Showing Love Towards Others
By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments. For the love of God is this, that we obey his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome.
-1 John 5:2-3
For the past two Sessions we have been focusing on the Ten Commandments. This session we will look at the remaining 7 Commandments, four through ten. When teaching the Commandments we will often see them divided up into two groups. At Holy Trinity we have a large painting of the prophets Moses and Elijah on the wall behind the altar. For last session we took a picture of Moses to highlight an interesting detail the tablets in Moses’ hands. In his right hand is the tablet listing numbers 1, 2, and 3. In his left hand the tablet lists numbers 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10. This division in the Commandments is with intent. Commandments one through three teach us how to love God. Commandments four through ten teach us how to love people. For this session we are using the painting of Elijah to address the basic question children ask about what they see in church. If you had pointed out Moses last week then they certainly noticed the second painting. We see these men for what they have come to be known as representing two of the major divisions of the Old Testament: Moses represented the law and Elijah represented the prophets. One astounding thing that both Elijah and Moses share in common is that both of them had very intimate encounters with God where he revealed his glory to them, but neither saw his face.
The design of Holy Trinity’s altar is centered on the Transfiguration. The Baldacchino is designed to represent the voice of God from the cloud that states (with the words written in Latin): “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him” from Mark 9:7. To learn more about the significance of the design read: Moses, Elijah, and Jesus: Why are they all together at the Transfiguration?
The Decalogue (Ten Commandments) has been an effective guide to godly living for over 3,000 years. This Law taught the Israelites how to worship God and how to live in harmony with family, friends and the rest of society. We are subject to these same 10 Commandments today.
We are asked to demonstrate this love in our actions. “We should accept the consequences of being a Christian. Love implies deeds. Faith implies keeping the Commandments. Check your conscience.” –1 John 3: 18-24
A living relationship with God and Christ alone is not enough. Our relationship with God should be carried by a living relationship with our parish community. To develop harmoniously as human beings we need the feeling of belonging. A Christian who fails to develop relationships on the everyday level usually fails also to develop a sound relationship with God. Children must learn that relating to one another means both listening and talking, both giving and taking. When we are able to do this in the family, with friends, and on the parish level, can we have a beautiful relationship with God.
I will praise you, Lord, in the assembly of your people. -Psalm 22
And God spoke all these words, saying….
4.) “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land which the Lord your God gives you.” –Exodus 20:12
This is the only Commandment that comes with a blessing. We are called to love, respect, and obey our parents. It also extends to respect to others who have authority over us. (Grandparents, Caretakers, Teachers, etc.)
“Hear, my child, your father’s instruction, and do not reject your mother’s teachings. -Proverbs 1:8
How do I live the Fourth Commandment? Some examples to consider: Model a loving and respectful relationship with your parents for your children. Teach your children the virtues of obedience and piety from an early age. Encourage your children to respect legitimate authority by modeling that behavior to them. Make your family into a “domestic church.” Through our family, we live our Faith actively. The family is the first school of virtue. We create a Catholic culture by celebrating the liturgical seasons, so that what we see at the parish, is celebrated in the home too. This is how we can develop an unique “Apostolate” to serve the Church as a family.
5.) “You shall not kill.” -Exodus 20:13
Human life is holy because it is a gift from God and God alone is the Lord of life from its beginning to its end. Natural Law forbids us to take the life of an innocent person. We are even called to avoid smaller sins that lead to anger.
What did Jesus say?
“You have heard that it was said to those of ancient times, ‘You shall not murder’; and ‘whoever murders shall be liable to judgment.’ But I say to you that if you are angry with a brother or sister, you will be liable to judgment.” -Matthew 5:21-22
How do I live the Fifth Commandment? Some examples to consider: Promote life from conception to natural death. Care for your own health. Care for the most vulnerable: aging and sick. Speak out against abortion. Speak out against euthanasia. We must not tear down someone’s character with insults, teasing, bullying, especially on social media.
“Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” -Romans 12:21
6. )“You shall not commit adultery.” -Exodus 20:14
9.) “You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife.” -Exodus 20:17
The gift of human sexuality is the most sacred and powerful gift God offers us and it is easily corruptible. Faithfulness in marriage starts in the mind and the heart of the spouses. The gift of human sexuality shared outside of the sacrament of marriage loses its most essential attribute: its sanctity. The gift of human sexuality frustrated by artificial contraception loses its most powerful attribute: its fruitfulness. It is within marriage that children feel most safe and secure.
