This year’s Catholic School’s Week theme is “The Good News in Education.” A good way to think about this theme for Catholic Schools Week is to think about how the way you live your faith makes a difference in the world around you. Your immediate world includes your family, your school, your church, and your neighborhood. Do you give spiritual light and spiritual salt to these surroundings? Are you a faithful disciple and follower of Jesus?
Before answering the question about discipleship, take a quiet moment and breathe deeply. Be as relaxed as possible. Imagine that your entire class has just had an opportunity to meet Jesus in your school. You and your classmates have plenty of time to discuss whatever is on your minds. In fact, Jesus encourages everyone to be as open as possible. The back-and-forth discussion is lively and meaningful. Everyone is captivated. It’s an awesome moment.
Suddenly, Jesus notices a large poster that is hanging on the front wall of the classroom. The poster is brightly decorated. It has a reminder message that Catholic Schools Week will be celebrated from January 29 to February 4, 2006. The theme of Catholic Schools is printed in large type: “The Good News in Education.”
The poster impresses Jesus. A moment of silence passes. Then Jesus asks the students to tell him more about their faith. There is more silence. Then Jesus goes into his storytelling mode. He tells the story of salt and light to spark some ideas about how your school might celebrate faith during Catholic Schools Week. Jesus begins the story by telling your class that the very purpose of his ministry is to foster faith in all of his disciples. Jesus does this by reminding his disciples that they are like salt and light (see Matthew 5:13). He explains that the purpose of salt is to add flavor to food. He then goes on to explain that you and your classmates are like salt. Your faith becomes visible to others every time you live out the values of the Gospel.
Jesus then expands the faith and salt comparison by talking about light. He tells you all that the purpose of light is to shine forth and overcome darkness. Jesus reminds you that you are like light. Your faith gives spiritual light and shines upon the whole world. Your deeds and actions are like beacons pointing to the glory of Jesus’ message of love for God and one another.
At this exact moment, there is loud thunder. Lightning hits occurs one after another, and the wind and rain are pounding against the school building. The overhead lights flicker, followed by a power outage. The entire school is dark for a few seconds and then suddenly power is restored. Everything is back to normal. The lights are on and the sun begins to overcome the dark and dreary clouds.
Jesus purposely leaves the classroom, but his spirit remains. One of the quietest students speaks out for the first time since the school year began. He says, “Jesus sure knows how to make a dramatic point. Now I see exactly what he means when he says we are like light. I now have a much better understanding of the power of faith.”
Click on the image to see how you can bring light to the world.
Recall the Jesus meditation that you just experienced. In explaining
that his disciples are light, Jesus is saying that we cannot see without
light or faith. Faith is what allows us to see the world as God sees
the world. Make a profile of your faith. Use the mouse to drag each
of these components of faith to the light meter. Then rank on the light
meter the power that each of these faith actions measures on the light
meter (low—medium—high). Conclude this activity in writing
by completing this sentence on the attached Post-It-Note.
Components of Faith
I accept the responsibility of being a disciple.
I stand up for what is right no matter what.
I respect all human life.
I am a peacemaker.
I am caring and reach out to others in need.
I am willing to forgive and ask for forgiveness.
I pray regularly to strengthen my relationship with God.
I try to live the gospel message.
I treat others with respect.