Facing the Final Judgment

Eternity

Edge Night Outline

Goal of this Night

The goal of this Edge Night is to help youth understand what the Catholic Church teaches regarding our final judgment and eternal life.

About this night

This night will help the youth to realize the importance of the decisions we make today and the importance they bear on our final judgment. The night is meant to draw youth in repentance and help them realize that they make choices every day to draw nearer or further from Christ. Our Catholic tradition teaches us that there are two types of judgment at the end of our lives: particular, or immediate, judgment and final, or universal, judgment. When we die, we will face our particular (immediate) judgment – we receive from God what we deserve according to our faith and works during our lives. At this point there are three different options for each human soul based on how he/she has used his/her free will (heaven, hell, or purgatory). Our final (universal) judgment is when our bodies will be resurrected and join our souls. The bodies will share in either the happiness and joy of heaven or the misery and hatred of hell. This is the time of the return of Christ. The natural world will pass away and a new heaven and a new earth will come forth. At this time, Jesus will judge the living and the dead.

The Gather is about random choices and consequences – this will be discussed during the teaching of the night. The Proclaim will discuss eternal life and challenge the youth to make decisions that will lead them to heaven. As the youth break into small groups, they’ll be able to dive deeper into the idea of accepting their judgment. During the Send, the youth will have an opportunity to attend Reconciliation or prepare for Reconciliation with an examination of conscience.

You’ll want to secure a priest or two ahead of time to help out with Reconciliation during this night.

Parental Notice

Tonight we discussed the permanency of final judgment – or the judgment of our soul after we die. We encouraged the youth to reflect on how they can make changes in their lives in order to draw nearer to Christ. They had the opportunity to engage in the Sacrament of Reconciliation and be freed from their sins! Here are a few questions for the ride home:

  • How does it feel to be free from sin?
  • How would you explain the final judgment to a friend?
  • What are you going to differently in your life now that you’re ready for the final judgment?
  • What do we need to change at home to help each other get ready for our judgment?

Environment

Tonight’s environment should create a feeling of premonition. In the front of the room, set up a judge’s chair/desk with a gavel. On one side of the judge’s chair, have a messy bedroom set up with distractions. Beyond the obvious mess of cans and dishes, etc, ensure that there’s nothing there to lend itself towards Christ. On the other side, set up a different-style youth bedroom. Place a Bible on the bed, a rosary on the nightstand, etc. Make it realistic.

Supplies List

• Act of Contrition

• Examination of Conscience

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