“In the beginning, when God created the heavens and the earth…”
“…our Creed begins with the creation of heaven and earth, for creation is the beginning and the foundation of all God’s works.”
Source: USCCB. org “The Catechism of the Catholic Church #198”
For Parents to Share with Their Children
We Continue to Learn Our Creed, Stanza by Stanza
“I believe in one Lord Jesus Christ,
the Only Begotten Son of God,
born of the Father before all ages.
God from God, Light from Light,
true God from true God,
begotten, not made, consubstantial with the Father;
through him all things were made.”
The Creation Story
Imagine ancient tribal people thousands of years ago sitting around the fire at night and telling stories about the beginning of the world. I have heard that the Creation Story is perhaps, a chant or song. Picture the tents, camels, and vast night sky. Our religion started more than two thousand years ago, with the birth of Jesus Christ, in the Middle East in the areas which now include Israel, Palestine, Iraq, Syria, Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon. The country of Egypt is actually in North Africa, but is a close neighbor with Israel. In fact, Egypt played a big role in the stories of the ancestors of the Hebrews, also called “Israelites, and had an important role in the early life of Jesus. Almost two thousand years before Jesus was born, Moses, the first Jewish prophet, received the Torah (or the “Old Testament”) between the years 1312 BC and 1272 BC. As a Jew, Jesus would have read and heard the readings from the Torah and have known the ancient stories from childhood onwards. We hear them every Sunday during Mass and every day if we go to daily Mass. We also hear and read “New Testament” stories about Jesus and his life, teachings, miracles, death, and Resurrection. In the Gospel, which means “Good News,” we hear the words Jesus spoke to his disciples, followers, critics and judges. Let’s begin to learn about the stories we hear today that Jesus as a young child would have heard many times.
An Excerpt from the Book of Genesis Chapter 1
3Then God said: Let there be light, and there was light.c4God saw that the light was good. God then separated the light from the darkness.5God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” Evening came, and morning followed—the first day.*”
An Excerpt for Young Children
from The Catholic Bible for Children, Page 10
“The Creation of the World” Genesis 1:1-2:4
“God decided to create the world. He said,
‘Let there be light!’ And there was light!
He called the light ‘day’ and the darkness ‘night’.
It was the first day.”
An Excerpt for Children
From The Catholic Children’s Bible, Page 21
“The Story of Creation”
“In the beginning, when God created the universe, the earth was formless and desolate.
The raging ocean that covered everything was engulfed in total darkness, and the spirit
of God was moving over the water.
The God commanded, ‘Let there be light’–and light appeared. God
was pleased with what he saw. Then
he separated the light from the darkness,
and He named the light ‘Day’ and the darkness ‘Night.’
Evening passed and morning came–that was
the first day.”
In Daniel’s lovely blessing he celebrates all the wonders of the world given to us by God. Invite your child to create a “freeform” poem, giving thanks to God for your child’s favorite things. Young children might be able to write “Thank You, God.” with a simple illustration. Older children can think of a number of blessings in their lives to list and illustrate or decorate. I recommend colored pencils or colored Sharpies on good paper for a lovely poster to hang in their rooms.
“Let there be light!” Art Project One
Materials and Method
Use any type of watercolor and watercolor paper to create a painting of light surrounded by darkness. I traced inverted plates of different sizes with pencil to create rings going out from the hot center of the sun. Then I filled them in with watercolors. I love watercolors and how the colors run into each other. Invite your child to paint anything they’d like about the sun coming into being at God’s command.
“Let There be Light” Art Project Two
Using Watercolor Pastels or Crayons
Materials and Methods
This is a fun and simple project. I remember doing this when I was very young–probably in second grade. The child covers a piece of paper with crayon colors (in this case, water soluble pastels) then covers all of it with a black crayon or black pastel. Then the child scratches through the black with a tooth pick, bent paper clip or perhaps a nail file tip. (I remember using an open safety pin as a child for this art project in school!) I used a small piece of watercolor paper to make this a quick and manageable art project. The objective is for the child to imagine a black void that becomes full of light at God’s command.