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A Language of Sound and Silence: Sensory Building Blocks to Engaging Kids at Mass

A Language of Sound and Silence: Sensory Building Blocks to Engaging Kids at Mass

Not long ago, the little son of a friend of mine made a grand discovery: his echo. Unfortunately for my friend, he made this discovery in church. Each time they went to Mass, her little tyke would sit patiently, waiting for a good quiet moment to let out a whoop and hear it bounce back to him from all around! Even more unfortunately for my friend, a good quiet moment often came during the Consecration.Not the kind of participation his parents were going for…This somewhat inopportune disco...
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#PutJesusFirst: Enter into God's time this Advent

#PutJesusFirst: Enter into God's time this Advent

It seems to happen every year: people make resolutions to get their Christmas shopping done early, to make sure everything is in place so they can actually find some spirituality throughout Advent… but in reality things get put off, no one’s sure when they “should” be doing anything, and the inevitable happens: Advent feels more and more rushed.It’s a problem. We have a solution.#PutJesusFirst is your go-to planner for all things Advent. It starts well before Adven...
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Dressing Up to Learn About Ourselves: How Halloween Can Prepare Kids for All Saints Day

Dressing Up to Learn About Ourselves: How Halloween Can Prepare Kids for All Saints Day

Halloween!It’s a thrilling night for kids. It’s a time when everyone is allowed to dream big and dress up as someone they are not. And yes… it is also a time for candy. What we often don’t realize, though, is that as we help our kids choose who they want to be for Halloween, we are opening opportunities for them to learn about who they want to be in real life.When I was young, I had a friend whose mom would help her dress as a different saint each year. To...
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Introducing your children to Mary in the month of the Rosary

Introducing your children to Mary in the month of the Rosary

Mary brings us closer to Jesus—we know this from the consistent witness of the saints through the history of the Church. Since we want our children to grow close to Jesus, it makes sense to introduce them early on to Mary, the mother of Jesus, who will help them through all the difficult moments of their lives. Do as I DoSimply having a statue or picture of Mary in the house or classroom is a way to share your love for Mary with your children. Growing up, I remember several pictures o...
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Be Brave, My Child

Be Brave, My Child

Maybe you haven’t done it yet, or maybe you’ve done it a dozen times. Either way, the day you send your child off to school can be terrifying. Are they ready? Will they be safe? Will they be kind? Will they be loved?In stepping out on their own, a child enters a new space in their life in which their mother cannot participate. And that’s scary. The only way a mom can enter into that piece of her child’s life is if, in some way, her child is brave enough to trust her with ...
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How to Help Kids Pray with Scripture

How to Help Kids Pray with Scripture

It's important to remember that there are many ways to pray. Memorizing and praying the Lord's Prayer, the Hail Mary, or any other beloved prayers are wonderful ways to pray, but so are praying with Scripture and even just thinking about God. The purpose of prayer is continuing and strengthening our relationship with God. Just like we can share with a close friend all the ups and downs of life, we can do that with God and we should teach our children to do the same. I love telling childr...
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Bless and Do Not Curse: How Love Preserves Your Spirit

Bless and Do Not Curse: How Love Preserves Your Spirit

I love you. You know that. I’m sorry. You know you’re my dearest daughter. The words were soothing, forgiving, as I rested a moment in my father’s hug. It had been a long week and a lot of work as we prepared their house to go on the market and my parents to move.I love you. You know that.All my failures rushed over me. I hadn’t been able that week to plaster over my own broken humanness with a schedule of prayer and community and work. Instead I saw myself. In the raw. T...
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When We Want to Say, "I Told You So"

When We Want to Say, "I Told You So"

My friend Gracie went to court again a few weeks ago.She’s not in any trouble—Gracie is one of the most law-abiding people I know—but her son is. He’s 18 and has been sporadically in trouble with the law for at least the last four years, mostly for stupidity. He’s sold marijuana. He’s passed on photographs to other kids that he shouldn’t have. That sort of thing. And every time it happens, Gracie is in despair and does what she can to get him out of the ...
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Spend a Month with Mary!

Spend a Month with Mary!

It’s finally here! We who live in the Northern Hemisphere are delighted to welcome the flowers that April showers (and there were a lot of them!) bring to us now. May is the most delightful of months, because it feels like the earth itself is awakening from hibernation.It’s also the Month of Mary. Many of us have childhood memories of May processions, of crowning statues of the Blessed Virgin Mary, of the songs in her honor. But… do you know why May is especially Mary’s ...
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How One Catholic Family Makes Sharing the Faith a Lot of Fun

How One Catholic Family Makes Sharing the Faith a Lot of Fun

Today Pauline Books and Media is releasing Catholic Funny Fill-ins, written by Karen and Tommy Tighe. Karen and Tommy are the proud parents of five boys. Tommy Tighe is co-host of the video program Repent & Submit airing on CatholicTV. (You can see past episodes here.)If you're looking for some fun for family road trips, get-togethers, youth group parties, or just a great evening at home, then Catholic Funny Fill-ins is for you! It helps you bring together both humor ...
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