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Catechesis of the Good Shepherd - Level 1 Catechist Training at Saint Patrick - Saint Anthony Church
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by Lisa Orchen, 2007

Subject:                 Prophecies


Title:                      The Names


Age:                       3+, first year students


Liturgical Time:  Advent


Source:                  Isaiah 9:5; RPC: 106-113;  LGC: Ch 14; CCC:  461-463, 479, 483 (Incarnation), 2305 (Peace), 102, 134 (Jesus in prophecy), 450, 455, 468 (Christ the King); Sing With Joy Music, SPSA Course Notes, MLB


Doctrinal Points:

Ÿ         The Prophet gives a three-fold message (1.) God has a wonderful gift for us, (2.) God loves us and wants to be with us, (3.) God is coming here

Ÿ         The Prophet is one who listens deeply to God and is empowered to speak God’s message

Ÿ         Jesus has many names which reveal aspects of his divinity and his humanity

Ÿ         Jesus is the Son of God and the King of humanity

Ÿ         Incarnation  -  God became human in the form of Jesus

Ÿ         Jesus is the person to whom this prophecy points


Direct Aim

      To announce more names for Jesus, the Light.


Indirect Aims:

Ÿ         To prepare for the celebration of Christmas

Ÿ         To introduce and explain Advent and the symbols of Advent

Ÿ         To offer a sense of salvation history - that God prepares the people, reveals Godself to people and is present through history to people

Ÿ         To explore God’s incarnation as a baby who was also so much more

Ÿ         To explore the images in all the names for Jesus in their ordinary use and their Godly use

Ÿ         To explore the many ways to image, contemplate and connect with God

Ÿ         To foster trust in God’s promise and power

Ÿ         To introduce Trinitarian thought

Ÿ         To assist with control of movement

Ÿ         To foster prayer

Ÿ         To assist the child enter into the mystery of his/her relationship with God

Ÿ         To encourage greater participation in liturgy through introducing the traditional scriptures used during Advent

Ÿ         To nurture a sense of wonder and awe around the mystery of the Incarnation

Ÿ         To facilitate the use of signs

Ÿ         To lay a foundation of respect for our Judaic heritage

Ÿ         To prepare for later work with the prophecies and infancy narratives



      Prayer table prepared for Advent (prayer table, purple prayer cloth, purple drape or accessory clothes, Advent wreath, matches, snuffer)

      Prayer card, 11x14, matted in purple to match Advent purples in Atrium with the words handwritten on parchment style paper:  “For a child is born to us, a son given us, Upon his shoulder dominion rests.  They name him Wonder-Counselor, God-Hero, Father-Forever, Prince of Peace.”

      Prayer card stand





At the Prayer Table, open mat on the floor.  Gather children in a semi-circle around the mat. 



“Does anyone remember the name for our circle of candles on our Prayer Table?“  Advent Wreath.  “Last week when we were here we lit our first candle on our Advent Wreath.  Now we are in the second week of Advent and we will light two candles on our Advent Wreath.” 


“Every day during Advent we light a candle to help us wait and prepare.  What are we waiting for, do you remember”………..”Yes we are waiting for the celebration of Jesus at Christmas.”


“Long, long ago people were waiting for someone God told them would come.  A prophet that God had given a message to had told the people that someone would come who would, lead, who would be a great light.  We are going to listen to another prophecy about the light.  You are going to hear a lot of different names - listen for them.”


Lighting the Candle


Light two Advent candles.  Place prophecy in stand.  Read once or twice through.


For a child is born to us.

A Son given us.

Upon his shoulder dominion rests.

They name him




Prince of Peace




“Did you hear who is given to us?  [paraphrase the prophecy]  “a baby……dominion means all authority…..etc.”


“How can there be a baby who can have all authority and power?”


“Did you hear all those names?  The prophet names the child Wonder-Counselor, God-Hero, Father-Forever, Prince of Peace.  How is this child also able to be called all these names?  We can wonder who this child might be.”


Welcoming A Response

Listen and respond to children’s answers to the open ended questions.  Try not to explain or answer but to respond with further questions to help their reflection go deeper.


Continuing to Pray


“Is there anything else you would like to sing or pray about this child?”


Invite the children to sing “Come, Lord Jesus,“ “The Advent Wreath Song” or other Advent songs.


Older Children - the exploration of the Prophecy could go deeper:


“Wonder-Counselor:  a counselor is someone who knows what to do and gives direction.  Someone who helps.  So a wonder counselor might help us to wonder or might help us have wonder.”


“God-Hero:  what does a hero do?”…………..”I wonder how there can be a hero who is also a baby.”


“Father-Forever:  How can there be a baby who is a father?  How long is forever.”


“Prince of Peace:  what is a prince, who is a  prince?…..The son of a king.  Whose son might this baby be?  What is peace?  Where does that peace come from?”


“How could a child be all these things?”



Children’s Work


      Copying prophecy (have parchment paper with printed lines)

      Original artwork

      Reading the prophecy

      carrying the prophecy in procession

Ÿ         Sitting at Prayer Table



Children’s Responses:





CGS Level 1 Catechist Training