For the Love of Neighbor

This is a follow-up to my March 19 post – For the Love of God – in which I shared a handout comprised of numerous examples of actions that either violate the first three commandments or represent virtuous acts done in the spirit of these commandments.

Here is the student worksheet that I am using tonight which covers the 4th, 5th, and 6th commandments. Likewise, here is the answer key.

One example that I feel particularly strong about is the issue of bullying. This is such a big problem in schools and it would seem to make great sense to consider it under the 5th Commandment because it is a form of violence and disrespect for human life. I think that if the Ten Commandments are going to have an impact on the kids, they have to speak to real life issues for them.

If you have any thoughts about the issue of bullying and the Ten Commandments, I’d love to hear from you!

About Joe Paprocki 2744 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

2 Comments on For the Love of Neighbor

  1. HI Joe,

    Thank you so much for sharing so many wonderful tools 🙂

    I loved your idea of applying bullying to the context of the 5th commandment. YOu requested any other ideas re:bullying and the commandments. I do a bullying workshop and use the 9th commandment about bearing false witness, and spend some time talking about the damage that spreading stories does. You can even go into the name of the sins committed when bearing false witness, such as calumny. An unusual word for an all too common practice among our young people.

    Thanks again 🙂

    • Hi Kris and thanks for your thoughts. I agree that bullying can also fall under the Commandment about bearing false witness, especially when bullying takes a verbal form.

      Just to clarify for folks, as far as the “numbering” of the Commandments: when I refer to the 5th Commandment, I’m referring to “You Shall Not Kill,” and I would consider “You Shall Not Bear False Witness Against Your Neighbor” as the 8th Commandment, rather than the 9th. This would be the traditional Catholic numbering of the Commandments. The Jewish tradition and many Protestant traditions have as the 2nd Commandment: “You shall not make for yourself a graven image” thus bumping all the rest down one and then combining what Catholics consider the 9th and 10th Commandments into one: “You shall not covet your nieghbor’s wife; you shall not covet anything that belongs to your neighbor.” A good explanation of this can be found at

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