Sunday, December 31, 2006
Thursday, December 28, 2006
Wednesday, December 27, 2006
Sunday, December 24, 2006
Friday, August 25, 2006
The fruits of the Spirit is love, joy, peace
Patience, kindness and goodness
The fruit of the Spirit is faithfulness,
Holy Spirit fill me
More like Jesus may I be
Living only for His glory
Telling others about Him
For Jesus is love, joy, peace,
Patience, kindness and goodness
Jesus is faithfulness,
Wednesday, August 23, 2006
Does God See Everything That We Do?
Yes, God sees everything we do, both good and bad. We can't hide from him. God is happy when we do what is right and sad when we do wrong. God can reward us for doing what's right, even when no one else knows about it.
Thursday, August 10, 2006
I don’t know what you’ve been told…
Galatians’ got the fruit of gold.
Patience, joy, love, peace and faith…
With gentleness He’ll get the praise.
Self-control with kind and good…
We’ll be like Jesus said we should…
Ask me what would Jesus do?
Galatians 5 Verse 22
Sound off: Galatians 5
Bring it on down: Verse 22
Galatians 5 Verse 22
WE'VE GOT- THE FRUIT!
Sunday, July 30, 2006
1. Before I go anywhere, I always check first with my parents or the person in charge. I tell them
where I am going,
how I will get there,
who will be going with me, and
when I'll be back.
2. I check first for permission from my parents before getting into a car or leaving with anyone - even someone I know. I check first before changing plans or accepting money or gifts without my parents' knowledge.
3. It is safer for me to be with other people when going places or playing outside.
I always use the "buddy system."
4. I say NO if someone tries to touch me in ways that make me feel frightened, uncomfortable, or confused. Then I go and tell a grown-up I trust, what happened.
5. I know it is not my fault if someone touches me in a way that is not O.K. I don't have to keep secrets about those touches.
6. I trust my feelings and talk to grown-ups about problems that are too big for me to handle on my own.
A lot of people care about me and will listen and believe me. I am not alone.
7. It is never too late to ask for help. I can keep asking until I get the help I need.
8. I am a special person, and I deserve to feel safe.
My rules are:
• CHECK FIRST
• USE THE "BUDDY SYSTEM"
• SAY NO, THEN GO AND TELL
• LISTEN TO MY FEELINGS, AND
TALK WITH GROWN-UPS I TRUST, ABOUT MY PROBLEMS AND CONCERNS.
Friday, July 21, 2006
Today I learned
Jesus is the Vine
With Him I grow
fruit very fine
Love and Joy and Peace
of the fruits
Jesus wants from me
These are the things
Jesus wants me to do
These are the fruits
Jesus wants me to grow
Saturday, July 15, 2006
How Can God Be Three Persons And One Person At The Same Time?
We don't know how God can be three persons at the same time, but we know He is because the Bible tells us so. The idea of three in one (the Trinity) is very hard to understand. Let’s think about water. Water can be a liquid, a gas, or a solid. We usually see water in liquid form, as when we use it for drinking or for taking a bath. But water can also be a gas, as when it turns to steam. And it can be a solid, in the form of ice. But whether liquid, gas, or solid, it's still water. In some ways God is like a family with father, mother, and child - three persons and one family. Just remember that the Trinity does not mean that we have three gods. There is one God with three persons. The Trinity also does not mean that God wears three hats, or takes on three roles, at different times. All three persons - Father, Son, and Holy Spirit - have always existed.
Friday, June 30, 2006
Why Can't We See God?
We can't see God because He's invisible. But we can see what He does. Balloons are filled with air that we can't see, but we see the balloon get big as the air is put in. Just because we can't see God doesn't mean He isn't real. Believing that God is there even though we can't see Him is faith. Someday, in heaven, we will see God face to face.
Saturday, June 24, 2006
How Can God Hear Everyone's Prayers At Once?
God can hear everyone's prayers at once because God is everywhere. We can only be at one place at a time, and usually we can't understand more than one person at a time. But God is not like us - He is not limited. God is infinitely greater than we are. He can hear thousands of prayers at once. Not only can God hear and understand everyone who is praying to him in many different languages, but he also can give each person his full attention. Isn't that great!
Friday, June 09, 2006
From dust ... to dust
After church, Jimmy tells his parents he has to go and talk to the priest right away. They agree and the priest greets the family. "I heard you say today that our bodies came from the dust." "That's right, Johnny, I did." "And I heard you say that when we die, our bodies go back to dust." "Yes, I'm glad you were listening. Why do you ask?" "Well you better come over to our house right away and look under my bed because there's someone either coming or going!"
Monday, June 05, 2006
One day, I saw two little girls crying a lot on a bench in the park. Thinking they might be hurt, I went over and asked them. "Are you all right?" Still crying, one girl showed me her doll and said, "My baby's arm came off." I took the doll from the girl and soon fixed her arm. "Thank you." came a whisper. Next, I asked her friend, "and what's the matter with you, young lady?" She wiped her cheeks and said, "I was helping her cry."
Thursday, May 25, 2006
Will God Give Children Toys If They Ask Him For Them?
Some people think God is there to give us toys and other things we want. God doesn't just hand out stuff to us. His purpose is to make us into people who are like Christ. God really cares about us, and he knows what we need.
Although toys seem important sometimes, there are other things that we need more. God also doesn't want us to get our happiness from toys, but from Him.
Tuesday, May 23, 2006
The bell rang. The first day at the new school was done. Nicholas walked to the tree to wait for Alice so they could go home.
