Wednesday, March 31, 2010

A Hidden Treasure

(Ed. Note: So much of the child's understanding of God remains unspoken. Big revelations may come to them, but the outward signs of these new understandings might be small. We have to remain attentive and observant to get a glimpse of what the child might be contemplating about who God is.

Below is a story from our database about one small sign a catechist found in her atrium, which points to a lovely synthesis a child created. The materials described here are small so a child can use them to meditate on the Biblical passages they represent. In this case, a child took part of the material from one text and integrated it into another - enriching our understanding of both.)

When a catechist in a 6-9 atrium came into the atrium on Monday morning, she found that a child has left out the Last Supper material.

When she took a closer look, she saw that the child had gathered the disciples around the table, and placed on the table a "treasure box" (a material we sometimes use when presenting the parable of the Hidden Treasure). When she opened the box, the catechist discovered the child had placed the tiny paten and bread inside.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

I Would Lay Down My Life for the Sheep

Katherine drew a picture of Jesus in a casket. The right thought bubble contains sheep. The second thought bubble says, "I love them."

Sunday, March 21, 2010

In her drawing, Madeline, age 7, included a synthesis of several elements. To the left of the cross is the merchant from the parable of the Pearl of Great Price. To the right is a joyous figure with the wine and bread from the Last Supper. The cross, she said, is for resurrection.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

It doesn't matter how big the darkness is

Xavier, 6: See that candle? (the Paschal Candle) It's Jesus and God. There's at least 50,000 darkness out here and only one light. And that light challenged the darkness and won.

Scott, 5: When Jesus was killed on the cross, his light got snuffed. But when he rose, it was like his light lit up a pile of firewood--and the light was MUCH stronger. Everyone was amazed!

Xavier: It doesn't matter how big the darkness is, it can't put out the light. But even one little candle can light up this dark room.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

“Jesus asked them to be nice and they put him on the cross.”

Caleb, age 4, was working with the Last Supper material in the atrium. He asked, “Why was Jesus on the cross?” I wondered why with him. Caleb replied, “Jesus asked them to be nice and they put him on the cross.”

Another day in the atrium, Caleb had traced the chasubles (vestment in one of five colors that reflect the season of the church year) and explained to me that the meditation time had been “nice”. He explained, “I talked to Jesus. He died.” I asked Caleb what happened after Jesus died, and he replied, “He rose!”

Thursday, March 11, 2010

The Table Where Everyone Can Eat

During children's chapel, which takes place in the Level One atrium, we read the story of Lazarus and the rich man (Luke 16:19-31). After our discussion a six-year-old child went to get the Last Supper material and told us all "This is a table where everyone can eat." (The child had seen the last Supper material the previous spring.)

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Eucharistic Presence

Daniella, age 5, was familiar with a material representing the parable of the Good Shepherd. It had figures of a shepherd and ten sheep she could move in and out of a sheepfold. Next, she received a presentation which uses the image of the Good Shepherd to introduce the Eucharistic Presence. Jesus, the Good Shepherd, calls the sheep around a small altar. Then bread and wine replaces the shepherd, because Jesus is present in the bread and wine, not the statue. Finally the sheep are replaced with people. The words of the Last Supper are repeated, and the catechist says, "With these words, Jesus feeds the sheep with himself in the bread and in the wine." After the presentation, she worked with the material for over an hour, and drew this picture.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Filled with Love

Leaving the communion table at church, seven-year-old Anna said to her mom, Wendy, "That was good." Her mom responded, "Jesus bread is always good." Anna replied, "That's because it's filled with love. And the yeast is the kingdom of heaven growing bigger and bigger and bigger until it's as big as the whole world."

Monday, March 1, 2010

A 3-year old insisted her mother come into the bathroom while she took her bath. She asked her mother to kneel down. The daughter took the wash cloth, wrung it out and placed it on the side of the bathtub. She took a plastic fish and stood it upon its tail and placed two bath toy cups on each side. She then filled them with water. The girl asked her mother to fold her hands and to help her say these words: "Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again."