Paschal Mystery

The purpose of this semester is to help teens understand all that God has done for us through his Son, Jesus Christ. Through this semester, teens will learn that for all eternity, God has planned for us to share eternal happiness with him which is accomplished through the Redemption Christ won for us. Teens will […]

Secure Promise: Covenants/Promises

The goal of this Life Night is for teens to understand how Scripture tells the story of how God uses covenants to prepare His people for salvation and the Messiah. The teens will also reflect on how God’s promises can focus their prayer.

This Life Night looks at the way God uses covenantal promises throughout the Old Testament to point His people back into relationship with Him, culminating in the New Covenant of Christ.  The Life Night begins with a fun video about covenants, and transitions into a Proclaim that gives the teenagers a brief overview of salvation history and challenges them to recognize God’s fidelity throughout history. During the Break the teens will take some time to discuss the importance of God’s promises and how covenants are lived in the life of the Church.  The Life Night ends by giving teens the opportunity to give God praise for His love and fidelity using the words of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the Magnificat.

Meet the Parents: Adam & Eve - Grace & Sin

The goal of this Life Night is to help teenagers recognize that original sin is a real inheritance that we gained from Adam and Eve, but that Christ has received us a new inheritance that can replace the hold of sin and death through grace.

This Life Night is meant to help the teens realize that sin is a reality that we are forced to face. By acknowledging sin exists, we can then move on to overcoming sin with the gift of grace that we receive through Christ. Many teens today struggle accepting that there is a moral right and a moral wrong. This night is designed to help them come to the reality of what sin can do to one’s life, but it also should leave them with a sense of hope in the cross. Grace can overpower sin in one’s life, if we are open to receiving it from Jesus Christ.

The Life Night begins with a fun game that challenges teenagers to bob for and then stack apples within a time limit. The Proclaim explains the origins of sin and our need for a savior. The Break for the Life Night is a small group discussion that will challenge teenagers to think about their relationship with Christ and the areas of temptation that exist in their lives. The Send offers teenagers a time to reflect on areas of their lives that need renewal and then offers an opportunity for them to renew their baptismal promises.

Darkness: The Passion and Death of Christ

This Life Night will challenge teenagers to recognize the physical, emotional, and spiritual realities of the crucifixion. It will help them understand the necessity for Christ’s Passion and death in order for us to have salvation.

The structure of this Life Night is different than others within this semester. It uses the structure of a Tenebrae service to proclaim the message of Christ’s Passion and Death. Tenebrae (which means “darkness”) is a service in which the last seven words of Christ recorded in the Gospels are proclaimed. After each reading, a candle is extinguished, bringing the room into deeper darkness. An eighth candle – the Christ Candle – remains lit at the end to signify our hope in the Resurrection. The whole night revolves around this prayer.

During the Tenebrae service, each of the last seven words (or sentences) of Christ will be followed by a short reflection that will also serve as the teaching. Then, the teens will also have an opportunity to journal and pray through music.

Consider assigning various Core Members to each reflection of the Tenebrae service. This will help the Life Night flow and stay fresh with different voices. It is important to assign these reflections to Core Members well in advance of the Life Night so they can adaquetly prepare.

The Sequel: Holiness and Discipleship

To have the teens understand that holiness is what we are created for and that the only way to holiness is through being a disciple of Jesus.

This Life Night challenges teenagers to understand authentic discipleship through the cross. The Life Night begins with an upbeat game called “Squishy Fishy.” The Proclaim addresses how we attain holiness through becoming disciples of Jesus Christ, making this connection to the teenagers’ daily lives. After the teaching, the teens will move into small group discussion. During the Send, teenagers will gather back in the main meeting room to pray with each other in their small groups and be challenged to uphold each other as disciples within their community.

How It Starts: God is the Creator

The goal of this Life Night is to illustrate several concepts that relate to creation: literary forms in Scripture, God as the creator of all, human beings as the summit of creation, and other truths of Genesis.

There is much discussion about our origins. Do Catholics believe in creationism or evolution? Tonight we will take a multi-faceted approach to talking about creation. We will start with a discussion on literary forms in the Bible and why that is an important consideration whenever one reads Scripture. We will look at Genesis and highlight the important truths found there concerning our primeval history. The Break for the Life Night provides teenagers with an opportunity to discuss and process the teaching, and the Send includes a prayer from the Book of Daniel wherein all of creation praises the Creator.

Pastoral Note: For some of the younger teens, in particular, this may be the first time they have encountered the concept of literary forms in the Bible. You will know best where your teens are in their relationship with Scripture. It may be helpful to have a priest or deacon present to help answer questions as these new revelations sink in and hit home.