Tommy, a new friend, came by and started talking to Nicholas.
"Come with me. I want to show you something," said Tommy.
"Sure, Tommy," Nicholas answered and they took off.
They played for awhile and talked and started running together.
Before Nicholas knew it, he was half way home. Where was Alice?
He looked around, there was no Alice!
Where could she be? What happened to her? He was supposed to look after his little sister.
He remembered leaving his classroom and walking to the tree and...
He was supposed to meet Alice at the tree! He ran as fast as he could back to school. He ran to the tree. There was Alice sitting on the ground waiting for him just as she was supposed to.
"Where were you?" she asked
"Well... I... um..."
"I have been standing here waiting for you!" She was so mad at Nicholas.
Nicholas didn't want to tell her what happened.
He didn't want her mad at him.
"Well?" she asked again.
Nicholas hung his head, "I was with Tommy. We were talking and running. I’m sorry, Alice."
Alice looked at Nicholas for a long time.
She smiled at him, "Let's go home. Its getting late".
Jesus teaches us that we must accept responsibility. Blaming others for our problems or feeling sorry for ourselves is wrong.
What would you have done?
Do you think Nicholas should have told Alice the truth?
Should he have blamed Tommy for making him late?
Do you think Alice should be mad at Nicholas?
Do you think she should forgive him?
Do you think she should feel sorry for herself for waiting so long?
Do you think Jesus was happy with Alice and Nicholas?
Tuesday, May 09, 2006
Recess was over and the kids were lined up to go back to their classroom.
Mrs. Nelson was unlocking the door when there was some terrible yelling.
She looked up. Eric and Adam were yelling at each other.
Mrs. Nelson walked up to them, "Now keep your voices down."
Eric complained, "Adam was pushing me."
Adam started his complaint when Mrs. Nelson interrupted, "We don't want to argue or fight with anyone. There are times when things happen and we just have to let go. It isn't so important that we say things to people especially things that hurt."
Eric and Adam were quiet.
Mrs. Nelson gave them a smile.
She walked back to unlock the door.
Jesus teaches us to never fight or argue.
What do you think?
Would you have argued?
Do you feel Adam and Eric were right?
Do you think Mrs. Nelson was right?
Do you think Jesus was happy with Mrs. Nelson?
Monday, May 08, 2006
It was a gorgeous sunny day in the town where James and Steve lived. James and Steve were not only brothers, they were best friends. They did everything together from when they were babies like crawling together as infants, to learning to ride bikes at the same time as toddlers. Now as ten year olds playing sports together and even going to school together—they were like twins, even though Steve was older. They spent most of their time together. In fact they even shared a room and bunk beds.
James and Steve lived across the street from a young boy named Andre. Andre had everything that the two boys ever wished for. Andre was an only child and his parents had unlimited amounts of money. Andre’s parents loved to give him gifts, lots of gifts.
Whenever the boys would go to Andre’s house, James would just stare at all the cool things Andre owned. Andre had three bicycles, one for racing, another for mountain climbing, and one for riding to school. It was the most amazing thing that they ever saw, since each of the boys only had one bicycle.
James wanted to spend lots of time with Andre. However, when James was with Andre, his manners started to change. James always asked Andre about his belongings. He would ask Andre to show him all the neat stuff he had. He would ask Andre to let him play with the things. Pretty soon all James wanted to do was spend all his time with Andre.
Soon, James stopped spending time with Steve. James no longer wanted Steve to play with him and Andre. He would say, “I don’t have time for you Steve, my good friend Andre and I are busy.” James would then run across the street to Andre’s house and leave Steve alone.
All that James could think about was Andre’s stuff. James became grouchy and wanted nothing to do with his family. One night at dinner, he shouted, “I wish I was not in this family. I wish I was in Andre’s family where they have great things. I don’t even like it here. If I was Andre’s brother, I would have desert every night.”
James’s dad said, “Stop that talk!” and called James into the living room and said, "James, we need to chat."
His dad said, “James you are my son, I give you everything I can including my deep and total love. Still, I need to tell you that your behavior is inappropriate and that you are falling into the trap of coveting. The tenth commandment tells us not to covet our neighbor’s goods.”
He went further to say, “Coveting is when you want something that belongs to someone else so much it changes you and usually leads to others sins.” He explained how his coveting Andre’s good had indeed changed him.
He showed James how he was now grouchy and cranky and how he was no longer joyful, like God calls everyone to become. He showed James how all he talked about were new Stuff. James had stopped talking about the really important things in life like how much he loved his brothers and sister, family and how much he cared for everyone. Most of all, he had stopped talking about God’s love in his life.
James stood in shock. He could not believe what his parents were saying. His mother put her arm around him and said, “Yes son, everything your father mentioned is true and more. Your marks in school are dropping, too. Be careful! Coveting can lead to other sins.”
James began to cry because he had realized he had truly forgotten others and all he thought about was Andre’s stuff. Even though Andre was generous, James’s problem was that he wanted Andre’s goods more than anything else in life.
Everything you have is what God has given to you. God gives different things to different people, what is important is that we be happy with what we have in life and use our gifts wisely to make the world a better place for each other to live and for God to do His work.
Sunday, May 07, 2006
A little boy was attending his first wedding. After the service, his cousin asked him: "How many women can a man marry?" "Sixteen!" replied the little boy. His cousin laughed and asked how he knew this. "Easy," the little boy said. "All you have to do is add it up! 4 better, 4 worse, 4 richer, 4 poorer!"
It was the last recess. Nicholas was happy because school was nearly over. He had saved some chips from his lunch to eat at his recess. He went to the washroom to wash his hands before he ate.
