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Engaging Faith: Practical lesson ideas and activities for Catholic Educators

May 5, 2009

Avoiding Alcohol Abuse; Becoming A Better Me

With the prom and graduation seasons approaching, teen drinking and alcohol abuse will be on the rise. Pray with your students for their commitment to live healthy and safe lives during these next few months and in the years ahead. Follow these directions:

 1. Light a candle and darken the prayer space. Tell the students to enter the space quietly and stand around the candle. When all are present and silent, lead this prayer:

Dear God,
alcohol and drugs have hurt many people we know.
We seek your help to encourage them and ourselves
to seek a right course and become the people you intend for us to be.
We ask this prayer in the name of your Son, Jesus Christ.

2. Say: "We all want to be a 'better me.' We all want to be healthy people in body, mind, and spirit. With God's help, the help of others, and our own persistence we can become the people God intends us to be."
Have the students reflect on and then answer the following questions, preferably in writing.
  • What discourages you from treating your body in a healthy way?
  • What discourages you from developing your mind to its fullest potential?
  • What discourages you from knowing God better and putting God first in your life?

3. Call on volunteers to share their responses to the questions. Then recite together the following prayer of Charles de Foucald:

I abandon myself into your hands; do with me what you will.
Whatever you may do, I thank you: I am ready for all, I accept all.
Let only your will be done in me, and in all your creatures—
I wish no more than this, O Lord.
Into your hands I commend my soul; I offer it to you with all the love of my heart,
for I love you, Lord, and so need to give myself, to surrender myself into your 
hands without reserve, and with boundless confidence,
for you are my Father.

4. Tell the students to use the prayer as an inspiration to answer these questions:
  • What encourages you to treat your body in a healthy way?
  • What encourages you to develop your mind to its fullest potential?
  • What encourages you to know God better and to put God first in your life?

5. For the final prayer, ask the students to stand again around the candle and recite together the Our Father.

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