On the first Monday of the school year my hopes for a peaceful and sacred dinner hour were dashed. Temper tantrums, disobedience, screaming, dirty diapers, and throw-up threatened my best intentions. Dinner prep turned into a massive cleanup effort, and I was just grateful that something edible made it onto the table at all.
I didn’t feel like I was in a very good disposition to be in the same room with my family, let alone try to converse pleasantly with them over dinner. But I grabbed the booklet from Donna-Marie Cooper O’Boyle’s video Feeding Your Family’s Soul: Simple Lessons for Building a Faith-Filled Home anyway.
I had watched the first lesson on O’Boyle’s video earlier in the day. It was about Mother Teresa and loving our neighbor. As our family discussed the reflection questions from the video’s booklet, an amazing thing happened. We started to smile at each other again. Someone cracked a joke and we laughed. Instead of each of us turning in toward ourselves, we started to reach out to each other. We reconnected. We were a family again.
Feeding Your Family’s Soul is divided up into seven lessons:
–Learning to Love Our Neighbor from Mother Teresa
–The Tradition of Prayer
–Learning and Teaching Forgiveness
–Why Catholics Honor the Blessed Mother
–Learning and Teaching the Virtues
–Learning perseverance from St. Monica
–Learning Steadfast Faith from St. Teresa of Avila
Each lesson in the video is only 10-15 minutes long, but powerful. The lessons incorporate an explanation of one particular Church teaching, supported by quotes from Scripture, the Catechism of the Catholic Church, and the saints. Following the lesson explanation is a “Dinner Table Teaching” and a few reflection questions and/or activities to help you convey the lesson to your children and put it into action. And the fun recipes are a great bonus!
Donna-Marie Cooper O’Boyle is an inspiring and relatable host. As she relates her personal encounters with Mother Teresa, her humble demeanor gives her stories validity and impact. O’Boyle provides the inspiration and “how to” in her video, and the booklet that comes with the video will remind you of the discussion questions and activities when dinner time rolls around.
Feeding Your Family’s Soul empowers parents to reclaim their role as the primary educators of their children. Implementing its lessons only takes a few minutes each day at a time when the family comes together anyway. The lessons in the video are flexible, but they do encourage us to make family time a priority.
We’re living the missionary life in the heart of our domestic church. And Donna-Marie Cooper O’Boyle’s video is a help-mate along the way.
Look for the video at www.paracletepress.com, and be sure to check out the book that offers even more dinner time lessons: Feeding Your Family’s Soul: Dinner Table Spirituality.
You can also follow our family’s progress through the lessons at my blog pavingthepathtopurity.wordpress.com.
Visit our Book Notes archive.
Copyright 2017 Charisse Tierney