First Communion Preparation

Introduction

Welcome to our special webpages for those who are preparing to celebrate the Sacrament of Reconciliation, and First Holy Communion in the coming months. As you know, many things at school, at home and in our community are different this year but we very much want these very big occasions in your life to be joy-filled and special. We also want our parish to play its full part in helping you prepare for your special day.

As part of these preparations, we will upload a series of short videos on this page. These will be directed at the young people in Second Class in each of our four primary schools who are preparing for their First Holy Communion. These might also be helpful to the pupils now in Third-Class in Scoil Iósaif Naofa and in Maree National School who, unfortunately, had their ceremonies postponed last Spring because of Covid 19.

Each video will include an invitation to come visit either Oranmore or Maree Church in your own time – with an adult in your family. In each church we have set aside a space just for you. You can put your artwork here and there will be various other things to bring or to collect.

Oranmore Resource Area

Maree Resource Area

There will also be four Masses during the next few months which will help you prepare as well. We can unite our minds and hearts in prayer even though we may be apart. You can watch the Mass through our parish website and clicking the livestream button. You will find the dates of the Masses at the bottom.

The word ‘sacred’ means ‘belonging to God’. As you prepare to celebrate a new, very big step in your life, we invite you, as well as visiting the church, to create a small Sacred Space in your home – maybe in a room that is usually quiet, so that you can pray or do some thinking there.

Maybe use a large tray or a small table. Put down a little white cloth. Have a little Cross – maybe a St. Brigid’s Cross that you have made yourself or maybe one from a set of Rosary Beads? And maybe you have a small statue of Our Mother, Mary or a holy medal? Or you could draw her? Maybe a very little vase of flowers too? Then, in the coming weeks, we will have some other things for you to add.

In the middle of a busy, noisy life, spending time at this Sacred Space will help you remember God and help you realize how much you are loved. The space will also help you to speak to God as you pray and will help you listen to God in your heart.

And we will continue to speak to God about you in our own prayers and listen to God about you in our hearts. You are our priority – that means that, for us, YOU are very important people and, like your families too, we want the very best for you.

So we invite you to enjoy the videos (please take a break half way through if any one is too long), to make your own Sacred Space at home, to visit Oranmore or Maree Church (or both!), to bring art, to take the things from there that are made for you and to give your very generous hearts to getting ready for the sacraments that lay ahead.

Looking forward to seeing you soon !

Diarmuid – Daniel – Louise

Reconciliation: to repair a relationship that has gone wrong.
Sacrament: a powerful way for God to give us strength, ability, power and healing.
Priority: the person or thing that is number one or is the most important.

Session release dates
Session 1: Family – Friday 5th February
Session 2: Our Church – Friday 5th March
Session 3: What God gives us – Friday 2nd April (Good Friday)
Session 4: What we give God – Friday 7rd May

Masses
Mass 1: Saturday 20th Feb 6pm
Mass 2: Saturday 13th March 6pm
Mass 3: Saturday 10th April 6pm
Mass 4: Saturday 15th May 6pm

Prayer-card

Download My Prayers [English]
Download My Prayers [Irish]

Session One – Family

Bring: Picture of your family
Do: Writing a prayer of thanksgiving
Take: Prayer card of family prayer
Bible story: Jesus lost in the temple

Topics

  1. Each family is unique
  2. Role of the family
  3. Bible Story- Jesus lost in the temple
  4. Then concentrate on their role of handing on the faith
  5. The role of the family this year in preparing you for First Communion

Bible Story of Jesus Lost in the Temple

We invite you to watch the following video and then you will find below the text for the story.

Text of Bible Story – Jesus Lost in the Temple


When Jesus was twelve he travelled to Jerusalem to celebrate Passover with his family and friends. After Passover his parents left, but they did not know that Jesus had stayed on in the city. They went a whole day before they realised he was missing. They went back to Jerusalem to look for him.
Three days later they found Jesus sitting in the temple listening to the teachers. When his parents found him, they were amazed. His mother said “Son, why have you done this to us? Your father and I have been very worried and we have been searching for you!”
Jesus answered “why did you have to look for me? Didn’t you know that I would be in my Father’s house?”. But they did not understand what he meant.

