Posted tagged ‘Cycle A/B’

Monday Fun!

October 16, 2017

amerieault pic

The kids enjoy playing with their Mass set and peg dolls on our prayer table. They had fun literally seeing Mass come alive in a way! (set up along with real candles too!) so fun!  They colored, an older one cut, and [Mom] folded/taped while [Dad] read the lesson. Went so well!!

Francis Family at Mass

Thanks for the great Mass kit. [We were] inspired to find some great mass attendees ūüôā Learning made fun, we love FF!

We’re so glad to see you’re having fun with the Mass lessons!


Lesson Notes: Liturgy of the Eucharist

October 14, 2017

Liturgy of the Eucharist

This week, we’re going to continue our study of the Holy Mass using the lesson and your Mass booklet and I just want to add a couple things:

This is the ideal time to share why you receive the Eucharist in your hand or on your tongue. Both are acceptable, but whichever you choose should be done with highest reverence, being mindful of just Who you are receiving. Share your personal devotion with your kids by taking advantage of this teachable moment.


Also, once your kids have finished going through their My Holy Mass Book, encourage them to bring it with to Mass! Older kids can keep track through the words and younger ones can do it by looking at the pictures ‚Äď either way, keeping track of what‚Äôs going on in the liturgy by using a missal like this can be a very effective way to focus on the Mass in a new light.

Lesson Notes: The Liturgy of the Word

October 11, 2017

Liturgy of the Word

This month, we’re really focusing on the Mass, a topic that is foundational to what it means to be Catholic.¬† We all got an overview in our October classroom lessons and now we’re breaking it down at home throughout the rest of the month.

We are beginning with the Liturgy of the Word and I love this quote about beginnings at the beginning at the book of John:

In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God.

We tend to think of a Bible as the Word of God, and that’s absolutely true, but John is telling us that Jesus himself is the Word of God.¬† When we get to know the Bible better, we’ll get to know Jesus better and that is the goal of EVERYTHING!

Mass bookletThis lesson works together with next week’s lesson on the Liturgy of the Eucharist to create a missal for your children to use.¬† Start with the last page in the booklet, where you’ll find a list of interactive ways to use it for all ages.¬† Write, draw, reflect, and practice along with the booklet as you teach about each section of the Mass.

Of course, the best way to bring this lesson to life is to actually go to Mass.¬† We know that’s hard!¬† There are seasons in every family’s life and every child’s life, where even just getting ready for Mass is daunting, but we encourage you to¬†persist!¬† Making Sunday Mass that “always, always, always” thing your family does will help your children develop¬†that holy habit as well and will help them tremendously as they move into adult life.¬† (Don’t ever get to the place where you are deciding on Saturday IF you should go to Mass the next day!)

We offer some helps for that in the lesson.  Starting on page 6, the Pauline family works through some situations that will likely mirror some things you experience.  Their choices are filled with practical ideas for all ages.

And finally, don’t miss the Parent Pages that are filled with Q & A about all sorts of things that aren’t covered in the lesson.

  • I’m on vacation this weekend.¬† Can I just go to Mass during the week to make up for missing on Sunday?
  • I’m allergic to wheat.¬† Can I get a rice host?
  • Last weekend the priest was running low on hosts and had to break them in half.¬† Am I getting half of Jesus?
  • Why can’t my Protestant friend receive communion?¬† He believes in Jesus too!

And lots more!

Art for November Prayer Tables

October 11, 2017

This month’s topic is the Creed, and as you’ll learn both the Nicene and Apostles’ Creed are divided into three parts, corresponding to the three Persons of the Trinity.

Since Baptism is given “in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”, the truths of faith professed during Baptism are articulated in terms of their reference to the three persons of the Holy Trinity.

And so the Creed is divided into three parts: “the first part speaks of the first divine Person and the wonderful work of creation; the next speaks of the second divine Person and the mystery of his redemption of men; the final part speaks of the third divine Person, the origin and source of our sanctification.”

CCC 189-190

For that reason, the piece I’ve chosen for this month’s prayer tables picks up that theme.


This work by Albrecht Durer was completed in 1511 as an altarpiece for a church.  The Persons of the Trinity are the focus, framed by clouds and angels.  On the left are the heavenly martyrs led by the Queen of heaven, herself.  On the right are Old Testament Saints, led by John the Baptist.  Near the bottom of the painting, but still above the clouds, are all the others in heaven: priests, nuns, lay people, etc., and at the very bottom we see the artist who painted himself in the scene still on earth.

