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JANUARY 2023 CRAFTS  

Those that came to the December 11th class have the "ingredients" for these crafts in their craft bag.

We're up to Session 3 in the BLESSED Series of workbook and Videos (here on the Penance Tab).   

SACRAMENTS BUS CRAFT

Cut the top slit in the bus on the yellow paper.

Write the name of the 7 Sacraments - one each on a stick

or print out this hexagon page and write the sacraments each on one of seven "stop signs"

and glue them one to a stick.

Slide the sticks into the bus and imagine what each Sacrament Stop will look like!   Imagine it with your family and friends.  What will you be wearing? What did you wear to your Baptism?  Who will be waiting for you at the bus stop (who will be with you at Church :))?

This spring you'll be "stopping" to do your 2nd Sacrament  called First Reconcilliation.  

You'll travel on the Sacraments bus for a whole other year until your next "stop," First Holy Communion!

ALWAYS ROOM FOR JESUS' MERCY Activity

Fill a clear Jar or vase with small rocks.  Those represent big sins.

Then add some smaller pebbles - shake it around--more pebbles'll fit it...  Those represent smaller sins.

Doesn't look like any more can fit, does it?  Pour in the bag of colored sand.  Notice how many tiny venial sins fit in every crevice...

If ever someone's life (their jar) looks packed with sin - tell them not to worry, Jesus can still fit in and wash it all clean.  Pour water into the jar.  Watch how there's always room for Jesus.  His love and mercy (the water) can fit into the soul of someone

packed with sin, and wash it clean.  Always remember this lesson.  There's always room for Jesus no matter how full your problem seems.  

HANDS AND HEARTS

--Use white paper to trace both of your hands.

-- On each finger of one hand, write something you've done recently that represents a virtue.  Were you humble, kind, diligent, patient, diligent, patient, loving...? 

--Write on the other traced hand any vices you've realized you had recently - have you been prideful, envious, a sloth, gluttonous, greedy, angry...? 

--Cut the "good hand" out with scissors, and bring it to the next class.  

--Now draw a heart on white paper. 

--Write in it any commandments that you have followed...Do you put God first, Did you stop yourself from saying "Oh my God!", Were you obedient to your parents, Did you show kindness to a friend...?

--Bring your heart to the next class.

Miss Joyce will attach your hearts and hands to a poster that we'll hang in the lobby of St. Anthony's--for Jesus and your Parish Family to see.  We'll all pray for you that your hands and hearts always are open to the Holy Spirit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CHILD OF A KING CRAFT

Take the silver and white plate and ask an adult to help to cut the middle to make it into a crown. 

Decorate it with the jewels in your craft bag - and any other fancy craft supplies you wish.   

Think of Epiphany (3 Kings Day) and how those Kings, humbled themselves before Jesus, the baby King of the Universe.

They, and Jesus, were all kings, with or without their crowns.  

Think of yourself.  If Jesus is a king, and you are made in God the Father's image...that makes you royalty!  You are a child of a king. 

For real and true.

Wear your crown, or don't...but always be sure your actions are as humble as baby Jesus, and the three earthly kings that followed the star to give Him gifts fit for a King.

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DECEMBER 2022 CRAFTS

Those that came to the December 11th class have the "ingredients" for these crafts in their craft bag.

We're up to Session 3 in the BLESSED Series of workbook and Videos (here on the Penance Tab). 













 

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STAR OF BETHLEHEM CRAFT  (Read pages 76-80 in BLESSINGS)

God made the stars.  And many are SO predictable that sailors and travelers can map their journeys by them.   Since God made them, He can make a new one...He made a special star to announce Jesus' birth on Earth.  The three Wise Men travelled from far away to exactly the spot where Jesus was born, by following that special star.   Some people send Birth Announcements to friends and family--God sent a star...  He does it His way :). 

 

You read this month about Jesus - and how even though He's a king, he didn't have to be born in a fancy castle - or even tell anyone He was God until he lived on the Earth for 30 years!  Then ooo the miracles He showed us!  Jesus did it His way :).  

Here's the "Birth Announcement" star God sent.  You're Jesus' Family.  You decorate it YOUR way.  Use the colored tissue from your craft bag--or think up a different way to make the star sparkle...  Announce the Coming of Our Lord on Christmas Morning your way...but just like God asked us to...SPREAD THE GOOD NEWS OF GREAT JOY!  Hang it somewhere that you and yours can ponder and enjoy.

Cut the middle out of the paper star from your craft bag.

 

Rip up or cut up the colored tissue into pieces.

Turn over the black star outline that you just cut out so the white side is up.  

Glue the colored pieces onto the star--continue to overlap as you glue, until the whole middle is filled with color.  Doesn't it look like a Church window :) !?

Let it dry.

Hang up and enjoy.

The Miracles of Jesus Crafts (Read Pgs. 80-86)

John 21:25 "There are also many other things that Jesus did, but if these were to be described individually, I do not think the whole world would contain the books that would be written."

We're learning of special miracles written in the Bible.  But don't forget the ordinary ones!  Isn't snow a miracle - how every snowflake has its own pattern....I'm in awe at snow!  Doesn't God run out of patterns :)) !  Fold your white paper in half, then half again - once more if you can...then randomly cut little chunks out of it...  Unfold the paper.  Unfold the glorious randomness and symmetry, of a snowflake!

We learned about lots of ways Jesus performed Miracles during His time on Earth....reminding us - and showing us - how He is God...and how we can come to Him with anything we are concerned about -- the weather, health, our relationship with others, our relationship with Him ---everything.  But here for Christmas....let's remember how His birth was a Miracle too!  Showing us His LOVE - coming to live with us in our struggle through life - entering the world within a FAMILY - coming as an innocent baby...trusting in God the Father to take care of us all.