Nicholas looked up and saw Jason, "Hi, Jason."
"What's going on, Nicholas?" asked Jason
"I am just washing my hands before I eat," Nicholas answered
"Do you always wash before you eat?" Jason asked.
"Yes, I always wash," Nicholas said. He dried his hands on a paper towel saying, "Do you want to share my chips?"
"Sure, I love chips. Let me wash my hands first," Jason said as he turned on the water.
Jesus teaches us that we must be clean and pure in mind, body and spirit.
What do you think?
Do you always wash your hands before you eat?
Do you bathe daily?
Do you have a clean spirit?
Would Jesus be happy?
Friday, May 05, 2006
Ashley and Sam were two young children who were blessed to have a grandmother who loved them and always invited them to visit her. It was a great adventure to visit Grandma. She made them the total center of her attention and the kids knew they we completely and unconditionally loved by Grandma. Ashley and Sam enjoyed all of her stories and her songs but they especially loved Grandma’s food. The fresh cookies and sweets, the home-made cakes, Grandma’s food always put a huge smile on their faces and made their tummies feel tighter.
Grandma was working in the kitchen making a wonderful lunch of home-made pizza with fresh cheese, meat and sauce. While Grandma cooked she would hum and sing. She had so much joy that wherever she went, that joy would gush forth in the form of song. Ashley and Sam were always full of joy, too but sometimes they were a bit mischievous. On this day Ashley and Sam snuck into the attic and knew they couldn’t get caught, as long as they could hear Grandma singing while she cooked.
Ashley and Sam loved Grandma’s attic because it had lots really cool stuff! There were tons of treasures from the past. Grandma made sure everything in the attic was organized and neatly stored in boxes and storage containers. On days she felt lonely, Grandma would go into the attic to remember her past and rekindle the feelings of love from days gone by.
Ashley and Sam were exploring in the attic. They opened up a box full of old style dresses that were all ironed and neatly folded. Box to box, they went opening up each one. Suddenly an old letter fell out of one of the boxes. The two children looked at each other and with a sneaky smile. Ashley opened the letter. “Wow!” she said, it is from Grandpa.
Grandpa died 2 years earlier and this was actually a letter that he wrote. They looked closely at the date and it said 1955. The paper had yellowed but the words were very clear. The letter said:
My dear and sweetest Amy Ellen,
I miss you greatly and still I continue to love you with all my heart. When the time comes, I will come to you as fast as I can. It I could run on water, I would go at full speed, jumping from wave to wave to get to you as fast as possible. If I could fly, I would soar through the skies to be with you--the one I love.
Please remember as you read this letter that you have my complete and unconditional love. While other men are tempted to be with other women or look at impure books and magazines, I promise that I will never do that. I will never ruin the special love I have for you in my heart. I know that my love for you is strong and that I have God’s support to help me in that love all the days of my life…
There was lots of other mushy stuff that made the kids giggle and they decided to return the letter to the envelope. As they were putting the letter away, they realized that Grandma’s humming had stopped. They looked up and looking down on them was Grandma.
With a very serious look on her face, Grandma said, “Could I please have that letter, it is special to me.” Ashley and Sam thought, “Oh gosh, we are in big trouble for reading this letter.”
To their surprise, Grandma sat with them on the attic floor and said, “Kids, you need to know why this letter is so important. It is a lesson about God’s love. For in today’s world, with all the bad things you can see on television, in the movies and in magazines, God’s plan of love for married couples gets hidden.”
Grandma continued, “You need to know that in the Sacrament of Matrimony God gives us the special gift of a spouse to love for our entire life. The gift of marriage is a special bond between a man a woman. God would never want any other man or woman to take this gift away. So, couples are not to be with anyone else and we are not to wish that we had another husband or wife who has more money, better looks or more intelligence”
Grandma further said, “God thought this was so important, that He included it in the 10 commandments and wrote them on the tablets for the entire world to know. We are talking about the 9th Commandment: ‘You Shall Not Covet Your Neighbor’s Wife.’” Grandma insured them the rule also applies to Husbands.
Ashley and Sam realized that each of us should only love the one God chooses for us. Only then, can we be happy in life and pass happiness to others like the love Grandpa passed to Grandma. Because she was loved, she could pass that love to them.
Don’t look at the television, movies, music or magazines for your model of love. Look to God to guide you to those who work hard to love their spouses and enjoy the gift of the Sacrament of Matrimony so they don’t look at others’ spouses.
Eight-year-old Simone and her four-year-old brother Joel were sitting together in church. Joel giggled, sang, and talked out loud. Finally, his big sister had enough. "You're not supposed to talk out loud in church." "Why? Who's going to stop me?" Joel asked. Simone pointed to the back of the church and said, "See those two men standing by the door? They're hushers!!!"
Monday, May 01, 2006
Thursday, April 27, 2006
Lunch time was nearly over. Alice and Nicholas were eating together.
They were talking about what had happened on their first day at their new school. They were cleaning up their lunch papers when Nicholas saw James.
When he was finished cleaning up, Nicholas walked up to James.
"Hi," Nicholas said
"Hi," James said quietly
Nicholas asked "Are you ready for class now?"
"Yeah"...Just then the bell rang and James ran off.
Nicholas smiled at Alice. "Are you ready?"
"Yeah, let's go," she answered.
Jesus teaches us to be forgiving and caring to others.
Do you think Nicholas was right to talk to James?
Do you think James thought Nicholas was nice to talk to him?
