The Family Zone

Lectionary-Based Playlist /Issue 56/April 25, 2021

"Those who keep his commandments remain in him, and he in them"

Last week we focused on what it means to be a disciple, and this week we will focus more on discipleship and what it means to lead a Catholic Christian lifestyle. There is a song "They will know we are Christians By Our Love," would someone know you and your family as Christians by the way you behave? As a "branch" of this big and beautiful vine of God's family, we are called by our Baptism to be a working and thriving part of the vine so that God can bear fruit in the world; we are all interconnected and dependent upon each other. Each of us is an important part of the Body of Christ! This edition of The Family Zone will provide opportunities for your family to consider how each of you are parts of something bigger and more important, and you have gifts to share!

Journeying with St. Joseph

Learn more about St. Joseph during this YEAR OF ST. JOSEPH!

St. Joseph is the Patron Saint of so many things! Being a patron Saint means he is a heavenly advocate for a place, craft, group of people, or other need. St. Joseph alone is the patron of:

  • The Catholic Church
  • Unborn children
  • Fathers
  • Immigrants
  • Workers
  • Employment
  • Explorers
  • Pilgrims
  • Travelers
  • Carpenters
  • Engineers
  • Realtors
  • Against doubt & hesitation
  • A happy death
  • China
  • Belgium
  • Canada
  • Croatia
  • Korea
  • Indonesia
  • Vietnam
  • Philippines
  • And many more places

These are the areas where St. Joseph is a known advocate, but you can pray with him and ask his prayers anytime. His story can inspire you in these areas, and maybe help you learn more about your connection to God!

To keep learning about St. Joseph, visit or follow us at

@rocdiocese on Instagram



Click on the link below for the readings that you will hear at this coming Sunday's Mass. 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 burgundy button below the text.

Family Stories:

Do you love to read to your kids? These stories will help you apply this week's theme to other areas of life and connect the lines between our beliefs and daily life!

  • Drop by Drop by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops teaches your child how to love neighbors you haven't even met
  • This is the Church by Sarah Raymond Cunningham talks about the Christian call to be the church out in the world
  • My Family Plays Music by Judy Cox focuses on how one family shares their gifts!

Parent Articles on the topic:

For Teens to Grow on their Discipleship Journey:


Below you will find "at-home" assignments if your child learns best through writing and completing worksheets:


Writing and Scripture practice from BibleWise:

find your way through the vine and branches maze:

FOR ELEMENTARY AGES and ADOLESCENTS: Fill in the pdf worksheet linked below from Catechism Angel on This is a free download, for more great worksheets, create your own account and follow Catechism Angel!

How do the Theological Virtues, the basis for a Christian lifestyle, connect to your everyday life? Try this exercise from Loyola Press and then send your cards to someone!

ALL AGES: Write out one of the "love your neighbor" commandments in family terms and use it as a teachable moment. For example, talk about what it means to covet your neighbor's goods and connect it to being jealous of what other people have, or being greedy for more. How does this happen in your family life? Write out things your family shouldn't covet and hang it in a prominent place!


Do you listen to podcasts throughout the week? We will share episodes to help you embrace week's theme and be able to converse with your kids feeling more confident! We'll also share family listening skills from time to time! This is a podcast episode from Catholic Bytes, that explains the reference of Vine and Branches in today's Gospel as an image of the Church.


Here we share ideas for personal prayer, family prayer and learning more about the ACT of prayer as a discipleship skill! Learn the Act of Love prayer and pray it as a family this week:

O my God, I love you above all things, with my whole heart and soul, because you are all good and worthy of all my love. I love my neighbor as myself for the love of you. I forgive all who have injured me, and I ask pardon of all whom I have injured. Amen.


Are you or your child a VISUAL learner? We've curated some videos that help you understand this week's theme!
Love God, Love Each Other
Gifts, Fruits & Charisms: What is the difference?
Section 3: Following God's Will


Children learn through play; here are some ways for you to keep learning about the faith theme of the week in a "hands-on" way!

Open-ended play helps a child to discover their gifts and their own creativity. In time, this type of play helps children learn a lot about themselves!

For open-ended play at any age try these toys for family play time and resist the urge to direct them!

  • building blocks: wooden, plastic disks that connect, plastic bricks, etc.
  • puppets (you can always provide supplies for making your own with paper lunch bags, googly eyes, markers and yarn!
  • A large package of pipe cleaners
  • stamps and ink
  • play food and pots
  • kinetic sand
  • recyclable materials to repurpose
  • gardening materials


Great projects for you to create something together for quality time!

FOR SMALL CHILDREN: On a nice day, outline your child's body in chalk on the driveway or sidewalk, and let them draw in their images for their own self portrait. Talk about all the things that make them special and unique in God's eyes.

FOR ELEMENTARY AGES: Make a picture of the vine and branches. On each branch, write one way you can connect with your neighbor to make the world a better place!

FOR ADOLESCENTS: What makes you special? There are so many things unique and wonderful about you! Think about your gifts and what you contribute to the world. Make a self portrait with Words. Watch the video to see the process and follow or just create your own self-portrait free hand!

ALL AGES: Create a family plan for connecting to others this week!! Make a difference out in the world!

Micrography Self-Portrait - Words & Art Combined - Demo Video - Art Lesson

Wonder with St. Joseph

I may just be a simple carpenter, but there are some things anyone can understand. I was brought up believing that God is the source of everything good in our lives, and it is our life’s work to spread that goodness. If I have extra, I should share. If I have joy, I should share. And likewise, if I am in need, I should not refuse. I tried to bring Jesus up with that same ethic, but he already understood it. Of course he did, I learned it from God and he IS God! Being a part of a family, including the family of God, means being there to help and get help. You know what? That sounds an awful lot like what it means to be part of the Church too!

Parents – Sometimes we think we have to always provide the help and never show weakness. Truth is, sometimes the best balm for our soul comes from our children! Imagine a world where our children felt empowered to help us too!

Young People – We all have a part to play in the Church. The pope, bishops, priests, deacons, laity – they all are important! How are you important to your parish? Your family is even known as the Domestic Church, so how are you important in your family? Imagine a world where we recognized everyone’s place!



CHARISMS: Special gifts the Holy Spirit bestows on individual Christians to help the Church grow.

Office of Evangelization and Catechesis

Roman Catholic Diocese of Rochester

Debtor in Possession

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