The trough here is made from a handprint - and if you have paint, try that...or you can draw it.   Thee's some "hay" in your craft bag...

Can you find something shiny in your home to make stars (aluminum foil?)  How will you make your stars?  How will you "make due" like the Holy Family to set up a spot for God?

WE LEARNED ABOUT THE 12 APOSTLES

Those twelve guys that followed Jesus around for 3 years...they were the first Priests--and Peter, was the first Pope.  Peter was the one God put in charge.  

We learned about Saints.   Here's something to celebrate St. Lucia's Saint Day, December 13th.  That morning (or perhaps you can wait 'till the closest weekend...), bring your parents breakfast in bed.  Coffee and cinnamon buns are popular to serve for this day in Sweden, but you can make your own tradition of sweets.  The oldest girl in the family wears a crown of candles on her head while she serves (colored in ones please ! :)).  The other children in the family wear hats with stars on them.   Her day in Advent helps us to remember Jesus is the Light of the World...and that God, who made the stars, announced Jesus' birth with the big bright Bethlehem star.  God Jul. (That's Swedish for Merry Christmas).

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 There are endless Christmas crafts on the internet to choose from.  I'm choosing this one for you so that you remember that God loves you - you are his family. Take two of the candy canes from your craft bag and glue them together (just wet the top and bottom, and stick them together).  Give the ornament to someone in your family.  You may wish to fill them with chocolate like the pictures here...sprinkle chocolate chips in the center of the heart - microwave for 1 minute - flatten the chocolate with the back of a spoon.  It'll take a few minutes to harden - quicker if you put it flat in the fridge...  Give the heart that you worked on to make sweet - to someone in your family. (It's great in cocoa, or eaten on its own...)  Eat your humble candy cane, with them.  Talk about your blessings, share how much God loves you both...  Merry Christmas.

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NOVEMBER 2022 CRAFTS   

Those that came to the November 13th class have the "ingredients" for these crafts in their craft bag.

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                                                                             ADAM and EVE craft – GOD IS PATIENT, CARING and LOVING. But FIRM

                                                                             Color in, cut out, and assemble Adam and Eve's new location: The land                                                                             they would be put in charge of to make their home, feed them, etc..                                                                                     Place Adam and Eve on the path for their new journey. Like God,                                                                                        care for (put on) their clothes, hair, open eyes, and smiles. Freedom is                                                                                  not care-free... In Eden, they just had to pick fruit when they were hungry.                                                                            Now they'll have to farm and work for their food. In Eden everything was                                                                               perfect. Now they had to work and get stinky with sweat – and wash                                                                                     their sweat off in the river. In Eden, they heard the actual voice of God                                                                               in the garden every day. Now they'll have to work to communicate with                                                                               Him through sacrifices and prayer...

 

                                                                             Yes we should learn from Adam and Eve that our best choice is always                                                                                 to work with God's plan... Sometimes we focus more on the sin in this story than the CARE God gave his family. Once He realized his children disobeyed him, yes, God gave them consequences...Gosh, they deserved them... But God also cared for them on their journey out of Eden.

He was gentle with understanding that they had sinned, but firm about the new way they'd have to live now...

He clothed them, He sent them off into the world with abilities, animals to tend and eat, seeds to plant to eat...

and Free Will to make good and bad choices, and learn from their mistakes.

 

...'course they didn't pass that information on well enough to future generations—we see that with the story of Noah...

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                                                  NOAH'S ARK craft - GOD MEANS WHAT HE SAYS

                                                  Cut out the white cloud and attach the rainbow colored strips of tissue. Hang it in your                                                      window and contemplate the story... while eating Animal Crackers if ya got 'em :) ...

                                                  God sent a rainbow as a promise that he would never wash away sin like that again...                                                        But now we know He can!!

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                                                  JONAH and THE WHALE craft – TRUST GOD - WORK WITH HIM

 

                                                  There's a clothespin in your craft bag.  Color in a whale and Jonah, and glue it to the                                                        clothespin.  Then read the story of Jonah and the Whale in the Bible:  It's in the book of                                                    Jonah, and referenced by Jesus in Matthew 12:40-41, and Luke 11:29-30.

                                                                                                watch the story here:  https://www.bing.com/videos/search?   

 

 

 

                                         

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                                                                     MOSES' WATER FROM A ROCK Craft - GOD GIVES US ALL THAT WE NEED

 

                                                                     MOSES gets water from a rock when the Israelites were thirsty.

                                                                     God always quenches our thirst--body and soul!

                                                                     Cut an oval from a paper bag or brown paper (for the sand).  

                                                                     Crumple the rest of the brown to make a rock.

                                                                     Attach the rock to the sand (glue/staple/tape)

                                                                      Cut Moses, the water and the water droplets from your craft bag, and glue                                                                           them onto the sand.  

                                                                      Put the straw “staff” in Moses hand and hit the rock. Imagine the fresh                                                                                  water, in the middle of the desert, surprising the Israelites (and probably                                                                              Moses too)!

                                                                      Then read the story of Moses in Exodus 17:6

                                                                         Some number the 10 Commandments slightly different, (they are listed                                                                                 twice in the Bible) but God's top 10 are still the same.   If you want a                                                                                     challenge, print out this and see if you can remember all 10.  To help you                                                                             remember, sing the song we learned in class.

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October 2022 Crafts

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October craft Child of God crown.webp
October craft God is love church doors.webp
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October craft Love the Lord.webp

Color in this Sacraments sheet.

