Top Planning Resources for Sunday
Top Planning Resources for Sunday


Epiphany (B)

“Tools” for the Classroom or at Home: activities, crafts, games, puzzles, worksheets, lesson plans, classroom tips, etc. for all ages.

What Gift Do You Bring January 3

FEATURED VIDEO – A weekly series featuring Kim Scott at Our Lady Queen of Angels Catholic Church in Newport Beach, California. Archives of the previous reflections

Intro to the Readings

Epiphany (B)

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Key Images

  • The glory of God shines brightly on you
  • Crowds are on their way
  • We saw his star
  • A shepherd for my people
  • They took out their gifts
SOURCES: Catholic Diocese of Auckland

Memory Verse

Jesus is the king of heaven and earth

Jesus isn’t like a king we see on TV. He doesn’t live a castle, separated from everyone. He lives with us, in our hearts, everyday. He came to show everyone that no matter how many things you have or how much money you have God’s love most important of all.


SOURCE: Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Southbury, CT

Getting Started

Welcoming of all people

This ancient feast celebrates the welcoming of all people who seek God with a sincere heart. It is not just the chosen people who are invited to faith in Jesus as Lord. He is significant to all who seek truth, and his light draws people into relationship with God. He is the sign of God’s love for creation and through whom God’s love is made known to all.

Today is a time to reflect on how far we have travelled in our own journey towards Jesus. What is leading you? How much progresses have you made? What gifts do you bring? How open are you to the possibility of finding the divine in the ordinary?

As we think on the story of the wise men, and reflect on how thrilled and excited they were to see the star, we might reflect back on times of pure delight in our own life experience. Did they cause us to take a new road?

We might also think about how open we are to welcoming foreigners’ who come to seek Jesus. What hospitality ministries are present in your faith community? How important are they?

SOURCE: Catholic Diocese of Auckland; Accompanying cartoon from The Cartoon Gospel, Used with permission.

Children’s Videos

Epiphany (B)

DISCLAIMER: Some videos are from non-Catholic sources. Therefore, be sure to preview before showing to your children.
DISCLAIMER: Some videos are from non-Catholic sources. Therefore, be sure to preview before showing to your children.
DISCLAIMER: Some videos are from non-Catholic sources. Therefore, be sure to preview before showing to your children.
Cropped image from this week’s CATHOLIC MOM coloring activity.

Children’s Handouts PDF’s

Epiphany (B)

Teacher and mom, THERESA, creates Kids’ Bulletins, a resource for Catholic kids about the readings for Sunday’s Mass every week. More resources from Theresa can be found at Teachers Pay Teachers website. Click on image/text to download entire bulletin for your children.

Image shows only a small portion of activity
CATHOLIC MOM is a ministry of Holy Cross Family Ministries offering children’s handouts of Gospel Reading, a coloring page, lesson plans, Mass Worksheets for ages 7-10 and 11-14, Word Search, and Crossword puzzle.
Words in this week’s word search
The S.D.C., a Catholic Society in the UK, provides worksheets for use in Sunday Liturgy groups for children.

Download Worksheet (PDF)
| Archive | Home Page

Click clues to download Crossword Puzzle and other handouts from Sermons4Kids

Gospel Reading: Matthew 2:1-12 GO TO LESSON

Children’s Skits

Epiphany (B)

Gospel Reading: Matthew 2:1-12

by Larry Broding

Reader 1:

Jesus was born in Bethlehem during the reign of Herod, King of Palestine. After his birth, wise men who studied the stars arrived in Jerusalem from the East. They began to ask, “Where is the child who is to be King of the Jews? We saw the star that pointed to him in the East, and we came to honor him.”

Reader 2:

When King Herod heard they were asking about a new king, he and everyone in Jerusalem got upset. He called the Temple priests and teachers of the Jewish Law together and asked them, “Where will the Christ be born?”

Reader 1:

“He will be born in Bethlehem of Judea,” they answered, “because God said through one of his prophets:

Bethlehem in the land of Judah,
you are not the least important among the cities of Judah.
From you, a great leader will come.
He will guide Israel like a good shepherd.’”

Reader 2:

Herod called the men together in a private meeting. “When did the star first appear?” he asked them. After they discussed the star, Herod sent them to Jerusalem with this request: “Go and ask everyone about the child. When you find him, come and tell me, so I can honor him, too.”