What did Jesus say?
“Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and he who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery.” -Luke 16:18
“Everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” -Matt 5:28
How do I live the Sixth and Ninth Commandments? These commandments are lived in the small decisions: How we speak, how we dress, how we act. All give signals to others about who we are. We must practice temperance and chastity in these three areas.
“Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” -Philippians 4:8
7.) “You shall not steal.” -Exodus 20:15
10.) “You shall not covet your neighbor’s goods.” -Exodus 20:17
The Seventh and Tenth Commandments pertain to stealing. We must not take or willfully destroy something that belongs to another person. These commandments are connected in that envy/jealousy often leads us to the temptation to take or destroy the happiness of others. Willfully taking someone’s joy (out of envy) is a form of stealing. Stealing is recognized as unjust. Even if the other person is not aware of what we have taken, God sees all that we do. We are called to rejoice in the good fortune of others. Jealousy/envy in itself is not a sin! Sometimes it is a reaction that you have no control over. Just like anger, the sin lies in what you do with jealousy.
How do I live the Seventh and Tenth Commandments? Some examples to consider: Practice generosity. Practice stewardship when borrowing from another. Ask permission before taking something. Practice gratitude for what we are given. Practice joy in the good fortune of our neighbors.
8.) “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.” –Exodus 20:16
We are called to speak the truth and we must never blame others for something we have done. We are called to witness to Truth by how we live our lives. When we speak the truth, we speak a prayer, we speak the name of the Lord.
What did Jesus say?
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life.” -John 14:6
How do I live the Eighth Commandment? Some examples to consider: Know Jesus as He is the source of all Truth. Know what we believe as Catholics this begins by studying and learning the Catholic faith throughout our lives. Pray to the Holy Spirit to guide our words. Speak with clarity. Take responsibility for our own decisions and actions.
Prayer of the Week: Hail Mary
Homework For the Year is complete. Everything was due to the Religious Education Office by April 30, 2021.
Watch grades k-2: Here’s a neat way to learn the Commandments using your hands. This woman uses hand movements to teach the commandments. 10 Commandments in Motion. And another way with a song: 10 Commandments song with hand motions.
Watch grades 3-6: Watch The 10 Commandments with your child just up to the 4:11 mark.
Activity Ideas: There are many crafting activities for the 10 Commandments on the website KGMCrafts. Here is their Moses Bible Crafts page with all the different options. The 3-D burning bush craft looks really neat. We have a few ideas to try that we sent in an activity email: The Commandments tablet, Moses game, and the Moses Paper doll.
Mother’s Day ideas:
- Learn about some Saintly Moms
- Mother’s Day Catholic Resources
- 25+ Mother’s Day Crafts for Kids
- Easy Mother’s Day Crafts
- Art Projects for Mother’s Day
- 45 Super Fun Mother’s Day Activities
May Crowning May is the second month of the year (along with October) dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary. One of the most beautiful ways to celebrate this month is to attend a May Crowning or have one of your own at home. For some background information read: What are the origins of the May Crowning? Many Catholic schools will have a May Crowning ceremony, if your children attend one then you will know when this event will be happening. They are such beautiful events. Our children attended preschool at the Linton Hall School (LHS) and while there were able to participate in the school’s May Crowning. The LHS had their May Crowning on May 6, 2021. If you would like to see this statue in person this weekend would be a great time to drop by the school grounds.
If you would like to begin a tradition of having a crowning at home it is easy to do. Reading: How to Plan a May Crowning for Kids is a great start. It will require a purchase of a few things. Start by finding a statue of the Blessed Mother (indoor or outdoor). Using fresh or little artificial flowers, weave a crown that will fit the head of Mary. If you need help with making a crown Catholic Inspired has an easy DIY for Making a Floral Crown for Marian Statue. Gather the family and place your crown on the statue. Pray a rosary (or even a decade) together. Teach the children a traditional hymn to Mary: Immaculate Mary or Hail Holy Queen Look at the Religion Teacher’s May Crowning Activities page for more ideas.
Family Faith Formation Ideas:
- Have you established a family prayer routine?
- Have you celebrated your children’s Baptismal days and feast days?
- Have you started at least one new tradition that brings the faith to life in your home, such as using an Advent Wreath or praying the Stations of the Cross?
- Do you have a plan on how your family will serve the Church as a family (bringing food to a food pantry, praying for poor souls, etc)? (Family Apostolate)