Can you name the seven Sacraments?  Here's a fun way to remember them in order by their first letter (two are already here!).  

B

Ready

Cool

Catholic,

Marriage or Holy Orders

Last!

God is the King of the Universe.

You are a child of  God.

That makes you Royalty--truly a Prince or Princess.

Think about that as you make a crown from the gold cardstock to display (cut points on the top and tape or staple into a circle), or wear (attach the extra strip to the back to size).  Write "Child of God" on the front.  Maybe draw a picture of yourself on the front too (or ask to print out a pic of yourself that you can attach).  Use the gold decorations (sticker-jewels, foil strips, stars...) to make it royally special.

Internalize--really think about how special you are to God!

How does a prince or princess behave?

Cut open the doors to the church.  Attach the white church to the bottom of the blue cardstock.  Fold back the doors so they open.  Attach the red heart inside the doors.  Write "God is love" on the heart.

Read and attach the paragraph from the Catechism above the church.

Whenever you enter the doors of Church, feel God's love for you.  Look for the Tabernacle - say Hi to Jesus.  Tell Him what you're thinking...love Him back :).

Cut the 3 colors of ribbon to fit, and attach them into the stripes of the candy corn cardstock. (paste/glue/tape/staple...)

Read the three parts of the description of the Trinity as you attach them on top of the stripes.

Glue some candy corn around the outside. 

Whenever you see or eat candy corn this season - contemplate the Mystery of God.  Remember, if He wanted us to understand the Mystery of Him, He would have told us!  Take the time, every day, to learn more about those you love!  It's fun to solve mysteries!

Cut out hearts from strips of multi-colored cardstock.  Attach the hearts (paste/glue/tape/staple...) around the Bible Verse that is a reminder to Love God with all you have!  On each heart, write a person or thing that is a blessing to you.

Remember that everyone is a child of God.  That makes us all family!  Remember that everything is a blessing from God - count yours every chance you get!

Below are crafts we did in previous years...  Feel free to check them out and do them on your own....

St. Patrick's Day Craft:

St. Patrick's Feast Day March 17th

Here's a pic of the craft...Only we're not making 4-leaf clovers like you see all in the lawn...  The "luck" is when you search the lawn and find a three-leaf clover.  We call that a Shamrock - - and it's what St. Patrick used to teach the Trinity.  One shamrock - three leaves belonging to the same plant... One God, three "parts" - Father, Son, Holy Spirit.  

 

Take the paper plate - squeeze the dab of green paint on it.  Use the flat part of your hand to spread the paint around the plate.  Take your paint covered hand and touch the white paper three times to make the top three parts of a cross shape (top/side/side).  For the bottom of the shamrock, take a swipe of the green and draw the stem.   Now go wash your hands :)!  Look at your shamrock and say a prayer:  St. Patrick, may I share our Lord with other's as you did. Amen.   Then go and share your shamrock with family and friends!  Remember how Ireland was "lucky" enough to have God's love shine on them through St. Patrick.  And may the "luck o' the Irish" be with you too!

St. Joseph Day Craft:

The Purity of St. Joseph is often represented with Lilies - a Spring flower that also represents new beginnings (God beginning a part of his existence on earth for our sake...).  Trace your hand three times on white paper.  Cut the hands out.  Roll them into a cone and staple or tape it to stay.  Curl back the "fingers"--rolling them should work-or curling them around a pencil might help.  Fold the green wire in half, over the yellow wire.  poke the green wire into the cone you just made until the green comes out the bottom to be the stem--and the yellow wire becomes the inside of the Lilly.  Bend the tops of the yellow wire a bit to be more "inside-the-flower-like".   Put them in a glass or a vase--or maybe make a vase if you're feeling more creative...  Admire your creation and say a prayer.  St. Joseph, pray for us! Amen.  Check out the link below to hear more about how people celebrate St. Joseph's Feast Day.

10 Commandments Craft:  First sing the 10 Commandments song we learned in class (the video is on this page)...then trace, or paint and stamp your hands on a big piece of paper.  Cut out the ten commandment squares in this month's folder and glue one to each finger (in order 1-10).  Cut out and glue on the Always Love part where you think it should go.  Then practice your 10 Commandment song again :).

Penance Heart Craft:

Remember how Penance - the giving of the sins you feel bad about to Jesus in confession - wipes your soul clean.  Write your sins on the red heart in your folder...be honest, be thorough!  Then write "Jesus forgives me--my soul is clean!" on the white heart.  Staple, Tape, or Glue only the top of the red heart to the white heart.  Flip the red heart up so you can see the clean white heart.  Say a prayer of thanks to

Jesus who loves you!!

Pretzel Craft:

Give yourself a hug - and a pretzel - but the pretzel in your folder isn't to eat...it's to dip into chocolate, then glue to paper with the (in your folder) reminder of what the pretzel was invented for....penance!

Finger Puzzle Craft:

Download the template from the button below, onto paper that you like.  Use the directions in that link to fold it into a finger puzzle - Have fun exploring it with your family and friends!

An ADVENT POSTER is in your folder - FULL OF CRAFTS:

An early Merry Christmas to all since Advent will begin before we meet next on December 13th

Pray when you craft! --It's a great way to just spend time with God!!

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10 Commandments Craft:  First sing the 10 Commandments song we learned in class (the video is on this page)...then trace, or paint and stamp your hands on a big piece of paper.  Cut out the ten commandment squares in this month's folder and glue one to each finger (in order 1-10).  Cut out and glue on the Always Love part where you think it should go.  Then practice your 10 Commandment song again :).

