May 21-27: Sixth Week of Easter
Servant of God Christian de Chergé + Venerable Maria of Jesus + Mary, Help of Christians + St. Philip Neri + St. Melangell of Wales + Ascension Thursday
CHECK OUT BOOK NEWS
Check out all our news about the upcoming Illuminated Rosary price hike (boo!), the release of MISSION:CHRISTIAN “Summer Edition” (yay!), and the last 24 hours of our crowdfunding campaign for Be Yourself: A Journal for Catholic Girls. Get details after this week’s full slate of saints, below.
7 CATHOLIC THINGS TO DO WITH YOUR KIDS THIS WEEK
Embrace the importance and impossibility of parenting. This week, we have a pair of thought-provoking articles on the importance and impossibility of parenting kids in faith:
In The Best Practices for Raising Faith-Filled Kids, Catholic family faith formation expert John Roberto rounds up the best research on the way families practice their faith . . . and the best family practices for raising faith-filled kids.
And in Parenthood Is Impossible (Because God Made It That Way), contributor Barry Peratt reflects on the vocation of parenthood which, like all vocations, requires God’s help to live out. Viewed this way, the challenges of Catholic parenting are a blessing, because they lead us to rely on God.
Be gentle. That’s one of the takeaways from this Sunday’s readings; prepare to preview the Scriptures with your kids with Breaking Open the Word at Home.
Play with St. Rita. Here’s a saint who had to stop a family feud before she could enter a convent! Storyteller Christine Hendersen shares the story of St. Rita and suggests an accompanying activity in Playing with the Saints.
Teach your young ones to navigate the neighborhood (and life) with the navigator game, in which you go on a walk (or ride), and they get to pick which direction to go at each turn . . . and then have to guide you home!
Mark Ascension Thursday. Canada and some places in the United States celebrate the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord on Thursday. If that is the case in your diocese, go to Mass. Most U.S. places will celebrate the Ascension on Sunday. Catholic Culture has a comprehensive article on the theology and customs of the feast.
Banish the grumpies and reset your day with the “I love you because…” game. It’s super simple and super effective!
Hey, it’s still Easter! Check out 10+ Ways to Celebrate the Easter Season.
SAINTS FOR YOUR KIDS TO KNOW & LOVE
Christian de Chergé (Monday). As civil war erupted in Algeria in 1996, the desert monks of the Monastery Notre-Dame de l’Atlas were urged to leave because of Islamic extremists. They chose to stay so they could continue serving the people near the monastery. Seven of the monks were eventually martyred. Fr. Christian de Chergé wrote a letter forgiving his murderer in advance, calling him “my last-minute friend, you who know not what you do” and hoping to see him in heaven.
Servant of God Emil Kapaun (Tuesday). Fr. Kapaun (1916–1951) was a U.S. Army chaplain during the Korean War. During a retreat, he stayed behind with injured soldiers, and then tirelessly served them in a POW camp. He is the most-decorated chaplain in U.S. history.
Venerable Maria of Jesus (Wednesday). Maria (1602-1665) was a Franciscan nun living in Spain who became the abbess of her monastery and was famous for her spiritual wisdom. She also was transported in prayer some 500 times to present-day New Mexico, where she preached to the Native Americans. When Spanish missionaries first met the Jumanos Indians, they reported her visits and asked to be baptized. The Franciscan superior went to Spain to meet with her; the Spanish Inquisition investigated her twice, but took no action.
St. Bede the Venerable (Thursday) was a scholar who was dedicated to learning, writing and teaching. He was considered a saint even when he was alive, and later declared a Doctor of the Church (that is, a great teacher of the Church). Bede (672–735) wrote the first history of the English people, published the first poem in English, and translated the writings of the early Church Fathers.
St. Philip Neri (Friday). At a time when many citizens of Rome had abandoned the faith, Philip (1515–1595) went there to bring some life back to the Church. He began by striking up friendships with everyone he met. His warmth, wit, and good sense of humor won him many friends, whom he took on picnics and gathered in his home for prayer, song, and spiritual reflection. Even before his death, he was considered a saint (and a great practical joker). His community lived on as the Oratorians.
