Year of Faith Retreat – Week 1, Day 4: What Are You Afraid Of?

WEEK ONE: The Creed DAY 4: What Are You Afraid Of? (Sin, Salvation, and the Cross of Jesus) Fear is a natural human condition. The following are considered some of the most common fears. Which do you share? Spiders, snakes, heights, closed spaces, lightning, injections, social situations, flying, germs/dirt, public speaking, darkness It often seems as though we have many things to fear. Perhaps this is why one of the most commonly used phrases in the […]

40 Ideas for 40 Days – Lenten Activities: Stained Glass Cross Craft

This activity is called Stained Glass Cross Craft and comes to us from a Web site called Frills, Fluff, and Trucks. The craft is very simple and requires only tissue paper (cut into squares), clear contact paper, and black paper (cut into two matching size cross outlines). Begin by taping down a section of contact paper onto a table top, sticky side up, and place one of the cross outlines on it. Next, invite the […]

More Advice for Catechists of Intermediate Age Children

Here’s what Irene says about being a catechist of intermediate age children: I also love working with intermediate children. I’ve taught fourth grade for a number of years and found the children so ready and willing to learn about the Catholic faith. They love doing posters, dioramas, role playing, group work…I even gave them opportunities to be catechists. Wow! That was an awesome experience! One particular unit of study on the Way of the Cross […]

A Little Rusty

Last evening’s class went very nicely, however, I really felt like I needed to ovecome some “rust” after a few weeks of not teaching (because of interruptions in the schedule). For one, I forgot to include our little ritual gesture of marking our foreheads, lips, and hearts with the sign of the Cross at the start of class! Didn’t think about it till I got home and was reviewing in my mind how the class […]

40 Ideas for 40 Days—My Lenten Calendar: 40 Crosses

Several years ago, my friend Victor Valdez provided us with Lenten Calendars (40 Crosses). Sadly, Victor passed away in 2013. In honor of his memory, we have updated his calendars in English and Spanish. Thank you again, Victor. Rest in peace, good friend! Hard to believe that Lent is just a few weeks away! Here are the links to the calendars: 40 Crosses 2019 (English) 40 Crosses 2019 (Spanish)

“Can We Do That Again?”

To begin Monday’s session, we did an All Saints Day procession. I talked a little bit about what a procession is, comparing it to a parade and how parades usually celebrate victory and the hoisting of a trophy – such as the Stanley Cup here in Chicago! 🙂 We talked about how the Cross of Jesus is a symbol of victory: God’s victory over sin and death. I had my aide, Daneen, lead the procession, […]

Jesus Is Our Redeemer

Here’s my lesson plan for Monday, November 1, 2010: Theme: Jesus is our Redeemer Big Idea: Through his death and Resurrection, Jesus redeems us – restores our “reputation.” Engage As kids enter, give them a “Do You Know Your Trophies?” worksheet and have them match famous trophies with the correct sport. Go over the answers. Show them a trophy you have and talk about what a trophy symbolizes (victory) Show them a crucifix and explain […]

More About Monday’s Class

As I mentioned in my last post, I taught my first 4th grade RE class on Monday and really loved it. Here are some more details about the ups and downs of that first class: I arrived 45 mins early only to find out that the doors don’t open until 30 mins before class begins. I’m such a dork! 🙂 For the early session, the kids kind of straggle in over a 10 min. period […]

Good Friday Graces

The graces of the Triduum continue to flow as we marked the Celebration of the Lord’s Passion and the Veneration of the Cross on this Good Friday at St. Julie Billart Parish in Tinley Park (this is where my wife and I usually attend Mass on Sundays).                 The solemn beginning in which we prostrate ourselves (through the priest and deacon) before the Cross reminds us of the […]

The Story of the Cross

Recently, I was asked by the folks at Loyola Press to share a “staff favorite” with regards to LP resources for families with young children. I chose to recommend The Story of the Cross. Here’s my little blurb about this excellent resource. Speaking of the Cross, last evening, the 8th graders put on the Living Stations and did a nice job. Three of my students had roles: the narrator, a Roman centurion, and crowd member. […]

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