Penance Heart Craft:

Remember how Penance - the giving of the sins you feel bad about to Jesus in confession - wipes your soul clean.  Write your sins on the red heart in your folder...be honest, be thorough!  Then write "Jesus forgives me--my soul is clean!" on the white heart.  Staple, Tape, or Glue only the top of the red heart to the white heart.  Flip the red heart up so you can see the clean white heart.  Say a prayer of thanks to

Jesus who loves you!!

Pretzel Craft:

Give yourself a hug - and a pretzel - but the pretzel in your folder isn't to eat...it's to dip into chocolate, then glue to paper with the (in your folder) reminder of what the pretzel was invented for....penance!

Finger Puzzle Craft:

Download the template from the button below, onto paper that you like.  Use the directions in that link to fold it into a finger puzzle - Have fun exploring it with your family and friends!

An ADVENT POSTER is in your folder - FULL OF CRAFTS:

An early Merry Christmas to all since Advent will begin before we meet next on December 13th

Here's inspiration for a Faith Box...

Decorate any shoebox-sized box, any way you'd like.  My favorite is using mosaic to make your own "stained glass" (with squares of colored paper/colored tissue/or even beads or painted dry pasta!)   Place in the box your sacramentals (holy card's, little statues or gifts you may have from your first holy communion), drawings of faith, prayer requests, bible verses, prayers that you've copied onto paper...   Then keep the box somewhere in your room.  Whether you put it on your desk, or under your bed doesn't matter --just that you know it's there--and when you see it or think about it, you smile, say a prayer, talk to God, remember being at Mass with your family (which includes Jesus, Mary, and all of Heaven!) 

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Pray when you craft! --It's a great way to just spend time with God!!

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ST. VALENTINE'S DAY CRAFT

February 14th

St. Valentine was a real person, a martyr (he died for the Faith), and a Saint.  When the government of his time and place in history told him that couples couldn't get married--he married them in secret.  He knew that marriage was between the couple, and God.    He got thrown in jail for doing God's work.  God gave him the ability to cure a young girl's blindness.  She was grateful, and wrote him letters in jail to cheer him up.   He would write back and sign them "Your Valentine".  Sound familiar :) !   Remember to call the day by it's real name--The Feast Day of Saint Valentine.

Use the "St. Valentine's Day Colored" Cardstock from your craft bag to make a small box.  Cut the St. Valentine message/picture in half, and attach as shown. Consider putting a treat in the box and give it someone you love. 

How to make the box?

Basically, cut the colored paper down the middle in half longways.  Fold up the sides of each of the two pieces,to make a top and a bottom, and remember to crimp the corners in and tape the corners so they stay put.

Is it difficult or challenging to make the box? Yes. 

Consider that making this box is like love.  It takes patience, perseverence, and a leap into the unknown.  You can try, get frustrated and give up...or search (in this case the internet) for assistance.  This craft takes effort.  Just like with love--take the challenge--work at it--don't give up!

THE FEAST DAY OF THE CHAIR OF ST. PETER CRAFT - February 22nd

Remember the story of Jesus meeting Peter for the first time?  Jesus asked Peter to go back out into the water and cast out his nets to catch fish.  Well, Peter had been fishing all day and caught nothing, so he argued with Jesus that it was a waste of time.  Doing what Jesus wants is, of course, never a waste of time...so when Peter went out, he caught so many fish that his boat almost couldn't carry them!  Jesus asked Peter if instead of fish, if he'd like to be "fisher of men", meaning "catching" people's hearts by telling them about God's love... 

Peter said yes, and left his fishing business to follow Jesus as an Apostle.     In time, after Peter got to know Jesus better, Jesus put Peter in charge of the church on earth as the first Pope.  Check out the bible verse and pictures of Peter and Jesus in your craft bag.  Jesus gave Peter his name, because Peter means "Rock"--he told Peter that upon him--the "rock"--he'd build the Church.  The rock foundation still stands today--we still have a Pope!

Take the foam ball from your craft bag and crush it onto the table so that it gets a flat bottom (a grown-up can help).  Cut out the 2 pictures of Peter and maybe even the bible verse, and tape them to the two sticks in your craft bag.  Stab the popsicle sticks into the foam ball to help Peter stand on the "rock" (you might want to use a grey or brown marker to make that ball look more "rock-like".  

ASH WEDNESDAY CRAFT - March 2nd

Ash Wednesday is the day that starts Lent--the 40 day count-down to Easter.  Lent is a time of extra Prayer, Fasting, and Giving.  Even though it's a Wednesday, not a Sunday, Catholic's go to church to have the Priest draw a cross on their forehead with ashes.  Remember the story of Adam and Eve, when God creates Adam, the first man, by breathing on a handful of ashes...  Ash Wednesday is humbling because it reminds us that God made man from the dust of the earth, and after death, our bodies return to dust, (but our souls have the opportunity to live in God's glory forever).  

Cut the cross out from the page in your craft bag.  Place it on the black paper, and use your hand to hold it down.  Use the side of the chalk to rub around the cross, so that when you pick the cross off the page, an image of the cross remains in the center of the chalkdust.   With the stick of chalk write "Remember man, you are dust--and to dust you shall return".  Place that picture somewhere that you can see it for the 40 days of Lent.

LENT CRAFT - March 3rd-April 16th

It's always right to try to be like Jesus.  Jesus fasted and prayed for 40 days before he died on the cross for us.  Each year Catholics try to pray and fast and suffer a bit, for 40 days before Easter, to remind them of how much Jesus did for us.  

