Friday, April 22, 2011

Celebrating the Mass Lesson- Profession of Faith

(This lesson is in accordance with the new Roman Missal that is to be implemented on November 27, 2011.)

*Be sure to adjust this lesson to fit the needs of your students.

(Please take in consideration that I am just a Mom and I'm providing these lessons and activities to the best of my abilities. I will try to make them as accurate as possible, but I know I will make a few mistakes and it was not intentional.)

The Nicene Creed, our profession of faith, is an important part of the Mass. The Creed is recited at the beginning of the Liturgy of the Eucharist just after the Gospel reading and homily. In between the two main components of the mass is a statement of beliefs Christians have expressed for 16 centuries.

Creed is from the Latin credo which means “I believe.” It is a summarization of the faith that Christians profess. Jesus brought important information to everyone about God and His message of salvation. Our acceptance of this information is faith. A Creed sums up the truths that God gave us and allows us to profess our beliefs so that we can acknowledge the truths by faith.

The Council of Nicaea met in 325 A.D. in a town in Turkey named Nicaea. Here the bishops composed a Creed to clearly state the beliefs of the Church and to reject many of the false understandings that were being taught. This prayer is called the Nicene Creed and it is a summary of what Christians truly believe. The Nicene Creed states the truths that the Church had been teaching since the time of the apostles.

The Creed is divided into three parts. The beginning speaks of the first Divine Person, God the Father, and the wonderful work of creation. The first thing our Creed tells us about God Himself is that He is the Father Almighty. Here we affirm that there is only one God and He is the creator of everything.

The middle part speaks of the second Divine Person, Jesus Christ, and the mystery of His Redemption for mankind. Beginning with stating that Jesus is indeed God, this is the longest section where Jesus’ role in the salvation process is defined. Here, Jesus’ life story is told and how He came to save mankind.

The final part speaks of the third Divine Person, the Holy Spirit, who is the source of our sanctification. Again, there is emphasis that the Holy Spirit is also God. The Holy Spirit is the part of the Trinity that is able to dwell within us so that we can have the gift of the grace of God.

Another important component of the Creed is the definition of the four marks of the Church. Here, another truth of Christ’s true Church is defined for us. It states that the Church that Jesus established for all time must be one, holy, catholic (universal), and apostolic or having its authority derived from the apostles.

The Nicene Creed is a summary of the principle truths of our God given to us by the early Church and has been passed on to every generation. As we profess and reaffirm the common faith that is the foundation of Christianity, we today share in the same truths as did the earliest Christians (Scaravilli, 2010).

During the Profession of Faith we stand and declare what we believe in. In the Profession of Faith we state our belief in God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit- the Holy Trinity. By reciting the summation of the Church’s belief, we declare ourselves both full members of the Church and faithful disciples of our Lord.

The Creed is to be sung or said by the priest together with the people on Sundays and Solemnities. It may be said also at particular celebrations of a more solemn character.

If it is sung, it is begun by the priest or, if this is appropriate, by a cantor or by the choir. It is sung, however, either by all together or by the people alternating with the choir.

If not sung, it is to be recited by all together or by two parts of the assembly responding one to the other.

There are two new words in the Nicene Creed: Consubstantial and Incarnate

God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, consubstantial with the Father;

Consubstantial means that God the Father and God the Son are made of the same substance.

For us men and for our salvation he came down from heaven, and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate of the Virgin Mary, and became man.

Incarnate means that the Son of God became a human being.

I believe in one God,
the Father almighty,
maker of heaven and earth,
of all things visible and invisible.

I believe in one Lord Jesus Christ,
the Only Begotten Son of God,
born of the Father before all ages.
God from God, Light from Light,
true God from true God,
begotten, not made, consubstantial with the Father;
through him all things were made.
For us men and for our salvation
he came down from heaven,
(bow during this part) and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate of the Virgin Mary, and became man.

For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate,
he suffered death and was buried,
and rose again on the third day
in accordance with the Scriptures.
He ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again in glory
to judge the living and the dead
and his kingdom will have no end.

