“Make big things from small beginnings.”

First Read Titus.

The letter from Paul to Titus is very short and was written (around 66 AD) to a Church leader who did not become very famous. And yet a passage from this letter (Titus 2:11-14) is used every year at Christmas midnight Mass. Four little verses that are read at Mass begin with, “Beloved: The grace of God has appeared, saving all and training us to reject godless ways and worldly desires” (The Lectionary, p. 106).

The Christmas story itself has other examples of God making big things from small beginnings. Mary is just a young girl – a teenager – and she becomes the mother of God. Bethlehem is a tiny town, not very well known for anything, and it becomes the birthplace of our Messiah.

God is very good at making surprising things happen from humble beginnings. So don’t ever doubt the importance of whatever you do for God. Even if you think it is small, God can make very big things come from it.

Second, take note of specific passages that Paul offers as advice to Titus.

Consider these themes:
1. What makes a worthy church leader? (Titus 1:5-9)
2. What tips are offered for living the Christian life? (Titus 2:1-8)
3. How can people, in general, be good in every way? (Titus 3:1-11)

Finally, write your own letter to a trusted friend. Modernize it. Make it real, convincing, believable for the 21st century.

Consider these themes:
1. What advice could be offered to a teenager looking at their personal future as an adult citizen (or a leader) in Canadian society?
2. What advice could be offered to a teenager struggling with peer pressure and social media or struggling with the temptation of drugs and alcohol?
3. What advice could you offer a teenager who struggles with relating to adults in authority: teachers, parents, police, politicians, TAs, … referees?

Format your letter using the same business letter guidelines you have mastered in ELA 9. Use your own address and the address of a friend in class, (or invent a realistic looking address).

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