Set A Table for God Placemat Craft


I would like to thank reader and Catholic school teacher Pat who kindly shared a wonderful PDF of a placemat she has designed to help her students remember and pray for those not physically present at a meal, either due to death or distance. Pat shares the following:

I teach middle school religion and science at Good Shepherd Catholic School in Santa Cruz, California.  Many of our kids are from divorced homes and several have experienced the death of a loved one, even a parent, in the past year.  I told my students about a group of friends of mine who met for dinner every two months or so, until one of them died from cancer.  The next time we met, we asked the waiter to leave a place setting for our friend who passed away as a reminder to us that she is with us always.    So, in trying to make connections between the comfort of All Saints Day and a potentially painful Thanksgiving I recently came up with this place mat to use for Thanksgiving dinner.   My students and I had a great discussion about the many reasons that people may not be at our table, from death, distance or estrangement, and how it affects the other people in the family.  It’s too late for Thanksgiving, but it may also be helpful for Christmas or any family celebration.  My family intends to use it at every family gathering this year.

I thank Pat for sharing this – if you have a craft idea to share, please send it over and we’ll make it available to the many priests, religious, teachers and families who visit for religious education resources.

Download the “Set a Table for God” Placemat


About Author

Lisa M. Hendey is the founder and editor of and the bestselling author of the Chime Travelers children's fiction series, The Grace of Yes, The Handbook for Catholic Moms and A Book of Saints for Catholic Moms. As a board member and frequent host on KNXT Catholic Television, Lisa has produced and hosted multiple programs and has appeared on EWTN and CatholicTV. Hendey hosted “Catholic Moments” on Radio Maria and is the technology contributor for EWTN’s SonRise Morning Show. Lisa's articles have appeared in Catholic Digest, National Catholic Register, and Our Sunday Visitor. Hendey travels internationally giving workshops on faith, family, and Catholic technology and communications topics. She was selected as an Elizabeth Egan Journalism Fellow, attended the Vatican Bloggers Meeting, the “Bishops and Bloggers” meeting and has written internationally on the work of Catholic Relief Services and Unbound. Hendey lives with her family in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Visit Lisa at for information on her speaking schedule or to invite her to visit your group, parish or organization.


  1. Fantastic idea! We set a place at the table for Daddy even when he has to work late or is out of town, but that becomes Jesus’ spot…since He will be the Head of our Home until Daddy physically returns to the house! I think we’ll incorporate this broadened idea into our traditions. Thanks for the great resource.

  2. Many people from the Philippines normally do that! It’s a good reminder that someday, we too, will not be able to join the dinner. I just pray, God will still graces us with long and healthy lives!

  3. Thanks for sharing your talents and gifts from the Lord with us and our children. May our Merciful Lord bless you and your ministry!

  4. Pingback: August 2014 Sunday Gospel Activities |

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