Sarah recently sent me an email wondering about resources we've used to introduce our kids to the Catholic faith. Here are few things that our kids have enjoyed:
1. Catechesis of the Good Shepherd - While I am wholly biased, having poured my life's blood into this program for years, truly nothing beats this for bringing the faith to life for very young children.
2. The Donut Man – Can't say enough about his CDs and DVDs. Biblical, liturgical, and fun.
3. Little Acts of Grace 1 and 2, Mass Book for Children, Living the Ten Commandments for Children, Just Like Mary – This is a seriers of kids’ books you can find on Amazon. They are beautfiul and simple.
4. Saint Books - My kids have enjoyed these from about age four and on.
5. Bible Stories - Lots of options. Boys love those battle scenes!
6. Faith and Life Series - For Kindergartners and up. Some parishes use this series for PRE. The lessons are clear and basic. You can find the books on Ebay or Amazon.
7. Magnifikid - This is a weekly magazine that follows the order of the Mass plus adds some interesting extras. For kids of reading age and above. We have given this to our Godchildren at different ages.
8. Prayerful practices - We say simple prayers like "Jesus come into my heart; take over my life." We encourage good behavior in church by letting John light a candle and pray for his grandmother after Mass. We have a prayer table in our living room. We rotate the color of the tablecloth based on the liturgical season.
|Piety reigns during evening prayers!|
With Tim and Kolbe, who were not close in age, I attended weekday Mass. We would sit close to the Altar so the kids could hear. The Mass was short so they could pay attention better. We would visit the tabernacle after Mass. It was a special time to introduce them to prayer. With John and Ainsley being closer in age, I haven't mustered the courage to try this much at all. Other people manage to bring stair-step kids to Mass. It's not for the faint of heart, but it is definitely worthwhile.
These are a few ideas we have tried off and on. Short and simple has always trumped complicated and lengthy.
I have to pull this back into edit mode to emphasize that the main way we share our faith with our kids is by living it fully and imperfectly. My kids see everyday, in numerous ways, that 1) I love God and 2) I am a flawed human being. In this area, as with so many other aspects of motherhood, it's easy to try to "keep up with the Jones." I do well to meditate on Micah 6:8 which reads, "What does God ask of You? To act justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God."
All that said, I would love to hear ideas from readers. Do you have books your kids have loved? Ideas for prayer or Mass participation?