Cut between the types lines of the two pieces of cardstock in your craft bags to make paper strips.  Make those strips into a paper chain.  Each of the 40 days of lent, beginning March 3rd, rip off one strip, read it, say a prayer (something like "Help me to more like you Jesus, Amen), and place it in the holder you make from the colored and white paper in your craft bag.  Write the word LENT somewhere on it, and decorate it however you'd like.  

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OUR LADY OF LOURDES - FEBRUARY 11th

ST BLASE Feast Day FEBRUARY 3rd

Take the ribbon and tie the two pretzel sticks together.  Pretend to bless the throats of your family member as the priest does after Mass on the feast of St. Blase.  As you do this, have conversations with your family about...conversations :).  Contemplate that what comes out of your mouth (what you say) matters...   And as you try not to break the pretzel rods :) , think about trying not to break God's second and fifth commandment...  and how the greatest "commandment", Always Love, should color your words...

Feb 3 - St Blaise, bishop, martyr (d. c. 316) - Catholicireland.netCatholicireland.net

Cut out, color in, and attach the picture of Our Lady of Lourdes appearing to St. Bernadette, to a background paper.  Then rip or scrunch up the paper in your craft bag to create a grotto around them both.    Say Hail Mary's while you contemplate the amazing blessing of Lourdes!  Perhaps plan a trip to Lourdes of Litchfield...

Our Lady of Lourdes and St. Bernadette Soubirous • Saint stories - Teaching Catholic Kids

St. Anthony of Padua's Feast Day is in June when we don't have class... So here in the season of Christmas, when we focus on our Heavenly Family, and your First Penance, when you are deeply contemplating :) how we treat our Earthly Family, it's good to remind ourselves of our Parish Family.  The St. Louis de Montfort Parish includes St. Anthony of Padua church in Litchfield, St. Thomas church in Goshen, Our Lady of Grace church in Bantam, and the Lourdes Shrine in Litchfield.  It might be fun to plan to visit all four of those churches, and perhaps say a prayer in each for the huge family that you are connected to.  The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, Mother Mary and St. Joseph, all the Angels and Saints in Heaven, your personal family members here on earth, Monsignor Tucker, all the parishoners who attend St. Louis de Montfort churches, and me, "Miss" Joyce, all pray for you--all the time!  You sure are loved!  Contemplate your roots by planting the basil seeds from your craft bag.  It is a traditional thing to do on the feast of St. Anthony of Padua.  Write who you pray for on the popsicle sticks, poke them into the soil in the cup with a quick prayer, and watch love grow.

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ST. VALENTINE'S DAY CRAFT

February 14th

St. Valentine was a real person, a martyr (he died for the Faith), and a Saint.  When the government of his time and place in history told him that couples couldn't get married--he married them in secret.  He knew that marriage was between the couple, and God.    He got thrown in jail for doing God's work.  God gave him the ability to cure a young girl's blindness.  She was grateful, and wrote him letters in jail to cheer him up.   He would write back and sign them "Your Valentine".  Sound familiar :) !   Remember to call the day by it's real name--The Feast Day of Saint Valentine.

Use the "St. Valentine's Day Colored" Cardstock from your craft bag to make a small box.  Cut the St. Valentine message/picture in half, and attach as shown. Consider putting a treat in the box and give it someone you love. 

How to make the box?

Basically, cut the colored paper down the middle in half longways.  Fold up the sides of each of the two pieces,to make a top and a bottom, and remember to crimp the corners in and tape the corners so they stay put.

Is it difficult or challenging to make the box? Yes. 

Consider that making this box is like love.  It takes patience, perseverence, and a leap into the unknown.  You can try, get frustrated and give up...or search (in this case the internet) for assistance.  This craft takes effort.  Just like with love--take the challenge--work at it--don't give up!

THE FEAST DAY OF THE CHAIR OF ST. PETER CRAFT - February 22nd

Remember the story of Jesus meeting Peter for the first time?  Jesus asked Peter to go back out into the water and cast out his nets to catch fish.  Well, Peter had been fishing all day and caught nothing, so he argued with Jesus that it was a waste of time.  Doing what Jesus wants is, of course, never a waste of time...so when Peter went out, he caught so many fish that his boat almost couldn't carry them!  Jesus asked Peter if instead of fish, if he'd like to be "fisher of men", meaning "catching" people's hearts by telling them about God's love... 

Peter said yes, and left his fishing business to follow Jesus as an Apostle.     In time, after Peter got to know Jesus better, Jesus put Peter in charge of the church on earth as the first Pope.  Check out the bible verse and pictures of Peter and Jesus in your craft bag.  Jesus gave Peter his name, because Peter means "Rock"--he told Peter that upon him--the "rock"--he'd build the Church.  The rock foundation still stands today--we still have a Pope!

Take the foam ball from your craft bag and crush it onto the table so that it gets a flat bottom (a grown-up can help).  Cut out the 2 pictures of Peter and maybe even the bible verse, and tape them to the two sticks in your craft bag.  Stab the popsicle sticks into the foam ball to help Peter stand on the "rock" (you might want to use a grey or brown marker to make that ball look more "rock-like".  

ASH WEDNESDAY CRAFT - March 2nd

Ash Wednesday is the day that starts Lent--the 40 day count-down to Easter.  Lent is a time of extra Prayer, Fasting, and Giving.  Even though it's a Wednesday, not a Sunday, Catholic's go to church to have the Priest draw a cross on their forehead with ashes.  Remember the story of Adam and Eve, when God creates Adam, the first man, by breathing on a handful of ashes...  Ash Wednesday is humbling because it reminds us that God made man from the dust of the earth, and after death, our bodies return to dust, (but our souls have the opportunity to live in God's glory forever).  

