The Family Zone
SUMMER EDITION/ISSUE 62/ JUNE 13, 2021
Jesus as RESTORER
To pray means to open your hands before God. It means slowly relaxing the tension that squeezes your hands together and accepting your existence with an increasing readiness, not as a possession to defend but as a gift to receive. Above all, prayer is a way of life that allows you to find stillness in the midst of the world, where you open your hands to God’s promises and find hope for yourself, your neighbor, and your world. In prayer, you encounter God not only in the small voice and the soft breeze, but also in the midst of the turmoil of the world, in the distress and joy of your neighbor and in the loneliness of your own heart.
In the end, a life of prayer is a life with open hands where we are not ashamed of our weakness but realize that it is more perfect for us to be led by the Other than to try to hold everything in our own hands. (Henri Nouwen, With Open Hands)
Wishing a Happy Father's Day to Dads, Grandfathers and Godfathers in advance of next week, as we won't have an issue that Sunday. May you special dads be blessed in many ways!
Journeying with St. Joseph
There are a number of prayers to St. Joseph, including a simple novena (a prayer over 9 days). Pray this short prayer each morning for nine days and see if it changes your view of St. Joseph. We look to St. Joseph in a special way, as we celebrate Father's Day next week; so we have also included a video prayer for dads! St. Joseph, foster father of Jesus, pray for us!
O St. Joseph whose protection is so great, so strong, so prompt before the Throne of God, I place in you all my interests and desires. O St. Joseph do assist me by your powerful intercession and obtain for me from your Divine Son all spiritual blessings through Jesus Christ, Our Lord; so that having engaged here below your Heavenly power I may offer my thanksgiving and homage to the Loving of Fathers.
O St. Joseph, I never weary of contemplating you and Jesus asleep in your arms. I dare not approach you while He reposes near your heart. Press him in my name and kiss His fine Head for me, and ask Him to return the kiss when I draw my dying breath. St. Joseph, Patron of departing souls, pray for us. Amen.
Click on the link below for the readings that you will hear at the Sunday's Mass for the coming two weeks. This will give you a chance to prepare your heart and mind for full and active participation in Mass this weekend! For a Mass schedule in our diocese click on the green button below.
Family Stories: Story Time with a Positive Message! This week, in celebration of Father's Day, we focus on books about dads and families:
Just in Case You Ever Wonder by Max Lucado
Dad School by Rebecca Van Slyke
Grandpa Green by Lane Smith
Alma and How She Got Her Name by Juana Martinez-Neal
When you go to Mass this week, see if you can locate the AMBRY. The Ambry is a small cabinet where the Holy Oils are kept. The Holy Oils are used for Baptism, Anointing of the Sick, and for Catechumens. It is by the Sanctuary or Altar area. Can you find it? What does your Ambry look like?
As the school year winds down, take the time to pray this special prayer in your family or share your own intentions for the year!
At the end of the school year, we give thanks to God:
For all the teaching and learning that took place in our school and at home;
For the teachers and helpers that learned to teach in new ways;
For the moms, dads, and family members who helped us learn;
For the talents and gifts that have been shared and the challenges we faced together;
For the burdens that have been lifted, the hurts that have begun to heal,
For the respect and care that has been given;
For the friendships that have grown;
For the faith we have lived in our daily struggles;
For the hope that has lifted our hearts on the dark days; and for the love that keeps us going;
We give thanks for the community we are
and we ask your blessing upon us
May your Spirit continue to flow through our schools, our homes and our communities
Bless our families as we enjoy the summer months and pour out your love on us that we may return renewed and refreshed to continue our journey together
We make this prayer through Christ, our Lord, Amen.
FAMILY FIELD TRIPS!
Our Lady of Fatima Shrine-Buffalo/Niagara
A place of natural beauty, art, communal prayer, and renewal to thousands who visit the unique buildings and grounds. The magnificence and natural beauty of the Shrine is highlighted by an awe-inspiring Dome Basilica with a contour of the Northern Hemisphere in the dome. The impressive approach to the Basilica is down the Avenue of the Saints (over 130 life-size marble and bronze statues represent Saints from every race and walk of life) and around the serenity of the Rosary Pool. Two flights of stairs, with 63 steps, lead to the top of the Dome, where, in graceful majesty, stands a huge statue of Our Lady of Fatima. From the top of the Dome, visitors can view the entire Shrine grounds and surrounding countryside. For more information, click here.
Find ways to laugh and be well...play time is just for fun this summer; indoors and out!
Play Glow-in-the-Dark bowling one night with your family!
Great projects for exploring, designing, building!
Go outside on a nice day and fill some balloons with paint! Set up a canvas and attach the paint filled balloons to the canvas. Use darts to pop the balloons and watch them burst with color! https://youtu.be/faRruXDonXY
Watermelon reminds us of the sweetness of God's love! Here are two tasty recipes that use watermelon.
Make Dad a special treat to celebrate his special day: https://www.inthekidskitchen.com/fathers-day-recipes-kids-can-make/
Raising Kids Who Care
Wonder with the HOLY FAMILY
We all need time to refresh – personally, as a family, and as a couple. Imagine what it was like for Mary and Joseph raising Jesus. They must have needed time, just like any parents, to strengthen their own marriage. Likewise, they needed time with Jesus to strengthen their relationship with him. Their life was not so unlike ours when it comes to family. More than likely, this is where Jesus learned that his followers needed to refresh themselves as well.
Parents – How can you take time to refresh your relationship with one another? Have you gone on a date recently? What about an evening with adult friends and conversation?
Children – How do you re-energize yourself? What do you do that is fun? Who do you share that refreshing time with? Can you do something refreshing with your family? Maybe your friends?