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Catechesis of the Good Shepherd - Level 1 Catechist Training at Saint Patrick - Saint Anthony Church
The Grain
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by Nancy Ahrens

Subject:        Kingdom Parables

 

Title:               The Grain

 

Age:               5+

 

Sources:       Matthew 13:33,44; RPC, chap. 8&10; GS&C, chap. 7; Mark 4:26-29

 

Liturgical Time:       Ordinary Time between Christmas and Lent

 

Doctrinal Content:

1.      The Kingdom of God is alive, growing everywhere, hidden but you know it’s working, mysterious and irreversible.

2.      The Kingdom of God grows with the help of human action.

3.      God animates all growth processes.

4.      The image of the grown grain is an image of the diversity of the Kingdom of God.

5.      The Kingdom of God grows in visible stages over time in which there are potential, purpose and goal.

 

Direct Aims:

1.      To further explore the growth and transformation of the Kingdom of God.

        Visible stages of it’s growth

        Exponential nature of it’s growth

        Surprising abundance of it’s harvest

 

Indirect Aims:

1.      To explore the identity of it’s sower.

2.      To see that we are active partners in the Kingdom of God.

3.      To foster wonder and awe.

4.      To foster awareness that God is working in us even if we are not aware of it.

 

Description of Materials

1.      Wheat grain in a clear glass.

2.      Head of wheat in a glued covered glass.

3.      Tray to hold 2 glasses.

4.      Candle, snuffer, matches, holder for spent matches, mat or table for presentation space.

5.      Scripture booklet.

6.      Tracing packet.

 

Presentation to the Children:

Preparation

1.      Gather children in a semi-circle around a mat.

2.      Place Hidden Treasure box, candle, snuffer, matches on mat.

 

Introduction

Jesus talked most when he was on Earth about the Kingdom of God (KOG). And it was

important so he told us in a lot of ways how the KOG was.

 

This is another parable about another seed called grain. Grain is a seed that is sown in fields. When it is grown it has a stalk with a lot of seeds on it like wheat, barley and oats. You might have heard about it.

 

(Open box with grain) This is grain. Sowing is planting seeds that are grown.

 

We can wonder how the grain of seed is like the KOG.

 

Light Candle

 

Solemn Reading of the Text

1.      Read “The Kingdom of Heaven and the Grain.”

 

            Meditation on Scripture

1.      There are some words that you might not be familiar with. He throws seeds on the ground. It is called broadcasting back in Jesus’ time. He had a pouch and would throw seeds from the pouch unto the ground.  (Demonstrate a broad, sweeping motion of the arm, as if spreading seed)

2.      Reaping is gathering in the grain that is grown.

3.      Harvesting is bringing in what is ripe and ready.

4.      We heard about stages when the grain is grown.

shoot

ear

full grain in the ear

 

Pass the grain. Would you like to take a seed? It grows into a plant, a wheat plant when it is ripe.

 

There might be 20 seeds in a head. Pass around a head of wheat in a covered glass.

 

Does the seed grow only when the farmer is watching it grow?

 

What is the farmer’s job? Water and feed it.

 

The seed grows night and day while the farmer sleeps. So what happens after it is fully grown? Ground into flour, eaten whole.

 

Some of it would be fed to the animals, sold or saved.

This goes on year after year.

 

Read the scripture again.

So from 1 seed he can get  20, 40 or more seeds.  What kind of power can cause this? Does the seed grow by itself? I wonder who the farmer is? Jesus said the KOG is like a grain that gets sown in a field. I wonder what he meant by that.

 

 

Children’s Responses:      (possible response could be silence)

1.      Sing a song - “The Kingdom of God”

 

 

Restoration of the Material:

1.      Snuff the candles

2.      Show children where the materials go on the parables shelf.

 

 

Children’s Work with the Materials:

1.      Copying the scripture story

2.      Original artwork (Encourage children to draw a picture of a farmer)

3.      Tracing Packet

4.      Reading the scripture story with the materials

5.      Sitting at prayer table

 

Children’s Responses (notable things the children say or do):

 

CGS Level 1 Catechist Training