Friday, April 1, 2011

Making Lent Meaningful for Young Children part 2

As I mentioned in this post, I have really tried to focus on finding things (activities, crafts, stories) to get Evan to feel the reality of Jesus this Lent. Not just Jesus as this "far away" or "a long time ago" divine person, but as someone in Evan's life now, today, every day.

Lent provides a lot of ways to accomplish this. Little by little, activity by activity, prayer by prayer, story by story, the connection grows.


Some of these ideas are so simple, like the crown of thorns activity in this post. Evan continues to ask if he can remove a thorn when he knows he's been especially good at Mass or at Stations of the Cross or cleaned up his toys voluntarily.

This next little idea, well it comes across as pretty lame, but it mustn't be. Because believe me, Evan (unfortunately) has picked up the word "lame" and has used it to describe things in a rather rude manner. And he didn't say his "this is lame" comment during this activity.

(We're workin' on removing that little word from his vocabulary.)

Anyhoo, I pulled out some colored string and I had Evan go on a search for some sticks in the yard. He brought them inside and we put together a very simple, little wooden cross. It sits atop our altar behind the crown of thorns. Another project is to cut a cross out of lavender paper. Choose (or have the child choose) a holy card to place in the center of the cross. Also, cut out little white sheets of paper that will be glued on the cross around the holy card.

Once the cross and holy card are glued down, think with your child, about what sacrifices they can make this Lent.

What would be some good behaviors they can offer up for Jesus? Write these out on the white sheets and have the child glue them on the cross.

Use this throughout Lent as a reminder of things they can do that will make Jesus happy. They could also decorate around the cross with stickers (Evan likes his without stickers).

The last project for today, comes from The Catholic Icing Blog. This is an awesome blog for sharing our faith with the littles. The link to this printable is found here. You are supposed to color a square each day, but Evan doesn't like all.
So we got stickers. Heart stickers to show his love for Jesus every day.
He's enjoying watching the hearts get closer and closer to Easter. :)

Keeping Lent simple has been key this year. Planning too much or too many complicated things just leads to stress and unnecessary pressure that I place on myself.

There is beauty in simple things.




1 comment:

Grandma Jo said...

Such cute ideas!! Love them. So great in their simplicity! Evan looks like he actually enjoys them! What a fun way to learn about Jesus - but so important to learn how important Jesus is to us! Jesus loves you Evan - and so do I!!! LYAB!! :)