Cut the cross out from the page in your craft bag.  Place it on the black paper, and use your hand to hold it down.  Use the side of the chalk to rub around the cross, so that when you pick the cross off the page, an image of the cross remains in the center of the chalkdust.   With the stick of chalk write "Remember man, you are dust--and to dust you shall return".  Place that picture somewhere that you can see it for the 40 days of Lent.

LENT CRAFT - March 3rd-April 16th

It's always right to try to be like Jesus.  Jesus fasted and prayed for 40 days before he died on the cross for us.  Each year Catholics try to pray and fast and suffer a bit, for 40 days before Easter, to remind them of how much Jesus did for us.  

Cut between the types lines of the two pieces of cardstock in your craft bags to make paper strips.  Make those strips into a paper chain.  Each of the 40 days of lent, beginning March 3rd, rip off one strip, read it, say a prayer (something like "Help me to more like you Jesus, Amen), and place it in the holder you make from the colored and white paper in your craft bag.  Write the word LENT somewhere on it, and decorate it however you'd like.  

OUR LADY OF LOURDES - FEBRUARY 11th

ST BLASE Feast Day FEBRUARY 3rd

Take the ribbon and tie the two pretzel sticks together.  Pretend to bless the throats of your family member as the priest does after Mass on the feast of St. Blase.  As you do this, have conversations with your family about...conversations :).  Contemplate that what comes out of your mouth (what you say) matters...   And as you try not to break the pretzel rods :) , think about trying not to break God's second and fifth commandment...  and how the greatest "commandment", Always Love, should color your words...

Feb 3 - St Blaise, bishop, martyr (d. c. 316) - Catholicireland.netCatholicireland.net

Cut out, color in, and attach the picture of Our Lady of Lourdes appearing to St. Bernadette, to a background paper.  Then rip or scrunch up the paper in your craft bag to create a grotto around them both.    Say Hail Mary's while you contemplate the amazing blessing of Lourdes!  Perhaps plan a trip to Lourdes of Litchfield...

Our Lady of Lourdes and St. Bernadette Soubirous • Saint stories - Teaching Catholic Kids

St. Anthony of Padua's Feast Day is in June when we don't have class... So here in the season of Christmas, when we focus on our Heavenly Family, and your First Penance, when you are deeply contemplating :) how we treat our Earthly Family, it's good to remind ourselves of our Parish Family.  The St. Louis de Montfort Parish includes St. Anthony of Padua church in Litchfield, St. Thomas church in Goshen, Our Lady of Grace church in Bantam, and the Lourdes Shrine in Litchfield.  It might be fun to plan to visit all four of those churches, and perhaps say a prayer in each for the huge family that you are connected to.  The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, Mother Mary and St. Joseph, all the Angels and Saints in Heaven, your personal family members here on earth, Monsignor Tucker, all the parishoners who attend St. Louis de Montfort churches, and me, "Miss" Joyce, all pray for you--all the time!  You sure are loved!  Contemplate your roots by planting the basil seeds from your craft bag.  It is a traditional thing to do on the feast of St. Anthony of Padua.  Write who you pray for on the popsicle sticks, poke them into the soil in the cup with a quick prayer, and watch love grow.

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As you train yourself not to sin by going to Penance (remember, this will be your first Penance, not your last :)), you will be thinking about "What makes a good person?"   Consider the virtues we learned in class:  by being Humble, Kind, Diligent, Temporant, Chaste, Generous, Patient, Meek etc., you are finding out the power of being gentle.   Take the bandaid out of your craft bag.  Putting a bandaid on someone is always done with gentle patience:  You feel concern for the person, slowly and deliberately peel off the wax paper, and carefully place the bandaid on the person's wound--usually with gentle words--and sometimes with a warm hug or forehead kiss.  Now think about how strong a bandaid is.  Try to rip it - go on...pull--try to rip it.  It's a pretty strong job to care for a wound!  If there's still some stickiness left after you tried to rip them :), but two bandaids on the picture of St. Francis de Sales like a cross.  Think about how Jesus on the cross was so strong to go through all he did for us.  Then remember how gentle and patient and full of love Jesus is.  Go be a bandaid:  strong in your faith, and gentle with your words and actions.  Wise St. Francis de Sales, pray for us!!

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MARY or NATIVITY SHRINE

Decorate a shrine similar to this one on 

 the blue cardstock from your craft bag.  

Use your imagination with the popsicle 

 sticks framing the holy card of Mary.  You 

can use the "hay" and stars to make this

 into a Nativity craft if you want.  Mary IS 

always making Jesus the center of attention...

WISE MEN CRAFT

Epiphany is coming up!  Fold and decorate 

this with the stars in your craft bag.

ST. ELIZABETH ANN SETON

Color the page in and put it near your books 

or where you do your homework...  Pray to 

her when you need a boost to do your best at school...

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JESUS' MIRACLE OF THE LOAVES AND THE FISH:

That little boy's lunch fed thousands of people thanks to Jesus' Miracle!

Cut one paper plate in half.  Glue, staple (or sew) the half plate to the 

whole plate--now you have a basket.  Fill it with the loaves and the fishes.  

If a few thousand friends stop by, you can rip your craft into 

bite size pieces so they all can enjoy your art :) ...pretend eating only please!

PETER'S BIG CATCH OF FISH CRAFT

Peter - the Apostle that Jesus put in charge (the first Pope), 

was grumpy about not catching fish all day.  Jesus gave him a miracle--

He told Peter to go out on the water and once more, cast his net into the sea.  

