Just in time for May – Mary’s month!
Right up front, I want to make a suggestion: If the topic of the Blessed Virgin Mary appearing around the world at different places and different times in history (including today) is new to you, skip right over to page 3 and start with some background information.
Everything we know about God has come about because He revealed it to us. These revelations are either categorized as public or private. Public revelation includes Holy Scriptures and the teachings of the Church (the Deposit of Faith). Public revelation ended with the death of the last Apostle and there is no possibility for new revelation until Jesus returns for us someday. Public revelation is there for all Christians to believe and trust.
But, there’s another category, private revelation, which will often involve a vision or a message from an angel, a saint, or the Blessed Virgin Mary. These happen all the time, but since the message is usually just for one person or a small group, they are typically not officially approved by the church. Over the centuries, there have been a number of apparitions that have the Vatican’s Seal of Authenticity approval and we’re learning about some of them in this lesson.
You can still be a super-solid Catholic even if you never have a special devotion to any of them, but the messages of approved apparitions are still worthy of our study. So with that … The Travel Guidebook will lead you through a brief study in three steps so your family can become more familiar with five approved apparitions.
- The core of each section is the guidebook entry and the audio link to Mary’s message. (Scan the QR code on the back page of the Home Lesson.) Start with these pieces no matter how old or young your kids are.
- If you’d like to go deeper, find the apparition site on your map and color it. This activity is a great way to get older kids involved since they have probably already developed some map skills and are comfortable with an abstract activity like that. If you have a globe, you can also find where you are and then point out where the apparition took place. For younger kids, just saying it happened on “the other side of the world” may be enough.
- And for review or for those who like playing games, prepare the Mary Memory Game cards to learn the images, locations and the names of the visionaries (those who heard the message).