Reader 1:

When they heard the king’s request, they left. Then, the star which they saw in the East led them and stood over the place Jesus was. When they saw this, they were very happy. And their hearts were full of great joy. When they entered the place where Jesus was, they saw the child with Mary, his mother. They bowed before Jesus, like he was a king. Then they opened their treasures and offered him three gifts: gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Later, God warned them in a dream not to return to Herod. So they went home on a different road.

SOURCE: Larry Broding at (Copyright 1999-2017). Viewers may copy any material found in these pages for their personal use or for use in any non-profit ministry. Materials may not be sold or used for personal financial gain.

Church Skits by Tanis Harms

Christmas from
King Herod’s Viewpoint

SCRIPTURE:Matthew 2:1-8

Style:        drama/conversation: Herod looks at prophecy and reveals his own evil intentions
Set & Props:  crown for King Herod, robes (optional)


(As KING HEROD enters, CHIEF PRIEST bows and backs away.)

PRIEST  King Herod.  I have gathered all the chief priests and scribes as you requested.

(PRIEST waves his arm across the congregation
as if they are involved. HEROD addresses
the congregation and the PRIEST.)

HEROD   Good.  I require advice from all of you.
.       A caravan of magi from the east
.       arrived here in Jerusalem.
.       They came directly to my palace
.       asking to see the King of Jews.
.       They have come bearing many gifts
.       and wish to worship said king.

PRIEST  Is this not good?  It is an opportunity
.       to strengthen your realm.

HEROD   They were not referring to ME.
.       According to some star in the sky,
.       which they have been following
.       for quite some time now, they are under
.       the impression that some Jewish King
.       has just been born.


Christmas from
Magi’s Viewpoint

SCRIPTURE: Matthew 2:7-12
Style: drama/conversation: the magi have a discussion after meeting the baby Jesus
Cast: MAGI 1 & 2


(MAGI enter and talk amongst each other.  They are still
in awe from seeing Jesus.)

MAGI 1  I have seen the King of kings.  I have beheld
.       His glory.

MAGI 2  We traveled very far, and it was worth
.       every single day of our long hard journey.

MAGI 1  Amen.

MAGI 2  We could have brought ALL our treasures
.       and given it to the Christ-child,
.       and it still would not have been enough.


SOURCE: Church Skits by Tanis Harms; used with permission.
MINISTRY TO CHILDREN (2:10): Epiphany is January 6th on the church calendar. That’s the traditional day to celebrate the visitation of the Magi to the infant Jesus. Here are some activities and lesson plans to use in your Sunday School to mark the occasion. Prepared by Kristin Schmidt, who serves at the Epiphany Lutheran Church in Castle Rock, CO.


Epiphany (B)

Magi & Kings Herod

This lesson plan is based on the visit of the wise men to see baby Jesus. First they come to see King Herod, but his dangerous plan fails and the infant Christ escapes to Egypt. Children will learn how God protected the Holy family despite the wicked king. This lesson shows that God is in control, despite the pretenders like King Herod.

Bible scholars are not certain as to when the Magi would have arrived at Bethlehem. Many suppose that Jesus could have been nearly 2 years old at this point, based on the age group Herod ordered to be killed. However, scripture is not specific. We are safe to say Jesus was still very young and without defense against the wicked King Herod – expect that God preserved him and his family.


RELIGION TEACHER (3:29): Chalking the door is a popular Catholic tradition on the Feast of the Epiphany. In this video I explain the meaning of the letters written in chalk above the doors of Christian homes: 20+C+M+B+YEAR

Catholic Families

The blessing of homes

Epiphany is a traditional time for the blessing of homes. It is a time to celebrate the fact that God can be found in our everyday environment. We know that we are part of the family of God and that God dwells in our home. Plan a blessing of your home. Use the following format: Read John 1:14 from the Bible. Then go in procession from room to room, blessing each room with holy water.

Help your family experience a true epiphany. Spend time this week looking for God. Go out for a walk, or look for God in your home. See where God leads you.

SOURCE: Our Sunday Visitor

Nomads in Niger arriving at the village well to water their camels. Picture credit: COFOD

Discussion Questions

Epiphany (B)

Sunday Connection

The Magi seek out Jesus and do him homage

Reflection Questions for Grades 1-3, 4-6, and 7-8 which help connect the Scripture to daily life in a meaningful way.

