My kids love the annual CRS Rice Bowl so much, it has (accidentally more than intentionally) evolved into a year-round “giving box.”
by Heidi Indahl
My children have always enjoyed participating in the annual Lenten Rice Bowl campaigns by Catholic Relief Services. They cheerfully do bonus chores to earn extra coins and add their own money from allowances, gifts, and more. At the end of last year’s campaign, I was not a very organized mom and never really got around to actually bringing the (now very heavy) bowl back to church.
After a couple weeks of all of us forgetting*, I dumped all the change into an empty formula can and threw it on top of the piano. Desperate to rescue our activity, I told the kids that I had a great idea and we were going to keep a special donation box all year round. Thankfully, my kids thought this was an excellent idea and so their chores and extra coins continued to make the pot grow. God is so amazing the way he works with our harried ways, isn’t he?
The little pot grew and grew until we ran out of room for more change. I didn’t want to tell the kids what they should do with it, so I waited for them to decide. The Our Lady of Fatima Peace Tour Statue was recently nearby and they decided to bring their can with and donate to her continued journey. We took a special night to visit her and (loudly) filled the special box with their offering.
And then unceremoniously returned the can to the top of the piano…where it already holds a few stray pennies
*Since I don’t want to take away from any future Rice Bowl campaigns, you should know that if you ever do forget you can total your collection and make a donation online—we’ve done that in the past too. Clearly Sunday mornings are a terrible time for me to remember anything extra. Getting 8 of us out the door is enough!