» » » Hunger in the Desert + First Week of Lent + World Marriage Day + St. Bernadette | THE BREAD for February 14–20

Hunger in the Desert + First Week of Lent + World Marriage Day + St. Bernadette | THE BREAD for February 14–20

posted in: Family Time! newsletter | 3 |
Reading Time: 7 minutes
- bread square
Get the full issue in PDF or web page format below.



The Bread PDF


What’s happening in the Church next week, and how can your family participate?

  • Sunday is World Marriage Day (and St. Valentine’s Day). Check out “7 Simple Ways to Celebrate St. Valentine’s Day with Your Family.”*
  • We’re celebrating the lives of no fewer than ten people to whom Mary appeared . . . including three children. Plus: We remember Brother James Miller, a martyred Christian Brother, with a coloring sheet from teen artist Carly Lobenhofer (page 3 of the PDF).
  • Did you miss our Ash Wednesday edition? It includes a Lent Family Planner and 21+ ideas for things your kids can do for Lent. You can find it here: The Bread for Ash Wednesday.
  • We’ve got 10 ways for you to #GetYourGraceOn, including cool prayer ideas and a reminder to tell your kids about the first-time-in-a-thousand-years historic meeting between Pope Francis and the patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church.
  • Heidi Indahl has a cool service idea for Valentine’s Day.*
  • This week in Breaking Open the Word at Home, Jen Schlameuss-Perry asks: Why would the Spirit of God ever lead us to where we would find temptation?*
  • Don’t miss your Peanut Butter & Grace 10% off February coupon code (e-mail edition only).

* Link to the article under MORE FOR YOUR WEEK, below.

You’re looking at The Bread for the First Week of Lent, Feb. 14-20.

Get The Bread for the Fifth Week of Ordinary Time, Year C, Feb. 7-13.

Sign up to get The Bread by e-mail, and get 10 percent off all Gracewatch Media books during the month of February (you’ll get the discount code in the e-mail):


Check out a free whole-book preview of
The Illuminated Rosary books
…perfect for Lent.



First Sunday of Lent
World Marriage Day
Collection for Black and Indian Missions

“. . . Therefore, I have now brought you the firstfruits of the products of the soil which you, O LORD, have given me. . .”
—Deuteronomy 26:4-10

Be with me, Lord, when I am in trouble.
—Psalm 91

For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
—Romans 10:8-13

Filled with the Holy Spirit, Jesus returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the desert for forty days, to be tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and when they were over he was hungry.
—Luke 4:1-13

Breaking Open the Word at Home has more Sunday Scripture resources, including reflection questions for kids and adults; by Jennifer Schlameuss-Perry.



MONDAY February 15
Brother James Miller, FSC (1944-1982)
The Christian Brother who was killed at the De La Salle Indian School in Guatamala in retaliation for the brothers’ work on behalf of Indian boys.

President’s Day

TUESDAY February 16
St. Gilbert of Sempringham (1083-1189)
The English priest who founded the Gilbertine order, which practiced “the plate of the Lord Jesus,” in which the best portion of the meal was given to the poor.

WEDNESDAY February 17
Seven Founders of the Servites (13th century)
The seven men of Florence to whom the Blessed Mother appeared, commissioning them to be her servants; they became known as the Servants of Mary, or Servites.

THURSDAY February 18
St. Bernadette (1844-1879)
The young teen to whom Our Lady of Lourdes
appeared as the Immaculate Conception; the site of the apparition draws millions of pilgrims today.

Pope Francis departs Mexico

FRIDAY February 19
Blessed Verdiana (1182-1240)
The anchoress who lived walled up inside the same cell for 34 years, praying and advising visitors.

SATURDAY February 20
Blesseds Jacinta and Francisco Marto (1910-1920; 1908-1919)
The children who witnessed an apparition of the Virgin Mary at Fatima, Portugal.


3 weeks to Laetare Sunday (Mar 6)



Try out a handful of these ideas this week! Numbers in brackets are points for the #GetYourGraceOn game.