SOURCE: Loyola Press


CAFOD stands for the Catholic Agency For Overseas Development. We are an international development charity and the official aid agency of the Catholic Church in England and Wales.

Feast of the Epiphany



This short presentation is designed for a teacher or class to produce a liturgy or assembly to help young people reflect on the Feast of the Epiphany.

Themes: Epiphany
Countries of focus: Cambodia, Zimbabwe and Brazil
Materials Required: The accompanying PowerPoint, copies of the readings and prayers for the readers, the words of the hymns “The light of Christ” and “One bread, one body” (optional).
Time allocation: Assembly format, 10-20 minutes

SOURCE: Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (UK)

Doctrine of the Week

Epiphany (B)

Universal offer of salvation

IMPORTANT: "The universal OFFER of salvation" should not be confused with the belief in "Universal Salvation" (Universalism) which is inconsistent to the Catholic faith.

Today’s feast proclaims that all people are attracted to and find salvation in the radiance of God’s light. Epiphany means “showing forth” or “manifestation.” In the context of the Christmas season, it is Jesus, the Word made flesh, who is shown as the light of all people (John 1:4). The Church’s missionary impulse derives from the conviction that all are meant to share in the banquet of God’s love. The Council asserted, “The Church’s essential nature is universal . . . preaching the Word of God and proclaiming the kingdom throughout the whole world” (AG 1).


Primary Session

Cut-out Stars

To begin, provide stars cut out of gold paper and pencils for each child. Invite the children to think of the greatest gift that God has given them and have them write it down on their star...


Intermediate Session

Light a candle

Light a candle and place it in the center of the room. Brainstorm with the children what comes to their minds when they think of the word light.....


Junior High School

Mapping out journey of faith

Invite the young people to map out their own journey of faith. Provide paper and pencils and have them mark down the significant moments in their faith journey from their baptism to the present time. Give the young people the opportunity to share their journey with the large group....


SOURCE: RCL Bensiger Lectionary Resources
Science Hangama (3:55): Watch the animated video to learn the importance of staying together!

Virtue of the Week

Epiphany (B)


Unity is what God seeks for all of us. It is most important to remember that unity does not mean uniformity. Often human beings get the two confused. God created all of us to be unique and to combine the uniqueness of each is to provide something beautiful for God

First Reading

he light given to the nation of Israel is to be a light for all the nations. There will be a unity restored.

Second Reading

 Now through faith in Jesus Christ people can, if they wish, experience the greatness of unity. God chose and blessed Saint Paul with this ministry of preaching to the Gentiles.


God is ever seeking to allow new light to seep into our lives in order to see God more clearly. The truth is we must make ourselves available to the light and seek unity among others from various nations, races and creeds. This is God’s will: unity.


SOURCE: Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University; "Build. Plant. Grow." = a free faith formation resource which aligns with the Liturgical Year of the Roman Catholic Church. Videos on this page are NOT affiliated with Markkula Center.
Schim(7:48): Read by author.

Children's Stories

Epiphany (B)

Book of the Week

Dear Children of the Earth

This enchanting and beautifully illustrated book begins with, as the title would lead you to understand, a letter from Mother Earth. In this letter, Mother Earth asks for help from her children everywhere. She writes to express her love for each and every child and asks for their love and appreciation in return. In her own words and with all of her heart, Mother Earth enfolds children with love and entrusts them with her protection.

This love that Mother Earth expresses for her children very much parallels the love that God makes manifest for the whole world in the celebration of the Feast of the Epiphany. Mother Earth and God, our Loving Father, seek unity of love and a cooperation among peoples. The love is made manifest to the children of the earth by God’s loving creation, Mother Earth, and to be enjoyed and stewarded by all of the inhabitants of the earth. The truth being told in the Scriptures and in Dear Children of the Earth is that we are all Children of the Earth and as such are called to unity...

Unity is what God wants for all of us. God intends for all of us to be connected to one another and to seek out all the similarities and uniqueness and to celebrate them, much like the beautiful colors of a multicolored tapestry.


SOURCE: Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University; "Build. Plant. Grow." = a free faith formation resource which aligns with the Liturgical Year of the Roman Catholic Church. The accompanying video is NOT associated with Markkula Center.

Children's Readings

Jesus, the Light of the World

Christmas was good for three different kind of families.