(Not So) Surprise Ending: The Resurrection and Ascension

The goal for this Life Night is to explore the truth of Jesus’ Resurrection and the significance of this in the teens’ everyday lives. This Life Night will also challenge the teens to have hope in Christ and look forward to their resurrection through Him.

This Life Night is written to follow Life Night “Darkness,” which reflects on the Passion and Death of Christ. The Gather invites teenagers to share any “good news” they have from the past week or month. This sharing leads into a short video that prefaces the Resurrection teaching. The Proclaim looks at the hope the Resurrection introduced into human history, as well as the hope it brings into each individual life. During the Break teens have a small group discussion that examines the ways that our hope in the Resurrection changes our thoughts, minds, and actions. Finally, the Life Night ends by challenging the teenagers to spend some time recalling how the risen Christ is made known to us through the Eucharist. The night will close with Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.

The Resurrection

Mark Hart teaches and celebrates the joy and hope of the resurrection of Christ

Dealin’ With Dad

A father and his daughter negotiate the terms of her allowance and homework contract. The father then proves that his love extends far beyond any contract.

Passion and Death

Mark Hart shares the story and reality of Christ’s passion and death

Alleluia! Alleluia!: The Resurrection of Christ

The goal for this Life Night is to explore the truth of Jesus’ Resurrection and the significance of this in the teens’ everyday lives. This Life Night will also challenge the teens to live as a “Resurrection People” and look forward to their resurrection.

This Life Night is about the Resurrection of Christ. We are familiar with the Easter celebrations filled with bunnies, eggs and candy. This Life Night starts with an over-the-top secular celebration of Easter and an extreme Easter egg hunt. After the hunt, the night transitions into a true celebration of the meaning of Easter. The teaching looks at the impact of the Resurrection on history as well as each individual life. The small group discussion looks at how we are called to live the truth that our God is alive. Finally, the night ends by changing the way we look at the Easter egg and spending some time in worship of the living God.

Entombed: The Death of Christ

The goal for this Life Night is to help the teens understand what happened when Jesus died. This night will illumine the events of Holy Saturday and Jesus’ decent into hell. Finally, this night will address the issue of death and the promise of eternal life.

This Life Night takes a closer look at the events of Holy Saturday – the death of Christ and His descent into hell. This night also addresses the teens’ fears and concerns about death, focusing on the hope won for us by Christ. The Life Night starts with a serious skit depicting the apostles on Holy Saturday. The Proclaim begins with a large group discussion and then a teaching on the death of Christ and how that affects our own death and judgment. The Break gives the teens a chance to talk about their own feelings about and experiences of death, and how we are given hope through Christ’s death. Finally, the Send consists of a reflection on Holy Saturday and a time to pray for the souls of those who have gone before us.

You Call This Good?: The Passion of Christ

The goal of this Life Night is to draw the teens into a deeper understanding of the Passion of Jesus Christ. This Life Night will also address why teens experience suffering and how it relates to Christ’s Passion. Finally, this Life Night will help the teens understand the importance of obedience to the Father and His will for their lives.

This is the first of a three part series on the heart of Christianity: the Passion, death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Each of these nights will look different than a typical Life Night. This night begins with a light-hearted look at what we consider “good” and “bad” and how quickly we can change our minds about those labels. The teaching looks at the events of Good Friday and why they are truly good. The majority of the Life Night is spent walking and praying the 14 Stations of the Cross. The end of the night will give the teens an opportunity to join their cross with the cross of Christ.

Ask, Seek, Knock (Part 2): Prayer

This Life Night is the second in a two-part series. The goal of the second part is to discuss the challenges and success the teens faced in their prayer during the week. This second part will wrap up the semester, asking God to help the teens fully embrace the Paschal Mystery in their lives.

The Life Night on prayer is split up into two parts. This second part is meant to be a follow-up to the first. The teens will gather together and immediately get into their school groups to share their prayer plan and experience for the week. After, the youth minister will ask two or three teens to share their experience from the week and lead into a Holy Hour of Eucharistic Adoration. The night will end in praise and worship and thanking God for sending his Son to save us.

The Drop Zone: Our Fall From Grace

The goal of this Life Night is to lay a foundation for the semester. This night will introduce the Fall of Man and the consequences of Original Sin. This night will also give the teens an opportunity to prayerfully examine how sin affects their everyday lives and their need for God’s love.

This Life Night is the first in the Paschal Mystery semester. The night starts with an intense community-building competition to keep a balloon in the air. The game leads into a teaching that focuses on the Fall of Man and how the sin of Adam and Eve have had consequences on all mankind. After a time of small group discussion in the Break, the teens will prayerfully offer a person, thing, situation or action that is keeping them from fully entering into a relationship with Christ. The Life Night will end with a challenge to dive into the Paschal Mystery semester.

