Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B, Primary

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Primary Session
Mark 1:29-39

Opening Prayer

Let us pray.
Thank you, God, for giving us many different feelings.
Help us remember that you are with us when we feel hurt or sad.
In the name of Jesus Christ we pray.
Amen.

Opening Life Reflection
The topic for today is the problem of evil. To begin, in a basket place small slips of paper with difficult feelings written on them, such as hurt, angry, frightened, worried, and sad. Invite the children to pass the basket around and have each child pick a paper from the basket. Explain that each child will have the opportunity to act out the feeling that they pick, without using words. Invite the children to act out the feeling on their strip of paper and have the large group guess what feeling it is. Discuss:

• What causes people to feel hurt or sad?
• What helps us when we feel hurt or sad?
• How can you help someone who is feeling bad?

Allow time for discussion. We all have times when we feel sad, hurt or angry. Our faith teaches us that God always loves us, no matter how we feel. God’s love is always with us.

Listening to the Word of God
In the gospel today listen to find out what happens when Jesus meets people who are sick.

Read Mark 1:29-39.
Allow for silence.

Scripture Discussion Starters
• What happens when Jesus meets Simon’s mother-in-law?
• Why do people who are hurt and sick come to Jesus?
• How does Jesus heal the sick?

Scripture Background

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

In today’s gospel we find Jesus healing the sick and casting out demons. When Jesus meets people who are sick or in pain he cares for them. This concern for the sick is shown when Jesus takes Simon’s sick mother-in-law by the hand and makes her well. Many people come to Jesus for healing. Jesus brings goodness and health to those in need.

This gospel shows Jesus taking time out to pray before he continues to make people well. Jesus’ healing love helps us to see that good is more powerful than evil. The presence of Jesus reveals the saving love of God to the world.

Questions for Deeper Reflection

• How does Jesus show love and care for people who are sick?
• Why does Jesus take time to pray?
• Where do you find Jesus’ healing love in the world today?

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

Doctrinal Discussion Starters
The Problem of Evil
All human beings experience suffering and pain. It is hard to understand why God allows evil to exist in the world. The Church teaches that evil causes the imperfections that cause human suffering. However, the meaning of suffering will always remain a mystery.

When thinking about the problem of evil it is important to remember the power of God’s love. We believe that God is good and all-powerful. God’s Son shared our suffering and death so that our sins would be forgiven. Jesus came to save us from all sin. Jesus continues to bring God’s healing love into the world through the Church and with the power of the Spirit.

• How can bad choices cause suffering?
• How can good choices bring about healing?
• How does the Church continue to bring God’s healing into the world today?

Sacrament Connection
The Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick celebrates the healing power of God’s love. In the sacrament of Anointing of the Sick we are given the strength to face sickness and death with courage and hope. Through the power of the Holy Spirit this sacrament continues Christ’s work of healing among us.

The Gospel in Life
How can you help someone who is hurt or sad this week?

Posted in: Sessions B