Do you think Jesus was happy with Nicholas?
What Should I Say To God When I Pray?
When we pray, it's easy to say the same words over and over. Prayer can become a habit that we don't think about. Instead, we should think about what we are saying when we pray, and we should be honest with God. Also, we shouldn't pray to show off, but we should say to God what we want to tell him. The Lord's Prayer can be a guide for what to talk to God about. Prayers can include thanking God for who he is and for what he has done. In prayer we can confess our sins, telling God that we are sorry for the bad things we have done. We can make requests, too, asking God to help others and to give us strength and guidance. We can talk to God about anything on our mind.
Tuesday, April 25, 2006
The bell rang for recess. All the children scampered to the playground.
Katie was sharing her treat with Alice.
"How did you get so good in science?" asked Alice.
"Learning is important," answered Katie. "I am not good at science, I just want to learn things."
"I don't like school," Alice said. "I would rather be home playing."
"Me too," said Katie, "but learning is ok. Everyday I learn at least one more thing than I knew yesterday; and ... we get the weekends off."
Both girls laughed as they finished their treat.
Jesus teaches us that we must be eager to learn.
What do you think?
Do you want to learn new things?
Do you like school?
Are you glad when recess comes?
Do you think Katie makes Jesus happy?
Friday, April 21, 2006
If God Gives Us Everything We Ask For, Then How Come We Don't Have Everything?
God doesn't give us everything we ask for. He gives us everything we need, when we need it. Sometimes we want things that could hurt us, like when a baby wants to play in the fire. Fire is dangerous and can hurt us. God knows what can hurt us, so He doesn't give us those things because He loves us. God wants to give us what is good for us.
Tuesday, April 18, 2006
Adam was so excited. This was the day he had been awaiting for weeks. All his friends were going to meet at the new city park and spend their day off from school riding their bicycles. In fact, just yesterday his friend Mike chatted with him at school to remind him that all the guys were going to meet at 10 o’clock. Adam could not sleep the night before because he was so excited.
Finally sun arose and morning arrived. As Adam started dressing, he thought of all the fun they were going to have. He dressed in his favorite jeans with a red shirt. He gobbled down his breakfast, kissed his mother and jumped on his bicycle and rode off to the park. The day was overcast and a bit chilly but Adam’s enthusiasm warmed everything. He was going to meet his friends.
Adam arrived at the park 15 minutes early and found a bench to lean his bike against as he looked around for his friends. No sign of them yet. Time seemed to drag on as Adam watched the clock on the wall of the bank across the street from the park. Finally, 10 o’clock arrived but no friends. The clouds got darker and it started to drizzle. Adam waited. The clock stuck 10:15, Adam was getting nervous and wet.
Adam thought that maybe the guys were at the other end of the park. So he jumped on his bike and peddled through the puddles that the rain made. Round and round the park Adam rode. Finally Adam realized that he had been the victim of lie. His friends had no intention of meeting him at the park. They thought it would be fun to trick him. They lied to him and it was not funny in his mind!
Later Adam discovered that his friends all when to another park. He had trusted their word and as a result of this behavior, Adam felt bad and it would take a long time before he would trust what they would tell him.
God wants us to have good friends that we can trust. When someone lies it means saying what is not true with the aim of deceiving someone. Make sure your heart is full of good things and your smile is bright. Be loyal to your friends and they will know you are being one of God’s loving people.
The bell rang for school to start.
Alice was on her way to her classroom at her new school. She saw a girl sitting on the ground, holding her knee, and crying.
She went over to the girl that was crying.
"Are you ok?" she asked.
The girl was crying.
She said, "I fell and skinned my knee."
"I will help you to the office," Alice said.
She helped the girl get up and they walked slowly to the office.
Jesus teaches us that when we cry and we are sad, Jesus knows and He cares.
Do you think Alice should have helped that girl?
Do you think Alice should have helped her to the office?
Do you think the girl was grateful to Alice?
Do you think Jesus was happy?
Thursday, April 06, 2006
“….Happy Birthday to Jenny, Happy Birthday to you!” The sound of her birthday song was still in Jenny’s ears as she peddled her brand new scooter to the swimming pool close to her home. This was a great day! For a birthday gift, her parents had just bought her the scooter she had always wanted. Now she was riding it for the first time! It was the perfect birthday gift! She was truly a lucky girl.
Jenny was meeting all her friends at the swimming pool for a great afternoon of splashing, swimming and diving. Her parents had arranged for a pool party with lots of food and balloons. It was her birthday and Jenny felt like the luckiest girl in the whole world.
Jenny pulled her shiny new red scooter into the pool’s parking lot and leaned it against the fence and ran to meet her friends who had arrived early. This was a great day and all she could think of was how special she was. When she was inside she spent a lot of time jumping from the diving board into the pool. About an hour into Jenny’s party, her friend Debbie asked about her new scooter. She was happy to show off the scooter to Debbie.
Debbie and Jenny ran to the outer fence to get a good view. The scooter as not there! A shocked look overcame Jenny’s face. She exclaimed “Where is my new scooter?” She and Debbie ran outside the pool complex and walked all around the parking area. No scooter! They asked the manager. No luck! Before she knew it, everyone at the pool was looking for Jenny’s new scooter.
Someone had stolen her brand new scooter. Jenny sat and cried! Her heart seemed broken. Soon Jenny’s mother came and held Jenny in her arms. Like all mom’s she could feel her pain and she held her close to her heart. She soothed Jenny and spoke to her.
“Jenny, this is a very sad thing that has happened, especially on your birthday. I am so sorry” her mother said. Jenny snuggled closer and cried.
