Second Sunday of Easter, Year A, Intermediate

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Intermediate Session

Acts 2:42-47
John 20:19-31


Opening Prayer

Let us pray.
Loving God, thank you for the gift of faith.
Help us to find your goodness and love in all of creation.
In the name of Jesus Christ, our Risen Lord, we pray.


Opening Life Reflection

The topic for today is faith. To begin divide a large sheet of poster paper into three columns titled, at home, in school, and with friends. Invite the children to brainstorm how they can be aware of God’s presence at home, in school, and with friends. Write down their responses in the appropriate columns. Discuss

  • Where do you find signs of God’s presence?
  • Who helps you learn about God’s love?
  • What is faith?

Allow time for discussion. Faith is both a gift and a response. God’s love is revealed to us in all of creation. When we trust in God’s love for us we grow in faith.


Listening to the Word of God

In the first reading from Acts of the Apostles, listen to learn out how the Spirit-filled disciples lived.

Read Acts 2:42-47.

Allow for silence.


Scripture Discussion Starters

  • How do the disciples live?
  • What do they share?
  • How do they praise God?

In today’s Gospel the Risen Lord appears to his followers. Listen to find out how the disciples grow in faith.

Read John 20:19-31.

Allow for silence.

  • Why are the disciples meeting behind locked doors?
  • What does Jesus say when he appears to the disciples?
  • What does Jesus show the disciples?
  • Does Thomas believe in the Risen Lord at first?
  • How does Thomas come to believe?


Scripture Background

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

On this Second Sunday of Easter we continue to praise God with great joy for the gift of salvation given through Jesus. Throughout the Easter season, the first reading is taken from the Acts of the Apostles to show the mystery of the Church as it developed from its beginnings.

Today’s first reading from Acts describes the Spirit-filled life of the disciples. They live as a community of believers, sharing all things in common. The disciples pray and break bread in each other’s homes. They joyfully gather together to eat and give praise to God. And God spreads the faith by increasing the number of new members.

The gospel today presents a story of mission, forgiveness, and faith. The story begins with the frightened disciples gathered behind locked doors. The Risen Lord appears to his followers on the evening of the resurrection. The first word he speaks is “peace,” and then he tells the disciples to go out and continue his saving work: “As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” Jesus breathes on his followers, giving them the Spirit.

Thomas is not present when the Risen Lord first appears to the disciples. He tells the others that unless he sees, he will not believe. When Jesus appears to him, Thomas strongly admits to having faith. Thomas calls Jesus “My Lord and my God.” The passage ends with a message for all believers. Those who have not seen as Thomas did are called to believe.


Questions for Deeper Reflection

  • How does the first reading from Acts remind you of the Church today?
  • What message does Jesus bring to his followers?
  • How are the disciples given the power to go out and continue the work that Jesus began on earth?
  • How are you called to believe without seeing?

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


Doctrinal Discussion Starters

God invites us into a relationship of love. God’s love is freely given and we are free to respond. Faith is both a gift and a response. Faith gives us the ability to believe the truths that God has revealed to us through Jesus Christ. The community of believers then hands on the gift of faith from God. With the power of the Holy Spirit, the words and actions of faith-filled people help others to live their faith.

Sometimes we have questions or even doubts about our faith. We may struggle to understand the evil and suffering that exists in our world. It is part of our human nature to search for truth and meaning in life. In times of doubt and struggle, we can turn to our Church community for support.

  • Who helps you when you have questions about your faith?
  • How is faith a gift from God?
  • Where can you learn more about your faith?


The Gospel in Life

This week, how can you show others that you have faith in God?

Connecting to Faith First® Legacy Edition

At Home Family Guide, themes 20 and 27
Grade 4, page 269 parish and page 373 school and chapter 1
Grade 5, page 269 parish and page 373 school and chapter 15
Grade 6, page 269 parish and page 373 school and chapter 1

Posted in: Sessions A