Activities Articles Resources

This Week's Liturgy

I Will Follow You

June 26th, 2016 (see other dates)

Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Discussion Questions for Reading 1

This is a vocation story. The word vocation means "call." Each of us is called by God to become something good and to do, as Mother Teresa of Calcutta used to say, "something beautiful for God." This does not only mean in the future, as a priest, religious, or layperson. It means now, too. What are you called to do today for God? How will you show this week that you are called by God to do good?

If you are an adult and therefore can look back over time, what is your "vocation story?" How were you called by God to be where you are today?

Reading 1 1 Kings 19:16b, 19-21

Reading 1 Reflection

Today we hear the dramatic story of the prophet Elijah appointing his successor. At God's command, Elijah chooses Elisha to take his place. Elijah throws his cloak, the symbol of his prophet's vocation, over Elisha's shoulders. With no questions asked, Elisha mmediately says farewell to his family and destroys his oxen and plow. He drops everything to follow God's call.

Discussion Questions for Reading 2

The actions of "biting and tearing one another to pieces" sounds all too familiar! Our relationships with others can be built up and made stronger or can be torn down and crushed. We are free to make this choice. Think about the relationships you are in?with parents, teachers, friends, people in your neighborhood and in your parish, even with other students or people you may not know well. Each relationship needs your positive contribution. How can you build up each of these relationships? How can you help another person this week?

Saint Paul warns us that being a negative influence has its consequences. He calls it "destruction." Think of some examples of negative thoughts and actions. How can they hurt the very person who gives them a place in his or her own life or uses them against others?

Reading 2 Galatians 5:1, 13-18

Reading 2 Reflection

When Elisha gave up everything to do God's will, he must have felt truly free. In our second reading, Paul reminds the Galatians that Christians have been called to live in freedom. Those who have accepted Christ follow his example of love. Those who listen to the "flesh"?whatever urges them to act against God's will?are still slaves. They act against their own best interests when they listen to the voice of selfishness.

Discussion Questions for Gospel

Plowing gets a field ready for planting. In Jesus' time, a farmer plowed a field by following an ox on foot. The farmer used the reins in his hands to give signals to the ox. If the farmer looked back, he would of course move his body around. Then the reins would jiggle. The ox would think it was a "turn signal" from the reins. The ox would veer from the straight path and the farmer's smooth straight row would be ruined. Jesus asks us to keep looking straight ahead as we follow him. No looking back to check on how we're doing! This takes trust. How do you show you trust Jesus to lead you "straight ahead?" When are you tempted to "look back" (perhaps at your sins and failings) or to look around in a different direction? Who or what helps you to keep trusting Jesus? How can you show that you are "fit" for the reign of God?

There are many ways of following Jesus. Some followers of Jesus today still give up "home, family, and means of income." Do you know anyone who has? We usually think of those in religious vows, like priests, sisters, and brothers. Find out about the priests, sisters, and brothers who serve in your parish or diocese. Some lay people also join together to follow Jesus as missionaries and helpers to the poor. They serve for one or more years in this country and in places around the world. Others join religious orders as Associate Members, but do not take vows or live in community. They may be married or single. Find out about some lay organizations that do this. Here are some examples: Maryknoll Lay Associates, Jesuit Volunteer Corps, Associates of the Divine Compassion.

Gospel Luke 9:51-62

Gospel Reflection

Jesus is on his way to Jerusalem. He is preparing himself to face suffering and death. He forgives the Samaritans who refuse to welcome him, showing his disciples how to behave toward their enemies. He then responds to three different people who want to follow him. Does he say, "Come with me and all will be well?" Not at all. Jesus tells them right up front that the cost of becoming his disciple is high. That cost may include giving up home, family, and means of income.

Proclaiming Faith Activities for Primary Grades

A Path to Jesus

Make a path to Jesus (Prayer Space). Use masking tape to make a path around the classroom ending at the Prayer Space. Add a few strips of tape, "detouring" away from the path. Place cards at the intersections of the "detours" with choices such as: taking something that belongs to someone else, hitting others, lying, etc. Follow the masking tape path as a class. As you come to each "detour" read the card and ask the children if you should detour. When the path ends at the Prayer Space, offer the following prayer: "Jesus, help us each day to follow your path. Amen."

Follow Me

Sing the following song with the children to the tune of Frere Jacques.

Follow me, follow me,
Jesus says, Jesus says.
Love the Lord your God,
And love your neighbors, too.
Follow me, Jesus says.

Proclaiming Faith Activities

Making a Choice

Today's readings remind us that we have a choice to make between the "flesh" and the "spirit." If we imagine "flesh" as a person, we see someone who constantly looks for ways to do only what he or she wants to do, not what God wants. "Spirit" is someone who keeps right on following the call of the Lord.

Design masks and costumes for the characters of "Flesh" and "Spirit." Then write a few lines of dialogue in which each reveals his or her true nature.

Describe or draw a mask and a costume for "Flesh."
What would this character have to say when there is a choice to be made at home, at school, or among friends?

Describe or draw a mask and a costume for "Spirit."
What would this character have to say when there is a choice to be made at home, at school, or among friends?

You may want to write a play around a particular situation. Give the starring role toa human character. Then show how Flesh and Spirit try to influence that character. Show what happens when the human character follows Flesh and then changes to follow Spirit. (This is the happy ending!)

Close your play by inviting the audience to join you in a prayer:

Lord, help us to choose your way?and never look back! Amen.

Called to Freedom

Freedom includes responsibility. Being free to drive a car means being responsible to obey traffic laws. When we cease being responsible, we risk losing that freedom. In the case of irresponsible driving, this can have tragic consequences for ourselves or for someone else. Can you give some examples of this link between freedom and responsibility?

Many people think they know what freedom means and how to use it. Think for a moment what Jesus has told us about using our freedom as his followers. Complete the following statements about using freedom as you imagine Jesus would complete them.

1. When I am deciding how to spend my time or my money . . .

2. If a poor person asks me for help or a sick person needs someone to care . . .

3. If a friend tells me to do something against God's will . . .

4. When I feel that I can't be happy unless I have a certain possession . . .

Which statement would you choose to live this week?

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

We Believe Site Map


Grade K Grade 1 Grade 2 Grade 3 Grade 4 Grade 5 Grade 6 Grade 7 Grade 8 Grade 7
Grade 8


Grade K Grade 1 Grade 2 Grade 3 Grade 4 Grade 5 Grade 6 Grade 7 Grade 8 Grade 7
Grade 8


Grade K Grade 1 Grade 2 Grade 3 Grade 4 Grade 5 Grade 6 Grade 7 Grade 8 Grade 7
Grade 8



We Live Our Faith

Grade 7
Grade 8