Thanksgiving Prayer Card

Please print out this prayer card and write you our prayer of thanksgiving.
Thanksgiving-Prayer-Card

Download the Thanksgiving Prayer Card

Prayer for Family – English

Our Father in Heaven,
Keep me and all my family safe.
Fill each of us with love, laughter, light and life.
Feed us when we are hungry,
Find us when we are lost,
Fix us when we are broken,
Comfort us when we are sad,
Protect us when we are in danger,
Be with us when we are lonely.
Bless and mind our homes.
Bless and mind all those we love.
Bless and mind all those that love us,
and help us to serve you and serve each other
In joy and peace always.
AMEN

Prayer for Family – Irish ‘Paidir don gClann’


Ár nAthair atá ar neamh,
Coinnigh mé féin agus mo chlann slán sábháilte sláintiúil.
Lionn muid le grá, aoibhneas, solas agus beocht.
Tug beathú duinn nuair atá ocras orainn.
Tabhair aire duinn nuair atá muid ar strae
Deisigh muid nuair atá muid briste.
Cosain muid nuair atá muid i mbaol
Tabhair sólás duinn nuair atá muid i isle brí.
Bí linn nuair atá muid uaigneach.
Beannaigh muid agus consain ár dteaghlach.
Beannnaigh agus sabháil ár gclánn.
Agus tabhair cúnamh duinn chun seirbhís a thabhairt duit
agus dhá chéile le misneach agus suíocháin i gcónaí.

Session Two – Our Church

Bring: A picture of your parish church and bring it put it up in the resource area.
Take: Flip flop key ring
Do: Explore the church worksheet
Key rings, and worksheets found in the resource areas of both churches. You can also download the Explore the Church Worksheets here:
Exploring the Church of the Immaculate Conception, Oranmore
Exploring the Church of St. Joseph, Maree

In our second session we talk about our Church. We can think of the Church as a physical building but also as a ‘teach pobail’ the house of the community, of the people. We look some of the groups that make up our parish and listen to the bible story of a sick man who had to rely on his friends to bring him to Jesus.

Bible Story Jesus Heals the Sick Man

Tours of our Churches

Join Fr. Diarmuid and Fr. Daniel and as they take you on a tour of the two churches in our parish. They point out the different parts of both churches. Some you might know and some you might not have heard of before.
Church of the Immaculate Conception, Oranmore

Church of St. Joseph, Maree.

Session Three – What God Gives Us

Bring: Your treasure chests to the church. You can create your own by folding an A4 piece of paper in half and gluing two of the edges. You can also use the chests in the picture and decorate. You will find them in the resource area.

Take: Your jewels of peace, love, joy, strength and hope.

Do: Create your own prayer box at home and place your written prayers inside.

Download the Jewels of Peace

In this video we focus on what God gives us through prayer. Prayer is an important part of being a follower of Jesus We ask what is prayer. We show why prayer is important; to build our friendship with Jesus, and receive the graces of peace, love, joy, strength and hope. The pearl of great price is our chosen bible story for this session.

Prayer Time

Please join us for 10 minutes as we have some time of prayer in front of the Blessed Sacrament. Let us put into action what we have learnt.

The Pearl of Great Price

Session Four – What we give God

Bring: Colour and decorate your footprint (Download Footprint Template)
Take: The medal of Mother Teresa and prayer to Blessed Carlo Acutis (Download Prayer)

Do: Pick a task out from the basket
Again all you need is found in the resource areas of both churches

In our final session we look at what we, as followers of Jesus, give God. The quote of Saint Teresa of Avila sums it up pretty well.

We are called to serve God through our words and actions. In showing love to others we also show love to God. We also look at the examples left by Mother Teresa and Carlo Acutis.

Carlo Acutis

Watch this short video about Carlo’s life.

Mother Teresa

Watch this short video about the Mother Teresa’s life.

Bible Story: Jesus Washes the Disciples Feet