1) I’ve attached this Family Advent Prayer Packet that you could do at dinner (or before bed) with the Advent Wreath. Check it out here. If you want to pick up a copy in our office I have one for anyone who would like one.
2) Various Advent Ideas from the following websites: Websites with ideas
4) Decorate Differently This Year… I know many like to put the Christmas Tree up beginning at Thanksgiving. How about a new tradition…. Put the tree up but decorate it gradually in the spirit of Advent. Put things on it one week at a time. For example, the first week, just put the lights on it. The second week of Advent, put the ornaments on the tree. During the beginning of the Third week of Advent put the tenzle around the tree and on the Fourth Sunday of Advent put the Star on the top of your tree. That way is a gradual preparation for Christmas. It’s a way to illustrate preparing in stages for Christmas. And then, don’t take your tree down until the end of the Christmas Season (this year the last day of the Christmas Season is Monday January 9th – the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord (the day before is the Feast of the Epiphany where the three Magi come to worship the baby Jesus).
3) Don’t forget to Celebrate the Feast of St. Nicholas on December 6th. Lots of great ideas for this Feast Day. Ideas Here and Here.
Greg Bole has worked for years with individuals seeking to become US citizens and other legal considerations immigrants encounter. Greg shared some of his experience and answered questions as our guest speaker on June 13th, 2017.
As Catholics, we know we are expected by the teachings of the Lord to love and offer hospitality to those in need. We are also called by our Lord to protect the innocent. Do these commands create an irresolvable tension when it comes to immigration and Islam? Listen to Dr. Troy Hinkel, Co-Founder and Executive Director of Mission for the Holy Family School of Faith offer principles of discernment for Catholics on this sensitive yet crucial issue.
Recorded live Friday, March 31st at Church of the Ascension.
Meg Meeker, M.D., mother and pediatrician said this about how boyhood is at risk today:
As parents, we know that boyhood has been changing-for the worse. We remember when boys use to go trout fishing, sitting under a tree while daydreaming about the future, and now we fear that our boys are cutting themselves off from us with iPods, earbuds, and computer porn. [As parents] we grimace as our boys are inundated with cheap, nasty dialogue and graphic images that reflect cheap, nasty values and an impoverished imagination….Outwardly we go about our work but inwardly we hold our breath. Are our boys in trouble? If so, are they in more danger than past generations? Yes, and most definitely yes. But unlike some psychologists, sociologists, and educators, I believe that the trouble hurting our boys stem from three major sources: lack of close relationships with men (particularly fathers), lack of religious education, and aggressive exposure to a toxic media that teaches boys that the keys to a great life are sex, sex, and a bit more sex – and a whole lot of money and fame…We must be willing to see that our boys need isn’t simply more prescriptions, more money, more activities. What they need is us. You and me. they need parents who are willing to take a good hard look at what their sons think and what they are doing. They need fathers who will embrace their sons and watch them with the eyes of schooled hawks…The world has grown sad for our boys. But the good news is: we can bring them back. We can reinstitute some of the joy of boyhood for them, and we can ease their pressures (even the ones we think are beneficial for them, like earning good grades to get into an Ivy League school) by giving them the freedom to be boys: to simply enjoy pickup games of basketball in their neighborhoods, to find that save acreage of woods where they can hike and imagine, and to have that home library where classic adventure books await. To read more check out Meg Meeker’s book Boys Should Be Boys
You make the greatest and most lasting impact upon your children’s lives. We live in a society that does not value faith like they value education and extra-curricular activities. At your child’s Baptism the priest said:“You have asked to have your child baptized. In doing so you are accepting the responsibility of training him (her) in the practice of the faith. It will be your duty to bring him (her) up to keep God’s commandments as Christ taught us, by loving God and our neighbor. Do you clearly understand what you are undertaking?” You responded: “I do”. Jesus Christ is calling you as parents to help your child be the person that God created them to be and to help them get to heaven. Heaven, is the central goal for your child and everything else follows.
This page hopes to encourage you as parents and provide helpful tips, ideas, articles about parenthood and faith formation:
Receiving Sacraments is a vital expression of who we are as followers of Christ.
