Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Sheltering in Place with Kindred Spirits!

Saint Martha's Guild has assembled a delightful collection of projects to keep your family focused on growing in holiness while introducing a variety of Catholic traditions and resources

Looking for directions to make your own scapular?  A pocket shrine?
A set of 40 eggs to tell the Resurrection story from Ash Wednesday on?

The narration is amusing and the variety of projects is impressive!  You'll be buying craft supplies before you know it.

Friday, April 3, 2020

Tenebrae at Home

Photo by Carabo Spain from Pixabay
If you haven't experienced Tenebrae (prayer for the nights of Triduum) before, this is the perfect year to try it out! During a typical Holy Week, it's a little much for families with small kids to try to make it to one more thing, but well, here we are. This is a prayer that really captures the senses, which is something I think we could all use when our usual forms of worship are being brought to us through the filter of our screens.

I've put together this printable version, which is pared-down enough for small attention spans who will mostly like the candles and banging on things in the dark, but serious enough not to feel babyish for older children or an all-adult group.

If you are musically inclined, it's well worth the effort to chant the Lamentations. I've put together the English text and the original chant melody here:

This recording isn't identical, but gives a good feel for the chant:

If you need a refresher on the hymns, here are some easy-to-follow recordings:

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Making a Paschal Candle

Go here or here to see how your parish version is made.

Or make your own for your family's prayer center using these simple directions:

  1. Cut a piece of white tissue paper, approximately 8 x 10.5 and carefully tape it onto a piece of copier paper.  It will work best if it is all very flat.
  2. Copy this image onto the tissue side (NB - there are enough images on this page for 3 candles (or one if you happen to make a mistake or two)
  3. Cut the page in thirds along the width and, centering the image on your candle, hold the blank ends behind the candle, shielding your fingers from the heat during the next step.
  4. Using a hair dryer on high heat simply melt the cross image onto the front of the candle.  Once it's tacked in place by the heat you can trim the tissue paper ends and continue to melt down the paper edges.
  5. I use gold map pins for my "grains of incense."

Sunday, February 23, 2020

The Church Ladies approve

A new project makes it easy for Philadelphians to put down their phones and get creative with their hands — for free.
Nailed to a brick wall on a busy section of Carpenter Lane in West Mt. Airy is a small cabinet with a clear door. Inside is a luscious bounty of color: piles and piles of yarn, plus complements like needles and patterns. On the front is a carefully lettered nameplate reading “Little Free Fiber Library.”

Read the rest here. It’s a sweet idea, and who doesn’t have a little yarn to contribute?

Friday, February 21, 2020

Lenten Sacrifices Booklet for 2020

Over the years, I've found that the key to keeping my Lenten resolutions is just seeing them in front of me. There are so many distractions in a day that I really need something concrete to keep me focused. With that in mind, here's a tiny booklet that can easily go into a purse, a prayer book, on the fridge, or wherever it will serve as a daily reminder.

Lenten Sacrifices Booklet Download (PDF).

To put together the book after you've printed it out (here's a diagram if you're a visual learner like me):
  • Fold in half and crease, with the text facing out, along the registration marks, both the long and wide way. Since every printer is different, you may have to trim a bit of the margins to even up these edges. 
  • Open it out, and then fold each side in to meet in the center (again following the registration marks). 
  • Slit the paper along the tops of the center two sets of pages, then pull open this slit at the folds. Fold book so that the covers are in front and back.
Have a blessed and fruitful Lent!