‘We are the people of the Lord, the flock that is led by his hand: come let us adore him, alleluia.’ (Invitatory antiphon)

Happy Father’s Day! Today, this festive day is celebrated throughout the country and on various days in many parts of the world all throughout the year, often in the months of March, May and June. The celebration acknowledges ‘fatherhood and paternal bonds, as well as the influence of fathers in society.’  Celebrations are as unique as each family. Seamus O’Rourke writer, director, poet and actor had one of his poems read on RTE radio recently. It was about his father and a worthwhile read in honour of Father’s Day. Let’s remember fathers, living and deceased.

The readings proclaimed at Mass today can be heard via webcam or read from the Old and New Testament.

The first reading from the prophet Jeremiah (Jer 20:10-13) proclaims how Jeremiah is rejected and denounced because he speaks about his personal mission which the people do not accept. Jeremiah remains steadfast because the Lord, ‘a mighty hero’ is at his side. Jeremiah declares he has ‘committed my [his] cause to you.’ The prophet is not afraid because the prophet trusts in God’s Word and presence.

As stated in Scripture for Evening Prayer 1 of the Church, ‘… For no prophetic message ever came from the will of man, but men were carried along by the Holy Spirit as they spoke the message that came from God.’ (2 Peter 1: 19-20).

The second reading from St Paul’s letter to the Romans (Rm 5: 12-15) offers hope, that Jesus has come not only to recognise sinners but the whole of humanity.

The Gospel (Mt 10:26-33) proclaims that if the disciples acknowledge Jesus, he in turn will acknowledge them before his Father in heaven. Jesus puts himself on the same level as the Father. If the disciples do not acknowledge Jesus, Jesus will not acknowledge them before the Father. Jesus invites us to live as people of faith and to proclaim the Good News in words and by doing good deeds. Jesus says ‘do not be afraid’.

Just as disciples acknowledge Mary as Our Mother in Heaven, they can lovingly call God, Our Father, and source of all life. Disciples pray the ‘Our Father’, the prayer Jesus taught his disciples.


None of these readings from Mass today are included in the Grow in Love programme, though children grow in the understanding that God is love. This experience of love is first found in the family, among friends, in the parish community and in the school. Children experience the love and beauty of God in relationships of love, friendship and the wonder of nature.

Children today enjoy this day of celebration for their Dads’, grandad, uncle or guardian. They might pray for all Dads and light a virtual candle accessible on the VERITAS website. They might pray thank you to God our Father in heaven. St Joseph was Jesus’ foster father. They might chat about his role in the family life at Nazareth.

The children are introduced to the prophets Jeremiah and Isaiah and they recognise that the prophet speaks the Word of God. On many occasions prophets are not listened to by the people, especially those close to them. They are urged on in their mission by God, who promises to support them. The prophet stands up for what is right and just. God’s people are called to be prophets of God’s Word. They need not be afraid because Jesus promised to be with them always to the end of time.

As children grow in faith and in God’s love they are hopeful of God’s promises. God raised Jesus to new life at the Resurrection and this is our hope. Jesus loves his disciples and forgives them their sins.

God sent Jesus into the world to proclaim the Good News. Children recognise that the Good News is that God loves God’s people with a very special love. They are taught that the Trinity is a communion of persons who live in a loving relationship. The Trinity is the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. God desires that the disciples pray to the persons of the Trinity and that they honour the three persons. Children explore the formal prayers taught to them and identify prayers addressed to the Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Children spend time in prayer and reflecting on God’s Word and they explore its meaning for their lives. For instance, on reading verses from Psalm 136, they read that God’s love is eternal. This phrase ‘his love is eternal’ is repeated throughout the psalm. Children recognise that God’s love is theirs forever and ever. Their response is to say thank you to God.

The Father sent Jesus so those who follow and believe may have eternal life with God in heaven. God desires that all may enjoy everlasting life.

Resources are accessible on the VERITAS website; including the Children’s e-book and accompanying online resources.

Logon: www.veritas.ie

Email: trial@growinlove.ie

Password: growinlove


READ from Grow in Love/ I nGrá Dé:

‘The New Commandment’ (John 13: 34-5), ‘God is Love’ ((1 John 4:7-8), ‘Psalm 136:1, 5-9, 26),  ‘Jesus asked his followers to help others to know him’ (Matthew 28:19-20), ‘Psalm 18:2’, ‘Psalm 23’, ‘Psalm 31:14-5’, ‘The Preaching of John the Baptist’ (Lk 3:3, 15-16).

SING from Grow in Love/I nGrá Dé:

‘Grow in Love’; ‘Sign of the Cross Chant’; ‘Love’, ‘Whatsoever You Do’, ‘Go Tell Everyone’, ‘Our God is an Awesome God’

PRAY from Grow in Love/I nGrá Dé:


O my God,

I love you with all my heart,

with all my soul, and with all my strength.

Lord, increase our love.

Help us to love one another. Amen.


Bless us, O God, as we sit


Bless the food we eat today.

Bless the hands that made the


Bless us, O God. Amen.


Thank you, God, for the food

we have eaten.

Thank you, God for all our friends.

Thank you, God, for everything.

Thank you, God. Amen.


Beannacht ó Dhia orainne atá ag suí

chun boird le chéile.

Beannacht ar an mbia a ithimid inniu.

Beannacht ar na lámha a d’ullmhaigh

dúinn é.

Beannacht a Dhia dílis orainn féin.



Go raibh maith agat, a Dhia, mar is tú a

thug bia dúinn.

Go raibh maith agat, a Dhia, mar is tú a

thug cairde dúinn.

Go raibh maith agat, a Dhia, mar is tú a

thug gach rud dúinn.

Go raibh maith agat, a Dhia. Áiméan.

‘Save us, Lord, we are in danger God, give the command, and there will be peace.’(Benedictus antiphon)

‘If any man wishes to come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross, and in that way, he must follow me.’ (Magnificat antiphon)

‘In your great love, answer me, O God.’(Psalm 68:14)

ABOUT Laudato Si’

‘Care for nature is part of a lifestyle which includes the capacity for living together and communion. Jesus reminded us that we have God as our common Father and that this makes us brothers and sisters. Fraternal love can only be gratuitous; it can never be a means of repaying others for what they have done or will do for us.  ’ (Laudato Si’, no. 228).

‘O Mary conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to Thee.’

St Joseph, please pray for all fathers.

Sr Anne Neylon