Let us pray.
Mighty God, let the power of your love shine brightly in us.
Help us to discover the gifts and talents that you have given us
so that we may use them to brighten the world.
In the name of Jesus Christ we pray. Amen.
Opening Life Reflection
Provide each child with pencil and paper cut into the shape of a large star. Begin by pointing out that just as stars shine in the sky, people are able to brighten our world. Invite the children to take their paper stars and write the names of all the people who shine like stars in our world. After a few moments discuss:
- Who are the people listed on your star?
- How do those people brighten the world?
Next invite the children to turn their stars over, write their own names on top and list all the talents that they have which help to bring light into the world. Discuss:
- What makes you a star?
- How do you brighten the world by sharing your talents?
All God’s children are called to share their talents with others. When we live as children of God we brighten our world. Through baptism every Christian is called to be a shining star and reflect God’s love.
Listening to the Word of God
In the Old Testament reading, God’s people are delivered. Listen to the joyful message.
Read Jeremiah 31:7-9.
Allow for silence.
Scripture Discussion Starters
- Who is God gathering together?
- Why is this joyful news?
- How is God going to lead the people?
In the gospel today Jesus cures a blind man who calls for help. Listen to what this reading tells us about hearing Jesus’ call.
Read Mark 10:46-52.
Allow for silence.
- Why did Bartimaeus call out to Jesus?
- What did Jesus do?
- What saved Bartimaeus?
- What did Bartimaeus do after Jesus cured his blindness?
Provide 2-3 minutes of background information on the readings using the Catechist Background section.
In the first reading we hear the joyful announcement that God’s people are saved. The people can shout for joy and give praise to God because—along with the blind and the lame—they will be gathered together. We learn that God will console and guide the people of Israel, and lead them to streams of water. Because the reading from Jeremiah refers to God gathering in the blind, it relates to today’s gospel story. Also this reading refers to God leading the people to brooks of water which relates to baptism and the water of life.
The gospel story of Jesus curing Bartimaeus of his blindness tells us about the call to follow Jesus. Bartimaeus is blind yet he calls out to Jesus, “Son of David”. This title for Jesus implies that although Bartimaeus is blind, he “sees” Jesus as the Messiah. Jesus stops and says to his disciples, “call him.” When Bartimaeus hears the call of Jesus he leaps toward him. Bartimaeus asks Jesus to heal his blindness. Jesus sends Bartimaeus on his way saying that his faith has healed him. After meeting Jesus, there is no turning back. The only choice for Bartimaeus is to follow Jesus.
Questions for Deeper Reflection
- Do you ever call out to Jesus for help?
- How does Jesus help you?
- What do you think it means to follow Jesus?
(If you are not going to continue with the doctrinal discussion, proceed tot he Gospel in Life.)
Doctrinal Discussion Starters
The Common Priesthood of the Baptized
Catholics believe that through the sacrament of baptism, all God’s people share in the common priesthood and every Christian is called to holiness. The waters of baptism offer God’s people new life in Christ. The faithful live out their baptismal call through a life of faith, hope and love. With the help of the Holy Spirit, the baptized discover and use their talents to bring God’s love into the world.
The ordained priesthood of bishops and priests is not the same as the common priesthood. Rather, they are at the service of the common priesthood of all believers. Jesus Christ is the source of all ministries in the Church.
- What do you remember about your baptism?
- How do the ordained priests in your parish serve others?
- How does the Holy Spirit help you to share your talents with others?
The Gospel in Life
Brighten the world! Share your God-given talents at home, in school, and with friends.