December 24, 2006
Junior High Session
Opening Life Reflection
• Where is the peace of Christ needed today, in our hearts, our homes, our schools, and in the world?
Then take a moment for silent reflection on the question. Then light each person’s candle saying, “Come, Lord Jesus, Prince of Peace.” As each candle is lit, invite the young people to quietly bring forth a prayer request for peace by placing their candle before Jesus, in the Nativity scene. Conclude with the good news that today we celebrate the light that has come into the world, Jesus Christ, Prince of Peace.
Listening to the Word of God
Read Micah 5:1-4a.
Scripture Discussion Starters
In the gospel reading today, Mary visits Elizabeth. Listen to the joy they share.
Read Luke 1:39-45.
• What happens when Mary greets Elizabeth?
In the Old Testament reading today the people of Israel are promised a ruler who will stand firm with the strength of God. The prophet Micah, who is a great preacher of social justice, announces that the king who will rule in the line of David will come from the small insignificant place of Bethlehem-Ephratha. This promised ruler will shepherd the people.
In the gospel reading today, Mary who is pregnant with Jesus travels to visit Elizabeth, who is also with child. We sense the expectancy of the journey and the excitement of the arrival when Mary greets Elizabeth. The infant in Elizabeth’s womb leaps for joy when she hears Mary’s greeting. Elizabeth is filled with the Holy Spirit and she speaks a profound truth calling Mary blessed and the Mother of the Lord.
Today’s gospel reading exposes the awesome mystery of the incarnation, God made flesh in the birth of Jesus. On this fourth Sunday of Advent, the gospel announces the great event of Christ’s coming in the flesh.
Questions for Deeper Reflection
[If you are not going to continue with the doctrinal discussion, proceed to the Gospel in Life.]
Doctrinal Discussion Starters
Jesus is both human and divine. The humanity of Jesus helps us to find the sacredness in our own humanness. In the person of Jesus, God and humankind come together in perfect unity.
• How does the birth of Christ bring holiness to all of humanity?
The Gospel in Life
Connecting to Faith First® Legacy Edition