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It was a surprise visit to see my grandmotherin the hospital. Before I gotWhat is the best gift you’ve ever given?The Incarnation of Jesus is the great gift we celebrate at Christmas. Eighth-grade students from St. Gabriel School in San Francisco,there, she was talking about how much she would love to see me that Christmas. DylanCalifornia, answer this week’s Attitudes question:I donated my hair to Locks of Love, which makes wigs for children who have cancer.I gave my mom a good-luck card on the opening night of her opera. She still has this card as aI prayed for my grandma and cloonugstinimweh.oI waenretesdictkhefomr ato be healthy again and to know that God was with them. VictoriaI was so excited when I got a letter from the girl I helped make a wig for. MarielMy grandparents are old and can’t do everything anymore. I helped  x theirI gave my mom a gold necklace for her birthday. It cost me all of my money, but I feltcabinets, chairs, and doors. They were very thankful. RyanIsipsltaeyrewdhcoelwloafsorealflyriesnicdk’s. They both loved it. Our love of music truly made something beautiful. Kylegood about it because she was really happy. PaddyWe gave my grandpa a blanket with a picture of my family on it. It was to remind to him that when we weren’t there in psteirllstohne,rweebewseirde him. CameronMy mom needed new sunglasses to wear running. She loves running so this was a very sentimental gift. She wore them untilEach month, I wrote letters to my prayer partner. I received a letter from my prayer partner’s family who explained that my partner had passed away and how she alwaysthey broke from overuse! Declanlooked forward to my letters. Gifts, big or small, can make an impact on someone else’s life. KaylaWe stayed in the hospital with my great-auntie. We had just found out that she had cancer and we were all very sad. I was happy that I was able to spend the time I had with her. NicolasVIS37_12.indd 18/25/17 6:56 PMreminder of the support her family gives her. SoniaI gave a GuardianAngel medallion to my younger cousin Heidi after she was born. She keeps it hanging by her bed every night. EllaPFLAUM GOSPEL WEEKLIES Faith Formation ProgramDecember 10, 20172nd Sunday of AdventTG2-18Share ExperiencesObjectives l The young people will:l Assess their attitudes about gift giving.l Explore God’s road through Israel’s history, symbolism,and geography.Gather in a prayer circle. Play and sing “Come, Emmanuel” (CD-1, #3). Lyrics for all songs on the Venture/Visions CDs are available at Prayer If you have prepared an Advent wreath for your classroom, light two violet candles and pray the following prayer: Loving God, our rough places need smoothing and ourlow feelings need lifting up. Let us see your kindness this Advent. Come into our world where war, greed, illness, and poverty often overwhelm us. Make us over ow with love for one another. We ask this in Jesus’ name. All: Amen.Cover Activity l Attitudes l What is the best gift you’ve ever given? (page 1) Today’s Gospel is about God’s great banquet for us. All are invited. Read aloud the title and directions for this week’s cover activity. Give the young people time to talk together and then write or draw with whom they share each kind of food.Note: You may wish to change the order of this week’s lesson to give the young people background about the Babylonian Exile. If so, begin on page 5 and then return to the play-drama “The Road from Beginning to End” on pages 2–3. Note, however, that this lesson plan follows the format of a typical Visions lesson.Play-Drama l The Road from Beginning to End (pages 2–3) Explain that Scenes 1 and 2 are set in 540 B.C., near the end of Israel’s Exile in Babylon. Scene 2 looks backward in history to link God’s deeds in creation and the Exodus to Second Isaiah’s promise that God will bring the People of Israel home from exile. Scene 3 takes place in A.D. 70. It links Jesus’ journey through death to life with God’s life-giving love for the People of Israel. Mark’s Gospel begins by referring to the way of the Lord or road as a symbol of God’s continuing care.Assign a special-e ects crew to ripple a blue sheet to create the waters of Creation. Have them use cardboard boxes tocreate the road through the sea and the level road through the wilderness. Have them stack the boxes to make a tomb, then shift them into a road in Scene 3.After the play, skip the Talk questions on page 3 for the moment and proceed directly to the proclamation of the Sunday Gospel.Discover Gospel and DoctrineObjectives l The young people will:l Recognize that Mark’s Gospel proclaims Jesus’ way throughdeath to new life.l Make connections between the journeys of the People ofIsrael and Jesus.l Recognize that God communicates with people in history. l Affirm that Mary is the Mother of God.Gospel Ritual Move to the area you have set up for the Gospel reading. As you prepare the young people to listen to this Sunday’s Gospel, play “Word of Truth and Life” (CD-1, #1).Sunday Gospel l Jesus Is the Good News (page 4) Have  ve young people take the  ve parts and proclaim the Gospel. Have those not reading parts become the crowd listening to John the Baptist. Encourage them to react with each other as they hear the words of the speakers.Use the Talk questions on pages 3 and 4 to discuss both the play and the Gospel. Answers: from page 3: 1. Israel faced slavery, defeat, and persecutionthroughout its history. 2. Like the exiles, the Christians experienced persecution and the Temple’s destruction. 3. God’s faithfulness ties Jewish and Christian history together. Answers to questions on page 4: 1. A prophet speaks for God. A Gospel writer tells Jesus’ story to help others believe. 2. Mark connects Jesus’ coming with God’s other comings in Israel’s history. 3. Open- ended.Connecting Gospel and Doctrine l We Can Turn Toward God (page 4) This Sunday, we hear the heart of the Gospel—the Good News of JesusChrist! This is a particularly appropriate Gospel reading for Advent during which we are called to pray and turn to God. Read the doctrine feature aloud together.Turn to the two Talk questions regarding the doctrine. Answers: 1. Open-ended. Accept all answers and encourage the young people that they can turn toGod in prayer no matter how they are feeling or what situation they may face. 2. Give them the analogy of friendship. We tend to be close to people with whom we communicate regularly; this is the same with prayer. The more we pray, the closer our relationship with God. Eucharist is our prayer of thanksgiving; regular Mass attendance shows our gratitude and also draws us closer to God.Teaching This Week’s Lesson

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