“I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. You shall not have other gods beside me. You shall not make for yourself an idol or a likeness of anything in the heavens above or on the earth below or in the waters beneath the earth; you shall not bow down before them or serve them.”
Source: USCCB.org “Exodus, chapter 20:1-5”
For Parents to Teach to Their Children
“The tablets were made by God; the writing was the writing of God, engraved on the tablets.”
While Moses was meeting and negotiating with God over the salvation of the wayward Israelites, Aaron– high priest and Moses’ brother– had invited the people to contribute all their gold items to make a golden idol for them to worship. “Before the ink was even dry,” as we now say, the contract between God and Moses on behalf of the Israelite people was already being broken. Moses was entrusted by God to deliver the commandments to the people:
“As he drew near the camp, he saw the calf and the dancing. Then Moses’ anger burned, and he threw the tablets down and broke them on the base of the mountain. Taking the calf they had made, he burned it in the fire and then ground it down to powder, which he scattered on the water and made the Israelites drink.”
Source: USCCB.org “Exodus, chapter 32:19-20”
Help your children learn how to use a Bible and read Holy Scripture. Point out to them that reading Holy Scripture is a part of an Examination of Conscience and Reconciliation. A reading your child is familiar with, such as “Adam and Eve,” in Genesis, chapter 3:1-24, can help your child understand the meaning of “temptation.” A reading of “The Golden Calf” from Exodus, chapter 32:14 provides an example of God’s forgiveness of even mortal sin. The priest may read or discuss Scripture during the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
If you do not have a children’s Catholic Bible, or regular Catholic Bible at home, I recommend buying one for the home library.
Here are three that I own and like to use as references:
“First Communion Bible” “My First Communion Bible” “The Catholic Children’s Bible”
Our Art Gallery
“The Golden Calf”
Exodus, chapter 32:31-32
“Moses returned to the LORD and said, “Ah, this people has committed a grave sin in making a god of gold for themselves! Now if you would only forgive their sin!
Practicing and Learning Our Prayers
“Learn to Pray Every Day”
“Pope Francis wants me to pray and listen to God every day.”
“Dear young friends, learn to pray every day: this is the best way to know Jesus and bring him into your lives…He is always listening and he knows everything about us lovingly…Let’s try to be open to God’s word, and open to the Lord’s surprises when he speaks to us.”
Source: Lessons from POPE FRANCIS for Children, page 16
Wonderfully Written by Angela M. Burrin, Beautifully Illustrated by Maria Cristina Lo Cascio
Reciting our Prayers
Most of the children will know these prayers, already. The Apostles’ Creed may be new to some students. I know from my previous parish that the Apostles’ Creed is taught in third grade. This doesn’t mean younger children can’t begin to read it and become familiar with it.
1. The Sign of the Cross.
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen
2. The Lord’s Prayer, or Our Father. (Given to us by Jesus, when he taught followers how to pray.)
Our Father, Who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come; Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.
3. Glory Be to the Father
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
4. The Hail Mary.
Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.
5. To the Guardian Angel
Angel of God, my guardian dear, To whom His love commits me here, ever this day be at my side, to light and guard, to rule and guide. Amen.
6. Grace Before Meals
Bless us, O Lord, and these Thy gifts, which we are about to receive from Thy bounty, through Christ our Lord. Amen.
7. The Apostles’ Creed.
I Believe in God, the Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth; and in Jesus Christ, His only son, our Lord; who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified; died, and was buried. He descended into hell; the third day He arose again from the dead: He ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of God, the Father Almighty; from there He shall come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Holy Catholic Church, the communion of Saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.
Source: Catholic Kids
8. The Beatitudes (Help children become familiar with it.)
“Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are they who mourn,
for they will be comforted.
Blessed are the meek,
for they will inherit the land.
Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
for they will be satisfied.
Blessed are the merciful,
for they will be shown mercy.
Blessed are the clean in heart,
for they will see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they will be called children of God.
Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
Our Art and Writing Project–“The Great Commandment”
Invite your children to write out “The Great Commandment” given to us by Jesus, and decorate it with Sharpies, markers, watercolor pastels, colored pencils, stickers, etc. Write on white paper, and decorate as desired, then glue onto the poster paper. My example below uses typed text and was “Photo Shopped” because it was made for this website. Your children can make a beautiful, hand-written poster for their room or your home.
Our Materials and “Double Love” Ideas
Suggested Homework Activities–Week Five
Please read from Exodus, chapter 32:31-32 with your children.
Discuss “The Great Commandment” with your family and read Matthew, chapter 22:36-40 on the USCCB.org or in your family Bible. Discuss with your child why Holy Scripture is a part of Examination of Conscience and Reconciliation.
Begin to learn about the Ten Commandments. Here is a simplified edition for children: