Good News from the Substitute Catechist (Who Just Happens to be the DRE!)

Last week, we missed our weekly session with our 6th graders since we were in Los Angeles for the annual Religious Education Congress. When we arrived back home, I received the following message from my DRE, Deb, who, along with another catechist, subbed for my class. I was so pleased and thrilled to get such a good report, especially the part where she explains that the kids were asking for/explaining their regular routine! Hi Joe, […]

Mercy, Mercy, Mercy!

Last evening was delightful session in which we focused on the “flipside” of the Prophets’ message: the proclamation of hope (we previously focused on their “getting in the face” of Israel over injustices). We talked a lot about the experience of the Exile and how those in exile were devastated and how the Prophets brought a message of hope that culminated in the coming of Jesus. The main focus of the session, however, was on […]

Prophets of Hope: The “Flip-Side” of Getting In Your Face

Last week, we focused on how the Prophets “got in the face” of the people of Israel to remind them to be faithful to the Covenant and to live justly. For this week’s session, we will look at the “flip-side” of the Prophets: their efforts to proclaim hope to an exiled people. The Prophets Give Hope Big Idea: We need HOPE to survive and we find HOPE in God’s MERCY Preliminaries (15 mins) Welcome and […]

Session Plan for March 4, 2014: The Prophets

Here is my lesson plan for tomorrow evening’s session, in which we will turn our attention to the Prophets of Israel. Big Idea: Prophets “get in the face” of the People of Israel. Preliminaries (30 mins) Welcome and attendance Opening prayer ritual/procession to set up prayer center Sacraments quiz Complete Lent discussion from previous week. Engage (10 mins) Put on baseball cap, whistle, and hold clip board and ask who I am imitating. (a coach) […]

An Introduction to Lent

Tomorrow’s lesson is going to be an overview of the upcoming season of Lent which is just over a week away (Ash Wednesday is March 5)! For this lesson, I will be using my FREE Lent PowerPoint. As with the previous PowerPoints I’ve made available, this presentation includes a script (in Note Pages view) to assist you in effectively leading your students to a deeper understanding of this season. To download the Lent PowerPoint from authorSTREAM, […]

Tonight’s Session: 3 R’s – Recognizing, Respecting, and Revealing God’s Presence

My lesson for this evening picks up where we left off last week as we learned about God’s presence in Solomon’s Temple, in the Eucharist, and in ourselves. Tonight, we focus on how we recognize God’s presence in the Sacraments, respect God’s presence in others (this is part of our safe environment program) and reveal God’s presence to others through works of mercy. Session 21: The 3 R’s Big Idea: We are called to Recognize, […]

God’s Presence – Solomon’s Temple and the Temple of the Holy Spirit

Here is my lesson plan for this evening! Session 19 God’s Presence – Solomon’s Temple and the Temple of the Holy Spirit Big Idea: God is present to us at all times and especially in the Eucharist Preliminaries (10 mins) Collect Psalms from last week and read them anonymously as part of opening prayer. Opening procession and prayer ritual Engage (15 mins) Show clip of Mr. Magoo Christmas Carol “Alone in the World” (2:44), in […]

The Psalms – We Can Talk to God Under ANY Circumstances!

Tonight’s session will focus on the Psalms and how they represent prayers for every occasion and emotion. I enjoy this session because it gives me the opportunity to incorporate contemporary music into the session. This year, for the first time, I am also having the young people bring in songs that they have selected (although with last week’s snow day, I wonder how many will remember!). Anyway, here’s the plan: Session 18 – The Psalms […]

A Lo-Tech Session; High on Props – David: Shepherd and King

Last evening was thoroughly enjoyable and, for the most part, very effective, as we focused on David as shepherd and king who points the way to the Good Shepherd/Christ the King. I decided to give the technology a rest since I’ve been using PowerPoints and videos a lot in recent sessions. Instead, I went all out on props which the kids loved. 6th graders are very much into this kind of theatrics! Here is one […]

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