Third Sunday of Easter, Year A, Junior High

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Junior High Session

Acts 2:14, 22-33
Luke 24:13-35


Opening Prayer

Let us pray.
Dear Jesus, you walk with us, sharing our joys and struggles.
Help us to recognize you in our daily lives.
In your name we pray.


Opening Life Reflection

The theme for today is the celebration of the Eucharist. Begin by brainstorming with the youngsters how they celebrate special occasions in their lives. Write down their responses. Discuss:

  • Why is food an important part of a celebration?
  • How did Jesus show his friends the importance of sharing meals together?
  • What meal do we share at Mass that helps us to remember Jesus’ presence with us?

Allow time for discussion. In the Eucharist, when bread is broken and blessed, we recognize Jesus’ presence with us. We can count on Jesus to be with us throughout our lives.


Listening to the Word of God

In today’s reading from Acts of the Apostles, listen to Peter spread the word that Jesus has been raised from the dead.

Read Acts 2:14, 22-33.

Allow for silence.


Scripture Discussion Starters

  • What does Peter tell the others about Jesus?
  • How does Peter explain that the resurrection was part of God’s plan?
  • What does Peter tell his listeners about the Holy Spirit?

In the Gospel listen to find out how the disciples come to recognize the Risen Lord.

Read Luke 24:13-35.

Allow for silence.

  • Where are the disciples going?
  • What are they discussing?
  • Who joins the disciples on the road to Emmaus?
  • When do the disciples recognize Jesus?


Scripture Background

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

In the first reading from Acts, Peter boldly proclaims the good news that Jesus has been raised from the dead. He explains to the people that the crucifixion and Resurrection were part of God’s plan, foretold by Sacred Scripture. Peter declares that God has poured out the Holy Spirit. In this passage we see the Spirit in action with Peter’s strong and fearless testimony.

In today’s Gospel the Risen Lord appears to the disciples. In the Gospel story two of Jesus’ disciples are traveling to a village called Emmaus. They are talking with each other about all that has happened to Jesus. While they are walking, the risen Jesus comes near and walks beside them, but they do not recognize him. Jesus asks the disciples to tell him what they are talking about. They are surprised to hear that this stranger has not heard about Jesus of Nazareth. To help them understand the events of his life, Jesus begins to explain the scriptures in a way that stirs their hearts.

When they come close to their village, the disciples extend to the stranger an invitation to, “Stay with us.” Jesus goes to their home and while they are eating, he takes some bread, blesses it, breaks it, and gives it to his friends. Then the disciples recognize the Risen Lord.

In this Gospel story Jesus explains the Scriptures, shares a meal in which the disciples recognize his presence, and then the disciples joyfully go forth to share the good news of the resurrection. These actions continue to be part of the celebration of the Christian Eucharist.


Questions for Deeper Reflection

  • How did Jesus’ disciples come to believe in the resurrection?
  • Why is the risen Jesus made known to the disciples in the breaking of bread?
  • When do you recognize the presence of the Risen Lord in your life?

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


Doctrinal Discussion Starters

The Celebration of the Eucharist

When we celebrate the Eucharist we remember and share in the paschal mystery: the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. By sharing in the Eucharist we are joined together with Jesus and with one another. The Eucharist is the center of our Christian life.

We celebrate the Eucharist at Mass. We share stories of our faith and share in the Body and Blood of Christ. The two main parts of the Mass are called the Liturgy of the Word and the Liturgy of the Eucharist. In the first part, we hear and respond to the Word of God proclaimed and preached. In the second part, we give thanks and remember what God has done for us in Jesus by sharing a meal.

In the celebration of the Eucharist, the Church believes that Jesus Christ is present in the people who are gathered, in the priest, in the Sacred Scriptures, and in the bread and wine. By the power of the Holy Spirit the bread and wine are changed into the Body and Blood of Christ. Jesus is truly present in the Eucharist.

The celebration of the Eucharist ends with a prayer that sends us forth to carry on the work of Jesus in the world.

  • Why do we celebrate Eucharist?
  • How does celebrating the Eucharist remind you that Jesus is with you?
  • How do you bring the presence of Jesus with you throughout your daily life?


The Gospel in Life

How can you be more aware of Jesus’ presence in your life this week?


Connecting to Faith First® Legacy Edition

At Home Family Guide, theme 27
Junior High, Church and Sacraments, chapter 9

Posted in: Sessions A