Her mother continued “Jenny, when God gave Moses the 10 Commandments, He made a special point to tell us not to steal. Stealing is a very bad thing to do and it causes very much pain for the innocent people who lose their valuables. It also makes the person who steals evil. “
She continued, “God calls us to share things with others but sometimes people break God’s laws and it causes pain. Nobody feels that pain more than you do, my precious Jenny.”
They returned to the Birthday party but the day was not as wonderful as it had been before the scooter was stolen.
This story does not have a happy ending. Stealing is not a happy subject. Jenny’s heart was broken and a wonderful day was ruined by the greed and bad actions of selfish people. May God bless you and may you never have anything of yours stolen.
Monday, March 27, 2006
It was a warm summer day when Uncle John visited Jean and Juan at their home in the city. At breakfast, Uncle John asked the kids to join him for a day at the zoo. The children were so happy, their faces were beaming! “The zoo, I love the zoo!” shouted Juan as he danced around the kitchen.
Jean jumped up in the air singing for joy. She said, “Thanks Uncle John, I promise to be good and do everything you ask of me.” Jean’s smile was from ear to ear.
Uncle John and the children were off to the bus stop to get the bus that would take them to the zoo.
The zoo was crowded with lots of people. There were so many colors, sounds and smells. The zoo was really exciting and the children were having a great time. They watched the monkeys swing from tree to tree. They watched the dolphins jump through the water making large splashes. They saw the mighty lion roar and then they saw slimy snakes.
When they saw the bald eagles that Jean had a question. “This sign says that bald eagles are endangered. What does endangered mean?”
Uncle John said, “Jean many of the bald eagles have died and have not had new baby eaglets to replace them. So, we are in danger of losing them from our planet if we do not care for them.”
“That is sad, how did it happen?” asked Jean.
“Many eagles have lost their nests to the construction of homes and businesses by humans. The trees were cut and the nesting areas were lost. The good news is that we have started to protect them and there had been a slow increase in their birth rate and maybe someday they will be able to fly freely again.”
While they were talking, Juan noticed another sign about bald eagles. “This sign said, most bald eagles ‘mate for life.’ What does ‘mate for life’ mean, Uncle John?”
“Well Juan it means that bald eagles chose one husband or wife and they never have another for their entire life. Men and women should have only one spouse for their entire life. In fact, God gave us the 6th Commandment--Thou shall not commit adultery, as a rule to insure that we only love one husband or wife.”
“What does adultery mean, Uncle John?” both children asked at the same time.
“It means that God wants us to be totally in love with our spouses, so much in love that we would never even want to love another man or woman. If a married person does give their love to another man or woman it is a violation of God’s law, which is called adultery. Adultery breaks the trust married couples have for one other. They do not feel as if they are ‘one’ any more and God wants all married couples to be ‘one.’” Uncle John explained.
“Being married is grace from God and God gives married couples great gifts. The best gift of all is the gift of life. God wants all married couples to have loving and polite children like you” said Uncle John with a great big smile.
“Now, let’s go home and have supper with your wonderful parents who love both God and you both very much” said Uncle John.
God wants good things for everybody. When your heart is full of good things, your smile will burn brightly and everybody around you will know it! What is on the inside affects the outside! Be loyal to your family and you will fly like the eagle.
Chelsea and Carliagni were with their parents on a summer holiday at a beautiful tropical island in the Caribbean. The sea water was as blue as the sky on a clear day and warm and refreshing. The white sand was perfect for making sandcastles and running. Chelsea and Carliagni were on the beach making sandcastles after spending the past hour playing in the water. They were having a great time!
Suddenly two unfamiliar boys came running by their blanket making a lot of noise.
"Bang, bang" said the older boy with his thumb in the air and his index finger pointing forward in the shape of a gun. The younger boy rolled around in the sand and said "Bang!" to the older boy using his hand in the very same way.
These boys were loud and snorted while they were pretending to shoot one another. The older boy dropped down on the sand, pretending to be dead while the other boy acted like a great champion. Then they both laughed and ran away.
After seeing this, the girls made guns out of their fingers imitating the other boys. "Bang bang!"
At that very moment, their mother said, "Please stop doing that immediately!"
Startled, Chelsea said, "Mom, we were just playing and our friends play this way all of the time at school."
Mom asked the girls to come to the beach chairs, it was time for a little chat. They needed to explain God's plan for respecting human life and for honoring the dignity of all persons.
Dad said, "Many years ago, God gave commandments to Moses, the fifth one said that we should not kill." So, we must not hurt or harm anyone, but help them and be a friend.”
"Oh come on, we were not killing anyone, we were just playing" said Carliagni .
Dad said, "Of course, you were not killing but you were pretending to kill. That is not a fun game to play. You were playing something that is wrong."
Mom then said, "Life is so special, I remember the days you were both born and I held you in my arms." Mom sighed and said further, "Oh, all the dreams and wishes I have for you. I could not imagine you being killed. Or you being someone who would pretend to take that dream away from another mother by killing their child."
Dad said, "If you are going to have fun, play games that make life special. Take part in sports, make each other laugh, run and play. These all are ways to enjoy life."
Mom said, "Girls, killing is against God's law. God wants you to obey the laws so you can benefit from God's love for you. God loves you more than you can imagine. God also has wishes and hoped and dreams for you! Being a person who respects life is a person who can enjoy all of the people God has made and most of all, it allows you to be truly happy."
"Wow! We are sorry” the girls said.
Mom and Dad just hugged one another and were proud that their children did not choose to make killing a game.
