Tuesday, February 21, 2006

What We're Going to do for Lent

Lent starts on March 1st this year -- String Bean's birthday (but she's not complaining too much as we'll celebrate -- yes, AND open presents -- on the Saturday before). To make sure I'm organized, I thought I'd put here what we're planning to use.

At Mater Amabilis level 1A, they suggest The Way of the Cross -- The Story of Padre Pio -- it's a great story and I'm looking forward to reading that aloud this Lent. I pre-read it and it's REALLY a good story. Padre Pio was an ordinary kid and Mohan portrays him as such - teasing his sister, etc. But he also had inherent graces that made him special too. I think my littles are going to enjoy that! We'll also read The Young Life of St. Faustina as it's about the owman who talked to Jesus and saw the Divine Mercy image.

I'll also read them The Parables of Jesus by Tomie dePaola -- I'll read one of the 13 parables and then they'll narrate and illustrate the story. They'll have their own parables booklet at the end. I like dePaola's retellings and the pictures are beautiful. A great read for the littles.

For our study of the Stations of the Cross -- every Friday we'll read the stations from Inos Biffi's The Way of the Cross: Holy Week, the Stations of the cross, and the Resurrection (OOP, but WELL-WORTH searching for). The stations are well described and the pictures very provocative. Last year we read The Story of the Cross: Stations of the Cross for Children -- and it was ok but a bit "cute", if you know what I mean?

Last year we did the Stations of the Cross box every Friday. After coloring pictures of the Stations of the Cross from Catechetical Resources we posted them around our dining room in order, thus having a daily reminder of Jesus' Calvary. Then on Fridays we got out the Stations of the Cross box (which Joe Starrs posted somewhere last year ).
  • Station 1 Jesus is Condemned to Death -- a string to represent the rope used to tie Jesus' hands
  • Station 2 Jesus Carries His Cross -- a small wooden cross
  • Station 3 Jesus Falls the First Time – band-aid to show Jesus fell and hurt himself
  • Station 4 Jesus Meets His Mother Mary -- a plastic rosary to represent the Blessed Mother
  • Station 5 Simon Helps Jesus -- small heart to symbolize Simon's love and generosity
  • Station 6 Veronica Wipes the Face of Jesus -- a piece of fabric with the drawn face of Jesus on it
  • Station 7 Jesus Falls the Second Time -- band-aid to show Jesus fell and hurt himself
  • Station 8 Jesus Comforts the Women of Jerusalem -- a tissue for their tears
  • Station 9 Jesus Falls the Third Time – big band-aid to show Jesus fell and hurt himself again!
  • Station 10 Jesus is Stripped of His Garments -- a square of purple cloth to represent His purple cloak and his Royal-ness
  • Station 11 Jesus is Nailed to the Cross -- a large nail
  • Station 12 Jesus Dies on the Cross -- a crucifix
  • Station 13 Jesus is Taken Down from the Cross -- a laminated holy card depicting the Pieta
  • Station 14 Jesus is Buried -- a stone to represent the stone rolled in front of the tomb

This was a great way for the kids to learn the stations and really think about them -- especially since we used a large, sharp nail!

That should bring us right up to Palm Sunday and then Holy Week. Lent is a glorious time to remember all that Jesus did for us -- we'll also do small sacrifices (sweets, videos and other treats) and instead do things as a family that help us remember. One thing we'll do this year is a March for Babies one of dh's 7th grade students has organized. The motto of the walk is "without babies, the future is just a maybe" -- all collected proceeds will go to BirthRight.

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