The Ark of the Covenant

My session on Monday evening focused on the Temple of Solomon and the question of where it is that we find the presence of God.

  • After reading from our Finding God book about Solomon’s Temple and the placement of the Ark of the Covenant in the Holy of Holies, representing the presence of God in the midst of Israel, we read John 2: 13-22 in which Jesus cleanses the Temple and then claims, “destroy this temple and I will raise it again in 3 days.”
  • I asked what Jesus meant by this and one of the students replied, “it means that they didn’t have to worship God in the Temple anymore and that they could worship him (Jesus) instead.” Wow…bright kid!
  • I then explained how Jesus gives himself to us in the Eucharist and how St. Paul tells us that this makes us Temples of the Holy Spirit which is why we need to show respect for everyone we encounter and seek to recognize God in others.
  • That set the stage for showing a 10 minute video about Mother Teresa: Everyone, Everywhere, in which she speaks about finding Jesus in the poor. They were glued to the video and when it was over, one of the kids said aloud, “She is AWESOME.” Agreed.
  • We then finished by having the kids work on a BLM (“What’s in Your Ark?” ) that I put together, asking them to list those things that are of the most value to them that they would want to carry in their “ark” – carry with them wherever they go. When they finished, I had them place their sheets in an “ark of the covenant” that I made! I bought a simple black wooden  jewelry box at CVS ($19) and cut 2 small strips of wood, painted them black, and nailed them to the sides. Now, I just need a couple of cherubim for the top and maybe I should spray paint the whole thing gold! Either way, this “ark” will now become a part of our prayer center for the rest of the year.

Anyway, here is a sample of some of the things they listed as of most value to them: family, friends, sports, house, blanket, dog, pin from my grandma, ring from my grandma, rosary, clothes, God, Ipod, Nana’s Christmas tree, money, cross, angel, life, grades, Church, Bible, the Lord, jobs, prayer, food & water, clothes, pets.

About Joe Paprocki 2736 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

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