Teaching About the Resurrection

Not long ago during class, a student said, “But Jesus was just a ghost.” I immediately explained that Jesus wasn’t a ghost, but that he had truly risen from the dead. This experience reminded me that we can’t assume our students understand what the Resurrection really means. I want them to understand that Jesus was truly dead and rose to life again. I begin by using a picture book that combines the Gospel accounts of […]

Grow Your Soul: 7 Ways to Experience New Life During Easter: #1 See Yourself as You Really Are

Welcome to the first installment of our Easter series, “Grow Your Soul: 7 Ways to Experience New Life During Easter,” drawing from my book, 7 Keys to Spiritual Wellness. We begin by looking at the notion of “seeing yourself as you really are.” So much of the Resurrection narrative has to do with sight and perception. Mary Magdalene did not recognize the Risen Christ at first. The two disciples on the road to Emmaus did not […]

The Triduum Is to the Liturgical Year as Sunday Is to the Week

One of the early inspirations in my ministerial career was Gabe Huck, a wonderful liturgist and warrior for social justice. At a workshop he gave years ago about the Triduum, he said, “The Triduum is to the liturgical year as Sunday is to the week.” Of course, Sunday, in Christian tradition, is a day “set apart” from the rest of the week, dedicated to worship, rest, and works of mercy. What Gabe Huck is suggesting, […]

Grow Your Soul: 7 Ways to Experience New Life During Easter

One of my favorite quotes is attributed to the great Mahatma Gandhi, who said, “When I admire the wonders of a sunset or the beauty of the moon, my soul expands in the worship of the creator.” I like to ask myself if what I have done or am doing presently serves to expand my soul or if it is diminishing it. I think that there are many things we do in life for recreation […]

Lent, a Time to (Re-)Learn the Story of Our Salvation—Part 3: Reassurance

Lent is a wonderful time for us to learn or to re-learn the story of our salvation, which is at the heart of our Baptism. How does one go about telling a story, however, that spans several millennia and encompasses 72 books (and thousands of pages) of Scripture? Actually, the entire story of our salvation can be summarized and captured in three words: rescue, restoration, and reassurance. During Lent, I invite you to join me […]

The Cross Is Heavy…In So Many Ways

As we approach Palm Sunday, Holy Week, and the Triduum, our focus is increasingly on the Cross of Jesus Christ. On Holy Thursday, the entrance antiphon proclaims, “We should glory in the Cross of our Lord, Jesus Christ!” On Good Friday, we venerate the Cross. Throughout Lent, we have been praying the Stations of the Cross. Historians tell us that victims carried the crossbeam on their way to the site of crucifixion where upright “poles” […]

Lent, a Time to (Re-)Learn the Story of Our Salvation—Part 2: Restoration

Lent is a wonderful time for us to learn or to re-learn the story of our salvation, which is at the heart of our Baptism. How does one go about telling a story, however, that spans several millennia and encompasses 72 books (and thousands of pages) of Scripture? Actually, the entire story of our salvation can be summarized and captured in three words: the story of our salvation is one of rescue, restoration, and reassurance. […]

How Jesus Responds to Suffering (VIDEO)

We know the Stations of the Cross as a traditional Lenten devotion, but how can we connect the Way of the Cross to our lives? Author Gary Jansen suggests that by walking through each station, we see the unique ways in which Jesus responded to suffering, and we are challenged to react similarly in our own struggles. Jansen writes: Though Jesus seems passive throughout his Passion—he never lifts a finger against anyone and he barely […]

Lent, a Time to (Re-)Learn the Story of Our Salvation—Part 1: Rescue

Lent is a wonderful time for us to learn or to re-learn the story of our salvation, which is at the heart of our Baptism. How does one go about telling a story, however, that spans several millennia and encompasses 72 books (and thousands of pages) of Scripture? Actually, the entire story of our salvation can be summarized and captured in three words: the story of our salvation is one of rescue, restoration, and reassurance. […]

Games in Lent

After a successful session with Advent Bingo, a catechist asked me whether Lent Bingo existed. While I don’t have a formal game board for that, there’s no reason we catechists can’t play Lent Bingo and other Lenten-themed games with our groups. While Lent is seen as a more solemn season than others in the liturgical year, and rightly so, there’s no reason we can’t lighten the mood in our classrooms with a game, even as […]

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