Chapter 7: Bread to Offer (Liturgy of the Eucharist)

In this chapter we take a closer look at the third part of the Mass – the Liturgy of the Eucharist.

We think about the Preparation of the Offerings / the Offertory. This chapter covers the Bread to Offer and chapter 8 covers the fruit of the vine.

Consider how God feeds us – physically and spiritually – in the special meal of the Eucharist. Link this to the importance of food in our day to day lives, we can’t survive without food. We remember that the food we have comes from God’s creation but is also the result of the work of our hands.

Sacrifice – meaning an offering. During the Mass, Jesus offers himself when the bread and wine are changed into his body and blood.

The word “Eucharist” means thanksgiving. We give thanks to God for his generosity – and that should prompt generosity from us in return.

Remember to do the online quiz (one for each chapter) – reading through the chapter and completing the quiz are the two things that must be completed, everything else is optional and there to support you if required.

Some questions to ask

Most of these are open ended and should be used to help your child explore these ideas/their feelings:

Q. What is the altar? Where it is in the church?
A. The altar is the table of the Lord – where the gifts are offered and where the sacrifice of the Mass takes place.

Q. What is the paten?
A. This is the special item where the bread is placed. The paten is a small plate that the hosts are put onto.

Q. What is the response we give when we offer our gifts to the priest at Mass?
A. Blessed be God forever.

Q. What do we do to prepare for a meal?
A. Allow children to talk about what goes into the preparation of the food itself – where the food comes from, as well as what we do to food to get it. You can also talk about what other things we do to prepare for any meal – setting the table and laying a tablecloth (as this can connect with what the priest does to prepare the altar during the offertory and preparation of the gifts at Mass).

Q. Where does bread come from? Why it is necessary for our lives?
A. Talk to your child about where bread comes from – see page 68 of the I Belong book. Maybe discuss times where people might have very little (like a country where there is famine). Flour or grain to make into bread becomes their basic meal and keeps them alive.

Q. What does Jesus do to the bread in the “Feeding of the 5,000” that is amazing? Can you make a link to what happens at Mass?
A. They may talk about the way that so little (the boy’s simple offering) became so much (enough for 5,000 and some leftover!). A natural link they may make with the Mass is the Offertory (where we offer our gifts to God, like the little boy did) and some may be able to say that we receive something (Jesus present in the bread and wine) at Mass.

The Readings

Old Testament Reading:

Manna in the Desert

Ask the children what they know about Moses. During their time in the desert, the Israelites became a community. They were entirely at the mercy of God, who gave them everything they needed. Even though they had not worked for it (and even grumbled), God provided for his children. You can make a link here with your own family: Children depend on their parents to provide meals and – in the same way – we are all dependent on God. He will give us what we need each day.

New Testament Reading:

The Feeding of the 5,000

Moses was the saviour of his people, but Jesus is the Saviour of the whole world and not just a particular group of people. The feeding of the five thousand is the same as what happens at Mass, Jesus took the young boy’s meagre offerings and turned them into something wonderful, just as the priest takes the offerings of the community gathered and they become Jesus’ body and blood – which is a life-giving, life-changing gift!

Suggested Activities

After you have gone through the chapter and completed the quiz you may consider doing some of the following:

  • Say grace before meals – giving thanks for everything you have. Simple words are best. Let your child take the lead sometimes.
  • When you attend Mass or join through the live stream encourage your child to look at what takes place during the Offertory.
  • Encourage your child to take part in our response at the offertory – “Blessed be God forever” and also the “Holy, holy, holy, Lord God of Hosts. Heaven and earth are filled with your glory – Hosanna in the highest. Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord – Hosanna in the highest.”
  • Look at the online resources suggested on this page which will help bring the chapter alive for your child.

Colouring Page

Download the colouring page by clicking on it.
Loaves and fish
Loaves and fish