Seeing is Believing
An Issue Night on Spirituality & Evil
Edge Night Outline
Goal of this Night
The goal of this Edge Night is to teach the youth to be aware of spiritual darkness and how to avoid it and walk in the light of Christ’s love.
About this night
Tonight’s teaching is going to give the middle school youth a very basic understanding of spiritual darkness, or evil. By introducing the topic, our goal is to teach the teens the dangers of spiritual evils — magic, superstition, fortune-telling, horoscopes, etc.— so they can turn to the light of God’s love and not delve into practices contradictory of the first commandment. Scripture constantly calls us to stand in God’s light, live in His love, and be holy. Our lives are ordered towards adoration of God, not in giving power to evil or anything that is not God. The Catechism teaches us that idolatry eliminates man’s religious sense, and Origen said an idolater is someone who “transfers his indestructible notion of God to anything other than God.” Keeping in mind that scripture calls us to be holy, all spiritual evils are forms of idolatry. By remaining in the light, we experience the love God has for each one of us.
The Gather begins with a piñata contest to introduce the concept of our souls. During the Proclaim, the youth will learn why they should avoid spiritual evils/darkness and what some of the evils the Church specifically warns against are. For the Break, there will be a large group panel discussion led by a priest, deacon, and/or youth minister (or a combination of all). The night will end with a short biography of St. Padre Pio of Pietrelcina, which leads to a closing prayer St. Pio wrote asking God to “stay with me.”
This is a sensitive topic, and we need to be aware that the purpose is to create awareness, not curiosity. Be sure to prep your Core Team to stick with the Church’s teaching, dispel curiosity, and remain clear in the understanding that God’s love is above any evil. You may want to read the Catechism references together as a team and talk about the sensitivity of the topic. Also, keep in mind that some youth may be dealing with various spiritual battles with evil, so have a plan ready and available should the topic unearth any issue close to home for particular youth. *Please check out the video on Edge Video Support 7 as an introduction to this important topic.
Tonight we learned about spiritual evil, warning the youth to stay away from idolatrous/occult acts such as superstition, magic, horoscopes and Ouija boards. The goal was not to scare the youth or plant needless curiosity, but to teach them that spiritual darkness is evil and the Church condemns such practices. Instead of focusing on these things, we should focus on God’s love and live the life of holiness we are called to. Living in God’s light is where we find protection from evil. During the ride home, here are some possible discussion questions:
- Had you ever thought of things like fortune-telling, magic and superstition as dangerous?
- Where do you see spiritual evil promoted in our culture?
- How can we as a family avoid darkness and be steadfast in God’s light and love?
Keep it very simple. The whole purpose is to help the teens understand the light and dark sides of the spiritual realm. Use imagery around the room of light and darkness: light could be represented with lamps, flashlights, candles, etc. For the “dark” side, use black fabric to cover some of the tables.
• Praying for Protection(Handout A)
• Striking stick
• Black/white for environment
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