Sunday, September 10, 2023

24th Sunday Ordinary Time A

Children’s Liturgy Instructions

Twenty-fourth 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.

Introduce Ordinary Time

            Explain:  Today is the 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time.

            Ask:  Does anyone remember what the symbol was for last week?  <a person with a heart>  What did it represent?  The symbol represented the love that God asks us to show to each other.

Introduce symbol

Say:  Today’s symbol is some numbers: seventy times seven.  Last week we talked about what to do when we knew of someone who sinned, who did something wrong.  Today, we are going to talk about what comes next.

Ask: What do you think comes next?  After you talk to somebody else about something they did wrong, what happens next? <let the children give their answers - forgiveness>

Ask:  What does forgiveness mean? <it means to let go of the mean feelings in your heart towards that person>  Do you think it is easy to forgive someone who has hurt you?  <NO – but that is what God asks us to do>

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:  The Lord is kind and merciful.  Can you say this with me?  <Have the children repeat it.>  Psalms were first written as songs, so make sure you say it loudly and clearly.

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 Sirach.  (Sirach 28:2-5, 6b-7). Has anyone here heard of the Golden Rule?  <do to other people what you would want them to do to you>  In today’s reading, we will hear how God will treat us.  Listen and see if it is the same.
Have the reader read the reading.

Ask:  Did you hear how God will treat us? <God will do to us what we do to other people>  If we forgive other people, then God will forgive us.

Say:  Now is the time for the Responsorial Psalm that we practiced.  <have a volunteer hold up the poster> Repeat after me: The Lord is kind and merciful.

Have reader read the psalm

Say: Today’s Gospel reading comes from the New Testament book of Matthew.  (Matt 18:21-35) In the Gospel today, we hear Jesus talk about forgiveness.  St. Peter asked Jesus how many times they had to forgive people who hurt them.  He asked if 7 times was enough.  Listen to the parable Jesus told Peter and see if you can hear how many times we need to forgive each other.
Say:  Now we will get ready to read the Gospel.  Please stand and say:
 Glory and praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.

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

Read the Gospel.

Ask:  Did you hear how many times we are supposed to forgive each other?  <70 times 7>

Say:  Tell me about the story.  <let the children retell the story>  Jesus taught by using stories.  What does this story tell us?  <that we need to treat each other the way that we want God to treat us, if we want God’s forgiveness for our sins, we must forgive others>

Hand out the large Offertory symbols for the children to color and the smaller symbols for the children to put their names on for the poster.

Explain: We will color the 70 times 7 (don’t forget to put your name on the back!)  to show that we have learned about forgiving each other.

Ask:  If you can, write one thing that you can do this week to show forgiveness to someone who has hurt 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.

Use this 7 for the small poster symbols.  Cut them out of light colored paper so the children can put their names on it

Use this graphic for the banner symbol and the full-sized coloring page to use for the Offertory gift

Parent Letter

Twenty-fourth Sunday of Ordinary Time  A

Dear Parents,

            Today is the Twenty-fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time.  The children listened to simplified versions of two of the same readings you heard: Sirach 28:2-5 and Matthew 18:21-35.

To reinforce at home:
            Last week we talked about helping each other to do the right thing.  Today we followed up by talking about forgiving those who do wrong.
            In Sirach, we hear that God will forgive our sins, if we forgive others.  In the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus tells a teaching story, aparable, that says the same thing.  God will treat us the way that we treat others.  St. Peter asked Jesus how many times to forgive others.  Jesus made it clear with his answer of 70 times 7, that forgiveness is limitless.  We must continually forgive others so that God will continually forgive us.
Activities to do at home:
            *Share Jesus’ love!  Talk about what forgiveness means with your child.

            *Show God’s mercy!  Is there someone in your life that needs your forgiveness?  Do you need to show forgiveness to someone?
            *Be forgiven!  Take advantage of the sacrament of Reconciliation this week so that you will feel renewed by God’s grace.

Thank you for sharing your children!

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