Sunday, April 4, 2021

2nd Sunday of Easter B

2nd Sunday of Easter Cycle B

Welcome children to their worship space.

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

Introduce yourself and your helpers.


             Say:  Today is the 2nd Sunday of Easter.  Did anyone notice anything different about the church today?

Explain:  The season of Easter began last week.  During Lent, there was little singing, we had time for thinking about Jesus and what he was about to go through, and, in general, everything about the church was serious and sad.

Ask: So what changed?  <Christ’s resurrection>  What’s going on now?  <we are happy, the singing is back, etc.>  In the Easter season, we are waiting for something new>  Does anyone know what that might be?  <Pentecost>

Explain: After Christ rose from the dead, his friends were sad and confused.  They didn’t really understand what happened right away.  Over the next few weeks, we will talk about the things that happened to the Apostles that helped them to understand.  We will talk about how the early church began and what a church really is.  We will begin to learn how we are part of the church and how we build our church every time we come.  We will talk about the gifts that the Holy Spirit brings us to help us be closer to God now that Jesus isn’t here with us any more.

Introduce symbol
Say:   Today’s symbol is a dove with an olive branch.
Ask:  Have you heard of a dove with an olive branch in the bible before?  <there was a dove in the story of Noah, the one that returned with the branch to let Noah know that the flood waters were beginning to recede>
Explain:  The dove represents PEACE.  Can anyone tell me what PEACE is?  <no more fighting, being calm in your mind, being friends with those around you>
The dove in the Old Testament brought peace of mind to Noah because it showed him that he didn’t have to wait much longer for the water to go away.  The words “Peace be with you” were the first words that Jesus shared with his friends when he visited them after his resurrection.
Ask: Does anyone know where we use Jesus’ words every week?  <at Mass>  We offer a sign of peace, a handshake or hug every week at Mass.

Say:  Let’s look at today’s poster.  What does it say? <Give thanks for the Lord is good.  God’s love is everlasting.>  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 first New Testament book of Acts. (Acts 4:32-35)  Acts of the Apostles tells us all about the days after Easter when the Apostles were trying to understand what happened to their friend Jesus and what they were supposed to do.  This reading in Acts tells us a little about how the Apostles lived.

Have the reader read the first reading.

Ask:  How did they live?  <they shared everything they owned>  Do you think that you could do that?

Say: Now it is time for the Responsorial Psalm.  Your part is to say:
Give thanks for the Lord is good.  God’s love is everlasting.

Say:  Today’s Gospel reading comes from the book of the Apostle John.  (John 20:19-29). John tells about the night after the Apostles discovered that Jesus’ body was missing from the tomb.  Jesus’ friends were gathered together in a locked room.  They were sad and confused and frightened.  The story is about one of the Apostles who didn’t believe that Jesus had actually risen from the dead.

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 is the name of the Apostle who didn’t believe about Jesus without seeing for himself?  <Thomas>  Jesus told him that the people who were really blessed were the ones who believed without seeing.  Do you know who are the people Jesus was talking about?  <the other Apostles AND US!>  Jesus was talking about US!  We can’t see for ourselves.  We have to believe.

Ask:  Does anyone remember what we do in Mass to show that there is peace between us?  <the sign of peace>  Can we do that now and then we’ll hand out the poster cut-outs?

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

Hand out the symbols to color. (The symbol is a dove). 
Explain: Color this symbol of a dove and bring it to the altar (don’t forget to put your name on the back!)  to show that we have learned about bringing a sign of peace to each other.  Does anyone remember the name of the sacrament that celebrates God’s peace?  <Reconciliation>

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 to make the small cutouts for the communal attendance poster

Use this graphic to make the mid-sized banner symbol and the full-size Offertory coloring sheet

Parent Letter

2nd Sunday of Easter  B

Dear Parents,

             Today is the 2nd Sunday in the season of Easter.  The children listened to two of the same readings you did: Acts 4:32-35; John 20:19-29.

Symbol: Dove

To reinforce at home:
We begin to hear in the readings today about how the Apostles begin to understand parts of Jesus’ message.  In the Gospel, we are reminded of how afraid they must have been and we hear about the doubts of Thomas.  We read how, even then, Jesus spoke to his friends about US, “those who believe who have not seen.”
“Peace be with you!”  These are the powerful words with which Christ greeted his friends after his resurrection.  Peace is the concept we introduced today, the peace that God wanted for all his people.  We touched briefly on the sacrament of Reconciliation and how this Sacrament is a way to bring God’s peace into our lives.  We also talked about the idea of peace between people and why we offer a sign of peace during Mass.

Activities to do at home:

*Use a sign of peace as part of your prayer at home.
*Use a moment of true apology to relate the meaning of peace between people and true forgiveness.  Help your children understand the wonderful feeling of being forgiven.

Thank you for sharing your children!

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