Lesson Plans That Work

These lesson plans are written by experienced church teachers using practical approaches to respond to the needs of volunteer teachers. They are designed to follow the Revised Common Lectionary and published by The Episcopal Church.

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While the world frantically shops, hoping to find the joy which is announced in the piped-in-music to show up in purchases, we are being called to STOP. No, not to zone out, but to stand, alert for signs. The Psalm for today calls out...

Isaiah knew this day would come: a young woman and a baby — Emmanuel — God With Us. God chooses to dwell in the womb of a woman. A messenger is sent to assure Mary’s fiancé that he should stay with her and help her raise their son....

John the Baptist has been calling people’s attention to their skewed priorities and baptizing them when they got the message. Now, confined to prison for his preaching that made the authorities uncomfortable, John sends this plaintive...

The Prophet Isaiah could see the day when “the earth will be full of the knowledge of God.” John the Baptist saw clutter blocking the way to God. John pointed to the truth that through Baptism, we are called to seek knowledge of God,...

Keep awake, for you do not know when Jesus is coming back. This message is not intended to cause us to cower in fear. Fear provides a useful warning signal, but it can also have the potential to paralyze us. Instead, we are called to...

Nutritionists will assure us that we are what we eat. Jesus, long before nutritionists, told us that we become what we eat. And so Jesus invites us to become one with him by eating his flesh and by drinking his blood. Our task is to...

Ominous warnings of end times: These warnings and words of hope heard in a community that was pretty sure the world was coming to an end. The message: Keep alert! Stay awake! Pay attention! Jesus just might come this very night....

John the Baptist, cousin of Jesus, dressed in camel’s hair, lived off the land, and was driven by the message he has heard from the prophet Isaiah, "Prepare the way of the Lord." "Stop," John is saying. “Look at yourself and your life...

The Gospel of John tells the story of John the Baptist from a slightly different perspective. Who is this John? John understands he is a messenger of the light – not the light itself. Those in charge of keeping the faith are confused....

A message, directly from God, sent by an angel! No wonder the angel had to begin with "Do not be afraid." And for whom is this message? A very young girl engaged but not yet married. The message: "You are to bear a child, the Son of...

Hovering over all of history – the parts we have recorded and all that came before – is the Word. The Word was with God and the Word was God. This Jesus, whom we can begin to grasp as the baby born on Christmas, is obviously something...

Those in power are often threatened by those who might be even more powerful. So it was with King Herod. The wise often have to go home by a different way. So it was with the three kings. In this passage, Matthew invites us to see that...

The baby Jesus is now a man; a man beginning his ministry. Perhaps he is still trying to sort out in his mind what he is being called to do. He looks for validation and turns to his cousin, John. John, meanwhile, has been faithfully...

Jesus has begun to put together his team. In this passage, Philip hears Jesus say, "Come with me." And he does. As it is dawning on Philip who this Jesus really is, he goes and finds his slightly skeptical friend, Nathanael, to tell...

Jesus is putting together his team. He seems to understand that people learn best when they can see – in action – what is being taught. So Jesus takes these men with him when he teaches and when he heals. And most importantly, they are...

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