St. Melangell of Wales (Saturday) was an Irish princess who lived as a hermit in a remote part of Wales. She was praying in a clearing in the woods when Prince Powys, who was hunting in the area, came upon her. The hare his hounds had been chasing hid under her skirts. The prince was so impressed by Melangell’s holiness that he gave her the land as a refuge —not only for animals, but anyone fleeing harm.
We’ve got a lot going on, book-wise. Here’s a rundown:
- The Illuminated Rosary books are about to get a major price hike, from $15.99 to $24.99, starting June 1. The change is prompted by a price hike by our main print vendor.* If you’re planning to order these books anytime soon, order before June 1. We’ll have them shipped to you direct from the printer. Order them here. We’re working on a second edition with half the page count (one prayer and artwork per page, rather than per spread) that should provide a more affordable option, hopefully by late fall.
- The crowdfunding campaign for Be Yourself! A Journal for Catholic Girls wraps up on Thursday, May 18, at midnight. Now’s your last chance to get signed copies with a custom message from the author, to donate copies to the St. Helena-Incarnation School of Philadelphia, or to sponsor the book. You can pre-order at the IndieGoGo campaign page for July delivery,
- MISSION:CHRISTIAN June-July 2017 is here! Preview the journal at its catalog page, and order now for delivery by June 1.
* A word about our pricing: We’re all used to dirt-cheap prices on full color books, which raises the question of why The Illuminated Rosary books (and our other color titles) are so expensive. Conventional publishers typically print large quantities of books (thousands of copies) at once at cheap prices overseas (typically Hong Kong or other locations in Asia). As a micropublisher serving a tiny market, we’re lucky to be able to print books in small batches, or even one at a time, using print-on-demand technology offered by our print vendor, Ingram Content Group, the largest book distributor in the world. Ingram has several large print facilities at locations around the U.S. The pricing of our color titles reflects these factors. Please know we’re conscious of the price sensitivity of many budget-strapped families, and do our best to keep prices reasonable. And remember, all of our books are free to download as a PDF (except for paid PDF downloads and coloring books).
MARK YOUR (CATHOLIC) CALENDAR FOR . . .
- Solemnity of the Ascension (May 28)
- Memorial Day (May 29)
- Pentecost (June 4)
“My heart never delighted in
earthly things, for they did
not fill the emptiness in my
—Venerable Maria of Jesus (Wednesday)
WHAT WE’RE TALKING ABOUT ONLINE
We’re still sharing our best family prayer practices over at our Facebook group, Peanut Butter & Grace Parents. Join us! It’s a closed group, so you’ll need to request to be added.
GET MORE PEANUT BUTTER! GET MORE GRACE!
BOOKS FOR SPRING
Remember to grab 15% off your order at Gracewatch Media with coupon code GRACE15.
MISSION:CHRISTIAN June-July 2017 includes features on Pentecost, the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart, St. Pierre Toussaint, St. Kateri Tekawitha, and more. A checklist of fun summer activities, plus “Christian missions,” Scripture readings, prayer prompts, and saint profiles for every day will keep your kids busy!
Blessed Is the Fruit of Thy Womb: Rosary Reflections on Miscarriage, Stillbirth, and Infant Loss invites grieving mothers to let the Blessed Mother accompany them on their journey of grief and healing. Mary not only understands their loss, but wishes to bring mothers to healing through the saving work of her son. For each mystery of the rosary, author Heidi Indahl compassionately shares her own experiences of miscarriage, stillbirth, and infant loss, offering insights about how those losses are connected to the experience of Jesus and Mary as revealed by the mysteries of the rosary.
In the Realm of Mist and Mercy, our new YA fantasy/adventure novel with a Catholic heart and sensibility; it comes with an accompanying Lesson Plan book that helps parents and kids connect the story to teachings of the Catholic faith.
The Illuminated Rosary complete set. “I can lead the rosary now!” That’s what we hear kids saying when they have one of the Illuminated Rosary books in their laps. The words of the prayers are printed on every page, opposite a sacred artwork depicting the mystery of the rosary being said. Kids love these books, but so do adults and grandparents! Available in hardcover (allow extra time for shipping) or softcover sets.
Molly McBride set. Kids love the spunky young Molly McBride and her feisty sidekick, the wolf-pet Francis. Get books one and two for one low price while supplies last.