"The whole trouble is that -- literally -- we do not know what is good for us; and what makes the trouble still worse is that we think we do. We have our own plans for our happiness, and too often we merely regard God as somebody who will help us to accomplish them. The true state of affairs is just the opposite. God has His plans for our happiness, and He is waiting for us to help Him to accomplish them. And let us be quite clear about it: We cannot improve on God's plans." This Tremendous Lover, M. Eugene Boylan, O.C.R.

Monday, February 28, 2011

The Great Fast Lap Book

Next week begins the Great Fast this year, and I have several fun activities in mind for Sunday School. These crafts could easily be completed at home as well. To get the season started off on the right foot, I borrowed some ideas from my favorite crafty-Catholic blog, Catholic Icing, and adapted it to the Eastern way! Here are the links to make your own Lenten Lap Book:

(If you've never made a lap book before, check out this quick video to get you started!)

For the cover, I used an old bulletin, trimmed it, then glued it onto a black piece of card stock. This was then glued on one half of the file folder. If you don't have the old bulletins available, you can easily find a crucifix printable online.

On the left flap, I included a layered book of the three key messages of Lent: prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. On the bottom half, the children will choose three specific things that they can do during Lent. (I provided them with a list of ideas to choose from as well.)

HERE and HERE are the links to the documents for you to make these pieces.

For the center page, I used the adapted calendar mentioned in the link above.

HERE is the link to my Eastern count-down calendar.

For the right side flap, I used a collection of Lenten traditions. A picture of the item is included on the flap, then when you open it, there is a description of the item.

You can find this printable HERE.

I hope you enjoy making this lap book!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Traveling on the Ark of Salvation

On Saturday, March 19, 2011, our parish, St. John of the Desert in Phoenix, Arizona, will be holding a children's retreat! All are welcome and we will be learning about our Most Holy Theotokos, the Mother of God.

It will be a wonderful time! If you are interested in attending, please send me an email and I will get you the detailed information.

Monday, February 7, 2011

To mark the moment...

Z is currently studying to be a Deacon in our Church. His cassock arrived last week and yesterday was the first Sunday Liturgy that he wore it. Afterwards, we went out to lunch as a family, as always. Put simply, I wanted to mark this moment. To thank God for this blessing, and to tell you how it felt.

First day out with my husband wearing a cassock...

aware of our surroundings, our actions, other's perception of us, the kids' behavior. Did we clean our table nice enough? Did we use our good manners? Did others have questions?

But moreover, JOY. It fits. He fits.

God's will be done, Amen.