This Lent, have you taken a couple of moments to reflect on your spending habits? This month's Family Prayer Service challenges us to be good stewards of all our gifts, including our money. Think about the questions below.
1. What is your family's biggest challenge in terms of materialism?
2. Are your children easily moved in the direction of wanting more things? What influences them?
3.What do you want to pass onto your children about how money should be spent?
Note: Due to the Biblical Village, the March newsletter will be given out at the April sessions.
The March newsletter ties into the P.E.A.C.e talk at church this month.How old is "old enough" for sleepovers, iphones, video games, etc?
Ask yourself these questions:
1. What will my child learn from this?
2. What are the risks?
3. Does it seem to overwhelm his/her personality, or keep them from doing other enjoyable activiites?
Make Lent really count this year. Discuss the questions below as a family.
1. Does your family enter into Lent? How so? What would you ike to teach your children about Lent?
2. Do you know by name any people who are experiencng poverty?
3. Have the much-quoted words of Pope Francis about the poor prompted you to think about doing something new or different for Lent or any othr time? If so, what?
This article invites us to consider our role as parents in helping our children become the persons God created them to be. St. Catherine of Siena said "Be who you were created to be, and you will set the world on fire!" True and lasting happiness for our children lies in helping them become their true selves.We always want the best for our kids, and let's make sure that is rooted in who God wants them to be - which will be the best of everything for them!
1. Where do you see yourself in terms of responsibility for helping your children become who God intends them to be?
2. When you look at each of your children, what do you see?
3. What outside interference is most dangerous, from your perspective, in terms of pulling your children away from their potential?
The teenage Mary's brave "Yes" can lend us courage during our own tumultuous times. After reading the cover article from December's newsletter, comment on the questions below.
1. Where are you being led right now? Is it clear what God is calling you to do, or is it blurry?
2. Looking back, is there a time you said Yes! to something you didn't completely understand at the time and now you realize that God led you there?
3. How can we help children to listen to what God is asking of them?
The April Gospel story is the Crucifixion of our Lord Jesus, as related in Luke 23:33-43. Luke does not focus so much on the death of Christ, just saying "they crucified him and the criminals there." Luke instead focuses on forgiveness. His Gospel tells the story of the criminal who was forgiven and promised the kingdom of God at the last moment. Luke also relates that Jesus asked the Father to forgive those who were crucifying him, because "they know not what they do."
1. Do you have a story of forgiveness to share - if not your own, a story of someone you are close to?
2. Do you agree with Jessica (from the front page) that forgiveness is one of life's most important lessons?
3. In your experience, why do people sin? Do you agree with the author that past hurt and baggage can lead to larger sins?
4. Have you had the experience of growing closer to someone you forgave who was truly remorseful?
This month's Gospel story in the Agony in the Garden.
1. What does Jesus' approach to prayer in his time of suffering mean to you?
2. What has been the role of suffering in your own life?
3. Think of an experience of joy or hope that came out of a time of suffering in your life.
This article revisits Jesus' first miracle, when he turned the water into wine at the wedding of Cana. It reflects on Jesus' relationship with his mother, adn invites us to reflect on own relationship to our parents.
1. What is the role of a parent's advice in the lives of adult children? What do you expect of your own children in terms of your advice as they grow up?
2.Comment on whether or not you think it's important for people to be comfortable showing their spiritual lives publicly.
3. The wedding at Cana is the first of Jesus' many public miracles. Which miracle stroy of Jesus is your favorite or resonates most with you?
This article reflects on the story of Jesus walking on the water (Mt 14:22-33), and Peter's varying responses to Christ.
1.How does this gospel story speak to you?
2. Has there been a moment in your life where you have felt that you were "walking on water," overcoming a difficulty you would not have been able to overcome on your own?
3. Comment on Amanda and where she is in her faith. Can you relate?
4. In what way do you believe Christ is calling you to "leave the boat?" Where is your comfortable place and where are you being called?
These questions encourage us to reflect on Jesus' words about the coming of God's kingdom, as written in Matthew 25.
1. Which of those Jesus mentioned do you have the easiest time serving? Which are difficult?
2.In terms of living this gospel, do you best identify with the couples living it through foster care, service work, or jobs with non-profits? Or do you live it another way?
3. How is your parish in terms of commitment to the groups Jesus mentioned?