Sunday, July 18, 2021

17th Sunday Ordinary Time B

Children’s Liturgy Instructions

Seventeenth Sunday of Ordinary Time   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.

Ask children to add their names to the cutouts (fish) 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.

Ask: Who takes care of all our needs?  (God, Jesus)  What does this sentence have in common with what we have been talking about for the last few weeks?    (We have been talking about what faith is, and what it means to have faith in Jesus.

Introduce symbol
Say:  (hold up symbol) What do you think this is?  (bread and fish)
Ask:  Do you remember something that Jesus did with bread and fish?  Today’s Gospel tells us about a special miracle that Jesus performed.
Explain: Scripture tells us that Jesus performed several miracles.  Do you remember some of them?  (discussion)  Why do you think that Jesus performed miracles?  (discussion)  When Jesus performed miracles, there were several reasons.  He always performed miracles to satisfy a human need - like hunger or healing.  His miracles were always dependent upon somebody believing in Jesus and doing what He said to do.  What is another word for that belief?  (FAITH)  Jesus asks us to believe in Him and do what He asks of us.
Say:  Now we are going to practice the Responsorial Psalm, that part between the readings where you get to help.  The Responsorial Psalm comes from the Bible just like our readings do.  Today’s psalm is: You open your hand to feed us, Lord; you answer all our needs.  Can you say this with me?  <Have the children repeat it.>

Introduce readings

Say:  The first reading is from the Old Testament, from the book of Kings.  (ll Kings 4:42-44) It is a story about the prophet Elisha and how through faith in God, he fed a hundred people with twenty loaves of barley bread.

Say:  The readings in the Old Testament often give a clue to or foreshadow the things that Jesus did while he was on earth.  Most of the people of the time knew the Scriptures.  They knew all about Elisha and the twenty loaves of barley bread.

Explain:  The people of the time revered and honored Elisha as a holy man.  Imagine how they must have felt when Jesus came along and performed much greater works for the glory of God!  Some of them would be impressed, some of them would honor Jesus, and some of them would be frightened.  Because Jesus did wondrous things, many people were confused.  They didn’t know what to think.

Say:  Now we will have the first reading (light the candle)

Have the first reading

Ask:  Does this story about the prophet Elisha remind you of any story you have heard before? <let the children guess – and then ask them to listen closely to the gospel reading>

Say:  Next we will have the Responsorial Psalm
Your part will be to say:
You open your hand to feed us, Lord; you answer all our needs. (hold up card with psalm on it)

Have reader read the psalm

Say: Today’s Gospel reading was written by St. John. (John 6:1-15) It tells a story about one of Jesus’ miracles, a story that many of you are probably familiar with.  This is the story of how Jesus fed a lot of people with only five loaves and two fishes.  It is also a story of how many of the people misunderstood what Jesus came to do.  The people believed that Jesus had come to be an earthly king.  They didn’t understand that He was here as the Son of God.

Say:  Now we will get ready to hear the Gospel
(hold up card)  Alleluia!  Alleluia!

“a reading from the holy gospel.....”

All respond:  Lord, let your Word be in my mind <make cross on forehead>, on my lips <make cross on lips>, and in my heart <make cross on heart>

Read the Gospel

Ask:  Was today’s gospel reading the story you thought of that was like the first reading?
Hand out the symbols to color and cut out. (The symbol is bread and fish)

Explain: Color this symbol of bread and fish and bring it to the altar (don’t forget to put your name on the back!)  to show that we have learned about. Jesus taking care of all our needs.  Jesus asks us to help him take care of others’ needs. 

Ask the older children to write one thing that you can do for someone else that will fill one of their needs.

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

While they are coloring, explain how we will go back into the church, up to the front with our gifts and rejoin our families.

Give out stickers, parent letters and hand-outs as they leave.

This small fish graphic is to be used on the communal poster

Use this bread & fish graphic for the banner symbol and the Offertory gift

Parent Letter

Seventeenth Sunday of Ordinary Time
             Today is the Seventeenth Sunday of Ordinary Time.  Today your children heard a simplified version of the same readings that you heard: II Kings 4:42-44 and John 6:1-15.

To reinforce at home:
Today’s symbol is a loaf of bread and a fish to represent today’s Gospel reading about the miracle of the feeding of the five thousand.  We continue to stress our current theme of FAITH and follow the symbols of the Eucharist that are present throughout the readings this summer.  All of Jesus’ miracles required that someone have faith in Him.  Jesus often worked through His faithful people to get His works accomplished.
Activities to do at home:
*Go to the grocery store.  Let your child pick out some food at the grocery store to donate to the church food pantry and show them that Jesus is working through them to feed the hungry.  (If you choose the “buy 1, get 1free” items, you can give twice as much)

*Be careful about wasting food.  Jesus’ followers collected 12 baskets of leftovers.  Help your child learn to prevent waste by preserving whatever they don’t eat (when practical)

*Pray together.  Pray with your child first thing in the morning that together you might be able to recognize and do whatever Jesus wants you to do that day.

Thank you for sharing your children!

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