National Office for Vocation

Primary School Assembly 3 THE GOOD SHEPHERD

Aims

To help pupils think about how they might follow Jesus using the image of Jesus the Good Shepherd who looks after his sheep. The sheep know the Shepherd’s voice. They know when he calls them by name. 

Introduction

Think for a moment about the voices you know. Imagine your parent’s voice asking you what you’d like to eat for tea. Or your teacher’s voice saying, “well done” for a piece of work.  [Pause for a few moments]. Have you ever been in a situation when you don’t know what to do and you’re stuck, and you think “Well Mum would…, or Dad would say…” We know their voices well, our teachers’ voices too. We often seem to know what they would say and do in all sorts of situations. They seem to know what’s best for us. We trust them.

Today’s assembly will be led by Year...  Let’s listen carefully to what they have to say. 

Main Presentation

Narrator         

Today’s assembly is about following Jesus.

Child 1          

What does following Jesus mean? Is it like ‘Follow my leader?’

[Quick example of ‘follow my leader’!] 

Narrator         

Well, sort of! Let me explain! Let’s look at what Jesus said about following him.

Child 2          

Jesus says, “The sheep follow the shepherd to safety because they know his voice. They do not follow a stranger’s voice.”

The people listening did not understand.  Jesus explained, “I am the Good Shepherd.  Follow me and you will find true happiness.  Don’t listen to others.” (Adapted from John 10:1-10)                  

Narrator         

We sometimes have to think quite hard about what Jesus is saying to us.  Jesus is asking us to put our trust in him, to follow him. This means thinking, ‘what would Jesus say’, whenever we have to make a choice. That’s not easy, it means being kind to everyone, even people we don’t like. It means sharing what we have and giving to others. Shepherds protect their sheep.  Jesus will protect us.

Child 3          

How can I follow Jesus if I can’t see him?         

Narrator         

Today’s assembly is about following Jesus. 

Child 1          

What does following Jesus mean? Is it like ‘Follow my leader?’

[Quick example of ‘follow my leader’!] 

Narrator         

Well, sort of! Let me explain! Let’s look at what Jesus said about following him. 

Child 2          

Jesus says, “The sheep follow the shepherd to safety because they know his voice. They do not follow a stranger’s voice.”

The people listening did not understand.  Jesus explained, “I am the Good Shepherd. Follow me and you will find true happiness. Don’t listen to others.” (Adapted from John 10:1-10)                       

Narrator         

We sometimes have to think quite hard about what Jesus is saying to us.  Jesus is asking us to put our trust in him, to follow him. This means thinking, ‘what would Jesus say’, whenever we have to make a choice. That’s not easy, it means being kind to everyone, even people we don’t like. It means sharing what we have and giving to others. Shepherds protect their sheep.

Jesus will protect us. 

Child 3          

How can I follow Jesus if I can’t see him?          

Narrator    

You can follow Jesus by becoming more like him and helping to do his work.

We get to know what Jesus is like by spending time with him, just like we do with our friends. We can spend time talking to Jesus in prayer—anytime and anywhere—and that’s how we get to know his voice. We also get to know Jesus by reading about him in the Bible, by praying with others and by going to Church.

Child 4

What is Jesus calling us to do today? 

Narrator

Well, we thought about things we can all do to follow Jesus when we’re in school. We can… 

Child 5

Make friends with someone who is all alone 

Child 6

Remember to pray for people who are sick 

Child 7

Help someone in our class who is finding their homework difficult 

Child 8

Share our sweets with someone who hasn’t got any

Child 9

Help with fundraising to send money to those in need 

Child 10

Tell our friends that Jesus loves them

[At this point the narrator might interview a few children from the class asking them how they look after the lonely, etc e.g. “I ask someone who’s standing all alone if they want to join in playing with me and my friends.” “I help my friend when he’s practising reading out loud.” “I helped to raise money for the Tsunami Appeal/CAFOD by washing cars in my parish car park on Sunday.”  “My family invited the new family on our street for Sunday lunch and helped them move their boxes into their new house.”]

Narrator    

We can all follow Jesus in our families, in our schools, in our local communities and around the world. And as we grow up there are special ways we can choose to follow Jesus. 

Child 11    

We can choose to marry. We can follow Jesus through loving our husband or wife and children too. 

Child 12

Or we can choose another way of life like following Jesus as a priest or deacon. We could also follow Jesus as a religious sister or brother, a monk or a nun. This might mean taking care of those who are poor and in need. 

Narrator

There are so many possibilities! Let’s take a few moments to pray. 

Child 1

Jesus you are our Good Shepherd. You protect us and keep us safe.  

Everyone

Thank you Jesus for loving us. Help us to follow you more each day. Amen  

[You could also use the footstep prayer cards that the children made earlier for the classroom display-see Teacher’s Notes on page 3.]

Finish with a song everyone can join in with such as: Will you come and follow me? (Iona); God has chosen me (Bernadette Farrell); The Servant King (Graham Kendrick); Here I am Lord (Daniel Schutte); Follow me, follow me (Michael Cockett). 

Teacher's Notes

The theme to follow Jesus comes from the celebration on the 4th Sunday of Easter of the World Day of Prayer for Vocations which in 2005 falls on the 17th April. Pope John Paul II delivers a Message to the Universal Church on this important day encouraging everyone to reflect on their personal vocation and to work for a culture of vocation in their community.  “This is a special occasion for reflecting on the vocation to follow Christ and, in particular, to follow him on the path to the priesthood and consecrated life…There is a pressing need to implement an extensive plan of vocational promotion, based on personal contact and involving parishes, schools and families in the effort to foster a more attentive reflection on life’s essential values.”

To parents and Christian educators, priests, consecrated persons and catechists, the Pope says, “God has entrusted to you the particular task of guiding young people on their way towards holiness. Be an example to them of generous faithfulness to Christ. The Lord calls some to take up family life, others the consecrated life or the ministerial priesthood. Help them to discern which is their way and to become true friends of Jesus and his disciples.”

RE Activities Towards Assembly

Discussion       

Explore with the class how we can follow Jesus each day. 

Activity and Display

Draw around feet on coloured paper and cut out. Ask them to write a way that they can follow Jesus each day—try to get as many different ideas as possible—enough for each day in the month before Vocation Sunday (17th April) See Archdiocese of Birmingham’s Vocation Page for ideas www.vocations.org.uk. Click on Publications and click on link to Kids Vocation Calendar (pdf file). Display footsteps in a “walk” around the classroom towards the class prayer corner. A Vocations Day prayer could be pinned up on the prayer corner ready to be read when you near Vocation Sunday.  www.ukvocation.org/prayers/prayers.html

ICT and RE

Encourage the children to look at their diocesan website and find out if there is a dedicated vocations page. Explore the website of the National Office for Vocation www.ukvocation.org and also www.ukpriest.org. Many religious congregations have websites too. These can be found by referring to the Conference of Religious website www.corew.org/nrvc. Further afield the children could look at the Vocations Websites of Ireland www.vocations.ie and Australia www.catholicozvocations.org.au  

www.ukvocation.org/resources

Other Resources for Prayers and Texts

National Office for Vocation Sunday Posters and Parish Pack—the Liturgy for the Sunday Mass could be adapted for a school mass on the theme of vocation.

Twitter Feed

Loading..