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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!