Peter did--and he caught SO many fish he could barely get the boat to shore! 

Jesus asked Peter if he would leave being a fisherman, and become an Apostle--

basically walking around telling people about God.  Peter saw the miracle of the fish--

believed in Jesus--and followed Jesus around from that day on...

 

This craft has goldfish to glue to the picture...DONT EAT THEM :) !  

Use a tissue for the sail.  Glue it to the blue paper...

JESUS CALMS THE SEA CRAFT:

The apostles didn't want to wake up Jesus--but they 

were afraid the boat would sink from the storm!

When Jesus awoke He stood up, put out his hand, 

and commanded the bad weather to stop.  Truly a miracle!

 

Cut the straw to use as the mast- and a tissue for the sail...

Glue strips to the blue paper...

JESUS' MIRACLE OF THE LOAVES AND THE FISH:

That little boy's lunch fed thousands of people thanks to Jesus' Miracle!

Cut one paper plate in half.  Glue, staple (or sew) the half plate to the 

whole plate--now you have a basket.  Fill it with the loaves and the fishes.  

If a few thousand friends stop by, you can rip your craft into 

bite size pieces so they all can enjoy your art :) ...pretend eating only please!

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This month's crafts are more "obvious" than usual...  You may wish to spend some time printing out or drawing the mysteries of the Rosary... 

There are 5 Mystery pages to color in your craft bag--but it would be much more fun to read about the MYSTERY HISTORY and draw your own!

Now is the season to be Penitant...remember how the word Penance means feeling sorry for our sins and "doing something about it to fix it (like saying sorry - going to Confession - working to do only things that are pleasing to God...)        ...Well these 40 days before Easter that we call LENT - is a time to do those things BEFORE we sin--like give to the poor, pray for everyone (even those kids we don't think we like :)), give an extra call or draw an extra picture for someone in our life that might be lonely...   MAYBE bring your crafts to a local Nursing Home to cheer up some elderly people! --

Color the picture of the Rosary

--AS you say the prayers! 

It's a great way to

practice your prayers!!

Make this CHAPLET from the fuzzy wire and beads in your craft bag.  If you give it to a friend, you can both say an Our Father and ten Hail Mary's together for someone you love.  Remember YOU always have Rosary Beads with you --- your ten fingers!

Palm Sunday is in 5 weeks!!

Remember Jesus walked around telling everyone about Himself and God for three years - and the people who wanted to shush him and hang him on a cross - never did find him...   Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey - basically telling the bad guys Here I am!   All the people who already loved Him put palm branches - and even their coats--on the ground--kind of like a red carpet for movie stars....for Jesus to walk on.   This Palm Sunday, many of you are receiving your FIRST HOLY COMMUNION.  It's like you walking into Church saying Here I Am Jesus! :)   What a beautiful day that will be - I'm so excited for you!!  

Cut and paste things on to this to make it look like you!  There are little black pompoms in your bag to use as ashes :) !! As you sprinkle your "ashes" onto the glue on your head (on the picture!!), say what the priest says when he sprinkles ashes on your head for real on Ash Wednesday,..."Repent and Believe in the Gospel." "Amen."   

        To repent means to choose not to sin.

        Remember the Gospel is the first four books of the New Testament in the Bible.  They were written by the Apostles Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.  The Apostles were those twelve guys chosen by Jesus to walk around with him while he was on earth--they were the first priests.

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THE FIFTH DAY CRAFT

God filled the sky and the sea on the 5th day.  Draw a big 5 on a piece of paper and fill it with as many creatures as you can fit!

THE MOSES PARTING THE SEA CRAFT

MOSES PARTED THE SEA by raising his staff above his head at God's command.  All the people who believed in God got to cross through WATER to get where God wanted them - safely on the other side.  The bad guys--they got swallowed up in the water just like in the story of Noah's Ark...  There's a craft page in your bag for this...check it out.

SACRED HEART CRAFT

Just something else to contemplate about WATER...  God could have "poof" been in the world as a human...but he chose to be born of Mary...Babies float in a sac of water in their Mom's womb's until they're born...  Hmmm...was Jesus' Holy Water?  Just thinking out loud...

 

BAPTISM CRAFT

Today if the Feast of The Baptism of our Lord.  It also marks the last day of Christmas.    From being placed in a water trough as an infant, to being placed in a river...Jesus shows all the power of himself as LIVING WATER for our souls.  Cut out the shell in your craft bag.  Attach the ribbons, and hang water droplets from them that you color blue like water...  Remember your baptisms by making believe you are baptising each other.  Talk about how today we renewed our Baptism promises at church...

JESUS AND PETER

WALKING ON WATER CRAFT

I SO wanted to put a box of blue JELLO in everyone's craft bag--but I thought that might just be getting carried away :).  I would LOVE to see someone create this though...PETER WALKING ON WATER with Jesus.  REMEMBER TO KEEP YOUR EYE ON JESUS...or you might sink into sin and need to be washed (through penance and by Jesus)...

THE FIRST MIRACLE: WATER TO WINE CRAFT

JESUS' FIRST MIRACLE WAS WATER INTO WINE.  You can draw your own water jug and "fill" it with blue (for the stinky feet water) or purple (for the best wine) colored paper to make this craft...  I'm sharing it because I thought it was funny how they put a "downloading" bar on the jug to show the change :)) ....

