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CCD hs: grace + sin + service journal (day 9)

November 17, 2009 Leave a comment

In our high school Confirmation class, we reviewed everything we learned to date using handouts of outlined points covered each day (basically our catechist notes).  I then covered GRACE, SIN, and CONFESSION.  The visual illustrations are my own (in parenthesis) that I used to teach these “highly religious” words to 7th graders years ago.  (If you have any other suggestions or comments, please let me know.)

Holy = to be set apart and united with God.

Grace = free and undeserved gift of God’s love and life.  (like “air”)

Sanctifying Grace = supernatural gift from God where our sins are forgiven & are made holy. First receive thru Baptism & continually sanctified through all sacraments.  (like “clean air“)  Lost by mortal sin.

Actual Grace = God’s impulse to help in our everyday lives.  (like “sweet smells”)

Sacramental Grace = graces specific to each sacrament.  (like “satellite TV”)

Sin = freely choosing to do something that we know is wrong and against God’s will; we can sin in thought, word, action, or by omission.  (like “rejecting air”)

Mortal Sin = serious offense that breaks our relationship with God & His grace. (like “holding your breath”)  Requirements are …

  1. it must be a grave matter
  2. we must know we are sinning
  3. we must freely choose to sin

Venial Sin = a less serious offense that weakens our relationship with God.  (like “smoking”)

Sacrament of Reconciliation = by confessing mortal sins with a contrite heart to a priest (in persona Christi = in the person of Christ), we are reconciled with God and with the Church, the Body of Christ.  Penance is the whole cycle of conversion, forgiveness and making reparation (repaying any debt) for our sins.  This strengthens us to resist future temptations.

CONFESSION Procedure

  1. Spend some time reflecting on your actions and do a thorough examination of conscience.
  2. Go in the confessional & greet the priest.
  3. Make the sign of the cross together.
  4. Begin: “Bless me Father for I have sinned.  It has been (time) since my last confession.”
  5. Confess your sins.
  6. Priest will speak to you and/or share something from Scripture.
  7. Priest will give you your penance.
  8. You will say the Act of Contrition.
  9. Priest will pray the prayer of absolution.
  10. Thank the priest & leave confessional.
  11. Spend some time doing your penance.

We finished the class by giving examples on their “Christian Service” Journal reflection that is due next time.

CCD hs: St Ignatius + BAPTiSM + PRAY + ARRR + journaling (day 8)

November 10, 2009 159 comments

In our high school Confirmation class, today was supposed to be a review of everything to day, but I couldn’t get my handouts run off in time, so I took the cue from the saint presented today and taught on next week’s topic, PRAYER.

St Ignatius of Loyola (16th century;  feast day July 31) injured in battle at age 30. During recovery, he read the life of the saints & responded strongly to a personal call by God.  He was convinced that God could be found in all things, and was guided by an inner peace (“consolation”) that comes from knowing one is doing the will of God.  Developed the “Spiritual Exercises,” a practical guide to live a truly Christian life with prayer & especially devoted to the name of Christ (IHS).  His companions were called the “Company of Jesus,” today called the “Society of Jesus,” or the Jesuits, one of the largest religious communities in the world. Besides the 3 vows of poverty, chastity and obedience, members take a 4th vow of obedience to the Pope.

Prayer of Self-Offering to God

by St Ignatius of Loyola (1491-1556)

Take, O Lord, and receive my entire liberty, my memory, my understanding, and my whole will.  All that I am and all that I possess, You have given me.  I surrender it all to You to be disposed of according to Your Will.  Give me only Your love and Your grace; with these I will be rich enough and will desire nothing more.

Sacrament of Marriage … purpose is …

  • Pro-create (open to children),
  • Educate (evangelize your Catholic children)
  • Holy Mate (get your spouse to heaven)

Types of prayersB.A.P.T.i.S.M.

  • BLESSING – invoke God’s power for a person, place or activity
  • ADORATION – the “created” before the Creator
  • PRAISE – glory God (for who He is)
  • THANKSGIVING – gratitude (for what He does)
  • i ASK for ME (petition) + OTHERS (intercession)
  • SORRY – ask of forgiveness
  • MEDITATION – tuning into God, reflection (through quiet prayer, Sacred Scripture, lectio divina, liturgy of the hours, Rosary, holy icons, imagery, books of daily devotion, lives of saints, works of spirituality, etc.)

The MASS includes ALL these types of prayer

CONTEMPLETIVE prayer“silent love” — a deep awareness of God’s presence by being alone with God who we know loves us (“centering prayer” helps develop skills)

Steps in prayer … P.R.A.Y.

  • PRAISE = God for who He is + thanksgiving
  • REPENT = confess + rec forgiveness + change
  • ASK = for others + me   (see A.R.R.R.)
  • YIELD = be open to God’s voice & His Will

[PRAYER] When your spending time in personal prayer with the Lord, here’s a good outline to follow  . . . . A.R.R.R.

Personal Prayer … A.R.R.R.

  • ACKNOWLEDGE –- How’s my life right now? Pay attention to your thought + feelings + desires (“the Big 3”).
  • RELATE -– Tell God about ALL “3” honestly.
  • RECEIVE -– Quiet your mind, focus on God, & listen to “the Big 3.”  (Discern spirits)
  • RESPOND -– do what you NEED to do

When you have something to talk to the Lord about, process your “Big 3” with this model.

HOMEWORK:

(1) 3 prayer journals — letters to God, (2) Chapter 3 Quiz, (3) Chapter 17 Quiz

“holiness” in Rise … by John Paul II

With a bad rainstorm (drought-relief) today, I started re-reading John Paul II‘s book, Rise, Let Us be on Our Way.” Although it mainly reflects on his journey to and through becoming a bishop, it is written for everyone.  It’s a simple read with great personal insight and advice for all Christians.  Here are some points I highlighted from the Ordination Liturgy parts of  “Vocation” (section 1):

At a priestly ordination, the hands area anointed; at an episcopal [bishop] ordination the head is anointed.  This signifies the call to new responsibilities: the bishop will have the task of guiding the Church, which will palce great demands on him. … The ring on the bishop’s finger signifies that he is married to the Church, the sign of fidelity … to protect the holy Church, bride of Christ. … The Book of Gospels is given to remind of a bishop’s calling, to not only serve, but he must be a teacher. … The miter is a reminder of his commitment to let the “light of holiness shine in him” like a “city on a hill” (Mt 5:14) to be “a living example to the flock” (1 Pet 5:3). … The crosier is a sign of the authority that enables the bishop to fulfill his duty to care for his flock.

Outside of the cool symbols, what really struck me was the personal call to holiness that ALL need to find.

The essential meaning of holiness is that it is always personal, and that each and every man is called to it.  All members of the people of God are called, but each is called in a unique and unrepeatable manner.  … A shepherd must watch, protect and lead every sheep to discover that holiness is not “some kind of extraordinary existence, possible only for a few ‘uncommon heroes’ of holiness.  The ways of holiness are many, according to the vocation of each individual.”  What a great potential of grace lies dormant in the vast numbers of the baptized!

I can say no more.