I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,
who proceeds from the Father and the Son,
who with the Father and the Son is adored and glorified,
who has spoken through the prophets.

I believe in one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church.
I confess one baptism for the forgiveness of sins
and I look forward to the resurrection of the dead
and the life of the world to come. Amen.


Do we stand or sit during the Nicene Creed? (Stand)

Is the Nicene Creed sung or said? (Either)

What does credo mean? (“I believe”)

Where was most of the Nicene Creed written? (It was written long ago in a town in Turkey named Nicaea.)

What do we say we believe in the first part of the creed? (That we believe in one God.)

What do we say we believe in the second part of the creed? (Belief in Jesus is still belief in one God.)

In the third part of the creed what do we declare? (Our belief in the Holy Spirit and the Catholic Church.)

What does consubstantial mean? (Made of the same substance.)

What does incarnate mean? (To make human.)

Activities: Catechist Resources for Roman Missal, 3rd Edition
Creed- lesson with Worksheet (page 2), The Creed Crossword (page 3)

Crafts: Catholic Trinity Craft We Are the Church Craft (highlighting the Four Marks of the Church found at the end of the Nicene Creed) Nicene Creed Craft (Be sure to change this to say: I believe in one God, etc.)

Make Nicene Craft from according to directions. Have students trace the beginning of the Nicene Creed: "I believe in one God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all things visible and invisible." (Printed out on tracing handwriting sheet.) Glue prayer on a piece of construction paper. Glue the bottom part of the hand on the back of the prayer with the hand showing above prayer.

Nicene Creed Tracing Handwriting Sheet- Students write their name on the top line. Students then trace the handwriting sheet and follow directions above.

Games: The Nicene Creed Game
Students help each other learn the Nicene Creed while playing a game.

These games below are from More than 100 Missions Bible Memory Games and Other Activities

I Am a Verse- Divide the Nicene Creed into parts equal to the number of children. Print each part on separate sheet of paper or index card. Jumble paper/cards and give one to each child. Holding the paper/card in front, each child lines up in proper sequence. Call out your part. Repeat until the Nicene Creed is memorized.

Illustrated Verse- Ask children to draw pictures of words in the Nicene Creed that help them remember the word. Put the drawings together repeating the words using the visual clues. Continue until all have learned the Nicene Creed.

Missing Words- Write the Nicene Creed on a chalk or white board omitting key words. Give each student a card with a key word missing from the Nicene Creed. Ask students to place their word cards in the proper place as they say the Nicene Creed. Shuffle cards and repeat until all have learned the Nicene Creed.

Photograph a Verse- Write words to the Nicene Creed on separate sheets of construction paper. Take pictures of each child holding a line to the Nicene Creed. Children then use the pictures to arrange the words to the Nicene Creed in proper order. Tape to poster board.

Verse Chain- Print lines of the Nicene Creed on separate strips of paper. Give each child one strip. After repeating the Nicene Creed several times with the children, ask them to assemble the chain by putting the words of the Nicene Creed in order. Staple the chain together.

These activities below are free, however they can only to be used for classroom and personal use. They may not be published on any websites or other electronic media, or distributed in newsletters, bulletins, or any other form or sold for profit. Reproduction or retransmission of any materials, in whole or in part, in any manner, is not permitted.

Nicene Creed- Cut out strips and glue strips of the Nicene Creed in the proper order on a piece of construction paper. (For younger students you can do this together as a group activity.) You can also play this as a game by dividing the class into teams and give each team the strips of the Nicene Creed. See which team can put it in the proper order the fastest.

Nicene Creed- (crossword)
For younger students you can do this together on the board.

The Nicene Creed- The objective is to be the first player to get all four of his or her color pawns from his or her START location to his or her HOME space. Players must do this by answering questions about the Nicene Creed and rolling the die.


tyler gonzalez said...

your writing was so inspirational thanks for your help.

krizia Maria Beltran said...

Your blogs are all interesting and helpful!
Thank you so much for sharing.