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Sunday, March 12, 2017

The Cenacle


This morning in the atrium I presented the work that is called The Cenacle. Cenacle means upper room and this work tells the story of the Last Supper. I do not present this lesson at circle time the way I do many others but invite all the children who wish to come and hear it. This morning all of our children wanted to take part. 

During the lesson we invite the children to listen to some words Jesus spoke for the first time, "This is my body, this is my blood." Their eyes lit up at this because they've heard these words before, at Mass! I asked if they've ever seen a table like this one- with a white cloth, two candles, a beautiful cup and plate. Of course, it's like the altar! 

A few of the children knew that after this meal Jesus was arrested and condemned to die. Of course we also know he rose again on Easter. The special lessons we use during Lent are so wonderful. They really help to bring the story of Jesus alive not only to the children, but to me, too! I often think about all our Catechesis of the Good Shepherd materials while I'm listening to the scripture passages during Holy Week. They have really enhanced my understanding and I hope the children will carry these lessons with them through the years as they grow.

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What you can do: Sit up close to the front of the church during Mass and invite your young child to try and see the items they are learning about in the atrium. See if they can find the Paschal candle, the altar cloth, the candles, the paten and chalice. Before or after Mass look for the tabernacle and the sanctuary candle. Show your children that all Jesus' disciples and painted along both sides of St. Mary's. Often by giving them things to look for in the church or moments that they may recognize during Mass helps them to sit a little quieter and gives them something to focus on.