Aug 9-14, 2017 – Solidarity, Genocide, Racial & Religious Violence – K-6 & the Domestic Church

The feasts of Sts. Teresa Bendicta of the Cross (Edith Stein) and Maximilian Kolbe fall in early August. Both saints were martyrs in the Holocaust. St. Teresa Benedicta was a Jewish convert to Catholicism, St. Maximilian Kolbe was a Catholic priest. They were both killed by the Nazis in concentration camps. Though the Holocaust occurred over 70 years ago our world is still not without the sin of racism and violence against people of different religions. Our goal is to help build a world community in solidarity with one another, united in our humanity regardless of race or religion.


Opening Prayer

Our Father, Who art in Heaven

Hallowed by they 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.


Additional Resources for Session Leader:

Catechism 1934-1938 (Equality of all);

1939-1942; 1943-1948 (solidarity);

2104-2109 (religious liberty);

Compendium 144-145; 431-433; 192-196; 152-159; 387; 504-506;

USCCB page on Racism

(“Our Father”)



John 15:12-16

Catechesis video



Catechesis video questions

k-6 grade

  1. We are all God’s children. He made each and every person because he loves us. But he did not make us all the same. What are ways that we are different from one another?
  2. When you meet someone who is different from you, how do you feel? What do you think about those differences?
  3. Jesus says in the scripture reading: “This is my commandment: love one another as I love you.” And then repeats himself “This I command you: love one another.” Does Jesus really mean to love everyone, even those who are different from us? How can we love everyone?
  4. In what ways is everybody the same? What things are more important than our differences?

Domestic Church – the family

  1. Jesus says in the scripture reading: “This is my commandment: love one another as I love you.” And then repeats himself “This I command you: love one another.” How can we live this commandment every day? What can we do?
  2. God loves each and every person on the earth, that is why he made us in the first place. Are there times that you find it hard to love others? Why or why not?
  3. What things can we do to love those who we might not want to because they are different from us?

Witness Video

Witness Video Questions

k-6 grade

  1. Kid President teaches us how to make new friends. How do you make friends?
  2. Kid President’s new friend, Donna, practices a different religion than Kid President. Do you have friends who go to a different church or have a different religion?
  3. What are ways you can make people who are a different religion or look and dress different from you feel welcome and included?

Domestic Church – the family

  1. What lessons did you learn from Kid President about making friends?
  2. Are you willing to be friends with people who are different from you? What makes new friendships difficult?
  3. How can you include others who might be different from you in your life as friends?

Take Action

k-6 grade

  1. If someone is picked on at school for being different tell a teacher and show the person who is being bullied friendship.
  2. Ask your teachers to include books, lessons, decorations and videos in their classroom that represent the successes and accomplishments of people from various cultures and background to better represent the whole human race

Domestic Church – the family

  1. Look up the story of a Saint who has a different family background than your own. Spend time each night for a week reading and discussing that saint and pray to that saint before bed for their intercession on your family.
  2. Speak to one another about the issues that happen in the news, the good and bad, and talk about how Jesus’ commandment to love one another applies to those news stories.

Closing prayer

For an end to the violence perpetrated by harsh words, deadly weapons, or cold indifference. May our homes, our nation, and countries around the world become havens of peace, let us pray to the Lord.

For the grace to see every human being as a child of God, regardless of race, language or culture, let us pray to the Lord.

For the wisdom to receive the stories and experiences of those different from ourselves and to respond with respect, let us pray to the Lord.

For the strength to teach our children how to resolve differences non-violently and respectfully, and the courage to model it in our own behavior, let us pray to the Lord.

For our faith community, that we may celebrate and welcome the diverse faces of Christ in our worship, our ministries, and our leaders, let us pray to the Lord.

For our faith community, that we may respond boldly to the Holy Spirit’s call to act together to end violence and racism, let us pray to the Lord.

For healing and justice for all those who have experienced violence and racism, let us pray to the Lord.

For the protection of all police and first responders who risk their lives daily to ensure our safety; for fair and just policing that will promote peace and wellbeing in all our neighborhoods, let us pray to the Lord.

For our public officials, that they will strive to work for fair education, adequate housing, and equal opportunities for employment for all, let us pray to the Lord.

For our parish, that we may cultivate welcome, extend hospitality, and encourage the participation of people of all cultures, ethnicities and backgrounds, let us pray to the Lord.

For the courage to have difficult conversations about racism, and for a better appreciation of how our words and actions – or even our silence – can impact our communities, let us pray to the Lord.

For solidarity in our global human family, that we may work together to protect those who are most vulnerable and most in need, let us pray to the Lord.

(prayer from the USCCB, 2016)

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