JESUS WASHING THE DISCIPLES' FEET CRAFT

JESUS WASHING THE FEET OF THE DISCIPLES.  This might be my favorite craft ever :).   Check your craft bag for the ingredients...  We didn't cover this in class today but you can see it here:  https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=jesus+washing+the+feet+of+the+disciples&&view=detail&mid=4BDF2714A6CD57A997114BDF2714A6CD57A99711&&FORM=VRDGAR&ru=%2Fvideos%2Fsearch%3Fq%3Djesus%2Bwashing%2Bthe%2Bfeet%2Bof%2Bthe%2Bdisciples%26FORM%3DHDRSC3   JESUS wants us to always be humble.  We should always help and take care of each other--even the stinky dusty jobs--because no one is too fancy to do a humble thing for someone else.  

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The Annunciation Craft:

The Feast Day of The Annunciation of the Lord March 25th

 

The Angel Gabrial Announced the Lord's intentions to Mary...asked her, for the Lord, if she would become the Mother of God.  

Mary's Fiat, her "Yes", continues to bless the world.  Are you always ready to say "yes" to the Lord when he asks you to be the best you can be?       The Parts to this St. Angel Gabriel are in your craft bag... draw baby Jesus in Mary's "womb".

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DECEMBER CRAFTS

ADVENT WREATH CRAFT

-Color The Joy Candle Pink,

-Color the Hope, Peace and Love candles Purple,

-Color the Jesus Candle White

-Color in the page with all the leaves on it in greens...

Then cut out the candles and the leaves. 

Glue them, wreath style onto the gold paper plate (if you don't have an Advent Wreath in your home, you may wish to add one candle each Sunday until Christmas).

 

(Notice that at the beginning of Mass, a family is invited up on the altar to light the next huge Advent candle and say a special prayer--if you want to do it with your family, ask Monsignor...)

HOLY FAMILY CRAFT:

Color in the holy family then cut them out as one piece.  Cut a piece of green paper to make Joseph's robe.  Wrap the green paper around the holy family and tape or staple the two pieces together.  You may wish to draw Joseph's hand on the front of the green paper.  Now imagine the Holy Family, huddling in the barn in the chill of the night.  God put Joseph there to protect Jesus and Mary.  If you'd like, you can hang the craft from the hole on top.

CHRISTMAS STAR CRAFT:

Glue the popsicle sticks in a star pattern.  When the glue dries, put some glue or paste on the top of the star and decorate with glitter or cookie sprinkles.  You can hang this craft with a string tied around the top.       

Since there was no TV back then, the most exciting thing people had to do at night was look up at the sky.  Since there were no electric lights, more stars showed up every night. People knew the patterns of the stars very well.  The star that hung over Jesus Bethlehem barn was a new and very bright star that had never shone before.  People noticed.  The three wise men travelled from very far away to reach that star...it's how they found Jesus.

NATIVITY CRAFT:

Cut out as much white as you can from the middle of the nativity silhouette (hint-to cut away the smaller spaces, cut through some of the black lines-you can glue them together later...)  On a seperate white page, tear or cut tiny pieces of all different color tissue, and glue them all over the page--you're making "stained glass".   When the glue dries, put glue on the back side of the silhouette.  Lay the black silhouette of the nativity over the "stained glass" and press it down.  When that glue has dried, cut around the outside and voila--you have made a "stained glass" ornament. 

The stained glass windows in churches tell us stories.  Way back when hardly anyone owned a bible, people would be reminded of bible stories by walking around churches...   What other stories can you tell with this kind of art...? 

ST. LUCIA CRAFT:

Color in St. Lucia.  Glue or staple on three red berries (red circles) to her wreath.  Maybe read a story about St. Lucia.

ST. NICHOLAS CRAFT:  Click the link next to the St. Nicholas craft, on the Penance tab of this website...there are several ways to make this craft...get creative.  I like to make a paper cone then cut out and add a circle face, a triangle hat, a candycane shaped staff, and some arms, and a small bag of gold.

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What Do The 4 Advent Candles Represent

The Advent wreath is a popular Catholic Advent custom that originated in Germany. There are 4 Sundays in Advent. Each Sunday you add 1 more candle that you light each night. Here are what the 4 candles during Advent stand for:

First Sunday of Advent (purple): Hope

Second Sunday of Advent (purple): Peace

Third Sunday of Advent (pink): Joy

Fourth Sunday of Advent (purple): Love 

White candle in the middle for Christmas: Christ candle 

Check out this link from Catholic Icing:  All about Advent...

https://www.catholicicing.com/advent-wreaths-101-everything-you-need-to-know/

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Check out this link from Catholic Icing:

All about St. Lucia Day

December 13th

https://www.catholicicing.com/?s=St.+Lucia

St. Lucia wished to become a nun - but her family tried to force her to marry.  Of course she fought not to marry the guy, and he had her tortured for being a Christian--they thought they damaged her eyes with the torture, but she could still see.  She was really devoted to God, and God restored her eyes.  In her life, she brought food to the poor at night...  All this makes her the Saint of Light.  Her feast day is celebrated all over the world, but Sweden, because it has such a dark winter, and her feast day used to land on the day in Sweden that has the shortest amount of daylight, celebrates the Saint of Light in a big way.  One tradition is that the youngest daughter of each family, wakes the rest of the family on Christmas morning, wearing a wreath of Advent candles on her head, and carrying a tray of sweet rolls.   Do you have any traditions having to do with saints, that your family celebrates?

Check out these links for the real story of St. Nicholas, and why you might consider putting your shoes on the hearth, Sunday December 6th...

https://www.catholicicing.com/how-to-celebrate-st-nicholas-day-ideas-printables-and-more/

https://www.stnicholascenter.org/who-is-st-nicholas

https://teachingcatholickids.com/meet-st-nicholas-%e2%80%a2-saints-for-kids/

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