Equipping the Domestic Church/ISSUE 108/3.19.23

St. Joseph

While many families will be celebrating St. Patrick's feast day this weekend, our churches will often take the time to host a special celebration today for the Feast of St. Joseph, the foster father of Jesus. St. Joseph is remembered as a quiet carpenter whose willingness to trust in God, and lovingly care for mother Mary and Jesus, makes him the patron Saint of fathers, families and our universal Church! The Feast of St. Joseph is a solemnity, which means it is an important day in our faith. It was because of St. Joseph, that Jesus had the prophesized connection to the lineage of David. If you do not have a St. Joseph's table celebration at your parish, you'll find ideas for celebrating it at home in this edition of The Family Zone.


During Lent, we fast from meat on Fridays and Ash Wednesday. We also eat smaller and fewer meals on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday and we try to fast from things that distract us from time with God. But, fasting isn't something we only do during Lent. Canon 919 in the Code of Canon Law calls us to the Eucharist fast, a fast we participate in one hour before receiving Holy Communion. We fast from both food and drink, except for water and medicine. This fast prepares us for receiving Jesus; the hunger we might experience draws us to recognizing the hunger we have for Jesus, himself, the Bread of Life!




Click on the link below for the readings that you will hear at the Sunday 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 purple button below.

Sunday Readings:

Dinner conversation FROM THE SUNDAY SCRIPTURES: On March 26, we will hear the story of Mary, Martha and the Raising of Lazarus. The three siblings were dear friends of Jesus. When Jesus arrives in Bethany, Lazarus has died, and Mary and Martha each approach Jesus separately to tell him that if he had been there, Lazarus would still be alive. At first, they are both frustrated and devastated at what has happened, but they also show trust toward Jesus in this moment. Sometimes life can be very challenging and sad and we can feel as if God has abandoned us. How can we as a family trust Jesus in difficult times?


Mary said YES to God! Make a list of all the ways in which your family will say yes to God during this Lenten season and beyond.

Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • We will attend Mass weekly
  • We will try each day to live by the Beatitudes
  • We will pick out a message from the Gospel each week and try to live our lives by it!


Watch these videos to help your family review the sights and sounds of Holy Week, which starts on April 2.
Holy Week for Children
Holy Week in Three Minutes


Welcome Spring (which begins Monday, March 20) with this fun gardening activity the whole family can enjoy! Create seed bombs to be dispersed throughout your yard after the danger of frost has ended. Follow the directions in the link below to learn how to make seed bombs and when and how to plant them!


March 25 is the Solemnity of the Annunciation of the Lord. Learn and pray the Magnificat as a family to observe the feast of Mary's YES!


As Holy Week draws near, consider ways your family can fully enter into this most sacred week in our Church year.


Here are some ways your family can celebrate the Solemnity of St. Joseph:

  • Make a delicious Italian dinner with traditional St. Joseph's Day foods
  • Take a family trip to the grocery store with a list of needs from an area food cupboard. Shop for families in need and bring the items to your local food cupboard in honor of St. Joseph!
  • Enjoy a family baking project from Catholic Cuisine:

Share a Story!

The Bad Seed by Jory John is the story of a sunflower seed who is bad, and knows it, until one day, the seed decides to change its ways. This is a great story to share with kids before or after a Lenten penance service or attending confession. The Sacrament of Reconciliation is a beautiful gift in that it allows us to think about our actions, express our remorse, receive forgiveness and absolution and try to be better moving forward. The Bad Seed helps kids better understand the value of self-reflection and can be a great start to making an examination of conscience! You can find The Bad Seed in bookstores and at your local library!

Office of Evangelization and Catechesis

Roman Catholic Diocese of Rochester

Debtor in Possession

Missed the previous editions of our newsletter?