The Art of Blessing

To bless someone is to communicate one’s life, strength, and authority to another. To be blessed by God is to share in God’s life, strength, and authority. In this Sunday’s Gospel, we hear Luke’s version of the Beatitudes (Luke 6:17, 20-26) in which Jesus describes those human conditions in which God’s life, strength, and authority are truly found. 

As catechists, we need to remind those we teach that they are blessed by God – through Baptism, they share in God’s life, strength, and authority. When humans bless other humans, it is a way of communicating our deepest desire that they continue to be filled with God’s life. Without this reassurance, people seek “life” in all the wrong places, usually in material goods (“Woe to you who are rich…”). To be blessed is to be fortunate. Let’s remind those we teach how fortunate they are to have God’s life, strength, and authority. Let’s re-capture the art of blessing and bless our students this week, reminding them that they are fortunate to share in God’s life – a treasure far more valuable than any earthly riches.

We can pray a blessing over our students. We can trace the Sign of the Cross with our thumb on their foreheads as they are leaving. Any other suggestions for how we can bless those we teach?

About Joe Paprocki 2631 Articles
Joe Paprocki, DMin, is National Consultant for Faith Formation at Loyola Press, where, in addition to his traveling/speaking responsibilities, he works on the development team for faith formation curriculum resources including Finding God: Our Response to God’s Gifts and God’s Gift: Reconciliation and Eucharist. Joe has more than 35 years of experience in ministry and has presented keynotes, presentations, and workshops in more than 100 dioceses in North America. Joe is a frequent presenter at national conferences including the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress, the Mid-Atlantic Congress, and the National Conference for Catechetical Leadership. He is the author of numerous books, including the best seller The Catechist’s Toolbox, A Church on the Move, Under the Influence of Jesus, and Called to Be Catholic—a bilingual, foundational supplemental program that helps young people know their faith and grow in their relationship with God. Joe is also the series editor for the Effective Catechetical Leader and blogs about his experiences in faith formation at www.catechistsjourney.com.

3 Comments on The Art of Blessing

  1. 1-We can bless our students by telling them that they are in our daily prayers. 2-We ask God, in our prayers to bless these children and keep them safe until we come together again. 3-Catechists could also tell our students that THEY (the kids) are a blessing in OUR lives. 3 kinds of blessings!!

  2. I’m so glad that you brought up the subject of blessings! It is one of my favorite things about being a Catholic. It is so powerful to bless someone else. I know that we get blessings from the Pope, the Bishop when he visits and from the priest at Mass, but I also love the fact that we can call blessings down upon one another. I think that blessing our kids is incredibly powerful.

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