Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B, Primary

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Primary Session
Mark 1:40-45

Opening Prayer

Let us pray.
Loving God, when we are sick or scared, hold us in your loving arms.
Help us to trust that you will make things better.
In the name of Jesus Christ we pray.
Amen.

Opening Life Reflection
The topic for today is the Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick. For today’s session bring in stuffed animals and some of the following materials: Band-Aids, small blankets, gauze bandages, and baby bottles. To begin, invite the children to imagine that the animals are feeling sick and they are going to help them feel better. Divide the children into small groups and provide one stuffed animal and some materials for each group. Have the children work together to help their pet feel better using the materials provided. Discuss:

• What did you do to help your animal feel better?
• How did it feel to help your sick pet?
• When friends or family members are sick, how do you show that you care?

Allow time for discussion. God brings comfort and healing to those who are sick. When we help others, we spread the loving kindness of God.

Listening to the Word of God
In the gospel today listen to find out how Jesus helps people who are sick.

Read Mark 1:40-45.
Allow for silence.

Scripture Discussion Starters
• Who comes to Jesus asking for help?
• How does Jesus help the leper?
• What does the healed man do?

Scripture Background

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

In today’s gospel a leper comes to Jesus for healing. The man is very sick with a skin disease called leprosy. The sick man boldly begs Jesus to be cured and Jesus lovingly responds.

Jesus feels compassion for the man. He reaches out his hand and the man is completely cured. Jesus urges the man to tell no one about what happened. However, the cured man goes off with excitement. He freely tells others the great news.

Questions for Deeper Reflection

• Why does Jesus help people who are sick?
• When do you ask Jesus for help?
• When do you share exciting news with others?

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

Doctrinal Discussion Starters
Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick
Jesus showed great compassion for those who were sick. He helped people believe in the goodness and healing power of God. While he did not heal everyone, his miracles showed the coming of the kingdom of God. The Church continues the healing mission of Jesus by taking care of those who are ill, by praying for them, and by celebrating the sacrament of the anointing of the sick.

In the sacrament of anointing of the sick, the Word of God is proclaimed from sacred Scripture. Then a silent laying on of hands by either a priest or bishop occurs. This is followed by the offering of the prayer of faith. Then the person who is sick is anointed with holy oil by the priest or bishop while the following words are said: “Through this holy anointing may the Lord in his love and mercy help you with the grace of the Holy Spirit. May the Lord who frees you from sin save you and raise you up.” The anointing can be made on the forehead and on the palms of the hands. The sacrament may be celebrated in a private home, in a hospital, in a nursing facility, or in a church. Families and parishioners are encouraged to be present to join in the prayer and offer the comfort and support of the whole Church.

• What do Jesus’ miracles teach us about God?
• How does the Church help people who are sick today?
• What is the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick?

Sacrament Connection
The Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick strengthens ones faith and gives those who are seriously ill or dying the grace to face their sickness. Through the Sacrament, the Holy Spirit offers the gifts of courage, hope and peace.

The Gospel in Life
How can you show care and concern for someone who is sick this week?

Posted in: Sessions B