Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C, Primary

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Primary Session

Luke 18:9-14


Opening Prayer

Let us pray.
Dear God,
Thank you for hearing our prayers.
Help us listen to you when we pray.
In the name of Jesus Christ we pray.


Opening Life Reflection

The theme for today is humility in prayer. To begin, invite the children to pray a prayer of meditation. As an option, you may want to play soft instrumental music in the background.

Invite the children to sit quietly, close their eyes and breathe slowly. Begin by saying softly, “imagine that you are in your favorite place. (Pause) Imagine that Jesus comes toward you and you can feel the love and warmth of his presence. Share with Jesus your thoughts and concerns. (Pause). Listen to what Jesus has to say to you.”

After a few moments invite the children to open their eyes. Discuss:

  • What was it like to pray a prayer of meditation?
  • How did it feel when Jesus came toward you?
  • Did you listen to what Jesus had to say to you?

Allow time for discussion. When we pray we share everything about ourselves with God. We also listen when we pray. Praying helps us grow closer to God.


Listening to the Word of God

In the Gospel today listen to Jesus tell a story to teach his followers how to pray

Read Luke 18:9-14.

Allow for silence.


Scripture Discussion Starters

  • What story does Jesus tell?
  • How does the Pharisee pray?
  • How does the tax collector pray?
  • What does Jesus teach his followers about prayer?


Scripture Background

Provide 2-3 minutes of background information on the Gospel.

In today’s Gospel Jesus teaches his followers about how to pray. He tells a story about a self-righteous Pharisee and a humble tax collector. Jesus tells this parable to teach his followers to be honest and humble when they pray.

When the Pharisee prays, he brags about his own greatness. He lists for God all the good things that he has done. He even puts other people down while he prays.

On the other hand the tax collector speaks to God with humility. He is sorry for his sins and he asks God for forgiveness. The tax collector does not compare himself with anyone. Instead, he shares everything about himself with God. God hears and answers the honest prayer of the tax collector.


Questions for Deeper Reflection

  • Why does the Pharisee brag about his greatness?
  • What does it mean to be humble?
  • How is the tax collector honest with God?

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


Doctrinal Discussion Starters

Humility before God in Prayer

Praying helps us get to know God better. We share with God everything about our lives when we pray. We can be completely honest with God and trust that God loves us. Prayer is talking and listening to God.

Our Catholic tradition teaches two forms of prayer to help us talk and listen to God, meditation and contemplation.

In meditation we use our imaginations. Meditation can start with a Bible reading. As the Bible story is being read we meditate by using our imagination to put ourselves in the story. In meditation we silently tell God what is in our heart. We listen to God’s call in our lives.

In contemplative prayer, we silently spend time in God’s loving presence. This type of prayer is a gift from God.

  • What is prayer?
  • How do you talk and listen to God?
  • Why does praying help us get to know God better?


The Gospel in Life

Ask a family member to read a Bible story to you this week to help you pray a prayer of meditation. Use your imagination.


Connecting to Faith First® Legacy Edition

At Home Family Guide, theme 17
Kindergarten, chapter 16
Grade 1, chapter 25
Grade 2, chapter 24
Grade 3, chapter 14 and 25

Posted in: Sessions C