January 15-21: Second Week in Ordinary Time
St. Anthony + Ven. Frederick Baraga + St. Sebastian + St. Agnes
MISSION:CHRISTIAN Volume 3 (Feb. – May) ships next week, so reserve your copies today! Its 142 pages includes:
+ Daily missions for your kids to practice their faith, plus dozens of bonus missions + Daily Scripture reflection + Four new saint stories (Josephine Bakhita, Patrick, John Baptist de La Salle, Joan of Arc) + More than 100 mini saint biographies + Daily invitation to journal prayer, now with prayer prompts + Daily invitation to prayerfully reflect on the day’s events + Checklists for Lent, Easter, and Pentecost + Features on the Scriptural Stations of the Cross, Ignatian imaginative prayer, and how to be a Christian in secret
Get it here.
TOP 6 CATHOLIC THINGS TO DO WITH YOUR KIDS
Pray to find lost stuff. Do your kids lose stuff? All right, stupid question. But do you pray to find what’s lost? Like, really stop and pray? If you don’t, put it on your list of things to do with your kids this week; here’s what one dad learned from praying with his daughter for a lost iPod.
Tap your child’s imagination to help her pray. If your children have big imaginations, they need to learn about imaginative prayer, the method of prayer Ignatius of Loyola developed for his Society of Jesus. The idea is for your kids to “enter into” the Scriptures with their imaginations, which God can use to communicate with them. We’ve got a step-by-step tutorial and links to resources.
Shine a little brighter. That’s what this weekend’s readings call us to do, as an apostolic people, says Jennifer Schlameuss-Perry. Preview the Sunday Scriptures with your kids in this week’s Breaking Open the Word at Home.
Mark the Martin Luther King holiday. The faith-based movement of non-violent resistance that he helped lead broke the back of Jim Crow and the worst elements of institutionalized racism. He may not have been Catholic, but he got a shout out from Pope Francis for his legacy to all Christians. Find out about the role faith played in the man’s life in Christianity Today’s Martin Luther King: A History.
Step up your Mass game. We got lots of comments on our Facebook page when we re-ran our article Doing Mass with Kids: 25+ Strategies for a Better Experience . . . check it out if you need some new strategies.
Clean up your to-do list. Have you signed up for 9 Days for Life yet? Get the app; it makes it easy to participate. Plus, have you taken your kids to the local food shelf this month? That’s right, it’s still Poverty Awareness Month, and “helped the hungry” is going to look good on your kids’ saintly CV.
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ALL THE COOL CATHOLICS ARE CHECKING OUT . . .
The Catholic Children’s Bible Coloring Book from Saint Mary’s Press, available now from Gracewatch Media for just $5; it’s 40 big, bold coloring pages carefully adapted from the art in The Catholic Children’s Bible. The coloring book features a wide variety of scenes from both the Old Testament and the Gospels, with handy cross-references at the bottom of each coloring page to the appropriate page in the Bible. Some of the pages include colorable quotes from the Bible, while others contain three different scenes to help kids remember the story. Preview pages aren’t available for this third-party product, just released, but we’ve got some pictures at the catalog page.
MISSION:CHRISTIAN Volume 3 (Feb. – May) ships next week (in case you missed it), full of 142 pages of Catholicky goodness. (Hmm. Not sure that neologism is going to catch on.) As with the last volume, we’ll be breaking out separate journals for Lent and Easter.
Saint Anthony the Great, a beautifully illustrated picture book about the great saint’s struggle to win a pure heart, by John Chryssavgis and artist Marilyn Rouvelas. We’re mentioning it because St. Anthony’s feast day is coming up next week. . . .
FRIENDS YOUR KIDS SHOULD HANG OUT WITH THIS WEEK
St. Anthony of Egypt (Tuesday), the young man who, at the age of 18, sought God in the solitude of the Egyptian desert; so many other men and women followed his example that he became known as “Father of All Monks.” His fame was spread by Athanasius of Alexandria, whose biography The Life od St. Anthony stayed on best-seller lists throughout the Christian world through the Middle Ages, influencing the spirituality of countless other Christians. Among his sayings: “Whoever you may be, always have God before your eyes; whatever you do, do it according to the witness of the holy Scriptures.”
Ven. Frederick Baraga (Thursday), first bishop of the Diocese of Marquette; he’s one of those obscure figures who probably should be better known. A Slovenian priest, he arrived in the United States on December 31, 1830. “For the next 37 years,” the Bishop Baraga Association tells us, “he traveled the length and breath of the Great Lakes area to minister to the Ottawa and Chippewa Indians. . . . During the summer months, Father Baraga traveled on foot and by canoe. During the winter months, he traveled on snowshoes thus giving him the titles of ‘Apostle of the Lakelands’ and ‘Snowshoe Priest.’ He wrote long and frequent accounts of his missionary activities including a three-volume diary. He also wrote seven Slovenian prayerbooks and authored 20 Native American books which includes his monumental Grammar and Dictionary of the Chippewa Language, still in use today.” His friendship with the Indians was not popular among European settlers, though.
St. Sebastian (Friday), the young Roman who, according to legend, joined the Roman army so he could help persecuted Christians. He converted several army officers who freed their Christian prisoners, but when his faith was discovered, the emperor had him tied to a post and shot full of arrows, which is the way he is typically depicted in art, and apparently the basis of his patronage of athletes. He was left for dead, But surprise, surprise, he wasn’t dead yet, and when he recovered, he went to warn the (presumably shocked) emperor that he was sinning by persecuting Christians. The emperor had him beat to death on the spot.
St. Agnes (Saturday) was only twelve or thirteen years old when she was pressured to abandon her faith, but she refused, even after being tortured.
She is one of the most popular early martyrs, and her name is sometimes mentioned during Mass. Listen for it this weekend!
MARK YOUR (CATHOLIC) CALENDAR FOR . . .
- Martin Luther King holiday (Mon Jan 16)
- Inauguration Day (Fri Jan 20)
- 9 Days for Life (Jan 21-29)
- Week of Prayer for Christian Unity (Jan 17-25)
“If you love God sincerely and above all, you will easily fulfill all other duties towards him. Nothing is difficult, nothing is boring, to a loving heart.”
—Venerable Frederick Baraga
Pre-order MISSION:CHRISTIAN Volume 3 (February – May) now! Pre-ordering helps us know how many books to print, and ensures that you’ll get your copies on time.