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First Sunday of Advent – Year C
December 3, 2006

Intermediate Session
Jeremiah 33:14-16
Luke 21:25-28, 34-36

Opening Prayer
Let us pray.
Come, Lord Jesus, and be born in our hearts.
Teach us to prepare for your coming with hope.
In the name of Jesus our Lord we pray. Amen.

Opening Life Reflection
On this first Sunday of Advent our theme is the coming of the Lord at the end of time. The children may be familiar with the concept of preparing to remember and celebrate the birth of Jesus during the season of Advent. However, today’s session will help them understand that Advent is a time to look forward to the Second Coming of Christ as well. The Advent season offers time to reflect on our readiness for the coming of the Lord. Use the following activity to help the children explore ways that they can get ready for the coming of Jesus.

Make an Advent calendar. Provide each child with a sheet of card stock paper, pencils, markers, and decorating materials. First, help the children create a calendar for the month of December with a blank box for each day of the month. Then, invite the children to write or draw a picture in each of the boxes that describes what they can do each day to help prepare for the coming of Jesus. It may be helpful to show them an example of a completed calendar.

• Invite the children to share an idea from one of the dates on their calendar with the large group.

Explain to the children that they can use their calendars at home to help them get ready for Christmas. During the season of Advent we get ready not only to celebrate the birth of Jesus, but we also look forward to the Second Coming of Jesus at the end of time.

Listening to the Word of God
In the Old Testament reading today listen to how a promise will be fulfilled.

Read Jeremiah 33:14-16.
Allow for silence.

Scripture Discussion Starters
• How does this reading offer hope?
• What does God promise?
• How will the land be transformed?

In the gospel reading listen to find out how we can get ready for the Second Coming of Christ.

Read Luke 21:25-28, 34-36.
Allow for silence.

• What are some signs of the Second Coming of Christ?
• Where in this reading do we find hope?
• How can we get ready for the coming of Christ?

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

The Old Testament reading speaks of the fulfillment of God’s promise. When a “just shoot” will spring up bring justice and righteousness to the land. In this reading from Jeremiah, Christians have understood Jesus of Nazareth to be the fulfillment of God’s promise. Jesus is the “just shoot,” a descendant of the family of King David, who was sent to bring about the kingdom of God.

The Second Coming of Christ is described in the gospel reading today in cosmic terms. There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars and on earth the roaring of waves will cause distress. Then, amidst this frightening scene, we are given hope. Although Catholics do not interpret this passage literally, we can live with the hope and confidence that we will be saved.

The gospel today offers guidance on how to prepare for the Second Coming of Christ. Be on guard. Stay mindful of what really matters in life, such as being in right relationship with God, one another and one’s self. Be alert. Stay attentive to the movement of the Spirit, and listen for what is true. Be prayerful. Stay connected to God, and grow in friendship with Jesus.

On this First Sunday of Advent we are reminded to look forward to the Second Coming of Christ with expectancy and hope. The season of Advent provides time for us to reflect on how we are to get ready for the coming of Christ.

Questions for Deeper Reflection
• What can you do to get ready for the coming of Christ?
• How can your preparation for Christmas also help you prepare for the Second Coming of Christ?

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

Doctrinal Discussion Starters
“He will come again in glory.”

Our doctrinal focus for today the First Sunday of Advent comes from our Profession of Faith (Nicene Creed) which states that Christ will come again in glory. The kingdom of God that Jesus established on earth is here with us but it is not here completely. This is made evident wherever there is evil and suffering in the world. We look forward to the end of time, when Christ will come again in glory to put an end to all evil and suffering and bring the fullness of the kingdom of God on earth. Catholics reject any attempts to predict the Second Coming of Christ or the end of the world, as we know it.

During the season of Advent we look forward to the end of time when the reign of God will be fully established on earth. Catholics believe that we have a responsibility to work for justice and peace at the present time in cooperation with the grace of God in order to help bring about the kingdom of God.

• How can you work for justice and peace at home, in school and with your friends?
• Do you look forward to the day when the kingdom of God is fully established on earth? Explain.

The Gospel in Life
Bring the Advent calendar that you made home and put it in a place where you can look at it each day. Put your ideas into practice and prepare for the coming of Jesus.

Connecting to Faith First® Legacy Edition
At Home Family Guide, theme 24
Grade 4, page 239 parish and page 349 school
Grade 5, page 239 parish and page 349 school
Grade 6, page 239 parish and page 349 school

Connecting to Faith First®
At Home Family Guide, theme 24
Grade 4, page 278
Grade 5, page 278
Grade 6, page 278


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