Nativity of Saint John the Baptist, A-C, Primary

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Primary Session
Luke 1:57-66, 80

Opening Prayer
Let us pray.
Loving God, thank you for reaching out to us with love.
Help us to love and follow you.
In the name of Jesus Christ we pray.

Opening Life Reflection
Today we celebrate the birth of John the Baptist. John the Baptist was a messenger of God. He helped people get ready for Jesus. To begin, invite the children to reflect on how they get messages. Discuss:
• Have you ever had good news to share?
• How do you get messages?
• Why is it important to get messages?

Allow time for discussion. John the Baptist was a messenger of good news. He announced the coming of Jesus.

Listening to the Word of God
Today’s gospel tells of a very special person who is going to be born. Listen to find out who it is.

Read Luke 1:57-66, 80.
Allow for silence.

Scripture Discussion Starters
• Who is going to be born?
• Who wants the child to be named John?
• What do the neighbors and relatives think?
• How does John grow up?

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

Long ago the birth of Jesus began to be celebrated. Soon afterward, Christians began to celebrate John the Baptist’s birth as well. The Church celebrates the feast of most saints on the day of their death. We celebrate the birth of only two saints: the Blessed Virgin Mary and John the Baptist. We believe that Mary entered the world sinless at her birth and tradition suggests that John the Baptist was also freed from original sin when he “leaped for joy” in his mother’s womb upon meeting the Savior.

In today’s gospel Luke describes what happens when John the Baptist is born. The grace of God is already with him even before his birth. God prepares John the Baptist for his role as messenger. He will tell the people about the coming of Jesus the Messiah.

Questions for Deeper Reflection
• Why did God send John to be a messenger?
• What did John the Baptist help people do?
• What is the message of John the Baptist?

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

Doctrinal Discussion Starters
Human Cooperation with Divine Grace

The birth of John the Baptist reveals how God reaches out to us first. God calls and waits for us to listen and respond. John the Baptist responds to God’s call in freedom. This shows how God’s grace and human freedom work together to bring about salvation. God reaches out to us in love. That gift of love invites a response.

We believe that grace is the favor of God, freely given to us so that we might respond and become children of God. In baptism we receive the gift of grace and we become part of God’s family. We are born anew into Christ and we receive the gift of the Spirit.

• How do you listen to God?
• How can you tell others about God’s love?
• How are you part of God’s family?

The Gospel in Life
This week write messages of love to bring to a local hospital or nursing home.

Posted in: Sessions A , Sessions B , Sessions C