Paul looked forward to the Scout camp out. They were going out to the desert where the sky is clear and there are no city lights to spoil the view of stars. They loaded up the trucks and vans. Then they rode in for over two hours. The ride was long and boring. Sometimes they would joke and tell stories. Sometimes look at the scenery out of the window. Sometimes they would try to sleeps using their jackets as pillows.

After a stop to get food and gas, they made their way to the winding desert road. The scenery got darker and darker as they left the lights of the city. The road began to wind back and forth. The younger scouts got a little scared. The taller boys could see the white lines on the road with the headlights. But all the boys new one thing. They were out in the middle of nowhere, in the middle of the night.---->


SOURCE: Larry Broding at (Copyright 1999-2017). Viewers may copy any material found in these pages for their personal use or for use in any non-profit ministry. Materials may not be sold or used for personal financial gain.

Children's Sermons

Epiphany (B)

Wait for it … God Does Not Disappoint!

This message uses the "post-Christmas blues" let-down as an example of how we sometimes wait for things and wind up disheartened. However, we know that waiting for God is always worth it, because He keeps His promises. The Gospel lesson that ties in is the story of Anna and Simeon in the temple. They waited for Jesus, and saw that the Lord fulfilled His word.


SOURCE: Copyright © 2007-2020 Ministry-to-Children. Please use our children's ministry curriculum and Sunday School material for any purpose that brings honor to Jesus.

Sermon Writer

The children's sermon excerpts below are linked to Sermon Writer, which was operated by Niell Donavan, a United Christ clergyman from 1997 until his death in 2020. His wife Dale is graciously keeping his website online FREE, subscription no longer required. As Catholic Catechists, be sure to adapt if necessary before presenting to children.

Star bright, star light

FOCUS: Gospel

Have you ever sat outside with a friend or your family and watched as the sky begins to darken, to see who could spot the first star? You must watch closely to be the one to see the first star appear. Soon after, many stars are twinkling in the sky. In fact, there are billions of stars in our galaxy.

Have you ever thought about what makes a star twinkle? A star sends out a straight beam of light, but movement in the air changes the path of the light, and causes the star to twinkle.

It is a special treat to sit outside at night and look at stars. Stars appear to be white, but if you look closely you will see that some stars are blue, yellow and red. And, some stars are very bright.There is one very bright star, the North Star, which guides travelers and sailors so they will always know in what direction they are going.Perhaps your parents or a friend can help you find the Big Dipper in the night sky. It looks like a large pan with a handle. The two stars at the front of the pan, opposite of the handle, point directly to the North Star.


I've got it

FOCUS: Gospel

Objects suggested: A light bulb or a picture of a cartoon character with a light bulb sketched above the head.

Think about how it feels when suddenly you have a good idea pop into your head. Perhaps you have had the experience of struggling to understand or learn how do to something you found very difficult, then suddenly it all becomes clear to you. It is as though a light turns on in your brain and makes everything clear.

Sometimes we see the same image illustrated in cartoons. It could be Charlie Brown, Snoopy, or Scooby-Doo, appearing surprised, a light bulb sketched above their head. It is a symbol that means “I’ve got it!I know what to do!” Some call that a “light bulb moment.” (Show example.)

When Jesus was born, the wise men or Magi, as they are called, had very holy light bulb moments. They saw a star rising and knew that special star would lead them to Jesus, The Son of God. They followed that star “until it came and stood over where the young child was” (2:9).


Finding joy

FOCUS: Gospel

Have you ever seen a satellite blinking and moving across the night sky? It looks just like a star, but this kind of satellite is made by men and women and sent into space where it circles the earth.Many satellites orbit our earth continuously and some are no bigger than a beach ball.

Satellites are used for many different things:

Some look at the weather and warn us about storms.

Some relay television programs and telephone messages.


The light inside

FOCUS: Gospel

Do you like to look at the night sky? What do you see? Yes, the moon and many, many stars.

Did you know that you can also see light from a star during the day? Would it surprise you to know that the sun is a star? All stars are balls of gas that burn from the inside and give off light and heat. The sun is the closest star to earth so we see its light and also feel its heat.

You may have heard the Bible story about the wise men and how they followed a very bright nighttime star that led them to Bethlehem.The star shone over the place where Jesus was born.

The Bible tells us that when the star “came and stood over where the young child was, the wise men “rejoiced with exceedingly great joy” (2:9-10).


SOURCE: Sermon excerpts from Sermon Writer: Children's Sermons - All Rights Reserved | © 1997-2020 Richard Niell Donovan
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