Catholic Culture Update Nov 20-27

Catholic Culture Update for the week beginning November 20th, 2016

Quote to carry in your heart this week

“Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord.” Mk 11:10

November 20th is the feast of Christ the King. “People have mixed feelings about kings and queens these days. Modern monarchs usually enjoy privileged lives and are far wealthier than their subjects. Because they are often figureheads, they may seem irrelevant to us, as if they are from another world. But in Jesus’ day, the king was all-important. He had great authority over the people’s lives and commanded deep respect. He held the power and he was anointed, the chosen one. Those who followed Jesus saw him as their king, yet others protested this use of the term. Even as he hung on the cross, the debate continued. The religious leaders and soldiers scoffed at him and mocked him. One of the criminals crucified with him derided Jesus. But the other criminal got the last word. He spoke from the heart, in faith and humility: “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” This refrain is often sung during the Triduum, when we recall Jesus’ passion, death and resurrection. And today, as we celebrate Christ the King, these words of faith and hope and trust echo in our hearts once again. This king is not about power or wealth. This king is “the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation.” For Christians, what could be more relevant?” Anne Louise Mahoney, Sunday Missal 2015-2016, Living with Christ, page 600.

November 21 is the memorial of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary. “The Gospel accounts tell of the Presentation of the Lord Jesus in the Temple but do not speak of the Presentation of Mary. Nevertheless, Christians in the East and the West have observed a day in honour of Mary’s Presentation for centuries. Many artists have depicted the scene: a tiny girl (Mary is said to have been three or four years old when she was presented in the Temple), climbing the steps to go into the Temple to offer herself to God. This memorial speaks of Mary’s total openness to God. God kept her free from sin from the moment of her conception, so that she, whose presentation in the Temple we commemorate today, would become a Temple of the Holy Spirit.” Companion to the Calendar – A guide to the Saints, Seasons, and Holidays of the Year, Second Edition, page 143 Mary, mother of God, pray for us. Pray the Hail Mary today in thanksgiving for Mary’s yes to God.

November 22nd is the memorial of St. Cecilia, Virgin and Martyr. “According to legend, St. Cecilia (c. third century) was beheaded because she would not forsake her vow of virginity and would not make sacrifices to the gods. She is the patron saint of musicians, singers, and poets. Her association with music is most likely related to a line from her passio (an account of her holy “passion,” her martyrdom), where she is said to have sung “in her heart to Christ” as the musicians played at her wedding. Upon its foundation in 1584, the Academy of Music in Rome declared her the patron saint of musicians. St. Cecilia’s popularity grew so much that several hymns were written in her honour, and her life is referenced in Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales.” Companion to the Calendar – A guide to the Saints, Seasons, and Holidays of the Year, Second Edition, page 144 St. Cecilia, inspire us to sing praise to God. Sing your favourite song today.

Holy Year of Mercy ~ until November 20th, 2016

“Our God is so eager to forgive that at the slightest sign of repentance he is ready with mercy. He does not forget the covenant he made with our ancestors.” A Year with Pope Francis, Daily Reflections from his writings, edited by Alberto Rossa, CMF, page 223

Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada 2012 Calls to Action

In order to redress the legacy of residential schools and advance the process of Canadian reconciliation, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission makes the following calls to action.


  1. We call upon the federal government to acknowledge that Aboriginal rights include Aboriginal language rights.

We are blessed in some of our schools to have the language being taught. Chi Miigwech!

New Catholic Elementary Curriculum Policy Document for Religious Education

Praying ~ Hope Expectations for Intermediate Classes

By the end of grade 8, it is our hope that students will be individuals who:

  • Seek intimacy with God and celebrate communion with God, others and creation through prayer and worship;
  • Appreciate the gift of the common prayers of the Church and how they teach us to pray;
  • Incorporate Sacred Scripture and other forms of prayer into their prayer life;
  • Turn to Christ’s gift of the Our Father as a model for prayer and the saints as a model for a life of prayer;
  • Reflect on the whole of the Liturgical year of the Church as an unfolding of the story of our salvation, made known through symbol, Word, ritual action and prayer.

Grade Seven – PR 1.4: Examine and compare the version of the “Our Father” in the gospels of Matthew and Luke and explain why it is considered an ecumenical prayer among Christians (i.e. final doxology). [CCC 2855-2865] The “Our Father” a.k.a. “The Lord Prayer” is found in Matthew 6:9-15 and in Luke 11:2-4. Invite your students to look at both versions of the “Our Father.” Ask them which one sounds most familiar. “In the Our Father, the object of the first three petitions is the glory of the Father: the sanctification of his name, the coming of the kingdom and the fulfillment of his will. The four others present our wants to him: they ask that our lives be nourished, healed of sin and made victorious in the struggle of good over evil.” [CCC 2857] It is important to teach the students the above. The prayer is ecumenical because all Christians pray it. Jesus gave the prayer to those who believe in him. All Christians can feel confident to pray this prayer together as one. The difference between Christians is that Catholics have a prayer at mass between the prayer and the doxology [For the kingdom, and the glory and the power…] and other Christians do not. Other Christians include the doxology as part of the prayer, so when praying with an ecumenical group it is good to invite your students to pray the doxology too. It would be good in class to practise praying the doxology every so often so the students know it is part of the Lord’s Prayer.