Many children play games that shoot and kill. Every life is precious and we should not do anything to cause harm to anyone. God wants you to be special. Don’t play any killing games instead play games that will make your life and the life of others special.
Saturday, March 25, 2006
Nicky and Jessica love parties! The food, the laughter, the games, always so much fun!
One day Jessica and Nicky were at one of these special family parties when Jessica went into the kitchen and gave a big hug to Aunt Helen. "Aunt Helen, I really love you and I think you are really cool. Do you want to know what I really like to do?"
"No, tell me" said Aunt Helen while giving Jessica a huge hug.
"I would like to spend time alone with you-just two girls" Jessica said with a big grin.
"That sounds like fun Jessica, let's go for a walk in the woods behind the house?" Aunt Helen said as she started towards the kitchen door. Aunt Helen and Jessica started an their "all girls" walk in the woods. Nicky ran into the basement to watch the baseball game on television.
While they were walking, Jessica said, "I love my whole family with all my heart. Sometimes, I even feel a tingle deep inside but I don't understand why. I even feel this love when they were not with me. Sometimes I just think of them and I feel a special love."
With a tear in her eye, Aunt Helen said, " Jessica that is so special! Why do you think you feel this way?"
Jessica said, "Aunt Helen, I think God puts a warm spot in our hearts for those who are close to us like our family and special friends. So, when we think of them we feel that special tingle. I feel that special tingle in a strong way when I think of my Mom and Dad."
Aunt Helen said. "That also happens to me when I am with my children and your Uncle Henry. That warm feeling is so special, isn't it?
"Oh yes is it a warm feeling. How long will it last?" Jessica wondered.
Aunt Helen explained, "God gives everyone a special amount of His love called 'grace.' Grace helps in times of trouble and also it helps make our love stronger and it lasts forever. God gives us lots of grace for our family. He wants us to honor and love our parents all the days of our lives whether they are with us or are far away.”
"Really?" Jessica asked.
Aunt Helen continued "Whether our parents or family are in the same room, in a far away country or even in heaven, your love will always keep strong. In fact, God thinks it is so important that he made it the Fourth Commandment. God wrote that we should Honor our Mother and our Father all the days of our lives."
Jessica said, "That was really a nice thing God did to give us that grace to love everyone in the same way that I love my parents." She put her arms around Aunt Helen and her face glowed with a huge smile.
They walked back to the party with that warm feeling in their hearts because by sharing God's love, they loved each other in a special way.
The main duties of children are to love God and their parents with all their hearts. When we do good things we not only honor our parents but we honor our family name which goes on forever. This obedience is needed for our everyday lives. When we are in school, we must obey our teachers and those in authority. This will make our lives happier and more pleasing to all, especially God.
Saturday, March 18, 2006
How Can God Hear Everyone's Prayers At Once?
God can hear everyone's prayers at once because God is everywhere. We can only be at one place at a time, and usually we can't understand more than one person at a time. But God is not like us - He is not limited. God is infinitely greater than we are. He can hear thousands of prayers at once. Not only can God hear and understand everyone who is praying to him in many different languages, but he also can give each person his full attention. Isn't God great!
Friday, March 17, 2006
One Sunday Nicky and Jessica went shopping with their Aunt Lisa. They were looking at all kinds of stores window-shopping. Jessica was telling Aunt Lisa how she would love a new dress when Nicky interrupted. He noticed that many of the stores were closed. He asked, “Aunt Lisa, why are so many stores closed today and their lights are turned out?”
Aunt Lisa replied, “Nicky, the reason the stores are closed is because it is Sunday.” Nicky scrunched up his nose and said, “Huh? Sunday? I know that’s when people go to Church and when people spend lots of time with their families but why can’t I go to this jewelry store to get my watch fixed?”
Aunt Lisa said, “Nicky, many stores are closed on Sunday because it is the Lord’s Day and the Third Commandment tells us to keep holy the Lord’s Day.” She explained that in many countries people do not work on Sunday so that they can spend time thanking God for all the good things in their lives and for the gifts, they received during the week. “
Jessica smiled and said, “Aunt Lisa, I always thank God for all the great things in my life.” Aunt Lisa gave her a hug and said, “Jessica, I know that both you and Nicky are always thankful but let me tell you more.”
She explained, “Sunday is the special day when the entire Family of God comes together to thank Him. It is like in our family when on ordinary days, you tell each other how ‘thanks’ and ‘good job’ but there are those special days when our family and friends join together to celebrate. Recently we all went to graduation celebrations of your cousins Steve, Richard, Tanya and Ann. We made it a special event and made them feel extremely special. We gave them cool gifts, remember?”
Aunt Lisa continued, “Sundays are the special days when God’s family around the world gets together at Mass to thank God for all his blessings. Some families worship together on Sunday with all the neighbors in their local communities as a way of thanking God for wonderful gifts. Some ask God for forgiveness. They even give God special gifts like part of their allowance or the best gift--the gift of their love for God.”
Aunt Lisa gave them each a hug and said, “I love you both and I need you to know that when I go to Church I always thank God for the both of you!”
It is always important to make Sunday a special day for God and join all of God’s family to say thanks. We should make every effort to attend Mass. Taking time to say thanks to family and friends is just as important—they too, are gifts from God.
Tuesday, March 14, 2006
Thursday, March 09, 2006
A leaf out of a book
A little boy opened the family Bible, and looked at the old pages as he turned them. Suddenly, something fell out of the Bible. He picked it up and looked at an old leaf from a tree that had been pressed in between the pages. “Mama, look what I found!” the boy called out. “What do you have, dear?” she asked. With amazement in his voice, the boy replied, “I think it’s Adam’s suit!”