God desires more than anything to give us his life – His very life is received through the 7 Sacraments. A Sacrament is an outward sign instituted by Christ to give grace. The Sacraments of Reconciliation and Eucharist are traditionally received during the 2nd grade year (although older children and adults also receive these sacraments each year). The Sacrament of Confirmation is Traditionally received in the 8th grade year. Below is information about Sacramental Preparation at Church of the Ascension.
The Role of Parents:
The faith formation of children and their preparation to celebrate thesacraments is primarily the responsibility of parents. Father Andrew, as pastor, faith formation coordinators, catechists and the parish community share this responsibility and assist parents to bring their child to the fullness of a life of discipleship through prayer, support, formal catechetical programs and preparation processes.
Parents prepare their children for sacraments by first serving as an example through their own regular participation in the Sunday Eucharist, their own modeling of prayer and service, and their active participation in the life of the parish community.
Parents have the privilege, right and responsibility to be intimately involved in preparing their children for sacraments.
Parents are expected to attend parent sessions so that their ability to participate in the preparation of their child to receive the sacrament is enhanced.
First Reconciliation & First Eucharist Preparation
Preparation for a child’s First Holy Communion is 2 years. Children are to be registered in School of Religion one yearprior to their reception. For most child this means being in 1st grade classes prior to their 2nd grade year.
Preparation for Reconciliation and First Eucharist includes:
Weekly attendance at Sunday Mass
Attendance and active participation at weekly class.
Participation in sacramental preparation sessions (Forgiveness Day and Jesus Day)
Completion of parent/child home assignments
Providing a copy of the child’s Baptismal certificate (if not baptized at Ascension)
Participation in parent/child rehearsals
All candidates who have received the Sacraments of Reconciliation and Eucharist are encouraged to continue receiving the Eucharist weekly and to receive the Lord’s gift of forgiveness when needed (a few times a year is recommended)
The Sacrament of Confirmationis a gift of the Holy Spirit which confirms our initiation in Christ which began at Baptism and calls us to be witnesses of Christ’s life and love. It also completes the Sacraments of Initiation. It is the beginning of the next step in ones spiritual journey.
2 Year Program
We have a two year preparation Program for all candidates preparing for the Sacrament of Confirmation. Students must have completed Year I (traditionally 7th grade School of Religion) before entering into Year II (S&L).
Year I Confirmation
Students in Year I will show their readiness by doing the following:
1. Attend Weekly Classes from September – May 2. Complete any assignments given in class. 3. Perform 10 Service Projects (Stewardship Activities).
Each of these components are signs of their readiness to move forward in their Confirmation Journey. If one is unable to complete the above mentioned they will need to repeat Year I.
1. Provide a copy of the candidate’s Baptismal certificate (if not Baptized at Ascension). 2. Having attend Year I Confirmation (traditionally 7th grade) prior to entering Year II (traditionally 8th grade) faith formation. 3. Attend Weekly S&L meetings. 4. Attend a Confirmation Retreat 5. Complete 20 service projects (stewardship activities). 6. Candidates must complete all homework assignments.
1. Confirmation Information Sheet 2. Sponsor Form 3. Stewardship Form 4. Saint Paper Guidelines 5. Letter to the Archbishop
Completion of the things mentioned above are what we consider “signs of readiness” for Confirmation. It is important that each of these are completed and each candidate participates in each aspect of our program in order to be ready to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation.
We Need Your Help….Volunteer You can made a big difference!!!
Both VBS and Summer YFF need volunteers to make it happen. Please call the Youth Faith Formation Office for more info to to volunteer – 681-7683 or email@example.com
VBS 2017 will be June 5th – 9th
Vacation Bible School has become of of the highlights of the Summer for those who participate. Every year children come and leave excited and happy as they go through the rest of the summer signing the songs and doing the hand motions they learned. VBS is for kids pre-school 3 year olds – 5th grade (3 year olds need to be potty trained). We have both an AM and a PM session. Go to main page of website to register beginning April 1st.
Our intensive Summer Program meets for 4 hours each day during the week from 8:30am to 12:30pm. It will be Monday through Friday the first week and Monday through Thursday the second week. It covers the same amount of material as the traditional weekly program during the year. These two weeks are filled with not only great instruction for our young parishioners in 1st & 3rd – 6th grades, but also has many other great faith filled activites. Call for additional information at 913-681-7683. Click Here to register.