sized banner symbol & for the full-size coloring sheets for the Offertory symbol
 
Parent Letter
Mary, Mother of God  B
                                                                             
Dear Parents:

             Today your children heard a simplified version of the same readings that you heard: Numbers 6:22-27; Luke 2: 16-21.

Symbol: lily
To reinforce at home:

Today’s readings talk about praising God.  Mary always praised God!


In Numbers, we hear that God will bless those who praise him.  In Luke, we hear the story of the shepherds arriving to see the infant Jesus.  Mary watched and learned and kept praising God even when she was confused or worried. 
Activities to do at home:

*Talk with your child about a time when your life wasn’t going very well and you still praised God and trusted that he would take care of you.

*Read about it!  Share your favorite scripture story that includes Mary.  Tell why you like it.

Thank you for sharing your children!


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