Welcome and Prayer

Greet the children and warmly introduce yourself to anyone who might be new or visiting the group. The atmosphere should be as relaxed and friendly as possible, so that the children feel happy and at home. To set newcomers at ease, it is sometimes helpful to explain briefly that the children have gathered to listen to God’s word and to praise him in their own special way.

Light the Candles
Song: Jesus Loves Me this I know,
For the Bible tells me so;
Littl ones to Him belong,
They are weak but He is strong.

Yes, Jesus loves me! Yes Jesus Loves me!
Yes, Jesus loves me! The Bible tells m so.

Jesus loves me! He who died,
Heaven’s gate to open wide;
He will wash away my sin,
Let His little child come in.

Yes, Jesus loves me! Yes Jesus loves me!
Yes, Jesus loves me! The Bible tells me so.

Jesus loves me! He will stay,
Close beside me all the way,
Thou hast bled and died for me.
I will henceforth live for Thee.

Yes, Jesus loves me! Yes Jesus loves me!
Yes, Jesus loves me! The Bible tells me so.

SEE THE LIGHT (Sung to the tune of Hot Cross Buns)
See the light; see the light.
How a little candle flame can shine so bright.
Chase away the darkness, fill the word with light.
Be a little candle flame and shine out bright.

Proclamation of the Word of God
You may do a brief introduction to the Gospel, to set the scene for what they are about to hear. Ask the children to stand and remind them to listen to the very special story.

Gospel Acclamation: Alleluia, Alleluia (Sung to the tune of if You’re Happy and You Know it)
Alleluia, alleluia, praise the Lord,
Alleluia, alleluia, praise the Lord.
As we listen to the story,
Let us praise him for his glory.
Alleluia, alleluia, praise the Lord.

Gospel: “A reading from the Gospel of ______________
Response: “Glory to you, O Lord.”

Have the children follow your actions as you say, “May the Word of the Lord be on my mind (trace the cross on your forehead), on my lips (trace the cross on your lips), and in my heart (tr say, ace the cross on your heart).

Read the Gospel from the Lectionary – the appropriate week will be paper clipped inside.

Finish with, “The Gospel of the Lord”
Response: “Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.”

Homiletic Reflection
After the gospel proclamation, have the children sit, and lead a discussion on what you have just read. A series of questions are provided to help prompt a brief discussion and to encourage the children to share their understanding of the word of God. The level of discussion should be geared to the age range of the group, appreciating that older children may gain more from this part of the liturgy than younger children. Good preparation of the discussion and enthusiastic delivery are essential to encourage the children to participate and respond in a lively and enjoyable way. It is important to give every child an opportunity to participate in the discussion, and to appreciate whatever they might say, never forgetting that everyone’s contribution is valuable.

Profession of Faith
Use the Creed as posted in each of the junior LWC rooms. They will answer the questions after you read them.

The Little Creed
Do you believe in God the Father, who made the whole world? YES!
Do you believe in Jesus the Son, who died on the cross for us, and rose from the dead? YES!
Do you believe in the Holy Spirit who brings life and love to us all? YES!
Do you believe that the Church is one family, and that one day we will share everlasting life with God in heaven? YES!

Prayer of the Faithful (Universal Prayers)
Invite the children to pray with you. The prayer of the faithful is the prayer of the children as members of the Christian community praying with that community for the work, the church, leaders and the local community.

A good way to call forth spontaneous petitions is to ask the children: “Who in our world needs God’s help today?”
After each prayer, you say “We pray to the Lord.”
Response: Lord, hear our prayer.

Some examples you can use or allow the children to offer their intentions:
• For all God’s family, so that we may share the Good News with everyone, we pray to the Lord. (Response: Lord, hear our prayer.)
• For God’s beautiful world, that we look after it with loving care, we pray to the Lord. (Response)
• For all who are hungry or sad, lonely or sick, we pray for…., we pray to the Lord. (Response)
Activity (Can be right after Homily if you think the children need it)
The activities suggested aim is to help the children retain the stories, understand the various themes, and remember the Gospel message. The activity can be adapted to suit the needs of the group for the time available. The time available for completing the activity is often very short as the Liturgy of the Word portion is the focus and may take more time. Appreciate the children’s efforts and don’t expect perfection. Allow them to make the artwork their own special gift to God. Their finished work is to be taken home with them. **Keep your eye on the adult congregation so you know how much time you have before you need to clean up.**

Return of the Children
Please have the children ready to return as soon as the congregation sits after the Prayers of the Faithful (Universal Prayers). **It is very important that they return on time.** This will allow time for them to return to their seats and still bring forward their offering.
Line them up at the door before you dismiss them. Distribute “Explaining God’s Word” pages as they leave or while you are waiting in line. Ask them to walk back to their seats. Thank them for coming.
Suggestion: “Thank you all for joining us today. Remember that Jesus loves YOU! Let’s line up at the door to go back to the Church for the Liturgy of the Eucharist! Line up if… you came with a brother, sister, cousin… if you’re wearing running shoes… if you are 5 years old… if you have a bow in your hair…etc. Please quietly walk back to your Mom or Dad or Grandma or Uncle or whoever you came with today. Have a wonderful Sunday!” God Bless you.

Fr. Michael