It‚Äôs very easy to look at this painting, with its clear vision of heavenly realities and recite, ‚ÄúI believe in one God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all things visible and invisible.‚ÄĚ ¬†‚ÄúI believe in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Only Begotten Son of God ‚Ķ‚ÄĚ ¬†‚ÄúI believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, and giver of life ‚Ķ‚ÄĚ

Image Credit: The Web Gallery of Art

The Rosary for this century

May 12, 2015

A simple search of “apps for praying the Rosary” turns up about 540,000 hits of one sort or another, but the one I’m familiar with is free and very easy to use and has a simple interactive element that may amuse your children while they pray. ¬†Laudate has tons of basic Catholic stuff (I always use it to follow the readings at Mass), and one of the things is a simple Rosary that keep count for you as you tap the next bead in the picture.


Not a lot of bells and whistles, but if your child is entertained by an iPad but you don’t want a lot of other distractions, this may be a good fit for you. ¬†(And the price is right.)

Praying With Little Ones

May 10, 2015

The Rosary has been around a long time and is one of the most beloved prayers in the history of Christendom, so it’s no surprise that there are many, many ideas for doing it well. ¬†I’m going to be posting some of the more family-friendly ones here and would like to start with some ideas from our archives.

Today’s idea involves a little preparation, but can be used over and over and is a very effective way to get your Littles on board. ¬†You can find the details here.

Lesson Notes: The Holy Rosary

May 9, 2015

Reasonable and attainable are the two words I want you to remember as your family is getting into the habit of praying the Rosary. ¬†Here’s a cautionary tale from my experience:

When we were first trying to learn this prayer together I thought about all the things my kids could do for 20 minutes (eat at a restaurant, watch tv, listen to a story, play a computer game, etc.) and I naturally assumed that this attention span would easily transfer to other activities.  I pictured a focused, reverent, consistent prayer time and maybe (just maybe) imagined what a good Catholic parent I was turning out to be.  Yay me!

The reality¬†was¬†more along the lines of chaos with a slight resemblance to prayer. ¬†A couple kids moved in and out of saying the words they knew while another traveled around and around the pattern in our braid rug to the beat of her sing-song version of Hail Mary. ¬†And, if I recall correctly, there was another child at the other end of the house crying, “No wanna pway!” ¬†Yep, so much for focused and reverent. ¬†As far as consistent went, I’m pretty sure my own lack of discipline was the end of that dream.

It was a little while before we attempted it again, and when we did it looked a lot different. ¬†This time instead of starting our regular morning routine, I had all of my kids (all still Family Formation age or younger at that point) just start the morning in bed with me where we prayed 7¬†Our Father’s, 7¬†Hail Mary’s, and 7 Glory Be’s before breakfast. ¬†I have no idea where that number came from, but starting our mornings praying The Sevens turned out to be a very successful way for us to learn the prayers and to establish a consistent morning prayer time, and this particular combination and repetition of prayers turned out to be a pretty effective transition into a real Rosary later. ¬†And that’s what this lesson is all about – setting your family up for success!


Some of this lesson is going to sound familiar because you just did the lesson on Marian Apparitions. ¬†The story of Lourdes is repeated here as well as Mary’s constant reminder to pray the Rosary. ¬†In addition, this lesson has a little history as well as some practical stuff like the structure of the prayer (5 sets of 10 beads, particular mysteries to think about, etc.), and how all of the basic prayers fit together into the one prayer we call the Rosary.

This is all stuff¬†that is helpful to know, but the whole point of the lesson is to actually help your family to pray, and that’s where the Praying the Rosary as a Family booklet come in. ¬† It’s¬†full of¬†ideas that work, contributed by lots of Family Formation parents over the years. ¬†We’ve divided them up into practical steps that can be used by everyone from those who have never prayed the Rosary to experts.

Holy Rosary Booklet - CoverWe also want to make sure to point out¬†the copy of The Holy Rosary booklet that’s included in this month’s packet. ¬†There are so many ways to use it! ¬†Besides including step-by-step instructions on the basics of how to pray, each of the mysteries also include the following:

  1. A picture of what’s happening. ¬†Perfect for little ones or anyone who would benefit from a visual element as they’re moving through the Hail Mary’s. ¬†There’s nothing quite like a picture to help maintain focus!
  2. Scripture describing the Mystery.  Yes, Marian devotion can be very scriptural and really, the whole point of the Rosary is to connect us better to Jesus.
  3. Each mystery also has a paragraph describing exactly what is happening.  Perfect for auditory learners or anyone who would simply like more insight into the event.
  4. Finally, each of the Mysteries also has a short list of related prayer intentions. ¬†I think you’ll find that these really help to make the Mysteries relevant to your life and they present¬†good ways to personally enter into the prayer.

May God bless your efforts as you continue to work on this through the summer and we would love to hear your success stories, no matter how small, as they pop up.

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