Listen to God's voice at the foot of the crucifix." ~St. Gaspar del Bufaro~

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Prayer, Fasting and Almsgiving

I know that many families use the sacrifice bean jar during Lent. The idea is that we make small sacrifices during Lent to prepare our hearts for Easter. Each time a sacrifice is made, a bean is placed into a special jar...

We have incorporated this tradition in our house but we ALSO have a Lenten Kindness Jar to accompany the sacrifice beans.  All members of our family can pick out a kind deed to do as often as possible. Each time they do an act of kindness OR make a sacrifice, a bean goes in the jar.  Many of the Acts of Kindness involve prayer and giving.  Between the two of these, our whole family is able to practice all 3 major components of Lent...Prayer, Fasting (sacrifice) and Almsgiving (acts of kindness). You make click here to see our Acts of Kindness List!
It is adapted from a list by Holy Heroes. If you haven't heard about their Lenten or Advent Adventures, be sure to check them out! By the end of the 40 days of Lent, the jar has filled up. On Easter morning, the beans are "miraculously" replaced with jelly beans. The kids whole family loves to look forward to the overflowing jar of jelly beans...Oh boy, colorful beans of joy!
"We cannot do great things on this earth. We can only do small things with great love." ~Mother Teresa~

Lenten Acts of Kindness

Here are a few ideas we place in our Kindness Jar for Lent.  They incorporate Prayer, Fasting, and Almsgiving:

Acts of Kindness:

Help clean up after a meal without being asked.

Read a story with a sibling.

Go somewhere quiet, think about Jesus, and talk to Him in a prayer.

Draw a picture of Jesus with your family and hang it on the fridge.

Smile at everyone you meet today.

Make a new friend.

Do a job around the house without being asked.

Instead of watching TV or gaming, pray a decade of the rosary.

Pray for someone who you find yourself not liking.

Put your own money in the Rice Bowl for the poor.

Gather some of your toys for the poor.

Help your Mom cook dinner.

Do one of your sibling’s chores without them knowing.

Compliment at least 5 people today.

Tell someone you see today that Jesus loves them.

Give everyone in your family a big hug today, including pets!

Walk or ride your bike instead of driving your car.

Go to daily Mass this week.

Do an extra chore today,that you normally don’t do.

Say a prayer for your Parish Priest.

Say a prayer for more vocations.

Say a prayer for the Pope.

Pray the rosary on your own today.

Say a prayer for your family.

Make a card for someone who is elderly or sick.

Send a note or card to someone/friend you haven’t seen for awhile.

Forgive someone who made you mad or sad.

List what is special about every member in your family, and then give it to them.

Help fold an extra load of clothes or laundry~Think about how Jesus’ clothes were found neatly folded on Easter morning.

Make a present for someone.

Go to bed right away when you are told.

Give a sibling the choice of game or toy you are going to play with.

Tell your parents how much you appreciate them…All their work and their love.

Help a sibling without being asked.

Do an extra chore.

Don’t yell for someone in the house but go ask for them quietly.

The next time someone says something mean to you, say nothing in return.

Spend some time in Adoration this week.

Read a passage from the Bible today.

Read about a new saint today.

Pray the Angelus on your own today.

Say an extra Our Father or Hail Mary for a special intention.

Pray for the Souls in Purgatory today.

Memorize a new bible verse today.

Pray for our deceased relatives.

Kneel and say a prayer of thanksgiving after Mass this week.

Read about the Works of Mercy today.

Share something you love about your faith with someone today.

Tell your siblings that you love them today.

Help your Mom the next time you see her cleaning.

Hug your Mom today.

Hug your Dad today.

Call a grandparent to see how they are.

Give up a special treat or snack today.

Do something nice or say a kind word to an adult today.

Do something unexpected and nice for a friend.

Do something unexpected and nice for a stranger.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Lenten Cross by Hubby

Here is a Lenten cross that hubby made with our 3rd son, Superboy. It was a great lesson with power tools too!

We painted the cross a Lenten Lavender color to help us with our "40-days" countdown.  We painted the backside white so we can just flip it over and use the other side for our Easter countdown!
Superboy was proud of his work!

Palm Sunday

We enjoyed making "Palm" Hands on Palm Sunday. All 7 of our hands were like hands reaching up to heaven when we taped them above our home altar/prayer table.

We finished the evening with a fig newton dessert idea that we found over at Catholic Cuisine.  Since Jesus was thought to have eaten figs, we used cookie icing to draw bibles on the fig newtons and they were a nice topping to ice cream with carmel and fudge!
Thank you to Catholic Cuisine for this perfect idea!
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