The Pursuit of Happiness
Marriage and Celibacy for the Kingdom of God
Life Night Outline
Goal of this Night
The goal for this Life Night is to help teenagers understand how the vocations of marriage, holy orders, and the consecrated life all lead us to fulfillment in Christ. It will challenge teens to discern their vocation and how they will offer their lives as a self-gift.
About this night
This Life Night concludes the Life Night series “Life, Love, and the Pursuit of Happiness.” The Life Night begins with a fun game that challenges students to figure out their “secret” identity and then find their pair. The Proclaim and Break for this Life Night are combined into two sessions — the first is about the Sacrament of Marriage, and the second is about celibacy for the kingdom of God, specifically in the Sacrament of Holy Orders and in religious life. Teenagers will switch between these two sessions, will have an opportunity to hear a teaching and testimony, and then ask questions. The Send for this night is a time of prayer for the teens’ future vocations and a challenge to be open to God’s will in their lives.
This week at Life Night we discussed marriage and celibacy. Teenagers are often very familiar with the former, as there are many examples (both good and bad) around them in every day life and in mass media. The latter, celibacy for the Kingdom of God, is perhaps more unfamiliar and may even sound crazy to some teenagers (and adults). At the Life Night we discussed how both of these vocations are paths to our happiness and ultimately to heaven, and each one represents a unique gift of self; in marriage, to a spouse, and in celibacy, to God. Teenagers had an opportunity to hear a testimony from a married couple and from a priest, religious brother or sister, or consecrated virgin, and then ask questions. We closed the Life Night with a prayer for each teen’s vocation.
- Take some time to talk about this Life Night with your teenage son or daughter:
- What did you learn tonight about celibacy for the Kingdom of God? Why is this important for the Church?
- How is marriage designed to build up the Church? Do you think there are more good or bad examples of marriage in the world today? Why?
For this Life Night you will need to split your room in half. In the middle of the front of the room place a large cross and a representation of an altar. To one side of the altar, decorate the front of the room with wedding decorations. Put streamers, fake wedding bells, and other representations of the Sacrament of Marriage on that side. On the opposite side, place symbols of the priesthood and religious life, as well as signs of service. Some examples are the vestments a priest wears at Mass, a religious habit, and some tools as a sign of service. Above the cross, create a sign with butcher paper that reads “The Path to Happiness.”
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