April 28-May 4: Second Week of Easter
St. Catherine of Siena + St. Pius V + St. Joseph the Worker + St. Athanasius + Sts. Philip and James + St. Florian
WE’RE EXCITED TO ANNOUNCE…
Today, we’re excited to announce that Peanut Butter & Grace has been acquired by Our Sunday Visitor, an Indiana-based non-profit Catholic publisher whose motto—“Live the faith, change the world”—resonates deeply with the mission of Gracewatch Media. The change in ownership is part of a broader collaboration between Our Sunday Visitor and Gracewatch Media to help parents form their children in the Catholic faith.
Read the full announcement on the Gracewatch Media website, sign up for our occasional newsletter to stay in touch with Gracewatch, and sign up for the Teaching Catholic Kids newsletter. It replaces Family Time!, which will cease distribution the week of May 15.
8 WAYS TO DO FAITH & FAMILY
1. Mark Divine Mercy Sunday. It’s the Sunday of Divine Mercy this week. Have you ever prayed the Chaplet of Divine Mercy during your family prayer time? The devotion is easy to learn. We’ve got the words and instructions (including in a printable format), plus a history of St. Maria Faustina and the Divine Mercy Chaplet, and two videos you can share with your kids: The Chaplet of Divine Mercy • Prayers for Catholic Kids.
- You can also celebrate the day with Divine Mercy Pierogies and a discussion about the relationship between empathy and mercy. Ryan Langr has the recipe and a discussion guide in Cooking with Catholic Kids.
- Finally, do your kids think they’re good enough for God? Becky Arganbright’s 8-year-old son didn’t think he’d go to heaven because he wasn’t “good enough.” Read about how she responded in A Story of Mercy for the Challenging Child.
2. Devote the month of May to the Blessed Virgin Mary. In popular practice, May traditionally has been devoted to Mary. Brian Smith gives us a reflection, links and ideas on how to live in faith, hope and love for Mary in this month’s family devotion for May.
3. Believe! Do your kids doubt the Resurrection like Thomas did? Preview the Scriptures for the second Sunday of Easter with your kids and Breaking Open the Word at Home.
4. Celebrate the month of Mary with your kids. Speaking of Mary, here are eight ways to celebrate Mary with your kids this month, from Marian hymns to Mary gardens and other easy but meaningful practices. Plus, an explainer for your kids: Why are Catholics so into Mary?
5. Celebrate St. Catherine of Siena. Her feast day is this week, and we’ve got a prayer, a short story, and a video to help you introduce this fantastic saint to your kids.
6. Pray for all those receiving the sacraments of initiation. It’s high season for confirmation and first Communions! Keep all those who will be receiving the sacraments of initiation this spring in your family prayers…and use the opportunity to talk to your kids about what these sacraments are all about. Extra credit: Make paper flowers for your kids to give to other children who receive their first Communion this spring. Search “easy paper flower craft” for ideas.
- Speaking of Confirmation, check out Sara Reinhard’s tips and advice in Surviving Confirmation: Tips for parents, catechists, and other humans at Teaching Catholic Kids.
7. Celebrate the feast of St. Joseph the Worker. Introduce your kids to St. Joseph in our Saints for Kids feature, Meet St. Joseph! It includes an introduction to his life, a short story for children, a coloring page, a Child’s Prayer to St. Joseph, some St. Joseph’s Day traditions, and a short video about the saint.
- Plus: Teach your kids about the dignity of work, one of the foundations of Catholic social teaching.
- Download two St. Joseph coloring sheets with the Living Sparks of God PDF download.
8. It’s still Easter! How are you reminding your kids that it’s still Easter? The Easter Octave lasts eight days (culminating this Sunday), and the Easter season lasts fifty days (culminating on Pentecost). Check out all the ways to celebrate.
- All throughout the Easter season, the sprinkling of the assembly with holy water replaces the penitential rite—a reminder of our own death and rebirth with Christ in the waters of baptism. Imitate this rite at home with your kids: Get some holy water from your parish and keep it in a homemade holy water font on your prayer table. Then, bless your kids with the holy water before saying your meal prayer, or before your family prayer time.
RAISING FAITHFUL CITIZENS
BISHOPS CALL FOR ALL TO BE COUNTED
Bishop Frank Dewane, of Venice, Florida, Chairman of the USCCB Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development and Bishop Joe Vasquez, of Austin, Chairman of the Committee on Migration, issued the following statement in advance of the oral argument of Department of Commerce v. New York, before the United States Supreme Court regarding the importance of ensuring an accurate count for the U.S. Census.
“Our country conducts a Census every ten years to count the number of men, women and children residing in the United States. Census data helps direct more than $800 billion annually to key programs designed to advance the common good, strengthen families and reduce poverty. The Catholic Church and other service providers rely on the national Census to provide an accurate count in order to effectively serve those in need,” said Bishop Dewane.
“We urge for all people to be counted in the Census, regardless of their citizenship. Proposed questions regarding immigration status will obstruct accurate Census estimates and ultimately harm immigrant families and the communities they live in. Our society, rooted in the strength of the family, cannot risk missing this opportunity to give children and parents the tools they need to succeed,” said Bishop Vasquez.
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Family Time! and Peanut Butter & Grace is edited by Regina Lordan and Jerry Windley-Daoust. Find out about our contributors.