20th Sunday in Ordinary Time Cycle C
Welcome children to their worship space.
Ask them to get their carpet squares and sit down in a circle.
Introduce yourself and your helpers.
Ask children to add their names to the cutouts (wedges) provided. Remind the children that we are making a poster for each Sunday and that they will sign a cutout and glue it on when they are here .
Explain: Today is the Twentieth Sunday in Ordinary Time.
Ask: Does anyone remember the symbol for last week? <oil lamp> Why? What did it mean? <it symbolized having faith in Jesus – that he will come back and that we need to be ready to do what he tells us>
Ask: Do you think that it is easy or hard to do what Jesus tells us? <discuss> What kinds of things does he tell us to do? <discuss – be nice, love others, forgive, etc> Are these easy things to do? <sometimes>
Say: Today’s symbol <hold up the symbol> is a divided circle. Sometimes when we really follow Jesus’ law of love, it is hard. Others around us, even in our family sometimes, won’t always follow the path of love and forgiveness. When we do something different, it divides us from others. Jesus knows that following him can be difficult!
Say: Let’s look at the poster. What does it say? <Lord, come to my aid!> This is our Responsorial Psalm for today. The Responsorial Psalms also come from Scripture, from the Book of Psalms in the Old Testament.
Ask: Can anyone tell me what the word “aid” means? <help> So what are we asking God to do? <to help us>
We have three readings today.
Say: Let’s light the candle to show that we are ready to listen to the Words of God.
Say: Today’s first reading is from the Old Testament, book of the prophet Jeremiah. (Jer 38:4-6, 8-10) Jeremiah was a prophet who did what Jesus asked him to do. Some of the people who heard him didn’t like what he had to say. Let’s listen closely to find out what they did to Jeremiah.
Have the reader read the first reading.
Ask: What happened? <let the children retell the passage> Do you think that Jeremiah was trying to make people unhappy?
Say: Now it is time for the Responsorial Psalm. Your part is to say:
Lord, come to my aid!
Say: Today’s second reading is taken from the letter of St. Paul to the Hebrew people. (Heb 12:1-4) St. Paul talks about how following Jesus is like running a race.
Have the reader read the second reading.
Ask: What did you hear that sounded like a race? <get rid of things that you carry – like sin, keep your eye on the finish line – Jesus, don’t pay attention to anything else – just run the race>
Say: Today’s Gospel reading comes from the book of Luke. (Lk 12:49-53) In the Gospel today, Jesus tells us that he didn’t come to earth to bring us peace. He came to make changes and changes are hard for us. Why might we have to change in order to love others? <because sometimes we are selfish and think only of ourselves, or sometimes we have to learn to be nice to ourselves as well as others>
Say: Now we will get ready to hear the Gospel
(hold up card) Alleluia, Alleluia.
Have the reader begin: “a reading from the holy gospel.....”
Read: Read the Gospel
Ask: Can you think of a situation where families might have differing opinions about something, where they have to think about what Jesus would want so they can make a good decision? <discuss – possible answers might be: recycling, giving food to the food pantry, helping at church>
Say: Today’s message is a little different than we usually hear. Usually we talk about how great love is and how we all agree that loving others is the way to live. Today we have the message that it is hard to love like Jesus did. Can you think of a time in your life when it is hard to live Jesus’ law of love and forgiveness? <when someone else hurts your feelings, when you are angry>
Hand out the symbols to color. (The symbol is a divided circle). Have the older children write one thing that they can do this week that will be hard, but that will be what Jesus wants them to do.
Explain: Color this symbol of the divided circle and bring it to the altar (don’t forget to put your name on the back!) to show that we have learned about how following Jesus can make you do different things than other people do.
Ask the older children to write one thing on their symbol that they know is right but that they find hard to do.
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.
20th Sunday in Ordinary Time C
Today is the Twentieth Sunday in Ordinary Time. The children listened to two of the same readings you did: Jeremiah 38:4-6, 8-10 and Luke 12:49-53.
Symbol: Divided Circle
To reinforce at home:
Today’s readings deal with making Christ-like but unpopular decisions. Jeremiah was put into a well for telling people what God wanted him to tell. St. Luke gives us an account of Jesus telling us that he did not come to bring us peace, that following him will divide us from each other.
Doing the right thing is not comfortable. We have to make a decision to stand up for what is right.
Activities to do at home:
*Choose something as a family this week that is inconvenient but would be the right things to do – examples are recycling, choosing food to donate to the food pantry, visiting a homebound person.
*Tell your child about a time when you had to stand up for what was right and what happened.
*Talk with your child about someone that you find difficult to love, perhaps someone you disagree with consistently or someone that frightens or intimidates you. Talk about how love is a choice not a feeling.
Thank you for sharing your children!