There is a difference between hearing and answering. God hears all our prayers, but He doesn't always give us what we ask for. He answers all our prayers, but not always the way we want Him to. When we ask God for something, sometimes He answers yes, no or wait. A good answer is not always yes.
Alice went to her class. In her class was a friend that lived on her same street.
"Hi, Katie." Alice was glad to see a friend.
"Hey Alice. If you need any help, just let me know," said Katie with a smile
"Thank you Katie," said Alice.
Mrs. Williams, their teacher, announced that Katie got the highest grade in the class from their test last week in science.
Mrs. Williams gave Katie a treat. The whole class clapped for Katie.
"Congratulations, Katie," Alice said.
"Thank you. During recess, we can share this treat," Katie offered
"No, Katie, its yours, you earned it," said Alice.
With a smile Katie answered, "I want to share with you."
"Thank you Katie, and I could use some help in science."
"Sure Alice, right after school."
Jesus teaches us that we all have gifts that He has given to us. We should share what we are good at with others and never be boastful.
Wasn't that nice of Katie?
Do you think Katie made Alice feel as if she had a friend?
Do you think Katie made Jesus happy?
Remember to pray and ask Jesus to give you a meek and humble heart and mind.
“Way cool!” said Nicky. He was happy because Uncle Henry was taking Jessica and him to a Memorial Day parade! It was a warm day in the city as summer was beginning. Jessica studied in school that Memorial Day was a day when all the people remembered those who had given their life for their country.
In their city, there were always parades for big events. The parades had marching bands that played great music, big, colorful floats dedicated to the theme and many of the city’s famous people.
Nicky and Jessica were very happy to be going. Uncle Henry also brought along his friend James. He was older than Nicky and Jessica but still younger than their very old Uncle Henry. Jessica used to tease her Uncle Henry saying, “He is so old that he even had grey hair.” She loved to tease her Uncle because she knew he loved her with all his heart and that he was always having fun.
During the parade, James got really excited about the music and started to shout out loud. An ugly scene happened. James lost his temper and said some very nasty words. He was red in the face and waved his hands all around. Nicky covered his ears because he knew that from his training about loving God and one another that nasty words were not what God wanted us to say. Jessica stood there with her mouth opened, she was embarrassed. Uncle Henry did his best to stop James.
After the fuss was over, James apologized to everyone, including Uncle Henry, Nicky and Jessica. James said he had a problem with anger and that sometimes he said things that were offensive to others. He said he was especially sorry about saying nasty things about God. James said, “God tells us in the Second Commandment that we should not use his name in vain.” I used God’s name in vain and I am sorry.
Nicky was not really sure what “in vain” meant but he knew it was important to respect for the Lord's name and James’s angry words did not respect God. Uncle Henry said that Nicky had it 100% correct!
Uncle Henry said that he was very happy that Nicky and Jessica did not use bad words or have anger problems. He was always proud of them for the way that they always respected other people. For their reward, Uncle Henry and James took Nicky and Jessica to the ice cream stand and bought them a big ice cream cone when the parade ended.
It is always important to respect God and all of God’s people by using good words and not using nasty words. Even though others may use curse words to act cool, we all know that God has a special love for those who use their words to make the world a better place.
Wednesday, March 08, 2006
Prayer is talking with God. When we have a good friend, we talk to that person about all sorts of things. By spending time with that person we build a relationship and become friends.
In the same way, we should talk to God about what is happening in our life. God wants us to share our life with Him, to tell Him about what makes us happy, sad, and afraid. He wants to know what we want and what we would like Him to do, for ourself and for others. Also, when we pray, we open ourself up to God so that He can make good and positive changes in us.
Tuesday, March 07, 2006
"I want the doll with the hair that grows, and the clothes that go with her, and new roller blades, and the phone that really talks, and perfume and new clothes . . .
. . . OH YEAH. . .
I want the car, and the studio, and the house for the doll,
and a new purse,
and . . . "
"WAIT A MINUTE!
You need to let me tell what I want!"
"I want a 12-speed bike, and a monster truck, and the talking space station and a ping-pong table, and a big trampoline, and a super-hero costume, and . . ."
HEY! You didn't let me finish. I want . . .
Oh my! It seems as if this could go on all day! This is the way it is in the James household. Every time a new catalog comes in the mail, the children gather around and pick and choose all the things they think they want.
What do you think happens when they receive some of these things?
Do you think they appreciate what they receive?
Do you think they are happy?
How long will that happiness last?
The Story of Achan
Achan and his family lived in a tent. That may sound strange to you , because your family and the people you know probably live in houses or apartment buildings. But, living in tents was quite common for Achan and his family.
Achan had everything he needed. He had his tent-home. He had a flock of sheep for wool to make clothing. He had herds of cattle for milk and meat. He had a wife and children that loved him. Achan should have been very happy. But he wasn't.
Achan wanted more!
One day Achan saw some very lovely things. He saw:
a beautiful robe from Babylon,
and a piece of gold,
and some silver coins.
As he looked at those items, he thought, "I sure would like to have all that. My clothes are made from sheep's wool. That robe from Babylon is much nicer than the clothing I have. It would look so good on me. And if I had that gold and those silver coins, why, I could buy anything I want."
Achan thought it all over in his mind. The more he thought about it, the better it sounded. The new robe and all that money he just could not pass up. He couldn't just leave it there. After all, if he didn't take it, someone else would come along and take it, right? He finally made his decision.
