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This Week's Liturgy

Lost and Found

December 27th, 2015 (see other dates)

The Holy Family of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph

Discussion Questions for Reading 1

What is a parent's job? What are the jobs of others in authority over you (teachers, civil authorities, and so on)? How can you help them in their work? Share ideas on ways to show respect for parents and others in authority. How can you show respect for older people who are not related to you?

Offer this prayer together: Lord, help me to understand and to appreciate my parent(s) and others who guide me. Make me patient with what I see as their faults and imperfections. Amen.

Reading 1 Sirach 3:2-6, 12-14

Reading 1 Reflection

Whether we are five, or fifteen, or thirty-five years old, the Lord expects us to show respect for our parents. A mother or father shares in God's work of teaching, guiding, and caring for us. We honor our mothers and fathers and guardians by obeying them in all reasonable ways, and by comforting and caring for them when they are in need. Those who honor their parents will be richly rewarded.

Discussion Questions for Reading 2

In what ways do we need to "put on love"? How will you "be thankful"? How might your actions affect others around you?

Reading 2 Colossians 3:12-21

Reading 2 Reflection

How can families and Christian communities live together in peace? The letter to the Colossians today offers helpful advice. We should "put on" in compassion and kindness. We must be willing to forgive, no matter how many times a parent or brother or sister offends us, just as the Lord forgives us without limit. Over all other virtues we "put on love." When we allow ourselves to be truly loving, gratitude and joy overflow in our lives.

Discussion Questions for Gospel

What do we learn about Jesus in this story? How can you put God first in your life? Jesus understood his relationship with God. It enabled him to grow "in wisdom and age and grace." How do you think following Jesus' advice will help you in your family life?

Gospel Luke 2:41-52

Gospel Reflection

Can you identify with Jesus in this wonderful story from Luke's Gospel? Jesus at the age of twelve is on the verge of becoming a man in the Jewish society of his day. He and his parents have traveled to Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover. After the departure of Mary and Joseph, Jesus remains behind in the Temple. There he amazes the religious teachers with his wisdom and intelligence.

When Jesus' parents discover him missing, they are upset. Jesus explains the importance of putting God first in our lives. When we do this, everything else in life will fall into place.

Proclaiming Faith Activities for Primary Grades

A Family Portrait

Make a picture frame out of craft foam for each child. Attach a magnetic strip to the back. Have children decorate this frame with stickers, paint, etc. Invite children to take these home and place a picture of their family in the frame. Reproduce the following prayer for each child and send it home with the frames.

Jesus, Mary and Joseph,

You teach us how to live, work, and love as a family.

Be with us each day as we try to be like you.


Encourage them to display their framed pictures on the refrigerator and say this prayer as a family.

Holy Families

Reproduce a Venn diagram for each child. Have them compare and contrast their families with the Holy Family. Ask the following questions. Encourage children to write or draw the answers on their diagrams.

  • Jesus, Mary and Joseph make up the Holy Family. (3 people)How many people are in your family?

  • Jesus helped his mother and father.Do you help your mother and father?

  • Jesus, Mary and Joseph ate meals together.Does your family eat meals together?

  • Proclaiming Faith Activities

    God's Word to Families

    Today's readings remind us that we must care for one another in our family. Even when parents misunderstand or nag, or when children seem not to listen to parents, we cannot say, "That's it. I'm leaving home!" Like Jesus, we go on loving one another and trying to work things out together.

    Here are some ideas from God's word. What do they mean in your life?

    Bear with one another.
    NOTE: The word "bear" means to "be patient" with one another.

    Kindness to a father [or mother] will take lasting root.
    NOTE: This means that the gentleness and respect we show one another will grow into something beautiful.

    He went with them . . . and was obedient to them.
    NOTE: The Holy Family teaches us that obedience is the result of mutual respect. Each son or daughter should give respect; each parent should be worthy of respect.

    How will you put one of these ideas into practice this week?

    Saying Thank You

    Note: Before beginning, spend some quiet time asking God for the gift of gratitude.

    In today's second reading we are urged to be thankful people. Think about three people who have done kind things for you. Write a short thank-you note to each of them.

    When will you share these messages of thanks?

    For Bibles and other scripture resources, please see the Sadlier Religion Catalog.
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