A SAMPLE LESSON
From our cUrriculum
WHAT YOU AND YOUR STUDENTS CAN EXPECT FROM VOCATION LESSONS
Here is a lesson on the priesthood that you will find within our 6th Grade curriculum. Each lesson contains student materials, and an instructor’s key for leading the discussion. Click below to download the instructor’s packet for this lesson in-full, or scroll down to see the students’ resources side-by-side with the instructor’s prompts.
6th grade priesthood LESSON
OBJECTIVE: To be able to identify good characteristics needed for the priesthood.
- There is a great need for priests in many countries today. There are nearly 4,000 Catholic parishes in the United States that do not have their own priest.
- Characteristics needed for the priesthood are: love of Jesus, virtue, service, people skills, intelligence, joy, and stability.
- Knowing your own character and temperament is helpful in finding your vocation and growing in holiness.
Choose the components you wish to use given the time you have and the needs of your students.
INTRODUCTION : 2 min
Summarize today’s theme. Through these lessons we hope to become familiar with the vocations to which God calls people so that you will be able to follow his call always. Right now, you are in the single state of life, but someday God may call you to a particular vocation—marriage, priesthood, or religious life. Today’s focus is on the priesthood.
Let us draw near to God during today’s lesson. Read Matthew 9:35-38
Pray a simple prayer from the heart or: Lord, there are many who are troubled and who need you. Please inspire young men to consider the priesthood to bring the Gospel to the whole world. Help us today to be filled with yourself so that we can bring peace to others. Amen.
OPENING ACTIVITY : 10 min
The Gift of the Priesthood
Lead students through examining the photos, reading the paragraphs, and answering the questions.
ESTABLISHING THE CONCEPTS : 20 min
Traits of a Good Priest
1. Read the passage titled “Traits of a Good Priest.” (Or choose a few paragraphs.) Read individually, in small groups, or as a class.
2. Time permitting, watch the video clip titled, “A Day in the Life of a Priest,”
3. Have the students discuss the reflection. Feel free to add questions of your own.
4. Quiz the students on the main concepts. Answer students’ questions. If it is helpful, refer to the Vocation Glossary:
- Which of these traits are most essential for a priest?
- Which of these characteristics are most difficult to acquire? How can a person work on acquiring them?
- Choose one of the traits, then describe a scenario in which a priest would need to rely heavily on his strength in that particular area. For example, when would a priest need a good sense of humor? When would he need to rely on his intelligence?
EXPLORATION : 15 min
Aristotle’s Four Temperaments
Knowing yourself is very helpful in discerning your vocation. One aspect of knowing yourself is knowing your character strengths and weaknesses. The philosopher Aristotle (and many others after him) identified four basic temperaments, or personality types. Taking this temperament test may give you greater insight into yourselves and others so that you can build on your strengths and prayerfully address your weaknesses.
1) Students may need help defining some words.
2) For many 6th graders, this may be their first attempt at serious introspection. Help students to feel positive about their temperaments.
3) In the modern Western world, people tend to value choleric and sanguine temperaments, whereas a century ago, melancholic and phlegmatic temperaments were more valued. Interestingly, there are more saints who had melancholic temperaments than any other temperament.
REFLECTIVE PRAYER : 7 min
The Harvest is Ready but Laborers are Few
1. Introduce the meditation:
Now is a prayerful time for you to internally interact with God. Feel free to close your eyes if you would like. The words you are about to hear are from Saint John Paul II, who travelled the world speaking to young people about their vocations.
2. Read aloud the words of Saint John Paul II in the student section.
3. Help the students to prayerfully reflect. Slowly speak out loud, pausing between lines:
- God, please show me the power of your love in my life.
- Jesus, how can I commit my whole life to you?
- How are you calling me to serve the Church and the world?
- If you are calling me to priesthood or religious life, please show me the way.
- Lord, let me know you so I can follow you.
VOCAL PRAYER : 2 min
1. If you have not previously in another lesson, introduce the prayer.
Mary’s “yes” to God can be our “yes” to following Him both today and later in our vocation.
2. Students pray the Angelus.
CREATED BY CATHOLIC EDUCATORS
FOR THE GOOD OF THE CHURCH
We created Vocation Lessons because of the vocation crisis in today’s Church. Our mission is to give schools & parishes high-quality material to teach young people about Holy Marriage and the possibility of Priesthood or Religious Life.