Making Disciples Today: Blog

The Making Disciples Today Blog has reflections to help you grow in your journey of missionary discipleship, reviews on recommended Catholic evangelization resources, and practical insight on how to evangelize in your daily life. 

Emil Nolde Christ and the Children"Christ and the Children" Emil Nolde There are many different ways to express and proclaim the kerygma - the core apostolic proclamation of the Good News of Jesus Christ.  You can find it throughout the New Testament, the documents of the Church, and the writings of the early Church Fathers. 

What Is the Kerygma?

Ultimately, however you express it, the kerygma is about the person of Jesus Christ and someone making a choice to give their lives to Him - to become his disciple.  

Children are not exempt from the need to hear the Good News of Jesus in a compelling way.  Even at a relatively young age, children have the capacity to

  • experience the nearness of God,
  • understand the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus in a deep and personal way,
  • respond to Jesus' invitation into deeper friendship with the Him, and even
  • share the Good News with others.

Jesus said, “Let the children come to me, and do not prevent them; for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” (Matthew 19:14)

Kerygma Resources for Children & Youth

We need to not only focus on the evangelization of adults and parents, but need to parallel our efforts by evangelization children. Unfortunately, traditional catechetical materials fall short in helping children encounter the living Christ and in proclaiming the kerygma. 

There are a number of resources and tools that we can recommend to help you proclaim the kerygma to children, youth, and teens of all ages.  Ultimately, however, the most powerful proclamation of the kerygma - whether it is for an adult, a teen, or a child - is the one that comes from out of your personal encounter with the life-changing power of the person of Jesus.  The most effective proclamation tool you have at your fingertips is your answer to this question:

What difference has Jesus made in your life?

Internalizing and living this core apostolic proclamation in your own life must come before any of the resources below can be used with any expectation of fruitfulness.  

When we see the movements of the kergyma in our own life stories, we can be nimble enough to share this proclamation in the manner, method, and expression most appropriate to the needs and journey of the person or people in front of us.  

(See also:  Kerygma Resources for Adults

My daily prayer routine has changed quite a bit since my husband and I retired.  We've found ourselves with more time in our days which means we were able to add in prayer time at different times throughout the day.  We've found that committing to this daily routine keeps us grounded and on track for the rest of our day.

Upon waking up:

  • Morning Offering

O Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer you my prayers, works, joys, and sufferings of this day for all the intentions of your Sacred Heart, in union with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass throughout the world, for the salvation of souls, the reparation of sins, the reunion of all Christians, and in particular for the intentions of the Holy Father this month. Amen.

  • Consecration to Mary Prayer

After completing the 33 Days to Morning Glory consecration to Mary, I say the consecration prayer upon waking up each morning.

For our family, prayer is always present, but very changeable. Our routine may change due to preference, a change in liturgical season, welcoming a baby and making prayer fit with the changing ages of our children. Though our prayer routine fluctuates often, we never go a day without praying at least a little bit.

Family Prayer Before Meals

We are very consistent about praying before meals. We say the traditional Catholic blessing and we add a simple, kid friendly “thank you for our food and for [each person sitting at the table].”

Family Prayer in the Evening

We do some form of prayer with the children every evening, but this is one place where we see a lot of variation. In the past we have read stories of saints, read from a children’s bible, said prayers from children’s books of collected prayers or used the five-finger prayers.

Our family life is hectic, chaotic and disorganized.  And that was before we were blessed with children.

There are certain times we do come together to pray on a consistent basis, and, well – if we can do it, then I am sure you can too!

When do we pray?

We pray consistently before meals and before bedtime.

We make a serious effort to eat dinner as a family. Lately, it has been a challenge and it doesn’t always happen, but that is not the norm. One thing we do well is family dinner time.

If having dinner together in your family is the norm, that makes praying beforehand a completely attainable goal.

We also pray before bedtime.

Part of our “tucking in” routine involves bedtime prayer. In our house it usually is just one parent at this stage, but we have done this as a family as well.