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Ascension of the Lord, Year A, Primary

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Primary Session
Matthew 28:16-20

Opening Prayer
Let us pray.
Christ has died,
Christ is risen,
Christ will come again.
Memorial Acclamation, Eucharistic Prayer.

Opening Life Reflection
The theme for today is the Ascension of Jesus. To begin, write the Memorial Acclamation, “Christ has died, Christ is risen, Christ will come again” on a large sheet of paper or chalkboard. Provide sheets of white construction paper, and crayons for the children. Invite them to illustrate one or all three parts of the Memorial Acclamation on paper with crayons. Discuss:
• What do we believe about Jesus?
• What happened after Jesus was raised from the dead?
• Why does Jesus return to his Father in heaven?

Allow time for discussion. After the resurrection Jesus returned to his Father in heaven. Before he left his disciples he blessed them and told them that they would not be left alone.

Listen to the Word of God
In the gospel today listen to Jesus tell his followers to share the good news about his life, death, and resurrection with everyone.

Read Matthew 28:16-20.
Allow for silence.

Scripture Discussion Starters
• Where do the disciples meet with Jesus?
• What does Jesus tell his followers to go out and do?
• How does Jesus help his friends understand that he will always be with them?

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

In today’s gospel, Jesus leads his disciples to a mountain outside Jerusalem. Jesus appears to his followers as Lord of all, and everyone who sees him believes. Jesus reminds his disciples of his life, his death, and how he was raised to new life. Jesus sends his followers out into the world to share this good news with everyone. Jesus tells his friends that he will remain with them always. The disciples are blessed to go out and continue the work of Jesus on earth.

Questions for Deeper Reflection
• Why do the disciples believe in Jesus?
• How does Jesus bless the disciples?
• Why does Jesus tell his friends that he will always be with them?

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

Doctrinal Discussion Starters
“He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father” (Nicene Creed)

The Catholic faith teaches that after his resurrection, the Risen Jesus returned to his Father in heaven. We call this the Ascension of Jesus. The Ascension is part of the saving plan of God, which we call the Paschal Mystery. We show our faith in the Paschal Mystery at Mass when we sing, “Christ has died, Christ is risen, Christ will come again.” Jesus has gone before us to open the way to eternal life with God. Our belief in the Ascension of Jesus gives us hope that where Jesus has gone, we will follow.

• What is the Ascension of Jesus?
• When do we show our faith in the Paschal Mystery at Mass?
• Why is Jesus preparing a place for his followers in heaven?

The Gospel in Life
How can you spread the good news about Jesus, at home, in school, and with friends this week?

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Posted in: Sessions A