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Week of March 8, 2020: Seeing the Kingdom (Ages 11-18)

Updated: Mar 25


Faith To Go Podcast: Seeing the Kingdom w/ Kathy Wilder

Hosted by the Faith To Go team in the Episcopal Diocese of San Diego, David Tremaine and Charlette Preslar, and joined the each week by a special guest, the Faith To Go Podcast highlights themes from the Sunday Gospel reading for you to take into your faith discussions and reflections throughout the week.


Reads: Emphasize the Positive

from NPR


Questions:


1) Who is James McBride?

2) How did his upbringing influence the content of his writing?

3) Why do you think he writes about the things he writes about?

4) How does storytelling change our perspective on people?

5) Why is it important to him to emphasize the positive when writing about people?



Views and Qs: Seeing the Structure

Watch this video together and then use the discussion questions below to reflect as a family.




Discussion Questions:


1) How does Thurston's experience of living in America differ from his girlfriend's or her family's?

2) Why does Thurston focus on headlines?

3) How do the systems of our society influence the stories we tell about one another?

4) What is he hoping we will do to change things moving forward?

5) Does this require us to see things differently? To see systems we might otherwise be oblivious to?



Feast and Faith: Being Reborn

For this week’s dinner discussion, we are talking about Jesus' imperative to the pharisee Nicodemus to be born from above.


Prayer -

Grant, O God, that your holy and life-giving Spirit may so

move every human heart [and especially the hearts of the

people of this land], that barriers which divide us may

crumble, suspicions disappear, and hatreds cease; that our

divisions being healed, we may live in justice and peace;

through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


(Book of Common Prayer, A Prayer For Social Justice, pg. 823)



Discussion –

In the second week of the Lenten season the Gospel story from John recounts a conversation Jesus has with a curious Pharisee named Nicodemus. Jesus tells him that if anyone is going to be able to see the kingdom of heaven they need to be born from above. This week, then, we wonder, what does Jesus mean when he says born from above?


Questions:

1) What do you think Jesus means when he talks about the Kingdom of heaven?

2) What would it mean to be able to see the kingdom of heaven here and now?

3) Have you ever had an experience that changed the way you perceived the world around you?

4) Did that change in perception make you more compassionate and accepting of other people?

5) Do you think this change helped you see the kingdom of heaven?


Final Nugget: As we enter this second week in lent, let us continue to examine the way we see and perceive the world and people around us. What are the underlying structures and systems that exist in our culture? Who are they benefiting? Who are they hurting? What can we do about it?




Stay and Pray: A Devotion for Families at the Close of the Day Each week we feature a way for your family to reflect and pray together. For families with older children this is an at home liturgy for your family to participate in together. It is a daily devotion for families adapted from The Book of Common Prayer.


Before you begin, take a few moments to decide who will read the scripture reading and who will read the collect and closing.


Read the Psalm and Lord's Prayer in unison.


After a moment of silence, begin with the Psalm.


Psalm 121

(read in unison)


1 I lift up my eyes to the hills; *

from where is my help to come?


2 My help comes from the Lord, *

the maker of heaven and earth.


3 He will not let your foot be moved *

and he who watches over you will not fall asleep.


4 Behold, he who keeps watch over Israel *

shall neither slumber nor sleep;


5 The Lord himself watches over you; *

the Lord is your shade at your right hand,


6 So that the sun shall not strike you by day, *

nor the moon by night.


7 The Lord shall preserve you from all evil; *

it is he who shall keep you safe.


8 The Lord shall watch over your going out and your coming in, *

from this time forth for evermore.


Gospel

(read by assigned person)


John 3:1-17

There was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a leader of the Jews. He came to Jesus by night and said to him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God; for no one can do these signs that you do apart from the presence of God.” Jesus answered him, “Very truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above.” Nicodemus said to him, “How can anyone be born after having grown old? Can one enter a second time into the mother’s womb and be born?” Jesus answered, “Very truly, I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and Spirit. What is born of the flesh is flesh, and what is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not be astonished that I said to you, ‘You must be born from above.’ The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” Nicodemus said to him, “How can these things be?” Jesus answered him, “Are you a teacher of Israel, and yet you do not understand these things?


“Very truly, I tell you, we speak of what we know and testify to what we have seen; yet you do not receive our testimony. If I have told you about earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you about heavenly things? No one has ascended into heaven except the one who descended from heaven, the Son of Man. And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.


“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.


“Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.”


Prayers for Ourselves and For Others (take this time to each offer one person/event that you would like to hold in prayer as well as one thing you are thankful for)


Dear God, tonight I ask your prayers for.......


and I give you thanks for ..........


Amen


The Lord’s Prayer

(read in unison)

Our Father, who art in heaven,

hallowed be thy Name,

thy kingdom come,

thy will be done,

on earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread.

And forgive us our trespasses,

as we forgive those

who trespass against us.

And lead us not into temptation,

but deliver us from evil.

For thine is the kingdom,

and the power, and the glory,

for ever and ever.

Amen


The Collect

(read by assigned person)

O God, whose glory it is always to have mercy: Be gracious to all who have gone astray from your ways, and bring them again with penitent hearts and steadfast faith to embrace and hold fast the unchangeable truth of your Word, Jesus Christ your Son; who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.



Share some of your conversations in the comments below:

#Ages1118 #Lent2