Music and the Gospel: “Love Is Alive,” Louis The Child, Palm/Passion Sunday

As we move through Holy Week, we reflect on Jesus’ ministry and his last days. We reflect on his message of love, compassion, and forgiveness. The song “Love Is Alive” is a reflection on love, how it sustains us and gives us something to strive for. When we embrace Jesus’ call to love wholeheartedly, we become his witnesses to others, living beacons of hope.

Key Lines: Love is alive when you don’t have to prove it /Unafraid, there’s no way to lose it / Oh I just wanna go where love is alive / So I’m gonna do that / All of the chaos surrenders / Changing the currents and tide / The water can keep getting deeper / Cause I’ll be right here staying dry

Questions: Reflect back on the weeks of Lent. What have you learned or discovered about Jesus and his ministry? What have you discovered about your own commitment as his follower? What Lenten practices do you want to continue? How will you keep love alive in your home, school, and community?

Music and the Gospel: “Love,” Lana Del Rey, 3rd Sunday of Lent

This week’s Spirit discusses relationships, dating, and What it means to be in a healthy relationship? The high school years are prime time for making friends and dating. Most of us spend those years within a wide circle of friends and, as we get older, we start to pair off into more exclusive relationships. When we date, we explore and set boundaries, expectations, and priorities. The song “Love” is about being in love and what can happen when we open ourselves up to experiencing love.

Key Lines: You get ready, you get all dressed up / To go nowhere in particular / Back to work or the coffee shop / Doesn’t matter cause it’s enough / To be young and in love / To be young and in love

Questions: What does love mean to you? How do you describe a healthy relationship? How do you identify boundaries between people? Who do you want to be within your circle of friends, family, or with a significant other?

Music and the Gospel: “Million Reasons,” Lady Gaga, 3rd Sunday Advent

This week’s Spirit focuses on open-mindedness and communication, on discovering what we have in common with people who hold different beliefs, come from different cultures, and have life experiences unlike our own. We live in a global world with social media and the internet at our fingertips. We need to learn how to build bridges between ourselves and so many kinds of different others. Lady Gaga’s song “Million Reasons” explores the desire to walk away from someone but acknowledges one reason to stay that overcomes all the others: love.
 
Key Lyrics: When I bow down to pray / I try to make the worst seem better / Lord, show me the way / To cut through all his worn out leather / I’ve got a hundred million reasons to walk away / But baby, I just need one good one, good one / Tell me that you’ll be the good one, good one / Baby, I just need one good one to stay

Questions: When have you been in conflict or felt frustration with someone from a different background? How might you learn what you have in common? How does listening to others’ stories help you better understand them? When has talking led you to change your mind about someone or something?

Music and the Gospel: “Sound of Silence,” Disturbed, 31st Sunday Ordinary Time

The song “The Sound of Silence” is about people being unable to bridge the gaps between them and communicate or understand one another. Often times, we take one look at someone and think we know all about them based on where they are from, how they speak, how they dress, even their skin color. These snap judgments prevent us from being open and accepting and can create an environment of silence that can be even more hurtful than words spoken aloud.

Key Lyrics: “Fools,” said I, “You do not know / Silence, like a cancer, grows / Hear my words that I might teach you / Take my arms that I might reach you.” / But my words like silent raindrops fell / And echoed in the wells of silence

Questions: When have you  judged someone? When have you felt judged? How do you treat someone who creates distance from you? How can you help create bridges between different groups within your community?

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: “One Call Away,” Charlie Puth, Easter

When someone we love dies, it can seem like the end of the world. This week’s Spirit deals with loss. It also deals with resurrection. The stories in this issue tell us that while someone may not physically be with us any longer, they live in our hearts and minds. The song “One Call Away” reminds us that when we need to be supported (or when someone needs our support), all we have to do is ask. We’re not alone, not without them.

Key Lyrics: No matter where you go / You know you’re not alone / I’m only one call away / I’ll be there to save the day / Superman got nothing on me / I’m only one call away

Questions: When have you lost someone you loved? What do you most remember about the person? In what way do you experience the person still with you? How have you helped someone through an illness? How did the illness affect your relationship?