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This Sunday, the Church starts a new Liturgical Year with the beginning of Advent. Around the world, millions of people begin to prepare their hearts, their homes, and their churches for the coming of our Savior. As parents, catechists, and teachers, it is our mission to help the children under our care to experience the holiness of this time and be ready to celebrate with joy the Nativity of Christ.
Every week in the GROW newsletter, you will find a helpful tip for teaching your Gospel Weeklies lesson, a reflection on the Sunday Gospel, and information about our online resources and seasonal activities. Here are tips for teaching the Gospel Weeklies lessons this week:
Lesson Theme: Advent prepares us to celebrate Christmas.
In this lesson, the children will work on an Advent Candle and an Advent Calendar to help them wait until Christmas Day. Make sure you have envelopes ready to send these two activities home, along with a puzzle activity and this week´s Family Corner. The instructions for all the lesson’s activities are on page 2.
Find a coloring page to accompany “I Can Wait” here.
Lesson Theme: Jesus promises to come again.
In this lesson, the children will make pinwheels that you will put together to create an Advent wreath. You will need to supply a base (cardboard) and paper candles with paper flames for this wreath.
Lesson Theme: We prepare for Jesus’ coming.
For this lesson’s Closing Prayer, we suggest that you adapt the Family Forgiveness Prayer to use with your class. You’ll want to give some thought in advance to how you will do this. Make the connection between asking for and offering forgiveness with being prepared for Jesus’ return at his Second Coming.
Lesson Theme: God cares for us.
The story in this lesson is a play that imagines three generations of a family away from their homeland during the Babylonian Exile. You may wish to prepare some props for the play, but don’t let that intimidate you. Props aren’t necessary; gestures and creative expression can go a long way to help the young people engage with the story.
Lesson Theme: Be ready.
This week we celebrate the beginning of the season of Advent. On the Living the Gospel feature, the young people will work on an Advent Calendar to take home. Make sure to keep one copy of this calendar in your classroom and to refer to it throughout the season. You can use the calendar to plan service projects for your class during Advent.
The heading box on page 4 incorrectly lists the Sunday Gospel Reading as Matthew 13:33–37. It should be Mark 13:33–37.
DON’T FORGET to check out our Unit 2 Overview Webinars. You can find them in English and in Spanish here.
Image credit: Corinne SIMON/CIRIC