Grade Eight – PR 2.1: Understand that all Christian prayer is directed through Jesus to the Father in the Holy Spirit and that in praying we profess belief in the Trinity. [CCC nos. 2663-2672] “There is no other way of Christian prayer than Christ. Whether our prayer is communal or personal, vocal or interior, it has access to the Father only if we pray “in the name’ of Jesus. The sacred humanity of Jesus is therefore the way by which the Holy Spirit teaches us to pray to God our Father.”[CCC 2664] “The invocation of the holy name of Jesus is the simplest way of praying always.” [CCC 2668] I used to teach my students that if they were afraid or anxious, the best prayer to say was “Jesus.” Ask your students to look up 1 Corinthians 12:3. “No one can say ‘Jesus is Lord’ except by the Holy Spirit.” “Every time we begin to pray to Jesus it is the holy Spirit who draws us on the way of prayer by his prevenient grace. Since he teaches us to pray by recalling Christ, how could we not pray to the Spirit too? That is why the Church invites us to call upon the Holy Spirit every day, especially at the beginning and end of every important action.” [CCC 2670] When we pray we profess our belief in the Trinity if we understand the above. It is difficult to separate God in the Trinity. They are one.

Twenty-first Century Learning

  • is an app that allows you to pray wherever you are. It is available on iTunes.
  • – this site is a joint ministry of the Irish Jesuits and Loyola Press. Daily prayers are offered and may be printed off or prayed online.
  • > World Community for Christian Meditation – Canada part of the site > This is a site for Christian Meditation for teachers and students alike.
  • > best kept secret for religious education teachers of every grade

115 Saintly FUN Facts ~ Smiles and Surprises for Kids of All Ages by Bernadette McCarver Snyder

“Helena –This saint was just the daughter of an innkeeper, but then she became a SOMEBODY, then a nobody, then a SOMEBODY again! When Helena was young and beautiful, she met an important Roman general; and even though she was from a “lowly” family, the general married her, and they had a son named Constantine. A few years later the emperor named Helena’s husband to be “Caesar,” the top Roman ruler! Then, for political reasons, Helena’s husband decided to divorce HER and marry the emperor’s stepdaughter – and Helena became a nobody again. BUT the story was not over. Just thirteen years later, Helena’s husband died and her son, Constantine, became the ruler! NOW Constantine demanded that everyone give great honour to his mother, and he even had some Roman coins made with her picture on them. It was Constantine who issued the edict that allowed Christianity to be practiced as a religion in the Roman Empire, and he released all those who had been put in prison because of their religion. Helena began to study about Christianity and decided to BECOME a Christian. After that, she worked very hard for the Church. She traveled all over Palestine, built many churches, and became known for her kindness to prisoners, soldiers, and the poor. Legend tells us that while she was traveling in the Holy Land, it was St. Helena who found the true cross on which Jesus had been crucified. Didn’t this saint have an interesting life? Would YOU like to travel to the Holy Land and see the places where Jesus lived, the roads where he walked, the city where he was crucified? Well, maybe you can’t do that right now but maybe you will SOME DAY. RIGHT NOW you COULD go to the library and get out a book about the Holy Land and see the pictures of those places and READ all about them. Why don’t you do that?” page 70-71

What’s Your Catholic IQ? A Self-Assessment for Your Fun and Enlightenment by David O’Brien

Test Your Bible Knowledge

  1. _____ was married to Abraham, the father of the faith for both Jews, Christians and Muslims.   A. Bathsheba B. Sarah C. Mary    D. Delilah
  1. Only priests and nuns can read the Bible. T or F
  1. The first book of the Bible is called _____     A. Baruch B. Revelation C. the Gospels       D. Genesis
  1. The first book in the New Testament is _____.   A. the Gospel of Matthew B. the Book of Exodus C. Paul’s letter to the Corinthians    D. The Psalms
  1. Jewish people call the first five books of the Bible the _____.     A. Ten Commandments   B. Gospels C. Torah D. Koran

What’s Your Catholic IQ? A Self-Assessment for Your Fun and Enlightenment by David O’Brien

  1. The Virgin Mary wrote all the stories about Jesus that are found in the Gospels. T or F
  1. Jesus walked on _____ and invited Peter to step out of the boat and do the same.   A. the moon sunshine             C. water       D. his new sneakers
  1. The pope wrote the Bible. T or F
  1. King _____ was famous for his wisdom.   A. Noah     B. Veronica Moses             D. Solomon
  1. “The Lord is my light and my _____, whom should I fear?”     A. Friend   B. salvation creator   D. judge

Taking Jesus to the Movies …A blog by Pat Carter csj

Genius – This movie is available on PPV. This movie stars Colin Firth as Max Perkins who is the editor of the publishing house of Scribners and Sons in NY. It is the story of the interactions of the editor with famous authors such as Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald and most especially Thomas Wolfe (played by Jude Law.) Nicole Kidman plays Thomas’ mistress, Mrs. Bernstein. Mr. Perkins is surrounded by five creative women. The movie has clever cinematography that I really appreciated. It is a character study. I give this movie ♥♥♥♥/5 hearts

Trivia for Those Who Read to the end…Just like the credits at the movies.

“There are 1,453 airports in Canada.” Huh!

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