How can we engage our children during Mass? Parents are super challenged with engaging their kids during Mass, while still focusing on their own personal encounter with Christ during the Mass experience.
Ginny Kochis has created a wonderful tool that can help parents do both. Her book, To Hear His Voice, is a Mass journal for kids. The book is designed to use before, during or after Mass to give parents and kids the opportunity to talk about what the Mass experience meant to them.
Each week the readings are pre-printed and labeled “God’s Turn,” allowing your children to hold their personal book. This frees you from having to share the missalette, so you may focus more clearly on the proclamation of the reading yourself. Next to each reading page is companion page, labeled “Your Turn,” where your child can write or draw. These pages prompt children to tell you in their own voice what the readings mean to them.
Following the readings section is a page labeled “Reflection Space” that allows children to write their thoughts about what comes to mind for them during their Mass experience. The page that follows the reflection is labeled “Meditation” and offers a contemporary example of how a reading relates to modern-day situations that children would experience.
The last section is titled “Wrap Up” and allows users to reflect on ways they can relate to aspects of the readings and ways that they can really “Go Forth Glorifying The Lord With Their Lives.”
It also outlines the saints and feasts to be celebrated each week, which can prompt more discussion about elements of our Church history and models of the Faith to help them practice our faith.
This would be a great gift for a child who is eight or older as a companion to religious education or as a Christmas gift. I myself use an adult Mass journal to capture my thoughts on the homily. I refer to it every year when writing Christmas cards to my parish priests to share which homily over the past year touched me the most!
As many of us are struggling to find engaging ways to share our faith with the emerging generations, this tool is such a wonderful way to plant seeds and spark faith-filled conversations about how to live our Catholic faith.
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Copyright 2018 Sherry Hayes-Peirce