Preview this Sunday’s readings with your kids, and reflect on them using Lectio divina. [30]

Pray for the historic meeting between Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill, the leader of Russian Orthodox Church, on Thursday, February 12, in Havana; pray, too, for improved Orthodox-Catholic relations. [15]

Pray for the pope’s prayer intentions for February: “That we may take good care of creation—a gift freely given — cultivating and protecting it for future generations.” [20]

Pray an Act of Love this week in honor of Valentine’s Day. Here is a traditional formula: “O Lord God, I love you above all things and I love my neighbor for your sake because you are the highest, infinite and perfect good, worthy of all my love. In this love I intend to live and die. Amen.” If this feels too formal, make up your own Act of Love, and post it on your refrigerator or another visible place. [20]



For your meatless Friday meal, try cheese empanadas with beans, a Catholic Relief Services recipe from Colombia described as “crispy pastry shells stuffed with soft, milky, and mild cheese . . . served with warm, spicy-sweet beans.” Get the recipe at crsricebowl.org. [20]

Celebrate St. Valentine’s Day with the ideas from “7 Simple Ways to Celebrate St. Valentine’s Day with Your Family.”* [25]




Deliver Valentine’s Day cards to homebound folks through your local Meals on Wheels; for details on how, and an opportunity to win a scholarship in the process, see “Do Something Loving for Valentine’s Day.”* [90] Have your younger children make their own Valentine’s Day cards and take them to the grocery store during the day to pass out to other shoppers, especially “grandmas and grandpas.” [50]



In honor of St. Valentine’s Day (and World Marriage Day), share the story of how you met your spouse—or, if you are not married, share a funny or interesting dating story. Bonus: Share whether you considered other vocations (to the religious life, for instance). [30]

Talk about the historic meeting between Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill, the leader of the Russian Orthodox Church. The meeting is a major milestone in Catholic-Orthodox relations, and a good opportunity to teach a little Church history as well. [20]


Stump the Parents! The Passion

This week’s theme: The Passion of Christ Jesus.

Have your kids look at the Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church #112-124, then let them choose questions to pose to you; they get points if they can “stump” you, you get points if you answer correctly. See the full rules at Stump the Parents . . . a quick (if slightly humbling) way to do family catechesis.

Sample questions:

  • What is the importance of the Paschal Mystery of Jesus? (#112)
  • What was the attitude of Jesus toward the temple in Jerusalem? (#115)
  • Who is responsible for the death of Jesus? (#117)
  • Why was the death of Jesus part of God’s plan? (#118)
  • What are the results of the sacrifice of Christ on the cross? (#122)
  • Why does Jesus call upon his disciples to take up their cross? (#123)
  • In what condition was the body of Christ while it lay in the tomb? (#124)



7 Simple Ways to Celebrate St. Valentine’s Day with Your Family
Here are seven simple ways to celebrate St. Valentine’s Day this year, plus links to resources with more elaborate ideas.

Lead Us Not Into Temptation | Breaking Open the Word at Home
It’s Lent! Our time to travel into the desert with Jesus—to be tempted and to triumph.   by Jen Schlameuss-Perry

Do Something Loving for Valentine’s Day
Here’s a cool service project idea . . . with a chance to win a scholarship, to boot.  by Heidi Indahl

And some relevant articles from last week:

Make a Family Plan for Lent
Make your family’s Lent great with a little planning. Here’s how.

Fasting, Giving, Praying: 21+ Ideas for What Kids & Teens Can Do for Lent
Help kids practice giving, praying, and fasting this Lent with these ideas . . . plus, a primer on Lent, and fasting guidelines.

Doing 40 Days for Life with Children
40 Days for Life has been a powerful addition to our family’s Lenten devotions. Here’s how your family can participate.  by Heidi Indahl

The Giving Jar: A Simple Way to Encourage Kids to Give Generously

Preparing for a Hands-On Lent
Here are three hands-on activities for Lent: a candle-based Stations of the Cross, a flipbook, and hands-on Lenten prayer table suggestions. by Heidi Indahl


Bonus resources

Best Lent Ever 2016 | Dynamic Catholic

Matthew Kelly is challenging us to not give up chocolate this Lent…instead, sign up for Best Lent Ever, and rediscover Jesus in the process. When you sign up, you receive daily inspirational e-mails with short videos attached. If it’s from Dynamic Catholic, it will probably be great!


Follow Jerry Windley-Daoust:

Publisher, Gracewatch Media

Jerry Windley-Daoust is a writer, editor, and father of five. He writes essays and stories at Windhovering and is the show-runner for Gracewatch Media, a small Catholic publisher. You can follow his latest publishing projects at gracewatch.org.

3 Responses

  1. kielersnyder@gmail.com'
    | Reply

    Just an FYI the dates on the Brother James Miller coloring sheet are wrong. Great stuff this week and always! Live Jesus in our hearts!

    • Jerry Windley-Daoust
      | Reply

      What? Brother James Miller didn’t live in the 12th century??? Okay, okay — you’ll find a new coloring sheet with the corrected dates, if you want to download the PDF again. Mea culpa — and thanks, Angie.

  2. kielersnyder@gmail.com'
    | Reply

    Ha! You’re most welcome!

Leave a Reply to Angie Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *