Helping you prepare for a unique and joy-filled Christmas & Easter
Holy Week @ Home
Join us at Most Blessed Sacrament (in person or via livestream) for the celebrations of Holy Week. Full schedule here
Read John 12:12-15.
Hold your own family procession (outside if weather permits) using palm branches and singing “Hosannah!”
Find a Stations of the Cross that you can do together with the people in your home to praying a little more deeply through the Passion of Jesus that’s read at Mass today.
Read John 13:1-17.
In ancient households, the lowest job of all was to wash the feet of guests. Usually this task was only carried out by servants. Discuss the many ways Jesus humbled Himself while on earth. Take turns washing one another’s feet and then read Philippians 2:5-8 and pray together: Lord Jesus, thank You for humbling Yourself for us. Help us to do the same with one another. Amen.
Bake homemade bread or rolls to serve with dinner today. Hot cross buns are a traditional bread for Holy Thursday & Good Friday. Have the head of the household start dinner by making a sign of the cross over the bread (or first roll). Then break it and hand it to the next person (and on down the line to everyone). Have everyone wait to start the meal until everyone has received the blessed bread.
Pope Francis says that to be holy is to “live our lives with love and bearing witness in everything we do – wherever we find ourselves.”
Below are a few suggestions for how to help make this week a “holy week”- wherever you find yourself!
A day of fasting: Catholics who are healthy and over 18 should limit to 1 regular sized meal and 2 small meals (when combined are not as large as your regular meal). Catholics also abstain from eating meat on this day. Every time you feel a little hungry during the day, try praying for those who do not have enough to eat, saying sorry to God for one of your sins, or simply praying: Jesus, I am doing this for you.
12PM – 3PM are the traditional hours that Jesus hung on the cross. Try cutting out music, TV, social media, and other distractions during those hours of the day today.
Read Matthew 27:57-66.
Have each member of the family name one person who knew Jesus and describe what they must have been thinking/freeing the day before His resurrection. After sharing, pray: Lord Jesus, thank you for going into the grave so we could overcome death!
Have an Easter feast with family (and friends)! Easter is a time for feasting and superabundance. Make something special (don’t forget dessert!), light candles, and decorate the table. Start your meal with this simple prayer: We rejoice in Jesus’ resurrection, O God, and ask you to bless our celebration. Amen.
Christmas @ Home
Read the Christmas Story
One of the simplest things we can do to put the true meaning of Christmas at the center of all our activities is to read and reflect upon the original Christmas Story in the Gospels. Set aside ample time in your Christmas gatherings to go over the Biblical story of Jesus’ birth (found here). Ask family members to share the word or phrase that stands out them as you read the story.
Christmas Movie Chats
Many families gather together on Christmas day to celebrate and spend time with one another. This year, many of us have had plans change and traditions put on hold.
Below are some ideas for a few new traditions that can help you find joy and hope in the true meaning of Christmas this year – even if you’re staying close to home or not able to celebrate with the loves ones you usually do.
Make and light a Christ candle
If your family has enjoyed lighting the Advent wreath, extend the practice by making a Christ candle. Purchase a large white candle and decorate it with the chi rho (the first two letters in the Greek word for Christ) along with the year. Place it in the center of your Advent wreath and light it throughout the Christmas season as a reminder that Christ is the light of the world (John 1).
Advent @ Home
Advent Prayers & Reflections
Advent Wreath Prayers
Reflections for Various Life Seasons
Lock Screens & Wallpapers
Want to be more intentional this Advent? Give your cell phone an inspirational makeover with these Advent images designed to fit as a lockscreen/phone wallpaper. Give yourself a little reminder to pause and pray each time you pick up your phone.
Advent Media Suggestions
Christmas Movie Chats
Adult Book Suggestions
Childrens’ Book Suggestions
By Joseph Slate