Eighteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C, junior high

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Junior High Session

Ecclesiastes 1:2, 2:21-23
Luke 12:13-21

Opening Prayer

Let us pray.
God of all gifts,
thank you for the many gifts you have given us.
Help us to be grateful, and keep us from always wanting more.
In the name of Jesus Christ we pray.
Amen.

 

Opening Life Reflection

The theme for today is finding our treasure in God. Begin by having the young people brainstorm what they are most thankful for at this time in their lives. Write down their responses. Discuss:

  • How do you thank God for the gifts that you have been given?
  • Are you satisfied with what you have?
  • Do you seem to always want more than what you have?
  • Have you felt envy toward another person because of something they have?

Allow time for discussion. The tenth commandment reminds us to be thankful for what we have and it warns us about greed and envy. Wanting what other people have can keep us from loving God and our neighbor.

 

Listening to the Word of God

In the Old Testament reading listen to what can turn us away from God.

Read Ecclesiastes 1:2; 2:21-23.

Allow for silence.

 

Scripture Discussion Starters

  • How is vanity described in this reading?
  • Why is vanity evil?
  • How can vanity turn a person away from God?

In the Gospel reading listen to find out where true riches are found.

Read Luke 12:13-21.

Allow for silence.

  • What does this reading warn against?
  • Why does Jesus tell the story of a rich landowner?
  • What is wrong with storing treasures?
  • Where can one find true riches?

 

Scripture Background

Provide 2-3 minutes of background information on the readings.

In today’s Old Testament reading the author states that, “All things are vanity.”  This statement brings to light the harmful nature of human effort for the sake of personal gain alone. Material wealth and accomplishments are not lasting. True riches and lasting security can be found in God alone.

The Gospel reading today also stresses that we can only find our treasure in God. When God comes first in our lives, all other things are put in the right place. Today’s passage begins with a warning against all kinds of greed. Jesus tells the story of a rich landowner who foolishly plans to store his treasure. This story stresses the point that greed only blocks one from acquiring what is really important. What is most important in life is a deep relationship with God.

 

Questions for Deeper Reflection

  • How can you grow rich in the sight of God?
  • Do you trust that God will give you what you need?
  • What keeps you from trusting in God?
  • How important is your relationship with God?

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

 

Doctrinal Discussion Starters

The Tenth Commandment

The tenth commandment, “You shall not covet your neighbor’s goods,” warns against greed and avarice. Greed is the desire to constantly want more and more things. Avarice is the intense desire for wealth and power. The tenth commandment also warns against envy. Envy is the feeling of resentment over another person’s belongings. Greed, avarice and envy can lead to terrible crimes of violence and injustice.

Our faith teaches us to value the human person and to treat one another with dignity and respect. Wanting what another person has is wrong when it leads to a disrespect and disregard for another person.

Following the tenth commandment keeps our hearts in the right place. It keeps us thankful for the gifts that God has given us.

  • How can you avoid wanting what other people have?
  • Has greed, avarice or envy ever tempted you?  Explain
  • Is your relationship with God a priority in your life?

 

The Gospel in Life

How can you keep your relationship with God a priority this week?

 

Connecting to Faith First® Legacy Edition

At Home Family Guide, theme 15
Junior High, Morality, chapters 10 and 11

 

 

Posted in: Sessions C