I spend much time thinking about how to share the faith with families. The fact that it is my job is only part of the reason, the main reason is because it is important. This school year I have implemented three different ideas that I think are easily done; one can be done whether you are in charge of a program or kindly share your time and talent as a catechist.
First idea: prayer bags.
Each class has a prayer bag. I saw this idea in a magazine a while ago. I expanded it a bit for my purpose.
Each bag has in it the following items:
- a Saint statue (different one in each grade),
- information about the saint,
- rosary CD and pamphlet,
- a simple prayer book I produced,
- this prayer intention list from OSV,
- a battery operated candle,
- a CD for parents,
- ideas on how to use the prayer bag,
- and then I add handouts of interest.
Since my program is small, I am able to look at the prayer bags each week when I visit each class. They are being used. Prayer lists are filled in; parents have sent me pictures of how they have set up the prayer area or of their children praying. Each week the catechist gives it to a different child; the child then returns it the next time we have class.
The biggest investment was the statues. I bought nice resin statues, in the $20 range. I didn’t want plastic nor did I want them all the same. If your budget is tight (or non-existent) ask families if they have a statue they might want to donate. If you have a men’s or women’s group in the parish they might be willing to help. We also blessed the statues on Catechetical Sunday at the same Mass where we blessed the catechists.
Second idea: parish bulletin pages.
I have two pages for my use in the bulletin. One page is usually announcements, reminders, and schedules. The other page is wide open! That’s code for I have a hard time filling it. I decided to use the entire page for a graphic related to the faith.
One week was Pope Francis’ Five Finger Prayer, another was ideas for families for October from Real Life at Home, or it’s an infographic I make myself. (Please remember to follow copyright guidelines for things you get from elsewhere on the web.) It can be torn out of the bulletin and put somewhere the family can see it. You can follow my Pinterest “For work” board to see more examples.
Third idea: a bulletin board for faith formation.
We have our classes in the parish hall and had some empty walls. So I bought a large bulletin board and hung it up. My plan is to use it for both information and to have the classes contribute to various themes.
Some possible themes:
- What are you thankful for?
- Where did you see God today?
- How can I show God’s love to others?
If you include children’s work, they will be sure to bring their parents over to it.
Enjoy sharing the faith and share your ideas with us.
Copyright © 2014, Deanna Bartalini