Memorizing the Beatitudes

There’s no getting around it – this month’s memory verse is LONG!  According to the Catechism, the Beatitudes are at the heart of Jesus’ preaching, they teach about our desire for happiness, they reveal the goal of human existence, and they teach us about the final end to which God calls us.  Seems important, right? J    So obviously it would be a good thing to be more familiar with them and their meaning.  But still, it can be a daunting task for a kid to memorize them all.

I’d like to recommend some very simple ways to break it down and make it more manageable.  Each of the eight Beatitudes follows a predictable pattern.  Each starts with a statement saying who is blessed and ends with why.  Try making two pages of flashcards like those below (or simply click here Beatitudes flash cards and print) and work on the following challenges:

  • Start by matching the sets to make the correct full sentences. (Don’t worry about getting them in the right order yet.)
  • Work backwards, matching each why to a who.
  • Think about the keywords in the first set (meek, merciful, peacemakers, etc.), and learn to put them in order.
  • Use the cards as a hand’s-on experience to get all eight correct and in the right order.
  • Transfer this skill to being able to get them in order verbally without the flashcards.
  • Congratulate your kids on their amazing perseverance and mental skills!

Normally, I would place a high priority on understanding the vocabulary of something like this, and while that is really important, you may want to put it off a bit until you’re doing the Home Lesson on the Beatitudes at the end of the month.  (Of course, if your child asks what meek means, stop whatever you’re doing and look it up together.  That is your teachable moment!)