What Goes Up …: ASCENSION/PENTECOST

The goal of this Life Night is to understand the significance of Jesus’ Ascension into heaven and the sending of the Holy Spirit. This Life Night will help the teens understand the power of the Holy Spirit at work in their lives, and their call to discipleship.

This night on the Ascension and Pentecost will begin with skit that shows a funny conversation between the persons of the Trinity as they plan what will take place on Pentecost. This will lead into the teaching that provides the context in which the Ascension and Pentecost fit into Salvation History. The teaching also highlights the completion of Christ’s mission and the beginning of the Church’s mission, which includes all Christians. The Holy Spirit is an important part of our Christians life, and this Life Night will help us gain a better understanding of His role in our lives. The night will conclude with a Scriptural meditation on the Holy Spirit incorporating the “Come, Holy Spirit” prayer.

Ask, Seek, Knock (Part 1): Prayer

This Life Night is the first of a two-part series. The goal of the first night is help the teens understand the necessity of a prayer life as the lifeline to God. The teens will be taught simple prayers they can use throughout the day and learn how to build their day around prayer.

The Life Night on prayer is split up into two parts. The first part is meant to help the teens understand the necessity of prayer in their lives. They will set up a prayer plan for the following week and commit to praying with and for each other. The night begins with a game to finish the line of a prayer. The game leads into a teaching on the importance of prayer in the life of a Christian. The Break for the night will give the teens an opportunity to meet in a group with the people from their school and plan times to pray throughout the day. The teens will also commit to two or three other times of prayer on their own. The night will end with the whole group praying Evening Prayer.

Word Made Flesh: The Purpose of the Incarnation

The goal of this Life Night is to help the teens understand why the Word became flesh and how the plan of salvation began well before the Son of God came to earth. The teens will have an opportunity to respond to this Good News and invite the Word Made Flesh deeper into their hearts through prayer.

The Incarnation is the mystery of God becoming man; as it states in the Nicene Creed, “For us men and for our salvation He came down from heaven.” The night will begin with a game similar to charades that will transition into the teaching emphasizing the four purposes for the Incarnation. The night will utilize the symbol of a ladder to show that God descended from the heavens to take on human nature. As a result of the Incarnation, humanity can now ascend this ladder to gain eternal life. In this world Christians continue to encounter the Incarnation in and through the Eucharist; the Incarnate God in our world today. After a time of discussion in small groups, the teens will spend time with the Word Made Flesh in Eucharistic adoration. The night will close with prayer and benediction.

Saintly Minute: St. Maximilian Kolbe

This Saintly Minute is on St. Maximillian Kolbe. He became a Franciscan novice at age 16 and he was imprisoned in Auschwitze. He was killed in a concentration camp because he offered his life to save another’s.

I Remember

A teen girl named Hannah shares about her past drug addiction that started at age 13. She shares what she remembers about her struggles and rehab.

Saintly Minute: St. John of the Cross

This Saintly Minute is on St John of the Cross. St. John of the Cross was ordained a priest in 1567. He decided to start a reformed form of the Carmelites called the Discalced Carmelites.

Drag & Gary: Answer Emails 3

Everyone’s two favorite puppets (aside from Kermit and Miss Piggy): Drag and Gary! This episode of Drag and Gary, the two decide to answer fan emails.

Dexter Drake – Overly Ambitious

The Life Teen linebacker “Dexter Drake” is a little overly ambitious about adhering to rules. His tackling skills are definitely not limited to the football field. After being forced to go to sensitivity training, Dexter Drake learns to “respect the bubble of personal space” and that the “sign of peace should not cause bodily harm.” Watch Dexter Drake tackle his issues.

Ordinary Sainthood

Two teens share stories about their childhood: Theresa and Miguel. They are two ordinary teens who ended up becoming saints: St. Theresa of Avila and Blessed Miguel Pro. The saints were ordinary people who used their ordinary lives to glorify God.

Mystery Meet

Don’t worry, you won’t find ‘mystery meet’ in your next sandwich, but you might find it on your nearest college campus. Follow a mystery woman around a college campus as she asks some questions about mysteries. However, there is no mystery far more important than the Paschal mystery (not to be confused with Pascal’s triangle).

Eternal Life

Have you ever wondered what will happen after you die? Wonder no more. Heaven, hell, and purgatory and the differences between are explained in a concise and clear way by Deacon Matt Lowry.

Great Divide

In the beginning of creation, God and mankind were united. However, when Adam and Eve ate the fruit from the tree of knowledge, they turned their back on God and sin entered. Watch Gretchen George (and two awkward volunteers) talk about the great divide between man and God.