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Posts Tagged ‘vatican council’

I had no entry last week, because I was out of town for work. Mrs. Van Brimmer took over the class and taught the Rosary. I understand it went very well.

We had our usual group of six students last night, as we continue to work our way through the “Faith Assessment” questions and answers. These are basic elements of the Catholic faith that our students should be familiar with before Confirmation. You can see the entire program here.

http://saintpetertheapostle.com/church/faith-formation/know-faith/

Last night, we were on the “Miscellaneous Questions” section. We had the students take the quiz to start, to see what they already know, and to make them think about the questions. Then we discussed them.

  1. What does catholic mean?
  2. Transubstantiation is:
  3. Can a non-catholic receive communion at a Catholic mass? Why or why not?
  4. What is the distinction between the Virgin Birth of Jesus by Mary and the Immaculate Conception?
  5. What is fasting and abstinence? In which liturgical season are these generally practiced?
  6. Where do you find the letters INRI? What do they stand for?
  7. Understanding, Counsel, Fortitude, Knowledge, Piety, Fear of the Lord and Wisdom are the seven __________?

If you don’t know the answers, feel free to click the link above and learn.

Given the importance of transubstantiation to our Catholic faith, we supported that concept by watching a video by Bishop Robert Barron on the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bJjW3LXuHzo

We finished up with a little throwback in Church history. In the past, we had discussed that prior to the Second Vatican Council, the Mass was said in Latin. Although I had explained that everyone had a translation available, the class never seemed to grasp the idea. A few weeks ago, when helping my siblings clean out some boxes at my father’s home in Pittsburgh, I came across my original St Joseph’s Sunday Missal, with all the Sunday masses in two columns, English on the left and Latin on the right. I passed it around the class. The students were very interested.

This continues to be a small, but great group of students.  They are engaged and behaved. We can talk about things, have open discussions and even joke around without the entire lesson running off the rails. They are fun and interesting to work with. Mrs. Rudolphi and I look forward to each week.

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Our mission last night was to finish up our lesson on the Eucharist. Our focus was on the Mass, or more specifically, the elements and order of the Mass. I suspected that many in the class really had little idea of what was happening in the Mass, the flow, the purpose of various parts, and so on. So I put together and distributed a two-page “Order of the Mass” and issued each student a missalette.

We started by talking about the recent changes in the priest’s prayers and our responses, and the reasons behind the changes. We talked about the old Latin mass and the changes of the Second Vatican Council.

We compared the Order of the Mass to the students going with their family to visit another family or relatives for dinner. In the Mass, we are visiting God’s house, but the general concept can be similar. For example:

When we go to someone’s house, we are welcomed, just as we are at Mass.

When we go to someone’s house, we start out by talking and visiting. In the Mass (Liturgy of the Word), we also exchange communication with God. Our prayers (Kyrie, Gloria, etc.) we address God, and in the readings, God addresses us.

When we visit someone’s house for dinner, we always bring something like dessert or wine. In the offertory, we present gifts to God.

The comparison becomes even closer in the Preparation of the Gifts and the Eucharist itself.

I don’t know how well that idea sunk into the class, but we tried.

We walked through the order of the Mass, referring to both the simple outline I had drawn up and also the missalette. We pointed out several spots in the missalette where it can be difficult to follow.  For example, there are four Eucharistic prayers, and you never know which one the priest will use (although it seems as if #2 seems to be the most common.)

We are continuing our effort to try to get all the students engaged in each class. On some evenings, we are more successful than others. As in most groups, there are a number of students who have their hands up constantly, and, frankly, are fairly demanding of attention. On the other hand, there are also some students who are semi-comatose. They occupy a seat and breathe the air, but that is about it. I wish I could pull some of these kids into the flow of the class.  However, with the class size (25 at full strength) and the relatively short time we have together, there really isn’t much time for the individual attention that would require. I am not suggesting these kids are behavior problems.  I just know that these students are learning nothing in the hour they are spending at CCD each week. That’s a shame.

I am certainly not going to “name names” in this forum. However, as a parent you are always free to call me to see how your child is doing. My contact information is under the “About” tab at the top of this page. Also, you are always more than welcome to sit in on any of our classes.  I promise; I won’t ask you any hard questions.  🙂

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