Regular readers may remember I was in Ravenna, Italy this summer, where I saw some mosaics I wanted to use in this year’s catechism class. Images help children learn, but I like to use fine art rather than something specifically pitched at 11-year-olds. The kids can learn from a “grownup” mosaic as well as they can a cartoon; and fine art is simply a richer experience, spiritually, culturally, aesthetically, you name it.
Next week we’ll be covering Genesis from Cain & Abel through the Sacrifice of Isaac. I’ve made up a 1-page handout for the class showing the mosaics, and a bit of scriptural narration to go with the images.
Here it is:
Genesis 14: “And Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine; he was priest of God Most High.”
Abraham & Isaac: sacrifice of only son; pagan sacrifice of firstborn; faith & works; a substitute sacrifice (lamb/ ram); Isaac prefigures Christ.
All of the above can be taught without pictures; but pictures make the learning so much more effective. Depending on how the discussion goes, I may say a few things about how these Genesis stories connect to Jesus and/ or the Mass. If I don’t, they’ll be reviewed on the fly when we cover the Gospels and the Mass later on.
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