Achan picked up the gold and the silver coins and put them in a safe place, then he carefully placed the expensive robe over his shoulder so it would not get dirty or wrinkled. Achan was so happy as he journeyed home. He almost couldn't believe his good fortune.
After Achan got home with his treasures, he began to think more about what he had done. He thought, "None of my friends have a robe like this one. It is so special that if I wear it, they will wonder where I got it. I can't tell them I found it and stole it." Then he thought about the gold and the silver. "If I take this gold to the market and try to buy new things, people will wonder how I got the gold. Only the rich people have gold and I am not rich. I can't use the silver either, because it is not from my country, and they will know that I have stolen it. What can I do now?"
Achan began to dig a hole. He dug a deep hole in the ground under his tent. In that hole, he buried the robe, the gold, and the silver. "Ah, that takes care of that!' He thought. 'It is all under the ground, and no one will ever know what I have done."
Achan forgot about God. He forgot that God sees everything and knew what he did. In the end, Achan had to be punished for the sin he committed.
Do you think it is wrong or sinful to want things?
If you see something that doesn't look like it belongs to anyone is it all right to take it?
What should Achan have done when he saw the robe, the gold, and the silver coins?
Let your life be free from love of money but be content with what you have (Hebrews 13:5).
Let us pray that we will not be covetous and be content with what we have.
Dear God, Thank you for all the good things you have given us, such as our family, home, clothing, and food.Help us learn to be happy with what we have and not to be tempted to steal in order to get the things we think we want. Let us remember that you are always watching over us, and help us to only do those things thatwill be pleasing to you. In Jesus' name.
Jessica and Nicky were stuck in the house looking for exciting things to do because it was raining. They soon became bored and started to do odd things.
Nicky started making noises. "Grrrrr!" said Nicky as he sneaked up behind Jessica.
This really annoyed Jessica so she started to push Nicky away. She said, "Nicky, stop being so dumb!"
Nicky just laughed and then started to jump up and down making a "hissing" sound like a snake.
Hearing the fuss, Aunt Helen ran into the room. She separated them and asked them to spend some time in their rooms thinking about the things that are really important to them. She told them to write a list of all the things or people they loved the most in life.
Aunt Helen asked to see the lists the kids made a short time after.
"Very interesting!" said Aunt Helen. "I see things like baseball, candy, music, movies, television, video games, stuffed animals and even chocolate but I don't see God's name anywhere." "All these things on their lists were great but to be truly happy, you need to make God your first love. You need to make God the center of your lives. You must love the Lord our God with all your hearts."
She told them that making other things the most important thing is breaking the 1 st Commandment. "I AM the Lord your God and I shall not have others gods before me."
"What are other gods?" Jessica asked.
Aunt Helen said, ""Other gods" can be things we love more than God."
Nicky thought for a minute and said, "That must mean that if going to a baseball game is more important to me than anything else, it is a god!
Aunt Helen just smiled.
Jessica said "I guess that 1st commandment is for us today because we made all the fun things in life our gods"
"It looks like you both understand." said Aunt Helen as she hugged them. "If you learn to trust and love God with all your heart, you will have life at its best."
Let us remember that God wants all of our love. Give all your love to God. He will give you lots more love than you can ever dream about. Then you can give that love to other people and this gift of love can continue for a long long time.
Sunday, March 05, 2006
Alice and Nicholas were in their new school. Going to a new school can be hard.
They sat together waiting for the bell to ring to start school.
A boy approached them,
"I am James. I can run faster than anyone else in the whole school"
"I am Nicholas and this is Alice. I'm glad that you run fast," Nicholas said.
“Run with me and I will show you how fast I can run. I can beat you."
"I believe you, James. I don't want to run,"
James was insisting, "Yes, you have to run with me. Are you afraid?"
"I am not afraid, I just don't want to run," Nicholas said.
By this time there were a lot of people around. James kept after Nicholas, calling him names until finally Nicholas said,
"OK, I will run with you."
James was laughing when he said,
"We will run to that tree and back. Try to keep up with me."
Nicholas ran as fast as he could. He ran to the tree touched it, and started back. James was running as hard as he could too. Nicholas was faster. He touched the tree and started back and James wasn't even to the tree yet. James never touched the tree. He just turned and started back.
James ran fast but Nicholas ran faster. Nicholas won.
Jesus teaches us that when we are humble, as Nicholas was, we get many rewards from Him.
What do you think?
Was that right for James to insist Nicholas run?
Did James want a race with Nicholas to show he was better?
Do you think James was humbled by losing?
What Have We Learnt?
Happy are the Poor in Spirit. This means that Jesus is happy when we are humble. We should not be boastful or selfish. If we do not listen to the words of Jesus we may develop a prideful attitude and think that we are better than everyone. This is not a good thing.
Remember to pray to Jesus and ask Him to give us an attitude of humility. The best model of humility Jesus gave to us is our Blessed Mother. We can ask her to help us become humble like she.
Thursday, March 02, 2006
Many people during Lent often decide to go without their favourite foods, which is a good thing, as they practice acts of penance.
There is also another way to please God and that is to try and be extra helpful to our parents. So instead of rushing out to play games, it may be a good thing with your Mom's permission to help her wash the dishes or to do some extra chores in your home.
Our favourite food is not always the only thing we must give up when Lent begins. We should also practice goodness and kindness to all, even if we are feeling a bit grumpy.
This kind of penace would make God very happy with us.
Copyright © 2006 Steve Smith. All rights reserved.