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Spreading the Gospel to the Whole World - Lesson Plan

The objective of this lesson plan is to encourage Catholic youth to reflect on the importance of spreading the Gospel to the whole world and explore different ways to share their faith with others.

Share the Good News!

Materials for Spreading the Gospel to the Whole World Lesson Plan

  • Bible (Mark 16:15-20)
  • Game about communication
  • Reflection questions
  • Small group discussion questions

Opening Game for Spreading the Gospel to the Whole World

Silent Birthday Line-up

Start with a game about communication. You can use the one below or a different game.

Tell the group that they must line up by birthday. But they cannot talk, write, use their phones, etc. They will have to communicate non-verbally to accomplish this task. When they are finished, ask them each their birthday to make sure they got it right!

After the game, ask the following questions:

  • Did you have to think of different ways to communicate?
  • Did some people stand out as leaders?
  • What would have happened if nobody had communicated with one or two people?

This task could not have been completed if some people had been left out. Somehow everyone had to be included in the messaging that was going on.

Scripture Reading for the Whole World Lesson Plan

Read the gospel: Mark 16:15-20

Jesus said to his disciples:

“Go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel to every creature. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved; whoever does not believe will be condemned.

These signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will drive out demons, they will speak new languages. They will pick up serpents with their hands, and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not harm them. They will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”

So then the Lord Jesus, after he spoke to them, was taken up into heaven and took his seat at the right hand of God.

But they went forth and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the word through accompanying signs.Mark 16:15-20

Reflection for Spreading the Gospel Lesson Plan

The Gospel reading from Mark 16:15-20 speaks directly to the importance of spreading the Gospel to the whole world. Jesus commands his disciples to go out and proclaim the good news to every creature. He emphasizes that whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, while those who do not believe will be condemned.

This message is a reminder of our responsibility as Catholics to share our faith with others. It can be easy to keep our beliefs to ourselves or only share them with those who we are comfortable around, especially our youth group friends or our closest friends. But Jesus' message in this Gospel reading calls us to go beyond our comfort zone and share the message of salvation with everyone we encounter.

As we reflect on this Gospel reading in the context of spreading the gospel to the whole world, we are reminded of the importance of communication. Just as the game we played at the beginning of the lesson showed us that there are many different ways to communicate, this Gospel reading reminds us that there are many different ways to share our faith.

Spreading the message of salvation doesn't always require preaching from a pulpit or engaging in formal debates. Rather, we can share our faith through our daily actions, attitudes, and interactions with others. One way to do this is by simply telling our friends that we are going to Mass, or steering the conversation in a positive direction when gossip arises.

This Gospel reading challenges us to reflect on the people in our lives who may need to hear the message of salvation and to consider the best way to share that message with them. It encourages us to pray for the courage and the right opportunity to share our faith with others, and to trust that God will provide us with the guidance and strength we need to carry out this mission.

Overall, this Gospel reading is a reminder of the importance of spreading the Gospel to the whole world and of our responsibility as Catholics to share our faith with others. It challenges us to reflect on our own communication skills and to consider the best way to share our faith with those around us.

Small Group Reflection Questions for Spreading the Gospel to the Whole World Lesson Plan

  • What did you learn from the communication game we played at the beginning of the lesson? How can you apply what you learned to sharing your faith with others?
  • How does the Gospel reading from Mark 16:15-20 challenge you to think about sharing your faith with others? What obstacles do you face when it comes to sharing your faith, and how can you overcome them?
  • Are there people in your life who you feel comfortable sharing your faith with? Are there others who you find it more challenging to share your faith with? Why do you think this is the case?
  • What are some non-verbal ways that you can share the message of salvation with others? Are there specific actions or attitudes that you can adopt that will help you to share your faith more effectively?
  • Who is one person in your "whole world" who needs to hear the Gospel message? What is one way that you can share that message with them, either directly or indirectly?

After a few minutes, ask for volunteers to share their thoughts with the larger group.

Challenge for the Whole World Lesson Plan

During this week, reflect on someone in your life who might benefit from hearing the message of salvation. Brainstorm ways, whether directly or indirectly, that you could share this message with them. Pray to the Holy Spirit for guidance and the courage to take action when the opportunity arises. When you feel called to share, take action with confidence and faith.

Prayer for the Spreading the Gospel Lesson Plan

Lead the group in a prayer asking for guidance, strength, and courage as we seek to share the message of salvation with others, and encourages us to live out our faith each day.

Heavenly Father, guide us as we seek to share the message of salvation with the whole world. Bless us with the strength and wisdom to reach out to those who need to hear the Gospel. Give us the courage to live out our faith each day and to be a shining example of your love.

More Themes for the Spreading the Gospel to the Whole World Lesson Plan

  • Effective Communication - The lesson plan begins with a game that emphasizes the importance of communication and highlights the many different ways that people can communicate beyond just words.
  • Spreading the Gospel - The lesson plan draws from Mark 16:15-20 to encourage Catholic youth to share the message of salvation with others and not just the people they feel comfortable around.
  • Non-Verbal Communication - The lesson plan explores different ways to share the message of salvation without relying on verbal communication, such as through one's actions and attitudes.
  • Courage - The lesson plan emphasizes the importance of courage when it comes to sharing one's faith, especially with those who may not be receptive or open to hearing the message of salvation.
  • Prayer - The lesson plan underscores the importance of prayer as a way to find the courage, guidance, and opportunities to share one's faith with others.

Background Material for the Spreading the Gospel to the Whole World Lesson Plan

Mark 16:15-20 is a passage from the Gospel of Mark, which is one of the four canonical Gospels in the New Testament of the Christian Bible. The Gospel of Mark is believed to have been written in the mid to late first century, around 70-75 AD.

In this passage, Jesus gives his disciples a final command before he ascends to heaven. He tells them to "go into all the world and preach the Gospel to all creation" (Mark 16:15). Jesus also emphasizes the importance of belief and baptism, stating that those who believe and are baptized will be saved. He also mentions the signs that will follow those who believe, such as casting out demons and speaking in new tongues.

The Gospel of Mark is believed to have been written for a primarily Gentile audience, and it emphasizes the actions of Jesus over his teachings. Mark 16:15-20 is seen as a call to evangelize and spread the message of salvation to all people, regardless of their background or beliefs. It is a reminder of the mission of the Church to share the good news of the Gospel with the whole world.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church emphasizes the importance of evangelization, which is the proclamation of Christ and his Gospel to thw whole world by word and the testimony of life (CCC 905). Evangelization is seen as a primary mission of the Church, and all Catholics are called to participate in it in some way.

Lay people also fulfill their prophetic mission by evangelization, "that is, the proclamation of Christ by word and the testimony of life." For lay people, "this evangelization . . . acquires a specific property and peculiar efficacy because it is accomplished in the ordinary circumstances of the world."

CCC 905

It should be noted that there is some scholarly debate about the authenticity of the longer ending of Mark (which includes Mark 16:9-20). Some early manuscripts of the Gospel of Mark do not include this passage, and it is possible that it was added later by a different author. Despite this, the passage has been widely accepted as canonical by the Christian church and is still used as a call to evangelize and spread the Gospel message.

Music Suggestions for the Spreading the Gospel to the Whole World Lesson Plan

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Youth Ministry Lesson Plans and Reflections

This lesson plan on spreading the Gospel to the whole world fits into a larger collection of lesson plans that focus on various aspects of Catholic faith and practice. Taken together, these lesson plans offer a well-rounded and comprehensive education in the Catholic faith, and equip youth to live out their faith in their daily lives.

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