Ascension of the Lord, Year B, Primary

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Primary Session
Mark 16:15-20

Opening Prayer

Let us pray.
We thank you Jesus for not leaving us alone.
Help us to share your love with our friends and family.
In the name of Jesus Christ we pray.

Opening Life Reflection
The topic for today is the Ascension of the Lord. For today's session provide a bouquet of helium balloons that total one balloon per child. To begin, brainstorm with the children what happens when they let go of the string of a helium balloon. Discuss:

• Have you ever let go of the string of a helium balloon?
• What is it like to watch the balloon fly high up into the air?
• Do we know where the balloon goes after it climbs out of our sight?

Allow time for discussion. On the feast of the Ascension we celebrate that Jesus was taken up into heaven. We understand that even though Jesus is gone from our sight, he remains with us forever.

Listening to the Word of God
In the gospel today, listen to find out what the disciples do after Jesus is taken from their sight.

Read Mark 16:15-20.
Allow for silence.

Scripture Discussion Starters
• How is Jesus taken from the sight of his friends?
• What do the disciples do after Jesus is taken up to heaven?
• What helps the disciples understand that they are not left alone?

Scripture Background

Provide 2-3 minutes of background information on the gospel using the Catechist Background section.

In today's gospel Jesus is taken up into heaven to sit at the right hand of God. The disciples know that Jesus will never leave them alone. Even though Jesus is taken from their sight, his friends understand that he will remain with them always.

Before he ascends into heaven, Jesus tells his friends that they have work to do. Jesus' followers are called to go out and spread the good news of Jesus to all people. Those who believe will have the power to preach, heal, and cast out demons in Jesus' name. After Jesus is taken up to heaven, the disciples take his message to heart. They go out and spread the good news everywhere.

Questions for Deeper Reflection

• How does Jesus remain with his disciples?
• What work does Jesus' ask his followers to do?
• How can you take Jesus' message to heart?

[If you are not going to continue with the doctrinal discussion, proceed to the Gospel in Life.]

Doctrinal Discussion Starters
The Ascension of the Lord is professed in both the Apostles' and the Constantinopolitan-Nicene Creeds.
On the feast of the Ascension the Church prays: " the Lord Jesus, the king of glory, the conqueror of sin and death, ascended to heaven while the angels sang his praises. Christ, the mediator between God and [humanity], judge of the world and Lord of all, has passed beyond our sight, not to abandon us but to be our hope. Christ is the beginning, the head of the Church; where he has gone, we hope to follow."

The feast of the Ascension of the Lord is celebrated forty days after Easter. Today's feast reminds us that Jesus is always with us. He ascended into heaven and is now seated at the right hand of the Father.

• What does the Church celebrate forty days after Easter?
• What are we reminded of on the feast of the Ascension?
• Why do we hope to follow Jesus?

Sacrament Connection
One way that Jesus' healing work continues in the Church today is through the Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick. This sacrament strengthens our faith when we are seriously ill or dying.

The Gospel in Life
How can you show others this week that you believe in Jesus?

Posted in: Sessions B