Music and the Gospel: “All I Need,” Cape Cub, 30th Sunday Ordinary Time

“All who make little of themselves will be lifted up, but all who make much of themselves will be brought down (Luke 18.14).” It can be difficult to work hard achieving a goal or be part of a team only to find out we’ve been “benched.” Our pride and sense of self-righteousness can make us blind to the larger picture. “All I Need” is about losing what we think is our rightful place. Humility can open our eyes to who we really are and help us better serve our teams, communities, and people.

Key Lyrics: Everything that meant something to me / Fell out of reach… / Everything that I just couldn’t see, / So far out of reach.. / You are all I need

Questions: When were you forced to sit on the sidelines? How did you feel about this? What did you learn from this experience? What does humility mean to you?

Music and the Gospel: “Just Like Fire,” Pink, 29th Sunday Ordinary Time

As of 2013, roughly 65 million children (over half of them girls) were unable to continue school beyond an elementary grade level. This is especially common in South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. Many of the girls in these countries are actually expected to get married and start families at very young ages. Schools like the Kenya Girls Soccer Academy aim to help girls to finish their education, which will then allow them to get jobs that will hopefully raise them out of poverty. These schools also create a support system for the girls and encourage them to be more confident in themselves and their capabilities. Pink’s song blazes forth with self-empowerment and strength. It emphasizes the power confidence can give anyone to break through barriers and change their community and the world.

Key Lyrics: Just like fire, burning out the way / If I can light the world up for just one day / Watch this madness, colorful charade / No one can be just like me anyway / Just like magic, I’ll be flying free

Questions: Who is a female role model in your life? In what ways is she strong? What has she had to overcome? What is education important?

Music and the Gospel: “Friends,” Francis and the Lights, ft. Bon Iver & Kanye West, 28th Sunday Ordinary Time

This Sunday’s gospel talks about Jesus’ encounter with ten lepers. They call to Jesus, ask him for compassion, and Jesus grants it. There is often more to a person than meets the eye. Sometimes a person doesn’t look or act “normal” by our standards, and we allow that to blind us to the beauty and potential that exist in that person. It is often by showing compassion that we get to know people, understand them, and rise above our own judgment to become better people.

Key Lyrics: We could be friends / Just put your head on my shoulders / I will straighten out, for you / Don’t wanna know if you made mistakes / I’m still waiting on your sunshine

Questions: What were your initial thoughts when you first meet someone who looks or acts different from you? How do you approach him or her? What did you learn from someone different from you? What makes people fit in or not fit in your school?

Music and the Gospel: “Can’t Stop The Feeling,” Justin Timberlake, 27th Sunday Ordinary Time

When Justin Timberlake sings out that he has sunshine in his pocket and a good song in his feet, he is speaking about what makes him move and feel. Like songs that help us share our feelings, our faith connects us to the people in our lives and the world around us. Faith in ourselves and our teachers gives us the strength to overcome difficult moments and the power to climb mountains Faith is yes to God who gives us life and all the diversity of life that has evolved in creation.

Key Lyrics: I got this feeling inside my bones / It goes electric, wavy when I turn it on / All through my city, all through my home / We’re flying up, no ceiling, when we’re in our zone

Questions: What does faith mean to you? Who do you believe in? When or how have you experienced God? How is your faith changing as you get older?


Music and the Gospel: “Never Forget You,” Zara Larsson, 5th Sunday of Easter

Losing someone we love can evoke powerful emotions. Some people break down immediately and may put themselves back together right away. For others emotions simmer inside until finally, sometimes months or years later, they explode. In this SPIRIT issue a young man finds grief motivating his climb to reach the top of a mountain. Grief takes time to discover the ways a person is still with us, time for memories to inspire us rather than cause pain.

Key Lyrics: I used to be so happy but without you here I feel so low / I watched you as you left but I can never seem to let you go / …It’s buried deep inside me but I feel there’s something you should know / I will never forget you

Questions: When have you experienced the loss of a loved one? How did you deal with your grief? Why doesn’t ignoring feelings work when we lose someone we care about?

Music and the Gospel: “Amazing Life,” Britt Nicole, 4th Sunday of Easter

Britt Nicole’s song “Amazing Life” is all about how beautiful the world around us is. However, it’s easy to forget this as we rush through our day with school or work, constantly plugging ourselves in to the latest gossip and technological trends. SPIRIT explores the experience of city kids who work at a farm called Dream of Wild Health farm. They connect with Earth, with each other, and with their Native American history. By working at the farm with the plants and vegetables that have sustained their community in years past, they keep their old traditions alive and connect with the beauty all around us.

Key Lyrics: It’s a beau-beau-beautiful world we’ve been given / From the top of the sky to the ocean / I’ll never understand it all (understand it all) / It must be supernatural

Questions: What are some traditions that you value? What are some Earth-centered traditions you would like to bring back to your home, school, or community? How do you connect and care for the Earth? Take a walk and leave your phone at home. What beauty do you see in the world around you?