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Engaging Faith: Practical lesson ideas and activities for Catholic Educators

Posts for Advent

Marian Assignments

December 06, 2019

Christmas Quotations

December 03, 2018

Two Great Teachers of the Faith: St. Nicholas of Myra (December 6) and St. Ambrose (December 7)

December 05, 2016

As Christmas approaches, remember to tell your students not only that Santa Claus is “real,” but that the saintly figure behind the legend is even more of an inspiration than the jolly perennial visitor of mythical renown! On December 6, the Catholic Church celebrates the Memorial of St. Nicholas of Myra (ca. AD 270 – 343), and on December 7, the Memorial of St. Ambrose (ca. 340 – 397).

Sharing Christmas Memories

November 29, 2016

You may wish to adapt this short activity to fill-in some extra minutes of class during the final weeks before the Christmas break.

December Days to Honor Mary

December 07, 2015

Working individually or in small groups, have the students create presentations on either the Feast of the Immaculate Conception or the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe related to what they unearth for understanding Mary.

“The Bethlehem Explosion”

December 15, 2014

The following lesson centers around the poem "The Bethlhem Explosion" by acclaimed author Madeline L'Engle. The accompanying background material and lesson is taken from The Catholic Spirit: An Anthology for Discovering Faith Through Literature, Art, Film, and Music by Michel Bettgole, OSF, and James D. Childs.

Prayer to the Virgin of Guadalupe

December 09, 2014

December 12 is the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Patroness of the Americas, Queen of Mexico and Empress of the Americas. On his first journey as pope in 1979, St. John Paul II went to Mexico "to invoke on my pontificate the motherly protection and assistance of Our Lady of Guadalupe;" he composed the following prayer for the visit.

Advent/Christmas Icebreaker Idea

December 01, 2014

This Christmas-themed icebreaker encourages students to share remembrances of fun holiday celebrations.

Guided Meditation: The Announcement of the Birth of Jesus

November 21, 2014

"Hail Mary, full of grace." These words were spoken by the angel Gabriel to Mary to announce the birth of Jesus. This meditation will place your students in the role of Mary: listening to the angel, responding and trying to understand.

Matching Quiz: Early Advent Saints

December 09, 2013

This fun quiz encourages students to contemplate the lives of these saints who have feast days in early December.

Advent Ideas for your Classroom

December 02, 2013

Ave Maria Press editorial assistant Barbara Brutt reminds teachers of some traditional Advent ideas appropriate for classroom additions and students of all ages.

Light for the World Prayer Experience

December 10, 2012

The Advent candles remind us that Jesus himself is the "light of the world" (Jn 8:12). Follow the directions for short prayer service you can use with your class in the weeks before Christmas.

Marian Projects

December 04, 2012

As part of the celebration of two upcoming Marian feasts—the Feast of the Immaculate Conception and the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe—ask your students to complete one of the following exercises.

Advent Meditation: The Birth of Christ

November 26, 2012

With the simplicity and wonder of the shepherds, we find God, who is one like us, born of the flesh. Inspired by Luke 2:6-20, this guided meditation is written by Fr. Thomas Catcci. 

The Digital Story of the Nativity

December 16, 2010

The Good News of Christmas never changes, no matter how it is delivered. In case your students haven't seen this creative video, have a look.

Christmas Prayer Service for Peace

December 13, 2010

Write a note to someone containing three or four constructive ideas for making peace in your relationships. These notes won't be delivered, but will be read anonymously to help us continue our prayer.

Praying the Joyful Mysteries

December 03, 2010

Celebrate the Feast of the Immaculate Conception by praying the Joyful Mysteries with your students.

Advent Prayers for Teens

November 29, 2010

Here are some prayer suggestions you might consider using with your teens during the Advent season.

Our Lady of Guadalupe Prayers and Lessons

December 09, 2009

In remembrance of the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe on December 12, note the following resources to apply for lessons and prayers on the feast and on the Blessed Virgin Mary in general.

Project Idea: Investigating the Infancy Narratives

December 15, 2008

Have the students read the following passages from the infancy narratives and write their hypothesis to each question.

Advent: A Season of Hope

November 26, 2008

Help your students to welcome Advent as a season of hope in the coming of the Lord.

Gift Giving

December 19, 2007

Teenagers should begin to realize that they have more responsibility for making the Christmas spirit come alive.

Infancy Narratives

December 17, 2007

Only Matthew’s and Luke’s Gospels tell anything about Jesus’ birth.

Celebrating Our Lady of Guadalupe

December 12, 2007

Wednesday's feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe was celebrated in many ways.

Countering Consumerism

December 10, 2007

Some Practical Ways to Counter Consumerism.

The Prophets and the Advent Liturgy

December 05, 2007

Remind your students that the Book of Isaiah actually contains the work of more than one writer, from more than one time.

Choosing Your "Birthday Scripture Verse"

November 29, 2007

To help celebrate the start of Advent and the birth of a new Church Year, have the students search the Bible for a specific Scripture verse they can make their own.

Another New Years' Day

November 13, 2007

On the Church calendar (also called the liturgical year or Roman calendar), “New Year’s” is the Sunday closest to November 30.

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